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There’s a particular sound that happens when you’re showing restraint. A certain kind of a glubglubglub as bubbles wind their way back around the bends of your intestine having been turned away by a steadfast and tight sphincter. This is the warning bell of things to come. A notification that you may have bought time, but it is borrowed and what has been building cannot be restrained. It will happen. You will fart.

Farting is a fact of life. I get that. You get that. We all get that. But we live in an oppressive society that does not accept this fact. Yes, that’s right, I’m getting on my farty soapbox. Wake up you gassy sheeple - the system has touted the taboo of the toot! Rise up! Brrap away! Look, I didn’t ask to be the person to squeeze out the first fart of resistance. In fact, when you live in the constant state of self-consciousness coupled with the comedic maturity of an 8-year-old, you tend to prefer not dealing with everyone farting around you (after all, suppressing nervous laughter at a stranger who farted is considered uncouth!). Thankfully there are ways you can subvert this system.

To fart subversively, the most important thing to master is sound control. We’re talking intentional silent farts. The mechanic of a silent fart is that you’ve created an escape vent in your cheeks, from which your butt burp can trickle rather than explode out in massive spurts that cause said cheeks to flap wildly and loudly. Start by pushing the upcoming fart as close to release as possible. As soon as you think the fart’s about to slip, try to pull back by taking a breath (or contracting your diaphragm as if you’re about to take a breath). This causes the volume of gas escaping to slow to a trickle. Once you have the tiniest of streams going, you can relax and (slowly) push the rest out. Just be careful about pushing too hard, as you’ll be in danger of creating a very loud, very noticeable squeaker.

Of course if you’re in a spot where sound is muffled (say a fabric-covered couch), silence is less an issue as much as giving yourself away. Assuming the fabric you’re sitting on is not too dense, you can fairly easily shoot that toot straight into the cushions where it will be hopefully febreezed to death later. There are two key things to keep in mind when ripping a secret fart while seated. First is that you’ll have to create a little bit of separate between you and the material. If you’re planted firmly you’ll either never be able to get your fart out, or you’ll have compressed the cushion too much and the fart will simply bounce off, run up the channel of your crack, and straight into the nostrils of whomever's closest. This is no surprise to most people. You know the signature seated fart move of a slight cock of the hips and lean to a side. What you don’t know is how obvious of a giveaway that is. This is the second key to a successful seated fart - subtlety. Be as subtle as you can about leaning to one side. Or make it look like you’re simply adjusting your sitting position. Then, once your bowels have adequately vented, hold the pose. Amateur farters will immediately relax and shift back down into a normal seated position. They may as well be shouting “HEY I FARTED!” from a smelly rooftop. If you hold your slightly elevated position for just long enough, even if someone noticed the initial shift, they will disregard it as a simple shift and not a farty shift. It’s like farting in front of a T-Rex. We all know that T-Rexes notice movement (and if you didn’t know that, you’re welcome). So the less sudden the movements, the less the T-Rex will know you just farted. Yeah, that’s right. This just veered into the realm of farting in front of a dinosaur. And if you must know it’s #4 in my bucket list.

These two keys are also true for standing farts. And when I say standing farts I mean from a standing position, but while in motion (generally referred to as “crop dusting”). I would never suggest or even speak of standing still whilst trying to conceal a fart. That's just stupid. It'd be like running up to the T-Rex, farting in it's open mouth, then running away. Sure, it'll feel great, but what's the likelihood you'll actually get away with it? That's why it's all the way down to number 17 on my bucket list.

While not as crazy as farting while standing, farting while walking is still no fart in the park. The ever-important controlled release is just harder to accomplish while you’re moving and things are shifting. Most of the time, though, ambient noise will cover sounds that do escape. Assuming you’re in a bustling area that is, and not like a library, which should only be attempted by Master Farters. Again, you want to focus on changing your gait as little as possible, and not letting on that you’re letting it out. The ideal scenario is waiting at a crosswalk. That allows you ample prep time and when the light changes you're off to the races. People tend to be distracted when crossing the street, and there's good airflow. You're just another farting face in the crowd.

In fact, maintaining the demeanor of a non-farter is nearly as important as sound control. Hell, if you’re good enough at selling that, you could conceivably be in a group of people and rip one, a loud one, and make some other sap take the fall for your fart. This obviously requires a lot of social observation in order to figure out how non-farters act, or as some call it, “acting normal.” Let’s take the “smelled it dealt it scenario.” Clearly no one wants to acknowledge that they’re smelling anything. We all know the famous line “He who smelled it, delt it,” which I’m pretty sure is from The Bible at around Mark 8:22 when Jesus was speaking to John, who was attempting to cover a serious bout of fish farts.

In this scenario, lack of acknowledgement stems solely from the fear of being labeled as the one who dealt it. What happens is a stalemate of stank. So you keep your head down and do not react in any way. BUT, out of the tiniest sliver of the corner of your eye, watch out for movement from others. What we’re going for is group mimicry. If there are enough other people that are moving about and making the stankface, being the only person pretending like nothing’s happening is a dead giveaway and, quite frankly, much worse than if you act like you smelled it before anyone else. I mean just imagine a packed subway car, everyone is groaning and pulling their shirts over their noses, and in the midst is one expressionless person, serenely reading a book. That person most definitely dealt it, and is also most likely a terrorist. The second line of the original verse (“He who denied it, supplied it”) is clearly more of a parable and not to be taken literally, and I think refers to transubstantiation, though if you're the Pope feel free to correct me.

Now go forth and spread your clouds. Get some gastric relief. Or stick it to the Man in your own subtle way. Go into a swanky boutique and make it a stanky pootique. Just don't try to blame it on me when our farts cross.