Who farted?

“Eeeeyehhhhh, who farted?”

It happens all the time in class. Someone decides to let out (or is unable to keep in) a stink bomb – a weapon of mass destruction capable of remedying your worst nose block. Thankfully, farting is not like yawning, and doesn’t cause a chain reaction. Phew!

Anyway, it’s the fallout that is usually a cause for concern. Of course, no one actually investigates thoroughly, because that would require you to put your nose to your classmate’s bottom. Still, the finger pointing starts, the name-calling begins. Once the flags are raised, the witch hunt is on.

“You’re the first one to smell it, it must be you!”

“He doesn’t dare say anything, it’s him!”

“So smelly!!!”

To everyone else, it seems like a joke. But somewhere in there, amongst the children, one of them is squirming in embarrassment. The same one who is holding his breath, not from the smell, but just waiting for the entire episode to pass. The same one swears never to eat baked beans again, ever.

I love teaching because it’s in a moment like this, when I get to step in and say:

“It was me…”

Everybody laughs. Everyone knows it isn’t true (okay, I hope they do). Some of them may even believe I’ll grow up to be a poopy-old-man-in-diapers… Most of us become that eventually, by the way. But most importantly, one of them is able to stop squirming now. The same one who can take a deep breath again. The same one who will have the courage to eat his baked beans again… Not.

So, would we ever know who really farted? Actually, it was … me.


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