Quoting Calvin: You can tell it’s a great club by how we start our meetings.
|Len stepped to the door, paused, and thought; maybe forgetting about the whole thing was the right choice. Yet, he gritted his teeth, twisted the handle, and peered inside. Many of the folding chairs were occupied. Other people were standing in small groups. Everyone seemed to be talking to someone. He thought again about returning home until he heard footsteps behind him. Turning, he saw an elderly man with a big grin. With that Len gained courage and stepped inside.
The room had about a hundred chairs arranged in neat rows in front of a small stage with a podium. On the podium was a mike and a small electric fan turned off with the blades facing the audience. Seeing some empty seats, Len sat down. Alone, doubts rose again until a charming female voice asked him, “Excuse me. Is this seat taken?”
Len looked up. His heart thumped hard and took all the moisture out of his throat. He croaked, “No. Please, ...sit ... down.”
“Thank you. I’m Brigit.”
“My pleasure.” He pointed to himself, “Ah, Len.” It was awkward; why did he have to meet the girl of his dreams here?
Brigit gave a big smile. “Nice to meet you, Len.”
Len thought he should say something. “Ah, is this your first time here?” He winced, for this was the opening event of the charter.
She giggled. “Yeah, you too, right?”
He smiled. “Yeah.” The lights dimmed. Reluctantly, Len turned toward the stage.
The sound of shoes from the darkened stage hushed the audience. A switch was pulled. Lights lit up the center of the stage to reveal a man in a dark suit with a white rose on his lapel standing behind the podium. Raising a hand to the mike and leaning forward, he spoke in a proud voice, “My name is James Cook and I can’t stop farting!”
A cacophony of farts ripped the air for five glorious seconds, then one by one they ended till two were playing a duet.
When again there was silence, James spoke, “Thank you for that wonderful welcome. Now, let the first meeting of the Chicago Charter of Farters Anonymous begin!” Another round of signature applause. “I’m very happy with the turn out, and, may I add,” he took a whiff of the rose and turned on the fan, “the terribly appropriate atmosphere that you have provided. He raised a leg and passed some audible gas.
Brigit chuckled then yelled, “You’re doing great, Dad.”
With eyes wide, Len turned to Brigit. “That’s your father?”
“Yeah, it runs in the family.” She punctuated that with a long faint squeak.
Len took a deep breath. “Onions on a hamburger?”
Brigit nodded as vigorously as a horse. “Hey, you’re good. That’s what I had for lunch.”
“I’ve had lots of experience. I grew up with three brothers in one bedroom.”
“Don’t think only guys smell bad. After all, why invent perfume and deodorant spray? You know girls should have as much right to fart as guys.”
“Yeah, you’re right. There’s more of a stigma attached to girl farters.”
“It’s not fair!”
“Well, here we are at Farters Anonymous. Fart as much as you please.”
“Thanks, I will. By the way, Len, after the meeting we’re having a buffet at our place for the charter, we can get to know each other better if you come.”
Len’s face lit up. “Sounds great!”
“The food will be, too. The main dish is chili with lots of beans.”