Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Why Are Farts Funny?


Since there are no earth-shattering news stories demanding my attention this morning, I am finally free to discuss a subject that has always fascinated me, that is, why are farts funny? Perhaps the question should be restated as, why are farts funny…to men?

Flatulence, even the word itself makes me want to giggle. From my earliest memories, hearing someone fart has elicited laughter from me. My best friend growing up was Al Thomason, and the two of us never laughed quite so much as when we were engaged in some raucous flatulence competition. I would like to say that those immature, adolescent days of tomfoolery are over, but although I am now 55 years old, I still laugh at the memories.

You could get ten world leaders in a room discussing an eminent threat to civilization, like some asteroid hurdling towards the planet, yet if one of them inadvertently let a loud one slip, I guarantee you they would all be laughing, except for Hillary Clinton. Woman don’t get it. All of my life woman have looked down on men who think farting is funny. It’s like it’s beneath them or something. They always screw up their faces and say, “that’s disgusting!” Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. If scientists are to be believed, everybody does it multiple times a day, making it an entirely natural, reoccurring bodily function, sort of like breathing. Only, there aren’t companies out there manufacturing remote control devices designed to project breathing sounds across the room. That’s because breathing isn’t, er, well, it isn’t hilarious! You can’t buy a breathing cushion, but whoopee cushions are the number one selling novelty gift of all times.

Here’s a thought experiment for all men over the age of 40. What is the most famous and memorable scene from Blazing Saddles? It’s my guess that 95% of you just said, “that scene around the campfire when all the bean eating cowboys started farting.” The other 5% of you never saw Blazing Saddles and therefore must relinquish your man cards immediately.

My point is that no matter how cultured and respectable we become as men, the fundamental hilarity of a well timed fart remains eternally funny. It is my considered opinion that this is an act of God. Our creator, in his great wisdom has placed within the heart of man a childish funny bone. The uncontrollable impulse to laugh at flatulence is a kind of divine comic relief, meant to remind us that no matter how terribly serious our lives become, we are still capable of laughter.

Or, maybe we men are just disgusting.