A few days ago Mister Soandso paused in his giggle fit to show me the Imgur file titled, “Thermal Fart” and I have to admit sharing it with a few others. Others who I thought might at least feel the corners of their mouths twitch in appreciation of seeing a person fart in technocolor. Because, really, who doesn’t find farting funny? Actually, I can think of some very unfunny fart moments such as death bombs in enclosed places and during your big presentation for work. But in general, it isn’t only adolescent boys who smirk over flatulence. Farting seems an international and intergenerational gag in the making. Except for those who are a bit squeamish about such things. (Like me. Although I have come quite a long way on the subject. Curious? Read here.) But I have long held this belief: if the act of flatulence was visible, people would do a whole lot less of it, thus depriving amateur and professional comics of vast amounts of material.
Proof of action is a big inhibitor for some folks. So if farting also left a visible vapor trail, would it keep your sphincter a bit tighter in public? I think so. After all, isn’t the possibility of sharting one’s self a big inhibitor for most folks?
In 2004, Ben Stiller’s “Along Came Polly” introduced us to the horrors of sharting as well as naming that poor little indiscretion of flatulence with additions. Before that movie, I’d never heard the term – probably because most folks would rather die than admit such things happen. Even if the question had occurred to me, I doubt I would have asked anyone. I mean, at what point in a conversation is a good time to insert, “Say, how would you define that awkward and unfortunate event where you have a bit of flatulence, but due to intestinal distress, your release of flatulence includes a bit of fecal matter?” For me, I can’t really think of too many conversations that lend themselves to that. Maybe with absolutely trusted friends and family, but probably not even then.
But apparently other folks don’t follow the same conversational etiquette boundaries as myself so when they have these questions, they post them here on the internet for all the world to see and comment. It is truly amazing how much information is out there just for the asking. How did we survive before Google? Well, for starters, we kept our mouths shut or blamed things on our pets.