At times writing is effortless. Other times nightmarish. But it's always therapeutic.


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Marc is a colleague at work. He smokes and smokes a lot. He tells me he is 2 packets a day serious into smoking, on any worry-free day. Well, call it 20 ciggies because the bowl he uses as ash tray is full of half burnt sticks. When I was little and active we would pick those half smoked sticks and light them up. Puffing on an ‘adult’ cigarette was an elevation from our usual thin newspaper rolls. It could either be newspaper or brown sugar wrappers sometimes stuffed with tea leaves. Yea, your normal chai leaves. We were blessed boys.

Smokers then, went all the way to the brown ciggie butt. Times were hard or they were better money managers. Inside the stud, as you know, is cotton for filtering. We went further and burnt the whole butt till our tiny fingers could hold no more. If there are boys who never smoked, I would like to meet them.

In the office, there is something called a Japanese meeting. I invented it – started is more precise. A Japs meeting is a short one of about 10 minutes, conducted while standing. Last week Marc called me for one of those and he also asked Mads to join. Mads is the marketing chief. Marc outlines his agenda quickly and goes straight into it. Then I hear a familiar noise from Marc. Once. It’s long since I heard such but I know that sound.

My mind tells me this is a free world and birds could be chirping. Mads recognizes it fast and says, ‘We’re getting bombed.’ Marc rips the second one, this time luxuriantly because he twitches. It’s like squealing or shrieking. A bum screech. I get what’s going on and it’s annoying. You can see Marc is ashamed and he starts blaming Mads for a pizza they had the previous night. He accuses Mads of ordering a capricciosa pizza with too much pepper than what he normally handles. It doesn’t matter what they ate but you just don’t do that especially on a sunny day, I think. Mads is uneasy as well since Marc is senior to me. I am in a meeting with a senior colleague who appreciates liberty in a very windy way.

I later have time to think about the incident and the limits of self-expression. At times our bodies overcome our manners. The pressure within is so strong it comes pushing the walls and things fall apart. Especially when our orifices cannot hold anymore, we are bound to lose face when it happens in public. Should we call you bad mannered or unfortunate? If you know pizza capriciossa loudly rips the cork off your gas cylinders, why order one on a Sunday evening? You know you don’t have, attached, like a Yamaha bike, a chrome exhaust pipe muzzler, don’t you dude? Unless your mind works as fast as Marc’s to know you can blame it all on pepper, how can we avoid calling you arrogant? One act could be forgiven, but two?

In my opinion however, it’s all OK. If you cannot control some body matters, well and good. Declarations of health have always had a priority, no matter the surrounding, the clout of the performer and or that of his/her unfortunate audience. Maybe Doctor Miriam can give a medically informed verdict of flatus but you’re good, Marc.

That said, choose your pizza carefully, people. The Japanese meeting ended in its time, though.

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Written by coldturkey

July 24, 2011 at 10:17 PM

Posted in here and there

6 Responses

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  1. ti hi hi hi 😉 smokin’ hot pepper…..


    July 25, 2011 at 10:42 AM

  2. I started off chuckling, the sobered up at paragraph 4…my eyes got huuuge & I kept saying ‘Nooooo. He didn’t do that…” I feel for you. It’s a wonder you didn’t black out from the noxious fumes. I think Marc is just nasty…I wonder if he’d have pulled the same stunt if he was in the presence of his bosses…


    July 26, 2011 at 2:53 PM

  3. @Wanjiru…it was near tragic. Flatus contains methane and hydrogen which are inflammable. What if we were in the kitchen or near a match box? Flames galore.
    @Nyambura…He did. I bet he would’ve done the same. He has a different sense of meetings but is a cool cat when the pizza doesn’t come with pepper.


    July 27, 2011 at 10:01 PM

  4. lol…i see you have dedicated an entire post to the topic…hehehe…what can i say, I agree,it’s bad manners..very bad manners..worse if you’re in a lift/enclosed area..but sometimes,…sometimes,’s urgent and better for it to be out than to do then?…hehehe.there I said it 🙂

    yella soul

    August 1, 2011 at 2:30 PM

    • @Yella Soul, an elevator? Hm…that’s annihilation. We have a good office though, that allows expression. Not to worry :_)

      Cold Turkey

      August 11, 2011 at 10:23 PM

  5. I think in this case, the flatuses were timed to ensure the meeting ended on time.


    September 19, 2011 at 4:09 PM

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