Thursday, February 21, 2008

ass hysteria

What I am about to write shames me, but in the interest of honesty, I feel I must confess. Those of you with tender constitutions, or those who are breastfeeding or pregnant, are advised to hit the back button on your browser immediately, lest you and your infant be tainted by the foulness contained within.


Lately, I am a farting machine.

Now, granted, it’s not like I’ve never been flatulent before, but lately it’s out of control. I think I can trace the origins of this particularly strenuous bout to my discovery of All-Bran crackers. They have 5 grams of fiber per serving, and they taste like a heartier Wheat Thin, so I’ve been knocking down a box every three days or so.

Let’s take a look at the nutritional information and do the math.

There are nine servings per box, so if I’m eating three servings a day, that equals 15 grams of fiber…and 15 grams of fiber a day means that it sounds like someone shoved a string of firecrackers up my ass.

Poor G. If he weren’t an atheist, I’d nominate him for sainthood immediately. Last Sunday, we were watching The Bourne Ultimatum, and I took advantage of a particularly loud action scene to let loose with a few grumblers. As a general rule, I try not to fart in front of him; sure, I belch proudly, but some things are just too gross to share. But I knew there was no way I’d make it to the other room in time; my hasty retreat would just mean a case of the walkin’ farts.

Seconds later, G leaped from the couch and ran to the kitchen, where he frantically rummaged through his junk drawer for matches while howling, “GodDAMN, baby!”

“I’m sorry!” I called sheepishly.

Although that was embarrassing, at least G is my boyfriend and has seen me at my worst; he’s cleaned puke out of my hair, for god’s sake. But when I subject strangers to my evil butt miasma, then something must be done.

Two weeks ago, I got a massage and I couldn’t help farting. It was silent, but the reek was so intense it almost brought tears to my eyes. The therapist didn’t say anything, but she coughed. I didn’t say anything, but I tipped her 30% before slinking out the door.

The massage place shares a parking lot with a restaurant. On the way to my car, I passed the dumpster, which was filled with rotting food.

It smelled like Sephora in comparison.

Later that week, I told G about farting during my massage, and asked whether I should have said something to the therapist or just kept quiet. He said, “If it had been me and I felt one coming on, I would have excused myself and gone to the bathroom.”

“But I’m NAKED when I get a massage! I can’t just walk out the corridor to the bathroom!”

“Naked, huh?” he asked, stroking his chin thoughtfully.


This week, since I had another massage appointment, I decided to lay off the All-Bran crackers for a few days. When I went to the massage place last night, I was relieved to get a different therapist. She was wearing a batik skirt, Birkenstocks, and a flower over one ear. She greeted me by pressing her palms together and saying “Namaste”; in short, she was a classic textbook hippie. I got undressed and lay down on the table and she began working on my back.

I tried---oh, how I tried!---to keep my ass clenched tighter than a miser’s fist, but when she began pressing hard on my lower back, a stinkypuff emerged. Again, it was silent; again, it was horrific.

“I am so sorry,” I said, my face burning. I stared down at the floor through the face cradle, wishing it would open up and whisk me away.

“Nothing natural is shameful,” she said in a dreamy voice that made me suspect she’d been blazing a fatty right before our appointment. I heard some clinking, and then the smell of patchouli filled the air. “This will help,” she said, returning to the massage.

Perhaps there’s something to this hippie shit after all.