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November 20, 2013

Bar Belle: A fart on paper

A critic of mine once described this column as a fart on paper. At first I took offense, but not five minutes later I came to appreciate her analogy. Flatulence relieves pressure and pain. Sure, it lingers for a bit, but isn’t that a good thing when it comes to newspaper columns in the age of social media? Some might turn up their nose at it, and others might blame the dog, but at the end of the day, if I make someone smile or want to try a new beer, then I feel better, even if I’ve soiled my surroundings.

The record for the world’s longest fart is held by Bernard Clemmens of London. He passed the gas for approximately 2 minutes and 42 seconds. Can you imagine his relief? We all fart, and if you don’t think you do, then you probably have a case of nocturnal emissions. A fart is just a buildup of gas that decided to use the back door — we shouldn’t be ashamed or embarrassed if one slips out during yoga class or at the library.

Of course, there is a code of conduct when it comes to dropping air biscuits that should be followed by everyone, regardless of age, gender, race or sexuality. Never pass wind while using public transportation — and that includes elevators. Crop dusting is OK at department stores and Target, but try to avoid cutting cheese at restaurants and bars. If you feel one coming on and you’re in close quarters with others, simply step outside or into the bathroom.

I had no idea I felt so passionately about anal acoustics, but considering all the draft beer I drink, I’m certainly no stranger to them. And if this column is truly a fart in paper form, then I hope it passes quickly and gives you a minute of reprieve. At the very least, I hope it makes you giggle.

Surviving Thanksgiving
It’s time to face the extended family once again. It’s time to hide out in the garage with your favorite flask while your mom debriefs them on a year’s worth of failed relationships, financial struggles, embarrassing health conditions and a zigzagging career trajectory. Just smile, mumble under your breath, stare at the football game and know that in a quick five hours or so, you won’t have to do this again until the fat man drops sack.

A few helpful hints to survival: Volunteer to get ice and hang out at the local bar for as long as you think you’ll be missed. Pack an extra flask. Fabricate an adventurous story of what you did this summer, and try to use “little people,” “Peace Corps,” “Jennifer Lawrence” and “turnt up” in the same sentence when doing so. Ask your aunt and uncle how they met. Talk to your grandma about the first time she got wasted. Pet the dog. Torture the cat. And just like that, those five hours will be over.

Celebrate Repeal Day!
Prohibition was a depressing, dark period in our country’s history, much like my junior high days. You woke up sad, hung out with sad people, and there was no happy hour to turn the mood around. Although I only had to endure three years of torture, the country trudged through 13 long years of no beer, bourbon or Fireball shots. Common sense finally prevailed on Dec. 5, 1933, which is now known and celebrated as Repeal Day. And in honor of Repeal Day’s 80th anniversary, I’m co-hosting a class Dec. 5 at Moonshine University called “Spirits of Prohibition.”

I thought I’d never go back to school, but this class will feature a few cocktails and absolutely no tests or papers. I wanted to tell you about it early so all you history and spirits buffs could sign up. The two-hour class (6-8 p.m.) will focus on cocktails from the Prohibition era (popular in speakeasies), and you’ll even get to try some nasty bathtub gin.

We’ll also tackle some of history’s infamous personalities of the time, including liquor-dumping Carrie Nation, rum-runner Captain Bill McCoy and bootlegger George Remus. The cost is $29 and includes some drinks and snacks from Bourbons Bistro. To sign up, go to moonshineuniversity.com or call 301-8130.

Drunk Texts of the Week
This drink tastes like a sex toy before it’s been washed
What do you have against stray pubes?
One man’s Nickelback is another man’s Nickelback
This drink makes you give back things you never borrowed!

Send your drunk texts to shavens@leoweekly.com. My blog is at barbelle.leoweekly.com. Word.