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Do you think a full moon affects people’s behavior?

Asked at Borders, 700 N.H. on November 15, 2005

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Photo of Alexander Solis

“Yes I do. I worked in a nursing home for two years and the residents would get restless and a little riled up when there was a full moon or stormy weather.”

Photo of Andrea Rauscher

“No. I think people control their own behavior. The full moon is just an excuse.”

Photo of Daniel Stover

“No. Most people I know don’t really keep track of the lunar calendar, so they wouldn’t even know if there was a full moon.”

Photo of Kevin Willmott

“I’ve always read that it does, but I can’t say that I’ve seen that to be the case.”

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Linda Aikins 12 years, 4 months ago

Nice picture Audvisartist! Thanks for sharing!

I've never thought about it, and I and my other personalities will have to keep track for a while!

Happy snowflakes today! Remember last year on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving when we had that awful awful ice storm? It's almost here.

Be careful not to slip and fall on your ice.

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

I enjoy this board because people seriously write things like "Twarog says..." Twarog! Great name. Sounds like a character on a sci fi series. Or a caveman movie -- or both, like "Land of the Lost." Twarog says you must bring me an egg of the giant lizard before the next full moon, and only then will we let your daughter go.

To the question of the day: no.

jwmound 12 years, 4 months ago

owww owwww owwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Dang skippy it does. Not to mention tidal changes,. due to gravitiational pull.

audvisartist 12 years, 4 months ago

Yes, the full moon definitely affects people's behavior. Back when I worked at KU Med, you could definitely tell when it was a full moon because of the increased number of ER patients! Speaking of moons, check out the shot I took of the moon the other night... it's pretty neat and was all done handheld with a digital camera! and scroll down just a bit...

neopolss 12 years, 4 months ago

My strategy for running for city commissioner will be to have a full moon placed on all of my lawn signs.

full moon = roundabout = werewolf kept on a leash

Somewhere a city ban is being violated...

enochville 12 years, 4 months ago

I think the most fascinating aspect of this question is the fact that, even in this society, there are some people who prefer to believe in their own biased perceptions, rather than the hard numbers of scientists who have studied this supposed phenomenon.

As was stated in the accompanying article, "Twarog says he's yet to see a scientific study that proves any connection between the moon's cycles and human behavior."

There are some questions science can never answer, such as the existence of God, but this is one question it can and has already answered at least for every outcome variable (human behavior) studied. I guess that it is instinctive to trust one's own experience more than anything else, and it is frightening to realize that although it feels like our brains are telling us reality, the truth is sometimes far from our perceptions. We are prone to "remember the hits and forget the misses".

It situations like this full moon and human behavior illusory correlation, the consequences of ignoring science aren't too severe, but when politicians or business men make policy decisions based on anecdotal evidence the results can be devasting. The same thing goes for voters who are persuaded by emotional and gut reactions.

When psychologists were first discovering principles of behavior, some wanted to hide these findings from the world lest some evil men or women use these principles to manipulate the rest of us to do what they wanted. Others warned that the only way to protect the public from falling victim to such manipulations would be to educate the public so that they could recognize what others were trying to do to them. The latter group won out, but I think we are doing a poor job of teaching people about these principles, as evidenced by the continued belief in this full moon unwittingly affecting human behavior phenomenon.

sunflower_sue 12 years, 4 months ago

enoch, I don't even know what you were trying to say! (Maybe the full moon is making you talk vague psycho-babble.)

As for science, many more mothers go into labor during a full moon than during any other moon phase. I speak strictly from personal experience and also on info from several hospital worker friends...two of which deliver babies. Maybe someone can look up a study as proof but I've got a shower to grout. Fun, fun!

Have a good day ya'll. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

nlf78 12 years, 4 months ago

I know that I've seen a full moon affect people's behavior. Strange things are happening! I'm going to run out and get my protective goggles now! I don't want to be the first blind woman in my neighborhood!

ms_canada 12 years, 4 months ago

Absolutely it does. When I was a psych nurse working nights, we always knew when the moon was full by the behaviour of the patients. We used a lot more sedatives on those nights and I kid you not. Hey guys, two more days and I will be in Kansas. Can someone tell me where to find Dorothy and Toto. I am so excited I can't eat. And that is excited!!

samsnewplace 12 years, 4 months ago

If you have ever worked somewhere answering the telephone to help the public, you know that a full moon definately brings out the unusual type of people and questions. When we start getting strange calls from folks, I check the moon phase calandar and sure enough if it is not a full-moon then it is very close to one. I know for a fact, people (maybe not everyone) do change with the moon phases.

