Letter From Milo: The Hallowed Institution

October 5th, 2015

When I first met the future Mrs. Milo, I had long hair, a shaggy beard, an attitude problem and unresolved mental issues. I was chronically unemployed, belligerent, had poor dietary habits, questionable hygiene, a gambling problem, abused alcohol, tobacco and drugs, and regularly entertained impure thoughts.

Getting married changed my life. It made a new man out of me. Since entering into the hallowed institution, I have shaved off my beard and gotten a haircut.

I’m still working on the other stuff.

Marriage is wonderful, but it’s not for everyone. Some people (and I’m referring to males of the species) are incapable of withstanding the rigors of marriage.

There are men who are so set in their doggish ways, so unwilling to compromise even the slightest bit of their independence, or answer to anyone for their behavior, that matrimony is simply not an option for them. They live by their own rules and schedules, and answer only to their own consciences.

I have a dear friend, who I’ll call Bruce Diksas, to spare him undue embarrassment, who has never married and doesn’t plan to get married anytime soon. He lives on his own terms, enjoying a rigorous lifestyle that most wives wouldn’t tolerate. I once asked Bruce if he had ever considered getting married.

“I almost asked Martha to marry me.”

“I remember her. You two were together for a couple of years. What happened?”

“It was just one of those things. I was getting ready to have my usual breakfast. I rolled a joint, popped a beer and got the cold pizza out of the fridge, when Martha said, ‘Are you sure you wouldn’t care for some granola and skim milk?’”


“I couldn’t believe she said that to me.”

“Swear to God, just when you think you know somebody…”

While there are lots of men who have never gone to the trouble of getting married, there are many others who are plainly unsuitable for matrimony, yet they keep getting married, over and over again. They are as unfit for marriage as any boozing, drug-abusing, whore mongering career bachelor, but that doesn’t stop them from marching down the aisle whenever they can convince some foolish woman to join them in wedded bliss.

I asked a friend, an old hell raiser named Rodney, who had been married four or five times, why he didn’t just give up on marriage and live in sin, or make some other satisfactory arrangements. Why, I wondered, did he insist on being married when he was obviously so bad at it.

“I’m Catholic. I was schooled by nuns. I’ve got a lot of guilt in me. I don’t want to add to my bad karma by living in sin.”

“That’s a bullshit excuse. Catholics aren’t supposed to get divorced, either.”

“Heh, heh, I’ve given that a lot of thought. There’s a very fine line there. You see, technically, I never divorced any of my wives. They divorced me. So, I figure that gives me some wiggle room.”

Ah, well, I guess people get married for all sorts of reasons. They marry for love and for money. Some marry because they want to and others marry because they have to. Some marriages are arranged and some are deranged. Some unions last forever and some are doomed from the start. I suppose the great thing about being married is that if things don’t work out, you can always try again.

There are not many situations in life where people get second or even third chances. The institution of marriage, however, comes with a lifetime supply of mulligans.

I was having a few drinks and discussing the subject the other day with a guy named Phil, who is a commodities trader and a ladies’ man with a string of ex-wives in his wake.

“So, why did you marry your first wife?” I asked.

“She had great tits.”

“What about the second wife?”

“She had a fantastic ass.”

“And the third wife?”

“Double jointed.”

I suppose that’s as good a reason as any to get married.

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Letter From Milo: Otis, the Comeback Cat

September 28th, 2015

After taking a brutal beating from a feral tabby, a few months ago, Otis became a changed cat. He lost his swagger. He was no longer a kingpin tomcat, the badass who bullied the other toms in the area, dined in Lincoln Square’s best dumpsters, and frolicked with the finest pussy cats in the neighborhood.

Otis was now 16 or 17 years old, battered and scarred, just another worn-out old tomcat, his best days behind him. He had been to the top of the mountain, but he’d never fly that high again. And he knew it. His spirit was broken.

When Otis recovered from his physical injuries, he sank into a deep depression. He seemed to lose interest in everything, including food, catnip, and the random slaughter of mice, bunny rabbits and song birds. He even quit paying attention to the sexy Angora cat that belongs to Mrs. Shimkus, our next door neighbor.

