The rougarou, or loup-garou, is a mythical swamp dweller in Louisiana who is very much like the werewolf of Eastern Europe. This is a human who shapeshifts into a wolf, whether when the moon is full, or by choice, or having failed for seven years to perform his or her Lenten duties. Anyway, rougarous are not very popular. Some parents advise their children to behave lest the rougarou come to get them!
Since there are these kinds of bad hombres running around, it is no surprise that in folklore there are supposedly effective techniques to thwart them. One way is to leave 13 pennies or 13 beans by the door to the house. Supposedly, when the rougarou tries to enter to do some mischief on a child within, he starts to count the pennies. However, rougarous are dense: they can't count past twelve and so they get upset and go away. I put out 13 pennies, just in case!
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