Jim Dawson, author of Who Cut the Cheese? A Cultural History of the Fart (Ten Speed Press, 1999), Blame It on the Dog: A Modern History of the Fart (2006), and Did Somebody Step on a Duck? A Natural History of the Fart (2010), puts his nose where it doesn't belong, so that you can savor the latest news blasts!
A BLAST FROM THE PAST
A bronze statue of Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin--located outside the Finland Station in St Petersburg, Russia, where he returned from exile in 1917--was badly damaged in 2015 when a bomber blasted a hole in Lenin's coat. There were no injuries except for Lenin's dignity.
20 WEIRD THINGS TO BUY ON AMAZON
In 2012, Jim Dawson's Who Cut the Cheese? A Cultural History of the Fart made the San Francisco Chronicle's list of "20 weird things to buy on Amazon" (photo 16).
The original source of this Mount Rushmore parody was apparently the German travel site queer-travel.de. It can't be found there now, but the image has been reposted on dozens of other Websites.
In this magazine from Sweden, the word fart means "speed."
The perfect place for making whoopee? For this 2011 street art project, Los Angeles photographer Alexandra Loftus says (via e-mail) that she "filled whoopee cushions with plaster, spray painted them kitschy whoopee cushion pink, set bolts in the back of them... then bolted them to various benches around town and documented them..."
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In this photo, Alexandra Loftus paired musician Dan Janisch with an opportune cloud formation in the Los Angeles sky.
THE ROLE OF FARTS IN RELATIONSHIPS
Click photo for complete article.
THERMOGRAM OF A HUMAN FART
The Science Photo Library in London has released this thermogram of a human fart (red, lower left) as it leaves a human body. The gas is red because it's still at body temperature, which is warmer than the surrounding temperature. For more amazing photographs visit http://sciencephoto.com.
(Click sign for complete article.)
"Oops, my ass is just like Old Faithful."
(Courtesy of http://tackytouristphotos.com)
WARNING: NEVER fart in a wetsuit!
FART WITHOUT FEAR COOKBOOK
The seventeenth-century English politician John Thurloe wrote that "there are five or six different species of fart." If that's so, then Wayne Chen and Gary Goss's new Fart Without Fear Cookbook--with its 80 recipes for every comfort food from quiche to chicken fried steak with gravy--threatens to drive yet another couple of species onto the endangered list. We must ask ourselves, "If cutting the cheese means we stop cutting the cheese, are we doing the environment (and our fart-loving friends) a favor?" (publishingworks.com)
THE SINGING BUTTS FART UP A STORM
What started out as a joke is now being marketed to skeptical retailers: The Singing Butts, which puts farts to music.
Photograph by: Handout, PNG
Photo from New York Press.
NO MORE DIVORCE FARTS!
Denver science teacher Francis Bibbo's Better Marriage Blanket, made with activated carbon fabric that quickly absorbs fart stink (and protects against chemical weapons), has become a YouTube sensation. A Queen-size costs $49.95 (i.e., 50 bucks) and a King-size is $59.95 dollars.
BERKELEY BREATHED's BREATH OF "FRESH" AIR
The Los Angeles Times ran this self-portrait of children's book illustrator Berkeley Breathed on the cover of its October 3, 2009, Calendar section. The dog in the upper right corner is flying on the power of its super-chunky flatulence.
SONGS FOR FART LOVERS!
It's been sixteen years now since the Grammy Awards snubbed Da Yoopers' 1994 CD, Songs For Fart Lovers, but that hasn't stopped Jim Dawson from including it in his Did Somebody Step on a Duck? chapter about the Yooper culture of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. With songs like "She Loves to Fart," "If She Farts on Da First Date (She's a Keeper)" and the tear-jerking "If I Could Fart Like My Dad," Songs For Fart Lovers is guaranteed to be one of those evergreens, like Phil Spector's 1960s Christmas album. (www.dayoopers.com)
NICK SWARDSON CD
Actor-comedian Nick Swardson is familiar to fans of TV's Reno 911 and several Adam Sandler films, including I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry and You Don't Mess With the Zohan. His October 2009 CD says it all.
THE ULTIMATE FART SILENCER
In December 2008 a Chinese prankster from WuHan announced his new invention called The Ultimate Fart Silencer, that looks like a tooth brush tube with one end cut off and the other punched with holes. You insert the open end first where the sun don't shine. To sweeten the smell, you can also put a perfume-scented cotton ball inside the tube, says the "inventor," who calls himself Big Chicken Mushroom.
COW BACKPACKS TRAP METHANE GAS
Is this the future of the cattle industry, now that cow farts have been declared "greenhouse gas" by the new Clean Air Act?
Chinese sculptor Chen Wen Ling’s solo exhibit, “Emergency Exit,” which opened at Beijing’s Joyart Space in late August 2009, included a bronze Wall Street bull being propelled by a space-shuttle-like blast of flatulence coming from its ass, as its horns pinned the figure of ponzi-schemer Bernie Madoff against the wall. Called “What You See Might Not Be Real,” it supposedly represents the runaway economy goring Wall Street’s greedy bingers.
