A male friend once asked me if women ever fart. Before we get into the finer points concerning that topic, I want to tell you that I am not a squeamish girl at all.
I enjoy toilet humour, and I enjoy embarrassing others with my arsenal of jokes. If you are like my cousin, you will pretend to not have heard me, and shake your head as you look away. But do not assume I will be deterred. I shall continue to make plop plop sounds and gross her (or you) out. Sometimes I annoy her with my dissertation on the low probability of a loud fart being smelly, and conversely, the high probability of a silent fart being smelly. Now that I have established my love for discussions of an excretory nature, we shall move on to more erudite topics such as the sounds these ejections make.
Men seem to take great pleasure in Sounds. They revel in the belches that erupt out of them after a satisfying meal, the air that escapes from the nether regions of their bodies, the burps and the hiccups, the loud yawns that let you count their teeth and guess what they had for lunch. Meanwhile, women are training to hold their bodily releases in, and probably practicing How to Sneeze Daintily at Work. They may also be wondering if they’ve reached that stage where they can fart in front of their significant other – can their relationship withstand this gust of air, are they sufficiently serious about each other for her to be able to give in to her impulses?
Let us go back to the question my friend asked me. I answered in the affirmative, with a large serving of incredulity. Women are human beings too, and so on. I am curious if he became the kind of man who thinks ugly women might be guilty of such uncouth behaviour, but attractive women most certainly do not let out noxious gases from various orifices. (Old women are usually exempted from such scrutiny.)
For the longest time, one of my biggest worries was that my stomach shouldn’t growl in a way that makes everyone else in the room look at me. This happened, of course. And I survived. But I now believe there is no need for politeness when it comes to such matters. Reclaim the sounds. And the smell. We cannot be expected to feel ashamed by how our digestive system chooses to do its job.
P.S. I can burp at will. I could show you if you like.