Your columnist, dear reader, delights in offbeat books. And the more offbeat they are, the better.
A book he has no hesitation in recommending, for example, is “Dr. Tatiana’s Sex Advice to All Creation: The Definitive Guide to the Evolutionary Biology of Sex”, by Olivia Judson.
Written in the style of an agony aunt column, the book is about the birds and the bees, written for the birds and the bees, and many other creatures besides. A positively delightful book about a positively rambunctious topic.
As I was saying, it is books of this sort that afford many an instructive lesson, while at the same time being endlessly entertaining, at least in the opinion of yours truly.
And today’s column is about just such a book, which I chanced upon a while ago, and have recently ordered on Amazon.
What is the book about, you ask? Ah, well, therein lies a tale. The book is about a topic that has proven to be a deeply divisive one in our household, and I daresay this is probably the case the world over. The book is about, to use James Herriott’s evocative phrase, borborygmi.
It is about what Bill Bryson would have called my inability to “suppress a small eruction of gastro-intestinal air”. To put it bluntly, the book is about farting.
Carrying the magnificent, resplendent title “Does It Fart?: The Definitive Field Guide to Animal Flatulence”, the book seems to be a fascinating romp through the animal kingdom, asking of each species but one question: does rajma cause you to deploy your after-burners the morning after?
And in a surprisingly large number of cases, the answer seems to be in the affirmative. Dinosaurs, it turns out, were not averse to tootling their horns every now and then, while dogs seem to positively revel in it.
Octopi are much more keeping in line with the manners expected in polite company while birds possess the ability to let one rip, but desist from doing so.
Now, the book is one I await with some eagerness because, as I alluded to earlier, our household has different opinions on the topic. I am more canine like in my outlook towards the topic, while my life partner would much prefer it if humanity in general, and her mate in particular, adopted a more avian outlook to the issue at hand.
Debates have often times become heated at our home because of, well, the air at home being heated by yours truly.
I treat these admittedly unfortunate occurrences as natural ones, and I have never been one for suppressing anything, while the missus would much prefer it if I was more shy and retiring about the whole thing.
See, but here’s the thing – and hand on heart, tell me if you can’t help but agree. The way to cap a good meal is to lie in repose, ruminate for a while, and then, when the time is right, to shift to an appropriate position, and let one rrrrrriiiiipppp.
And, I ask you, if most of the animal kingdom does it, why on earth shouldn’t I?
He doesn't expect the paradox to be resolved in his lifetime
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