It’s the middle of a meeting and one of your coworkers is addressing the room. Her presentation is going well and everyone at the table is engaged. But then, something strange but all too familiar happens. She starts to stumble in her delivery, as though she’s grasping for an idea that somehow slipped out of her brain against her will. Now blushing, she tries to regain her composure and eventually does, as people in the room are too “sophisticated” to call her out on the spot for the transgression.
Brain farts can be very unpleasant to endure, not to mention disrespectful. But because they often occur in a business setting most of us refrain from humiliating the farter with unforgiving remarks and looks of disgust. This is foolish. We don’t let people get away with bodily farts, so why give them a free pass on mental ones? (When was the last time you didn’t acknowledge that a person in your group, car, bed, etc., just farted? Never, right?) Brain farters should be shamed to the full extent of social norms too, lest you and your coworkers have to suffer their mental flatulence every time they present.
Here are some creative yet practical ways to thoroughly embarrass brain farters. Unless otherwise noted, each tactic is to be employed immediately after the offense has taken place, even if that means interrupting the presentation.
- “Oh, man. Those ideas stink!”
- “Forget your slides. Why don’t you just draw a picture of a big fart?!”
- “Even the people who dialed in from home can smell that one.”
- “Did your brain have like 10 burritos for breakfast?”
- “You suck.”
- The “I’m in a wind tunnel” face.
- The “this is the sourest thing I’ve ever tasted” face.
- The “you’re a disgrace to your family” face.
- Pinching your nose between your thumb and forefinger, ideally while squinting at the same time. This one is definitely a classic, but it does score quite low in creativity.
- Both arms raised straight up in the air, like a football referee calling a field goal. (“It’s good!”)
- Both arms flailing across your chest in opposite directions like a pair of possessed windshield wipers, letting the person know you want him/her to stop immediately. If possible, use this gesture in tandem with the “this is the sourest thing I’ve ever tasted” face for maximum effect.
THINGS TO DO TO THE FARTER’S DESK THE NEXT DAY
- Fart on it.
- Create a life-sized picture of the person’s face but with a set of butt checks where the mouth should be and glue it to his/her desk.
- Nail a model brain to the desk with its back facing the person’s chair, just like when you force your roommate to stare at his dog’s butt whenever the dog gets gassy.
RE-PURPOSED SONG LYRICS TO SING WHENEVER WALKING BY THE FARTER
- “Now I’m free … free farting.”
- “Who let the fart out? Who? Who? Who?”
- “Goodness, gracious, great balls of fart.”
MISCELLANY FOR LATER IN THE WEEK
- Buy the farter one of those hats with a fan on it and insist he/she wear it backwards when in the office.
- Smash the rear window of the person’s car so anyone traveling behind it knows the driver is a brain farter. Maybe write a note on the trunk explaining this one though.
Be aware that the brain farter most likely won’t appreciate some of the more ruthless approaches outlined above, or any of them for that matter. But it was never the farter’s feelings you were most concerned about anyway, so this shouldn’t be an issue.