Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Break Like the Wind

Some days go just like clockwork.

I always leave the office around 4:45. It's a five-minute walk to Metro, 40 minutes of riding with a transfer at Metro Center and then a 15-minute walk home from Silver Spring. I know exactly where to stand on which platform so that as the doors open, I'm in front of the appropriate escalator. Freaking clockwork baby.

Since I transfer trains, I rarely get a seat, but frankly, it's just good to stand. The iPod plays and I can keep in time with the music as my body sways with the train movements. It's like commuter dancing.

When I get on the train at Foggy Bottom, I try to be the last to enter. Then I’m at the correct set of doors when they open three stops away at Metro Center. It’s a carefully orchestrated system. Today went exactly as planned.

Van Halen was playing as I entered. “Dreams” from 5150. I can still remember the video, which featured the Blue Angels. Utter Perfection of a song.

I’m in my own world as I face the doors. Being underground, I can see the reflection over my shoulder as the other passengers fill the train at each station. It’s getting crowed, but the song drowns out the commuters. We’re getting close to Metro Center. I know my routine; to the left, up the escalator, another left and two car lengths down. Seriously, more utter perfection. The train rocks through the tunnels, the passengers all prepare for the mass departure and I….

I fart.

Holy shit, I totally fart.

I feel my ass quiver as the gas releases. For moment, I think it’s my imagination, but no, my ass moved. “Dude,” I say to myself, “You farted.” Omigosh, did they hear it? And I panic because I’m not certain if it was silent. So I do what any man would do…

I ignore it. I scrape my shoes to make flatulent sounds as to confuse the commuters. I cough and hope that mimics a farting sound. (Please dear God, don’t let the fart smell.) A 30-second lifetime later, we pull into the station. I make no eye contact and head out the door. Do I walk as far away from these folks? Damn no, I’d destroy the routine. Do I look back? Are you kidding?!?

I pucker my ass as I run up the escalator, praying not to spray another set of unsuspecting travelers. Hopefully, there is a train just waiting to depart that I can jump into as it pulls away. No luck. Instead there is a delay and I must wait among the gas-guzzlers.

I continue listening to my music, pretending the fart incident never happened. I contemplate the lunch I ate and silently wonder what caused the expulsion.

The only thing that makes me feel better is that I still adhered to the Metro rules: You can not have device that makes noise unless you are using headphones.


Blogger Bacchus said...

And I thought my day was bad. There is nothing worse than those trapped moments of embarassment. I hope your day got a little lighter after that.

11:36 PM  
Blogger Chag said...

This was hilarious! Loved the gas-guzzlers line.

Sounds like you've got a new routine!

12:50 AM  
Blogger Georgia said...

It must be in the water because I accidently let one go while in line at the Redskins game on Monday night. Thank goodness the game population is dominated by men 30 to 1...no one suspected it was littl ol' me!

8:47 AM  
Blogger MotherReader said...

Very funny. Nice tie-in to a book too.

9:54 AM  
Blogger The Brian said...


11:13 AM  
Anonymous Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

Note to self: Don't go on Metro between 4:45 and 5:15.

10:35 PM  
Blogger Daddy L said...

Totally empathize. My iPods always blasting when I commute, and sometimes I forget that even though I can't hear myself let one rip, the unfortunate people around me can.

And I thought this only happened to me.

2:45 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

You do realize that there is nothing funnier in the world than a fart.

Late one night I heard my 5-year-old daughter giggling in her sleep. I went into her room and her eyes opened. I asked, "What are you laughing about?" She said, "I was dreaming about farts."

Anyway, thanks for the laugh. I needed it.

1:25 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

They can't pin it on you. De Nile is not only a river in Egypt.

11:06 AM  

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