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This site also contains adult like humor and ideas that could make you think. Consider yourself warned!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

My Ode To Farts (Part 2)

Joseph Pujol, a man of singular talent, was born in Marseilles, France in 1857. In his early youth it became clear that he was a natural entertainer, singing, dancing, and performing for his parents' house guests. He had a love for music, and over the years he became handy with a trombone, but it was a different wind instrument that led to his eventual fame and fortune.


Young Joseph became alarmed one day when he was swimming in the sea, and took a deep breath before submerging. As he inhaled, he felt icy cold water entering through his rear end. He immediately returned to shore, and was astonished to see a great deal of seawater pouring from his backside. A doctor assured him that this was nothing to be concerned about, and it seems that Joseph took this advice to heart, exploring his strange new ability with a healthy curiosity.

While in the army, he mentioned his childhood sea-bathing experience to his buddies. They immediately wanted to know if he could do it again, so on a day's leave soon afterward he went out to the shore to swim and experiment. He successfully reenacted the hydraulics of his childhood experience there and even discovered that by contracting his abdomen muscles, he could intentionally take up as much water as he liked and eject it in a powerful stream.

Demonstrating this ability back at the barracks later provided the soldiers with no end of amusement, and soon Pujol started to practice with air instead of water, giving him the ability to produce a variety of sounds. This new development provided even more enjoyment for his buddies. It was then and there, in the army, that Pujol invented a nickname for himself that would later become a stage name synonymous throughout Europe with helpless, hysterical laughter: "Le Petomane" (translation: "The Fartiste").

After his stint in the army, Pujol returned to Marseille and to a bakeshop his father set him up in, on a street that, today, proudly bears the name "rue Pujol." At the age of 26 he married Elizabeth Henriette Oliver, the 20-year-old daughter of a local butcher. Pujol enjoyed performing, so in the evenings he entertained at local music halls by singing, doing comedy routines, and even playing his trombone backstage between numbers. He continued amusing his friends privately with his "other" wind instrument, but only at their suggestion and urging did he decide to turn this parlor trick into a full-fledged act for public audiences.

Pujol worked up a Le Petomane routine, and with some friends he rented a space in Marseille to perform it in. They promoted the show heavily themselves through posters and handouts, but word-of-mouth soon took over and they packed the house every night. Pujol's was a good act by any era's standards, but back then his scatology hit a raw nerve, and hit it hard, at an especially vulnerable time.

He developed the act in the provinces until he reached Paris in 1892. Insisting on seeing no one else, he persuaded the director of the Moulin Rouge, M Vidler, to engage him. From the first night he was a sensation.

He took the stage in a red coat, a red silk collar and black satin breeches. He began by explaining each impersonation that was to follow.

"This is a little girl... this is a bride on her wedding night (small noise) ... the morning after (loud rasping noise) ... a dressmaker tearing calico (ten seconds of ripping cloth) ... and this a cannon (loud thunder)."

The audience were at first astounded. Then there would be an uncontrollable laugh, followed by more until the whole audience was wriggling in their seats, convulsed. Women, bound rigid in corsets, were escorted from the hall by nurses, cleverly placed by the manager so that they could he seen in their bright white uniforms.

Pujol embarked on a highly successful tour of Europe and North Africa. On his return, he split from the Moulin Rouge and formed his own variety company at the Pompadour Theatre.

He continued to top the bill there until Europe was launched into a madness of its own in 1914. World War 1 had started. His sons were mobilised and Pujol never went back on stage. He settled in Marseilles to run his bakeries and then moved to Toulon where he established a thriving biscuit factory. He died in 1945, aged 88, and was buried in the cemetery of La Valette-du-Var, where his grave can still be seen today. The Sorbonne offered his family a large sum of money to study his body after his death, but they refused the offer.

7 comments:

threio said...

this dude give me the cramps; Where's the Pepto Bismal

Sy said...

You are probably the only person in the world who I know that would do a series of posts on farts!!

The canteen food where I work gives much the same result. Turns you inside out and makes you wish you were dead!

Tommy Buettner said...

Now how come we didn't learn shit like this back in school? History class would have been much more enjoyable.

Kathy Martin Studio said...

Thanks for visting my blog!

Haha nice history lesson! The King of Farts rocks!

Have a great weekend!

smiles,
Kathy
My fun blog: http://www.kathymartinstudio.blogspot.com

Kathy Martin Studio said...

Thanks for visting my blog!

Haha nice history lesson! The King of Farts rocks!

Have a great weekend!

smiles,
Kathy
My fun blog: http://www.kathymartinstudio.blogspot.com

Bent Society said...

Love it.

Great blogsite.

Political Discourse said...

That was a lovely story.

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