Teapot 12 years, 4 months ago


Linda Aikins 12 years, 4 months ago

E_M - it's snowing in Lawrence? Is that where you are?

Ms_Canada, just click your heels together and say "There's No Place Like Home" and you could be here today!

Linda Aikins 12 years, 4 months ago

OMG Teapot!!! What an interesting post. We ARE totally cultured psychos. Is there a problem with that?

I really dislike your last sentence. With an attitude like that, I hope you stay in lurk mode. We are just having fun and you are NOT!!!

Aiko 12 years, 4 months ago

Teapot, I did what you said in your last sentence but please quit yelling with all caps!

neopolss 12 years, 4 months ago

I got squid flu last year, but it was easily cured by going to the homeless car wash. Afterwards we played softball!

Is that the teapot calling the marijuana pipe black? You gotta clean those out now and then!

jonas 12 years, 4 months ago

Teapot: I would think, after that, you'd prefer us to believe the idea of the moon influencing people's behavior. Without that, we're forced to believe that you are simply an inadequate little angry person.

Enochville: I won't come down on a side here, as it doesn't really mean a whole lot to me, but it is very difficult to accurately obtain clean data from behavior studies, in my opinion largely because we never know exactly what we're looking for, or at what level of obviousness, etc. in order to record it. Consider: would it be easier to measure hard data (which would be, as well, more resistant to change) such as ER visits, car accidents, etc; or is it easier to measure character differences such as someone acting, say, a little tweaked out?

I guess maybe I do have an opinion on the question: I would guess that there is a difference, but that the difference comes from people seeing a full moon and then acting on that observation.

Now pardon, I think I'll go pee on a fire hydrant.

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago

Wow...Twarog...who is Twarog, a new candidate for the Lawrence city commission??


hey is snowing...quick take cover...oh no!
1. lock all doors and windows!

  1. build up the emergency supply of food water, dogfood, signalling flags, batteries, and "little Debbies."

  2. get on your knees and pray...the snow is coming, the snow is coming, the snow is coming...OH MY!

  3. wake up, its only a dream. and, the damned full moon has caused you to have this episode of snow panic. snow panic...that's not in the DSM--the manual the psych professions use to define mental disorders...neither is moon madness--its a conspiracy--a CONSPIRACY!

twiggle 12 years, 4 months ago

I was thinking that this board had become awfully stream of conciousness today.

And there's a weird, "it was 80 degrees two days ago" kind of vibe... the shock of the impending winter.

Linda Aikins 12 years, 4 months ago


Is that the teapot calling the marijuana pipe black? LOVE IT!

bankboy119 12 years, 4 months ago

Has anyone else had trouble getting on LJW lately? For the past few days I have only been able to get to the main page. Must be the full moon coming.

Or else I had too many posts deleted so they decided they didn't want to delete anymore so they just didn't let me on.

I don't think that can be right though b/c the other day E_M had about 10 deleted by noon.

nlf78 12 years, 4 months ago

I think that the TEAPOT needs to take their happy pills and go to sleep in the snow. Really, you need to find a way to unwind and de-stress. Bankboy - I've had problems too!

Staci Dark Simpson 12 years, 4 months ago

EM-you rock!! You're a poet and we didn't know it!!!

From personal experience I have not noticed anything strange about a full moon. Other than there is a lot more roadkill. I heard a bunch of coyotes howling last night with the full moon and that was creepy. I wonder if it is maybe all in our heads so weird things happen because we have heard the full moon myth so many times. Like maybe we expect weird crap to happen and so it does. Who knows? I'll put the pipe down now.

Aiko 12 years, 4 months ago

Staci, don't put it down but pass it around. Be kind.

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

So, it appears Teapot got a little steamed! Besides, I thought we smoked crack around here. Geez.

Staci Dark Simpson 12 years, 4 months ago

Who is Vivian? I've been gone awhile and missed all the excitement. Gone for a month and I miss all the good stuff.

thunderbuns 12 years, 4 months ago

"Full moon and empty arms".

That affects my behavior.

Once, when my wife was in Kansas and I was in California for an extented period, there was a full moon. That evening I called her on the phone and told her to go outside and look at the full moon. And at that very moment I'd be looking at the full moon too.

