the shocking truth about the wolf in sheep’s clothing



So there’s this wolf, right, and he finds this perfect sheepskin just lying on the ground, and he’s, like, Score!

He puts the thing on and it fits him like a Herve Leger dress.

The wolf saunters, all casual, into a nearby flock and seeks out some tasty young morsels.

The sheep barely notice what’s going on, because of the disguise, and because they are stupid.

Meanwhile the shepherd is roaming through the flock, he’s got his strut on, and he sees the sheep that’s really a wolf, except he thinks it’s really a sheep – and he slaughters him.

Did you know the fable ends like that?

It often gets confused with an idiom from the King James Bible: “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”

Many people think, as I did, that the fable ends with the cross-species-dressing wolf eating some innocent (and confused) little lambs, with the moral that warns you to beware the dangerous person who pretends to be who she is not! (or meets you for coffee at Starbucks wearing nothing but a sheepskin!).

But according to Jonah Sachs, who wrote the excellent WINNING THE STORY WARS, the fable is actually a warning to wolves:

…don’t try too hard to fit in. You’re better off being yourself.

Aug 29, 2012

1 Comment · Add Yours

I’m always amazed at how much we take for granted. I, too, didn’t know the correct ending to this fable. Just goes to show that the stories we tell ourselves are frequently based on bad (or made up) information. I’ll remember this next time I’m tempted to join the “safety” of the crowd.


Add your comment