Personally, I was glad to see him suffer. I never liked the bastard anyway. He’s made my life a living hell ever since he followed my youngest daughter home, about 13 years ago. If it wasn’t for the fact that my wife and children, who’d grown very fond of him, told me there’d be hell to pay if anything happened to the cat, I would have strangled the fucker a long time ago.

Still, as much as I despised Otis, I hated to see him moping around the house. Nobody likes having a depressed cat around.

“Hey, dumbass!” I said to the cat. “Snap out of it. Act your age. You’ve got a few good years left. Why waste them fighting with cats half your age? That’s a battle you’ll never win. We all have to accept our limitations. You don’t see me chasing after young chicks and getting in fights with 20-year-olds. I learned a long time ago that you can’t be a top cat forever, but being a middle cat isn’t that bad.”

Otis must have taken my pep talk to heart, because I soon noticed a change in his behavior. He seemed to be coming out of his funk. He stopped hiding in the basement and resumed his favorite position on the radiator under the bay window, where he could keep an eye on the street. He began taking pleasure in his five o’clock catnip again. And one day I found the pathetic remains of a half-eaten mouse in the back yard.

When I let Otis out of the house, he didn’t immediately rush next door and start fighting with the half dozen other tomcats who were hanging around Mrs. Shimkus’ house, all of them hoping to get a shot at Missy, the sexy young cat who spent most of the day grooming herself in the front window.

Instead, Otis began keeping company with Martha, a middle-aged, somewhat frumpy, but still attractive cat that lived on Wilson Avenue.

I realized Otis had finally figured out his new position in the alley cat hierarchy when one of my neighbors, Mrs. Torkelson, stormed up my walkway and confronted me on my front porch, where I was enjoying a cigarette with my morning whiskey.

“I should call the police on you,” she said, angrily.

“What did I do this time?”

“Your rotten cat beat up my Mr. Buttons.”

“You can’t blame me for that. Cats are going to fight. It’s their nature.”

“But Mr. Buttons is 23 years old, blind, and can hardly walk.”

“Well, then, he shouldn’t have fucked with Otis.”

“Oh, you’re a horrible man. I’m going to report you to the Alderman.”

Later that day, when Otis returned from his regular afternoon visit to the corner restaurant’s dumpster, I noticed that he had gotten some of his swagger back. There was a bit of strut in his step.

No, Otis isn’t the badass he used to be, but he’s still bad enough.

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Letter From Milo: Female Troubles

September 21st, 2015

It must be contagious. Mistresses all over the world are coming out of the woodwork and revealing their affairs with famous married men. You can’t open a magazine or newspaper, get on the internet, or watch a TV talk show without reading or hearing about yet another woman claiming to have frolicked with a well-known, wealthy and very wedded man.

The reason that all of these mistresses are coming forward is, of course, the almighty greasy dollar. Magazines and TV shows routinely write huge checks to any woman willing to dish the dirt on a married celebrity. For many mistresses of the rich and famous, this has become something of a retirement plan, sort of a mistress IRA.

Sadly, mistress trouble isn’t restricted to movie stars and athletes. Even famous and wealthy bloggers, like those of us at The Third City, can be led astray.

In our case, the feces has, indeed, gotten into the duct work. According to Leopold & Loeb, our attorneys here at The Third City, several of my mistresses have decided to rat me out. Apparently they can’t resist the fat checks that the Chicago Reader, the Ravenswood Homeowners’ Association Newsletter, the Wicker Park Shopper & Coupon Book and WXRT are offering.

This news couldn’t have come at a worse time. My wife and I are at a delicate stage in our marriage. The other day I caught her Googling Family Therapists. I have a hunch she’s going to drag my ass off to marriage counseling again. Feeling just a touch of a panic, I called Jon Randolph, the photographer of this scabby, flatulent and barely literate blogging crew and asked his advice.

“Hey, Jonny, it’s me, Milo.”

