“Pujols! It’s funny!”
By Timothy H Kepple
Deep down inside, I’m just an average guy.
Because deep down inside, the average guy is just an average 12-year-old boy.
So the average guy never stops being amused by the same things the average 12-year-old boy thinks is funny. Like things that come from deep down inside.
Which is why fart jokes are so popular. With boys, at least.
Granted, there are those who neither find fart jokes funny, nor understand why they are funny. (Mostly girls.) Here’s the secret: fart jokes are funny because farts are funny, hands down.
One of the greatest joys a young boy discovers is that his body can make funny sounds, like burps. But farts trump burps because not only do they sound funny, they smell bad, too. And make people go “ewwwwww!”
Sadly, it’s difficult for most boys to fart on command. Which is why we learn how to make the sound with our hands and our armpits.
Of course, people (mostly girls) tend to think that boys will grow out of the fart-is-funny stage. What actually happens, however, is that boys pretend to grow out of it. Yes, most men are still amused by farting. And even moreso, we’re proud of it.
Get a group of men together. Depending on how formal the gathering is, eventually, one of the men will finally feel comfortable enough to break the ice by breaking wind. But it’s not just an expression of the man’s comfort level. No ma’am- it is a challenge. Every group of men needs a leader, an alpha male, the one man all the other men respect and will follow.
But each group of men can have different alpha males for different things. The man who can fart the loudest, the stinkiest, the most enthusiastically, is definitely an alpha male.
An aggressive display of flatulence not only is a means of showing superiority, it’s also a way of building camaraderie and of having fun. For from where else would come the expression, “Having a rip-roaring good time”? The right gut-buster earns a man respect, awe and the occasional high-five from his peers. It almost always earns a good laugh. While we may not enjoy the smell of another man’s fart, we secretly enjoy our own, feeling an astonishingly high sense of pride when we rip a real paint-peeler. Especially if it out-stinks another man’s.
This secret tradition of male dominance does not end at the end, however. For there is the bigger matter, the source of all farts and the daddy of all fart jokes as well:
Heck, ‘poop’ itself is a funny word. It sounds funny in the best sense of onomatopoeia. It feels funny when it’s pronounced, and a person looks funny when they say it. There’s a reason why the silly “poop” is rarely said in anger; that’s when we push forth with its stronger, more powerful synonym, which I’ll just leave here as “s*%$#”.
Men are fascinated as well as repulsed by poop. We’ll look at it, but we don’t want to touch it. We don’t want to step in it, but we enjoy making it in large quantities. Large, smelly quantities.
(In the appropriate place, of course.)
Bathroom time is important to men. It is a time for peaceful reflection on our life; a time for pondering the universe; a time to catch up on our reading; a time where we can let our guard down and hopefully not get caught with our pants around our ankles.
And it is a time to make the air smell bad.
See, one of the goals of manhood young boys strive for is to make the bathroom smell just as badly as their father could. Achieving this is to cross a manly line just as important as the need to shave.
It is a challenge, however. There is frequently a process that is followed, one of nearly ritualistic nature. Each man has his own preferred method of undertaking a porcelain download. Some may squat. Some may sit. Some may tuck and some may hold. Some may grunt and some may groan. We each have our own preferred utilization of the provided paper, whether we count out squares or use it by the crumpled fistfull.
The end result is always the same. Men take time in the bathroom. We don’t always have too, but it’s just not natural to rush matters.
We are accused by some (mostly girls) of taking too much time. But it’s not just because we like to; but because it’s necessary. Men need to reach a certain zen-like state of relaxation to prepare themselves for the coaxing that is sometimes required before the performance is begun. We often start with a building thunderclap crescendo before delivering the bulk of the performance, the very fiber, so to speak, until ending with an even larger boom in a grand finale. Even T. S. Eliot realized that sometimes, things do end with a bang. Why else would he name his poem ‘The Hollow Men’?
Many times, when we think the show is over, we’re even called back for an encore.
Using the bathroom is not just about the satisfaction of making a boomer; it’s about making a statement: I am a man, and I was here! Look at that paint peel!
Not everyone understands this.
Mostly … but not all girls. I once had a female boss who found fart and poop jokes just as funny as your average man. In fact, I can easily pinpoint just when it was that I knew I wouldn’t have trouble working with her; the day she told me about baseball player Albert Pujols. She didn’t tell me about how good or bad of a player he is (not that I’d understand that anyway.) No, she told me about his name, and more importantly, how it is pronounced. She said, “It’s pronounced ‘poo holes’! It’s funny!” We got along great from then on, secretly and not so secretly making fart jokes.
Poo holes. It is funny.
Just like April Fools Day.