She did.

ladysilk 12 years, 4 months ago

Thanks...I needed that laugh today. As a has-been teacher I would say that yes, the full moon makes people a little crazy. My kids were always a pain in the rear on the day of a full moon. Poor Teapot, sounds a little stressed, there are pills you can take for that...

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

Only if cheat by you using dilithium crystal filled shoes!

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

Okay, Aiko -- the next question is: What is the best concert you have ever seen?

For me, it was Frank Zappa, front row in a small venue. Shook hands with him afterward. Wow, what a treat.

Ceallach 12 years, 4 months ago

I absotively believe it. Rooooaaaaaarrrrrr!!!! Hasn't anyone else out there ever been Moonstruck?

ljw: I think you need to consider upgrading your system, getting a new system or hiring people who know how to maintain a system. Each day the delays seem to get longer. Earlier I had an epiphany that may have saved the world from war, starvation, crime, all that bad stuff. But it took so long for me to be allowed onto the site -- I forgot :( Now I have to catch up really fast!

omb: If someone is seafood intolerant does the squid flu bother them more than those who are not?

What was the name of the space critters referenced in the 3rd Rock episode the first time they saw snow? Some kind of chiggers or something -- anyone remember?

I'm a little teapot short and stout, I type in caps when the full moon is out. What's that all about? What if we don't have a marijuana pipe hippie? Will any hippie do?

thunder: What a romantic rascal you are!

enochville: Do any of those psychologists have names? Some people may have difficulty giving credence to statements without verifiable references. Who and when were the psychologists discovering the principles of behavior? In which papers, articles, etc., is the information published? Was there any mention made of a connection or lack thereof to the lunar cycles and human behavior? Without such references one opinion is as good as another.

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

omb: I have seen a lot of shows, but never have caught The Boss. Lucky you. Other great bands I've seen in concert include Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, and Lynyrd Skynrd (before the crash)!

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago

the 6news central tells us, "stay indoors!" apparently, according to them it is life-threatening hazzzzzardous out there!!!

well, gnomedog (who has no elves, just kibble), and I just took a short, death defying walk on the block for his relief.. [ [Jeff Foxworthy once said: "you and your dog take...and you both share the same tree!] .the precip has just about stopped...however, I sighted a ROAD CREW TRUCK TREATING THE STREET!

these road crew guys are obvously heros...risking life and limb out think they didn't hear 6news' heard it and laughed it off with a jaunty wave...they're used to facing death like today..."stay indoors" means nothing to them.

seriously, I don't understand the panic from 6news weather action eyewitness central command. yeah, there's a little wind...nothing much!

I love this board...Cealach...that poem LOL.

and, Even_Money...good job.

so, I'm off for a while...try to stay safe on this treacherous day...and if you see a road crew driver treating the street, remember what a hero he or she is.

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago

that quote of Foxworthy should read: "you and your dog take a walk...and you both share the same might be a redneck"

I should add that nowadays being enlightened we prefer the term "agro-american" to the negative aspersion "redneck."

and, that proposition, sharing a tree with my dog...has been true of me...

jonas 12 years, 4 months ago

Neopolss: Ummm. . . . Kessel is a run. Kashyyk is the one that's full of Wookies.

Aiko 12 years, 4 months ago

Beatrice, that would have to be Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and the Grateful Dead in Akron, Ohio. 5 hours of music. Very nice.

oldfashiongirl 12 years, 4 months ago

All I know about a full moon is that I always enjoyed walking home from church out in the country. It lit your way and I felt safer. OH GOD A TORNADO WARNING AND SIRENS EVERYWHERE!! bye.

Ember 12 years, 4 months ago

Hmmm... Moon's effect on the human body.

Well, let's see. The moon obviously has an effect ont he 70% of the Earth that is not solid, in terms of high tide and low tide, among other effects.

If it can affect the oceans, then with our bodies being 80-90% water, wouldn't it reason that it would affect us as well, at some molecular level?

Oh, and remember, lunatic comes from the Latin word 'luna'.

Go look it up and find out what it means...

Liberty 12 years, 4 months ago

I don't think it affects behavior unless they think it will. But it may be a good time to get on the scales because the gravitational pull of the moon may make you weigh less the same way it makes the high tide in the ocean. That may make people feel better. :-)

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

Dylan, Petty, and the Dead! Great show! But can anyone actually do the noodle dance for that long? And please tell me that Dylan didn't open for Petty. That would just be wrong.

Worst concert: Aerosmith -- it was the late '70s, they were on drugs or drunk, and just phoned it in. Terrible. All the energy of a bake sale. Sammy Hagar opened, and was much, much better.