“Make it quick. I’ve got to make a beer run.”

When I explained the problem, Jon sighed deeply and said, “Shit, Milo. I’ve got the same problem, my girlfriend, Coco LeFarge, is threatening to go to the media unless I buy her a new Mercedes.”

“That sucks. What are you going to do?”

“I don’t know. Maybe she’ll settle for a new Chevrolet.”

“That should do it.”

Benny Jay’s girlfriend is giving him a bad time, too.”

“That’s a shame.”

“She claims Benny’s spending way too much time and money on his other girlfriend. If Benny’s wife finds out she’ll kill him.”

“Yeah, Benny’s wife has got a mean streak. But what am I supposed to do about my three mistresses?”

“Well, we’ve got to have a plan to deal with all these ungrateful women. You and Benny come down to The Third City corporate office on Michigan Avenue tomorrow morning and we’ll…”

HOLD IT! This is Mrs. Milo. I just noticed what Milo was writing and chased him away from the computer with the can of pepper spray I keep handy for occasions like this.. He is SOOOO full of crap. Here he is, sitting around in a ratty bathrobe, hasn’t shaved or showered in a few days, plus, he’s still half drunk from all the wine he drank last night, and he’s bragging about what a ladies’ man he is. Three mistresses! I’d laugh if it wasn’t so pathetic. Listen, any women that wants his worthless old ass can have him. I should have dumped him a long time ago. I’d trade him in for a new washer and dryer right now.

Those two idiots that Milo associates with, Jon Randolph and Benny Jay, are almost as bad as he is. I doubt if there are three uglier or less appealing men in the City of Chicago. They’re just three over-the-hill burnouts with nothing better to do than write those stupid blogs. They’re lucky if they get six or seven people to read their nonsense. The corporate office they talk about is actually the Sanka House, the low-rent coffee shop on the corner. Swear to God, if either of them so much as approached a woman, the poor thing would probably call 911. Jeez, what a bunch of losers.

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Letter From Milo: The Dreaded “H” Word

September 14th, 2015

The English language has a lot of nasty words that begin with the letter “H.” A few of the rotten H words that come to mind are hatred, harm, headache, horror, harassment, Halliburton, halitosis, hostility and hangover. Given enough time, a thesaurus, and access to Google, I could probably come up with hundreds more.

 There is one vile H word, however, that makes all the other foul H words seem like benedictions. It is a word so fraught with pain and misery that just hearing it makes people wince.  The word is so horrifying that it would probably scare the shit out of Stephen King.

 The word I’m referring to is, of course, “Hemorrhoids.”

 Thank God, I’ve never been troubled by the condition. The only reason I even mention the unpleasant subject is that a dear friend, who I’ll call Leonard, to spare him undue embarrassment, had recently been griping about the affliction.

 “I can’t even enjoy my morning shit anymore,” Leonard complained. “When I get off the stool, it feels like my ass is on fire. “

 “Jesus! I hate to hear that.”

 “The pain goes away in a while, but it still itches and tingles for most of the day. It’s like a low-grade toothache. I’m constantly aware of it.”

 “Have you tried any creams or ointments? I see ads on TV for hemorrhoid relief products.”

 “I’ve tried all of that shit – Preparation H, witch hazel, aloe, Vaseline, apple cider vinegar, sitz baths – and nothing works.”

 I felt bad for Leonard. I hated to see him suffer. Although, as I’ve mentioned, I’ve never had any problems or experience with hemorrhoids, I told the miserable fucker I’d do a little research, just to help him out.

 My research consisted of Googling “hemorrhoid cures.”

 I was surprised to discover that there were hundreds, maybe thousands, of websites devoted to eradicating the scourge of hemorrhoids. Most of the sites seemed to be legitimate, but there were quite a few that left me scratching my head.

 One website, for example, was named Dr. Larsen E. M’Bogo’s Miracle Hemorrhoid Remedy. Another site, based in Calcutta, sold linen swabs, soaked in water from the sacred Ganges River, that were guaranteed to end your hemorrhoid misery. My favorite was the website of a convent in Sicily, where the nuns would light candles and pray for your recovery, for the sum of 25 dollars, payable in cash, in U.S. dollars.