SPARROW FART STAMPS
From a chapter in Did Somebody Step on a Duck? called “His Eye Is on the Sparrow Fart,” Dawson reports, “You’ll have to get up pretty early in the morning to find anyone who celebrates the expression 'sparrow fart' more than New Zealanders. They’ve put it on a postage stamp. “If you wake up at sparrow fart, are away with the fairies, get stuck in boots and all, or are prone to throwing a hissy fit, you are, like the latest issue of New Zealand Post stamps, a classic Kiwi,” the New Zealand Post [Office] said on July 4, 2007. “The new stamps have an added twist—people can rub off the black mark to reveal the definition of the expressions.” (The other ones mean throwing yourself enthusiastically into an activity, traveling far away, and losing your temper.)
“Post Stamp General Manager Ivor Masters said, “[W]e developed the list by going through loads of books and dictionaries and then whittled the list down to what we felt were still most commonly used. There are many more out there and this list is the tip of the iceberg.”
“When I contacted Mr. Masters two years later to see how the sparrow’s fart stamp was doing, his office responded that the issue had sold very well to both collectors and regular stamp users, but since the stamps were sold as a full sheet, ‘it is impossible for us to identify sales of the ‘sparrow fart’ themselves. We did receive a couple of letters with reference to sparrow fart but no more letters than other stamp issues. The term sparrow fart is quite common in New Zealand and I would say it’s generally accepted as part of our language.’ In other words, hardly anybody objected.”
THIS IS RECTAL TAP
Laughing Hyenas Films' It's Tough Being Me is a mockumentary about Fred Jarow's invention of the Remote Control Fart Machine, which Jarow claims has been America's best-selling novelty item since he introduced it in 1993. The machine is essentially an "electronic whoopee cushion" that can be activated by remote control from the next room. (You'll find more information on the fart machine in other items below.) The writer and director is television veteran Daniel Chasin. For more information, check out http://www.itstoughbeingme.com.
MAKING A STINK
The American Reporter reported in January 2003 that museum officials at the Dewa Roman Experience in Chester, England, created a stink when they added the appropriate smell to their reconstruction of a Roman latrine. Unfortunately, it was so realistic that several visiting school children became sick on the spot. The odor, called Flatulence, was created by Dale Air (www.daleair.com), an aroma manufacturing company in Lancashire, England. "The smell was disgusting. It was like very strong boiled cabbage, sweet and sickly," supervisor Christine Turner said in a BBC interview.
Dale Air makes nearly 200 different odors, both food and non-food related.They have Coffee, Eucalyptus and Lavender, but they also have Dinosaur, Boiled Cabbage, Mustard Gas, Sweaty Feet and Old Drifter.
However, Dale Air does not make Vomit.
The company says theme-based aromas are the wave of the future. It provides realistic smells of horses at Scott's Hut in New Zealand, coal fire smells in the Tenement Museum in New York, and even the odors of a swamp and a Tyrannosaurus Rex's breath at London's Natural History Museum.
Dale Air's next venture is movies, where they "aim to change the theater experience."
A former Pentagon scientist has been working on a new fart weapon, according to the Los Angeles Times (November 10, 2002). Actually, it’s not entirely new. During World War II, “military researchers developed a repulsive, fecal-smelling mixture and packed it in a squirt tube. It was given the humorous name of Who Me?” It smelled roughly like the odor added to natural gas, “with a heavy dose of spoiled mushrooms” mixed in.
But now Pamela Dalton, who works at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, has come up with a new compound that combines Who Me? with another government formula called Bathroom Malodor, which was originally invented so that bathroom cleanser manufacturers could test their products. During sniff trials, people of many ethnic backgrounds called Bathroom Malodor the most vile odor they had ever encountered. But Dalton wasn’t satisfied with a mere vile stink, so she has come up with Stench Soup, combining “the worst of Bathroom Malodor and Who Me?” It’s so obnoxious that it practically freezes people in their tracks and clouds their minds to the point where they become confused.
So far the Pentagon hasn’t figured out how it could weaponize Dalton’s Stench Soup into stink bombs, plus there is still a problem of whether it could be considered a chemical weapon subject to ethical and legal tests.
I SAY THERE, I LET A BIT OF A FAHT, YOU KNOW!
According to an Internet Movie Data Base item dated May 28, 2002, British actress Helena Bonham Carter, known for her upscale Merchant-Ivory roles, eased the tension during a sex scene with co-star Paul Bettany on the set of the film Heart of Me by farting. Bettany, best known as Russell Crowe's imaginary friend in A Beautiful Mind, admitted he was horrified not by Helena's wind, but by the fact she proudly announced it to everyone on the set. He said, "She farted on me, announced the fact to the cast and crew, and of course I was the one who ended up feeling embarrassed." But the farting episode hasn't put Bettany off working with the actress again: "She's barking mad, keen as mustard and funny as fuck!"
MR. METHANE VIDEO ARRIVES WITH A BANG IN U.S.!