BunE 12 years, 4 months ago

Jeez, Kessel is a prison Planet. All the wookies were sent to the Maw to work for admiral Daala. She was Tarkin's favorite.


Grundoon Luna 12 years, 4 months ago

Cops say full moon nights are very busy. Medical personal say ERs are very busy . . . Psych say patients are way out there. The moon controls tides and menstruation, but has absolutely no affect on we that are mostly sacks of water . . . I don't buy that for a minute.

I think I'm mad, I've always been mad, you know I'm mad. . . . Ode to Syd Barret . . .

ms_canada 12 years, 4 months ago

Best concert by far - Eric Bibb at the Banff center for the Arts in the idylic town of Banff in the Canadian Rockies. Son of Leon Bibb, the wonderful Eric Bibb. We had front row seats. Never forget it. Anyone else a fan of Eric Bibb or his dad? Asure_attitude, how about you?

enochville 12 years, 4 months ago

I know that it is late, so I am not sure if anyone is reading anymore. But, Ceallach, here are some studies, and there are plenty more where these came from:

TITLE: Crisis calls and lunar cycles: A twenty-year review. AUTHOR: Byrnes,-Gail; Kelly,-I.-W SOURCE: Psychological-Reports. Vol 71(3, Pt 1) Dec 1992, 779-785. ABSTRACT: Reviews 12 studies that examined the relationships among crisis calls to police stations, poison centers, and crisis intervention centers and the synodic lunar cycle. It is concluded that no good foundation exists for the folk belief that lunar phase is related to the frequency of crisis calls. In addition, there is no evidence for the contention that calls of a more emotional or "out-of-control" nature occur more often at the full moon. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved)

TITLE: Suicide and lunar cycles: A critical review over 28 years. AUTHOR: Martin,-S.-J; Kelly,-I.-W; Saklofske,-D.-H SOURCE: Psychological-Reports. Vol 71(3, Pt 1) Dec 1992, 787-795. ABSTRACT: Reviews 20 studies examining the relationship between completed suicide or suicide attempts/threats and the synodic lunar cycle. Most studies indicated no relation between lunar phase and suicide measures. The positive findings conflicted, have not been replicated, or were confounded with variables such as season, weekday, weather, or holidays. It is concluded that there is insufficient evidence for assuming a causal relationship between the lunar cycle and suicide. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved)

TITLE: Geophysical variables and behavior: LXVIII. Distal and lunar variables and traffic accidents in Saskatchewan 1984 to 1989. AUTHOR: Laverty,-W.-H; Kelly,-I.-W; Flynn,-M SOURCE: Perceptual-and-Motor-Skills. Vol 74(2) Apr 1992, 483-488. ABSTRACT: Analyzed the daily total number of traffic accidents (200,545) and traffic accident severity for the years 1984 to 1989 in Saskatchewan, Canada, to estimate relationships with day of week, season of the year, and various lunar variables. A higher number of accidents occurred during winter months and weekends; however, more severe accidents tended to occur during the summer months. No relationship was found for lunar cycles. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved)

enochville 12 years, 4 months ago

Ceallach, a few more: TITLE: Attempted suicide and the lunar cycle. AUTHOR: Mathew,-V.-M; Lindesay,-J; Shanmuganathan,-N; Eapen,-V SOURCE: Psychological-Reports. Vol 68(3, Pt 1) Jun 1991, 927-930. ABSTRACT: Analyzed 383 cases of attempted suicide presented during 12 complete lunar cycles (1 yr). No support was found for an association between attempted suicide and the lunar cycle, especially at the full moon. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved)

TITLE: Parasuicide and the lunar cycle. AUTHOR: Rogers,-Tim-D; Masterton,-George; McGuire,-Ralph SOURCE: Psychological-Medicine. Vol 21(2) May 1991, 393-397. ABSTRACT: Explored the relationship between parasuicide and the lunar cycle in 20,919 parasuicide patients (aged 16+ yrs) during 222 complete lunar cycles from January 1, 1969, yielding 6,556 consecutive days. Analysis shows a pattern characterized by an increase in parasuicide in the 1st and 3rd wks of the synodic month, corresponding to the new moon and full moon respectively. The effect accounted for approximately 0.7 out of the average of 46 parasuicides per 100,000 adults per lunar cycle, a rate that fails to reach significance. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved)

