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Jewish Journal

Why is Passing Gas So Funny?

by Ilana Angel

April 22, 2014 | 5:10 pm

My son thinks all jokes regarding farts and poop are hilarious. Me, not so much. I suppose an unfortunately timed passing of gas can be funny, but there is nothing funny about a bowel movement. Nothing. My older sister called me this morning and she was laughing. She laughed for three minutes before she said anything I could understand. She managed to calm herself down enough to tell me what was going on.

My older sister lives in Montreal, works as a hairdresser, and is hilarious. I love her very much and we speak several times a day. This story is embarrassing, but too funny to not share, so she has given me permission to write about her unfortunate morning. She suggested I say it was someone else, but then people will assume it was me, and the truth is it was her, so we are going to stick with the facts.

As I write I am laughing to be writing a story about farting. I almost didn’t do it at all, but it is part of life isn’t it? I write about everything else in my life, and this is funny, so while I imagine some may be offended, I say lighten up. It can’t all be serious. Life is funny and on a day when I have a lot of serious things going on, it is good to have a laugh and be reminded that laugher not only feels good, but is good for you.

My sister shares a fence with her neighbor. This morning she went outside to smoke. (A disgusting habit and we are working on her quitting.) She sat on one of her garden chairs and proceeded to pass wind. Not a dainty ladylike passing of gas, but a massive fart I may have actually heard in Los Angeles. As she giggled to herself, she heard someone clear their throat and quickly realized her neighbor was outside.

She panicked and was not sure what to do. She immediately tried to ease her embarrassment by saying out loud to her dog, “Rosie! That was crazy. Shame on you!” As she smiled, proud of her quick thinking, my mother opened the door to the garden and asked my sister why she didn’t take the dog out with her. So now she is outside with a barking dog, who just arrived, and can hear the neighbor laughing.

She wanted to go back in the house but had to stay outside with the dog. Still certain she could make him think it wasn't her, she lifted her phone to her ear and pretended to have a conversation. This way the neighbor would not talk to her and she would be less embarrassed. She is having a full-blown imaginary conversation when her phone starts ringing. Now the neighbor is laughing as the lying continues.

He has not only heard her rather thunderous toot, knows it was not the dog, but caught her in the lie with the fake phone call. She waits for the dog to finish her business and she quietly goes back in the house, where she starts laughing uncontrollably, and farts again. She then called, told me the story, and said she needed to move. It was the funniest story and we laughed for the entire twenty minutes it took her to tell it.

In the middle of a very busy day, my sister’s fart was a good laugh. It is rare for me to laugh from deep in my soul. Today my sister made me laugh so hard my stomach hurt and I couldn’t catch my breath. Her laughing was infectious and while I didn't plan on writing about farts, at the end of the day farting is funny. Gross, but funny. I had a smile on my face and I laughed as I tackled my day while keeping the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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