Tiny’s Last Hurrah

As long as I can remember, my father has farted in my presence. He’d grin and say something corny when he broke wind.

“Your grandmother always said, there is more room outside than there is inside.”

If there were other people around, he would try to coincide his fart with the slamming of a car door or loudly dragging his foot through loose gravel on the ground.

Pfffffffffftttt. SLAM!  …ewww.

That being said, the last fart I remember my father passing was at the Cadillac House restaurant in Lexington, Michigan. He was 82. It was a family gathering of the five of us. My brother, Kenny, was in town from Nevada and he sat next to me on one side of a booth. My sister, Shawna, and my mother sat across from us on the other side of the booth. My father used a walker, so he sat in a chair at the end of the booth.

It was a great time. We relived events, vacations and embarrassing stories. Kenny tends to tell the stories that we cringe at, yet we love to hear repeated. He told us about his misdeeds at my parent’s church. I say my parent’s church because they switched churches when I was in high school. For whatever reason, I never considered it my church and neither did my brother. We were strangers in a strange land. So when my brother told a story about his disdain for one of the ministers at “their” church, my mother took the story as a personal insult. Without considering the consequences, she grabbed her drinking glass and threw all 12-ounces of ice water in his face.

That changed the mood.

Shawna and I were stunned, but that quickly turned into laughter. My mother was furious and indignant, but she started to laugh at my soaked brother too. I looked at Kenny. He wasn’t laughing. His wet face was red. And getting redder.

I’ll give Kenny credit. He took the hit, removed the ice from inside his shirt and let it go. My mother tried to explain her actions by saying she didn’t mean to throw the water in his face, but was just going to pretend to throw the water at him. Yeah. Right. Shawna and I laughed even harder at the whole situation.

While we were still laughing, my mother noticed that my father was standing up at the end of the table. We turned our attention to him. Sure enough, he was standing with his hands on the table to support his weight. My first thought was that my mother’s actions had embarrassed him and he was ready to go home. Cool. Serves her right, I thought.

“Tiny. Why are you standing up?” asked my mother.

My father didn’t reply.

“Tiny,” my mother said just a little louder.

Again, no reply. My father wore a hearing aid, so this time my mother said his name loud enough for the other tables to hear.

“Tiny! What are you doing?” she said.

Most of the people in the dining room turned their attention to our family. My father glared at my mother.

“Shhhh. I’m tooting,” he whispered a little too loud.

On cue, a long series of loud farts flopped out of his butt.

A man seated directly behind my father heard the farts and naturally turned his head. My father’s butt was no more than 18 inches from his face. He had turned his head straight into ground zero. I can still see his facial expression of horror.

Have you ever laughed so hard that you can’t catch your breath?

You shake as you exhale every last bit of air in your lungs, but it’s not enough. You just want it to stop—whatever it is that is making you laugh—please make it stop. Although I was seated in the booth, I fell into my brother. I had lost my equilibrium. This latest event was too much. I was still laughing at the ice water incident when the farts happened. Too much. Too soon. Too funny.

My father sat back down. The table behind us got up and left. Who could blame them? I wanted to join them.


5 thoughts on “Tiny’s Last Hurrah

  1. Thank you for the laugh my dear brother – Once I again. I laughed until it hurt.. It gets better and better each time.. Because I was there laughing just as hard the first time.. Still funny years later! THANK you for the happy endorphins 🙂

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