Since no film footage or recordings of France's infamous Le Petomane exist from the late nineteenth century, we'll have to content ourselves with his rightful descendant, Mr. Methane, England's Prince of Poots, who is offering his video--Mr. Methane Lets Rip!--to American audiences. The camera gets a ringside seat at one of Methane's stage performances, as he farts along (in tempo and relatively in tune) with classical music (including 'The Blue Danube Waltz" but omitting "The Buttcracker Suite"), imitates a pesky bumblebee, creates a talcum powder blast, breezily snuffs out candles, and imitates several characters from Robin Hood, all with his talented bunghole, of course. For a finale, this caped crepitator sticks a peashooter up his butt and fires a dart at a huge balloon several feet away. All this horseplay is broken up by a rousing music video for his song "We Love You, Mr. Methane" and candid-camera footage of him (out of costume) shocking unsuspecting tourists at an English seaside resort with rip-roaring flatulence (captured surreptitiously in Sphincter-Scope). Naturally bad taste, bad puns and corny humor prevail throughout. Visit www.fartvideo.com or mrmethane.com.
PULL MY FINGER FILM!
It's official. Richard Halpern, one of the producers of the popular Pull My Finger CD that contains 99 recorded farts, is now living in Hollywood where he's co-producing a documentary film about farting, called, oddly enough, Pull My Finger. Halpern says the camera followed him along on his national tour earlier this year (2000), which included stints on both The Howard Stern Show (both radio and the TV rebroadcast) and The Donny & Marie Show. He hopes that he can also license footage from popular films to show how flatulence has become a big crowd pleaser. Furthermore, to give Pull My Finger a patina of respectability and intellectual weight, he interviewed yours truly to get a historical perspective.
"The most amazing thing of all," says Halpern, "is that we got a lot more response from people who saw us on Donny & Marie than we did from people who listen to Howard Stern." (www.fartcd.com)
HEY, LADY, LISTEN TO THIS!
Speaking of my chapter on Hollywood, I credited Blazing Saddles with being the first mainstream American film with a fart joke, but after watching Jerry Lewis' 1963 version of The Nutty Professor, I have to revise my cinematic history. In one scene, as Lewis' title character, nerdy Julius Kelp, sneaks into a college lab, his shoes seem to be making suction noises on the tile floor that sound like wet farts. Trying to avoid discovery, he takes off his shoes. But when he continues to tip-toe forward, the audience can still hear those flatulent noises, prompting Jerry Lewis to give the camera a dumbfounded expression.
An Oakland, California, company called DigiScents, Inc., is developing technology which it claims will deliver smells over the Internet. DigiScents uses a device called iSmell, a "personal scent synthesizer," which attaches to the serial or USB port of your computer and plugs into a standard electrical outlet. The iSmell, which is activated by a mouse click, supposedly uses small cartridges with various scented chemicals. Like an inkjet printer, the cartridges are simply removed and replaced when the chemicals have been depleted. These cartridges contain natural materials commonly found in the cosmetics, foods and beverages.
SNAKES FART INSTEAD OF RATTLING!
The August 2000 issue of Discovery magazine announced that "A Pop a Day Keeps the Predators Away." That's right, according to writer Josie Glausiusz, "Two rare snakes from the American southwest--the deadly Sonoran coral snake and the western hook-nosed snake--have developed a novel way to scare off their enemies. When threatened, they emit rumbling air bubbles from the cloaca, the common opening for sex and excretion at a snake's rear end....'Essentially it's snake flatulence,' says Bruce Young, an experimental morphologist at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania....The snake uses two sets of muscles to isolate a compressed pocket of air, which they release to the outside in a startling, explosive burst."
EX CREPITUS MACHINA
According to the Village Voice (July 13, 1999), the S.S. Adams Company of Neptune, New Jersey, announced that the sales of their electronic whoopie cushion, the Fart Machine, had gone over 100,000 units. The sleek, black, plastic contraption contains a computer chip that makes a fart sound triggered by a small remote control, so that pranksters can activate it from the next room. The Fart Machine was invented by Florida textile manufacturer Fred Jarow about ten years ago. "Originally we wanted to have one really long [fart], but it sounded too much like a motorcyle," said Jarow. "Shorter ones are much more realistic."
His own favorite prank, Jarow confessed, was to hide one of his Fart Machines in a Thanksgiving turkey and then hit the remote just as the host begins carving.
IT WAS A DARK AND STINKY NIGHT!
One of the joys of literature is the annual Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, sponsored by San Jose University in California, in which contestants try to write the most outrageous opening sentences for what would surely be horrible novels. The event is named for George Bulwer-Lytton, whose opening line for his 1830 novel Paul Clifton began with "It was a dark and stormy night...." (Snoopy, in the comic strip Peanuts, toyed with this line for many years from atop his doghouse.)
In 1997, one of the runner-up entries was: "As a scientist, Throckmorton knew that if he were ever to break wind in the sound chamber he would never hear the end of it."
In Swedish, "fart" is the word for "speed," as this Superman comic amply demonstrates. Does that mean that the Man of Steel is the real Fart Man?
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