Something happened to me last night that took me by surprise. I’ll set the scene.
The clocks had just turned 8pm. Midsomer Murders was on ITV, and I had nothing better to do other than sprawl out on the sofa in my onesie. As my flatmate (and older brother Ol) was away for the rest of the week, I could afford to be extra slobbish.
So I did what every honest person would do in this situation; I let out a massive fart.
Now I’m not one to blow my own trumpet – unless a noxious odour is involved – but it was one of my most impressive farts to date. Its high, mid and low frequencies aligned beautifully to create a wondrous, foghorn-like racket – imagine Brian Blessed playing the tuba with his trademark gusto in an empty corridor. The sheer power and panache of the fart caught me by surprise. And given that there was just me in the room, I had a little chuckle to myself. Life at its most mundanely magical.
It was around about this time that I just so happened to scroll aimlessly down my Facebook timeline, something I’ve been perfecting for the past seven years. Quite a few of my friends had commented on a link, automatically grouping it to the top of my page. The link contained this picture below.
Within seconds of laughing, and with barely enough time to evacuate the plume of methane that was suffocating me, a wave of guilt washed over me. Guilt and shame.
Here I am, in my pokey West London flat, in an ill-fitting onesie, watching Inspector Barnaby solve YET ANOTHER MURDER IN THE COUNTY OF MIDSOMER, while basking in the hilarity of my own farts. And there Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan are, looking impeccably sun-kissed and impossibly beautiful as they stroll along a beach in Dubai. For a moment, I felt like the less hygienic brother of Harry Enfield’s ‘Wayne Slob’ character.
The comments my friends had left on Facebook were of a similar nature.
“THEY’RE SO PERFECT”
“THE PERFECT COUPLE”
“OMG, FOR ALL DA LOSER GUYS WHO R WATCHING MIDSOMER MURDERS IN THEIR ONESIES RIGHT NOW, DIS IZ WHAT A REAL MAN LOOKS LYK”
Ok, maybe that last one wasn’t true.
But then I thought to myself, “NO!”.
(Admittedly, the smell had dissipated at this point, so maybe that’s what had clouded my judgement in the first place). What do I have to be guilty about? I was well proud of that fart. And more importantly, with no offence to Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan, why are we basing our ideals on a photograph like the one featured above?
The moral of this rather aimless blog entry? Try not to take the polished, Instagram-filtered snapshots we see on Facebook and the like as gospel. Nothing in reality can compete with them, yet it’s the raw moments, like sprawling out on your sofa in a onesie and letting out an earth-shattering explosion of methane from your backside that make us human. I’ll leave it for you to decide if I’m just spouting a lot of hot air.