TITLE: Lunar cycles and human aggression: A replication. AUTHOR: Russell,-Gordon-W; de-Graaf,-Jane-P SOURCE: Social-Behavior-and-Personality. Vol 13(2) 1985, 143-146. ABSTRACT: Presents a systematic replication of an earlier work by G. W. Russell and M. Dua (see record 1985-04079-001) on the relationship between lunar cycles and aggression. Data came from the official records of all games played in the Western Hockey League during the 1983-1984 season. Results indicate nonsignificant differences in days of the week and in player aggression across the phases of the synodic cycle. Analyses of 2 seasons of hockey involving overlapping franchise cities and different player-Ss did not support a relationship between the synodic cycle and interpersonal aggression. The persistence of lunar beliefs and their links to the literature on selective exposure and interpersonal experiences is discussed. (17 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved)

beatrice 12 years, 4 months ago

ms_c: Eric Bibb isn't my fave, but he can play a sweet guitar. I hope you have fun in Lawrence!

jonas 12 years, 4 months ago

Don't blame me if the Wookies don't know how many "Y"s are in their home planet.

jonas 12 years, 4 months ago

Best concert: My first, at the ripe age of 13. White Zombie, Pantera, and Megadeth. Thought I was gonna get killed, but the music was great.

After that: Tool at Kemper promoting the Lateralus CD.

Ceallach 12 years, 4 months ago

enochville: Well, if that is all you have to support your opinion, I don't know if I can go along with it : ) : )
Thanks, enoch. I find that very interesting reading and appreciate your taking the time to post them.

I've never been a concert goer : ( color me dull! I did see the Oak Ridge Boys at the Fair in Topeka one year, does that count?

Ceallach 12 years, 4 months ago

OMG omb, Blizzard O'Doom? Sounds Irish -- it must be great : )

thunderbuns 12 years, 4 months ago

How 'bout:

Argent (hold your head up) Emerson, Lake & Palmer (What a lucky man) Black Sabbath (the wizard.) Cream (white room) Steppenwolf (magic carpet ride) Mountain (Mississippi Queen) The Animals (house of the rising sun)

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago

OMB: daily, gnomedog and I walk either ten or twelve blocks, for one long walk each day.
today, we did this bravely against all odds, from 4;40 to 5;15pm. if I hadn't had my gnome watchcap gloves, and flannel shirt on...would never have made it back alive!

yes, we've survived this blizzard o'doom...this time. dunno if can ... make ... next time!

seriously, the "every fathom of weather" and the "angry polar bear" wow, he's shot his wod for this? what's he going to do when snow spikes to say ... 3 inches accumulation and 40mph windy...knotty boy, just give up all the panic!

thunderbuns 12 years, 4 months ago

I challenge anyone here to tell me what show "Happy Kine and the Mirth Makers" was on...............

There's a new car it for ya!!!!!!!!!

killjoy 12 years, 4 months ago

Blizzard O' Doom can become Roundabout of Souls

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago>

to support the garden gnome liberation front...etc.

killjoy 12 years, 4 months ago

Here's a good (funny) Gnome site:

scroll down for funn pics of gnomes

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago

Thanks Killjoy!

the "die screaming with sharp things stuck in your head" shop...OMG! very damned funny...

very funny gnome rox.

bearded_gnome 12 years, 4 months ago

just happened to scroll down slightly to the employment ads...first one says:

"dietary: we need a flexible cook and dietary aide"

so I'm thinking...just how 'flexible do these people need to be...beyond double-jointed? wrestlers?

Thanks Killjoy...that site was funny.

thunderbuns 12 years, 4 months ago


100 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GreenEyedBlues 12 years, 4 months ago

LOL Boogeyman! That was super catty. I loved it.


neopolss 12 years, 4 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

BOE 12 years, 4 months ago

Teapot, (Tempest in a):



Are you?

Once, I and a group of fellow farmhands decided, because of a full moon, that we had enough light to unload a big ol' "minnie" HD800 irrigation motor out of a pickup, with a winch truck. Both! chains slipped!! and the winch came crashing down on the pickup and motor. This had never happened to us during a new, half or 3/4's moon (waxing or waning!). My fellow farmhands (Mexican) said it was the full moon. I concurred. The boss said it was because we were dumb***es.

To this day I know full well the incident would have never happened w/o that full moon and I also know that me and the Mexicans were'nt "TOTAL PSYCHO's", nor "CULTURED AND INTELLIGENT" and we sure as heck were'nt no "MARIJUANA PIPE HIPPIES"!

So there.

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