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Fart Proudly

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I’ve just been in a CABS queue.

The limit on cash withdrawals is Z$1 billion a day. When the call-out fee for a plumber is Z$1.6 billion I feel like singing that line in Oliver Twist – Please Sir, I want some more. Fat chance. But waiting in queues can be both profoundly sad, as well as amusing.

The other day this really old man was sitting waiting his turn to withdraw some cash. When his turn finally came he shuffled forward and I noticed that the bottom of his trousers had been burnt. I wondered whether he’d come in to town escaping the violence in the rural areas. When he had to enter his pin number, ironically he turned round and asked for assistance from a policeman in the queue. Most men and women in uniform in Zimbabwe are regarded with suspicion.

Then today, in another cash queue which dribbled out the CABS door, I noticed a woman who had come prepared for the wait with some reading material. The title of the book was Fart Proudly which I thought rather amusing because we generally all Fart Quietly. Except for one particular friend of mine who lets off with such gusto that I’m left in shock. Luckily I don’t see her very often. But the title of the book intrigued me so I Googled and came up with this editorial comment  courtesy of Amazon

A mention of flatulence might conjure up images of bratty high school boys or lowbrow comics. But one of the most eloquent—and least expected—commentators on the subject is Benjamin Franklin. The writings in Fart Proudly reveal the rogue who lived peaceably within the philosopher and statesman. Included are “The Letter to a Royal Academy”; “On Choosing a Mistress”; “Rules on Making Oneself Disagreeable”; and other jibes. Franklin’s irrepressible wit found an outlet in perpetrating hoaxes, attacking marriage and other sacred cows, and skewering the English Parliament. Reminding us of the humorous, irreverent side of this American icon, these essays endure as both hilarious satire and a timely reminder of the importance of a free press.

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