 A few days after doing the Google research, I went down to the Jesse Brown V.A. Hospital, hoping to convince my primary physician, Dr. Frankie “Disco” Lopez, to give me some stronger and more interesting meds. When I walked into Dr. Frankie’s office, he looked at his watch and said, “We’ve got to make it quick. I’m meeting a nurse from O.R. for a nooner and I don’t want to keep her waiting. What can I do for you?”

 When I explained that the meds I was taking weren’t as effective as I hoped they’d be, Dr. Frankie said, “No problem. I’ll prescribe some new shit for you that’ll make you feel real good. Is there anything else?”

 “Yeah, what can be done about hemorrhoids?”

 “Have you got a ‘rhoid problem?”

 “Me? No way. I’m, ah, asking for a friend.”

 “Surgery is the only way to get rid of them, but I don’t recommend it.”

 “Why not?”

 “Hemorrhoids have a tendency to recur, even after surgery. Besides, the surgery itself can be painful and messy, with serious side effects. The best thing your, ah, friend can do is learn to live with the problem. It’s not a life threatening condition.”

 A couple of days later, I ran into Leonard at Swillagain’s Saloon. He was sitting, gingerly, on a barstool, guzzling whiskey, and muttering to himself. We chatted a while, the conversation eventually getting around to his hemorrhoid affliction.

 “I’ve decided to see a doctor, “Leonard said, “just to check things out.”

 “I’ve been checking around, too, doing a little research.”

 “What did you find out?”

 “Dude, you are totally and completely fucked. The rest of your life will be a living hell.”

 ”That’s what I figured.”

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Letter From Milo: Return to Sender

August 31st, 2015

I still haven’t recovered from my recent vacation. It was a nine-day road trip to several of Minnesota’s garden spots and it nearly ruined my health. My back is still sore from all the driving. My liver is acting up from all the drinking. And my lungs are shot from breathing all that clean air.

 The only reason I mention these things is to explain to The Third City’s loyal readers why I wasn’t able to come up with a new blog post this week. I’ve been so busy recuperating that I haven’t had time to do any writing.

 That said, I’m contractually obligated to post a blog every Monday. So, I’ve had to resort to the drunken newspaperman’s trick of posting letters from readers, adding snappy replies, and calling it a column.

 Fortunately, our readers are an elite group. Most of them are movers and shakers, wheelers and dealers, high rollers, big spenders, honchos and top dogs. An unusually large number of long-legged, busty babes are also fans of the blog.

 Here, then, are a few letters from our distinguished readers.

 Letter #1:

 Hey, Milo, did you hear about all those dumbasses who registered at the Ashley Madison website for cheating spouses? The site got hacked and now a lot of poor bastards are going to be in serious trouble. This is going to be a bonanza for divorce lawyers.

 Snappy Reply:

 I’ve got no sympathy for those dumb fucks. What kind of guy goes to a website to cheat on his wife? Where’s the initiative? Where’s the sense of adventure? Where the manliness? When I cheat on my wife, I do it the old-fashioned way, by picking up chicks in sleazy bars, hitting on some of my wife’s slutty girlfriends or keeping a mistress. The day I have to resort to a website to get laid is the day I’ll become a faithful husband.

 Letter #2:

 Dude, I’ve been reading your blog for a long time and I’ve come to the conclusion that you are full of shit.

 Snappy Reply:

 Thanks, Mom.

 Letter #3:

 Hello to you, my dearest Milo. I am presently being Professor Larsen E. M’Bogo, President of the Greater Nigerian Literary Society. It is my sincere pleasure to be informing you that your ebook, WASSERMANN GARDENS, which is wildly very popular in my country and currently the #1 selling book in Lagos, has been awarded the Goodluck Jonathan Award for Excellence in Literature Endeavors. This much esteemed award comes with a very large plaque and a check for $200,000 dollars in American money. Due to international banking regulations, we will need a check from you for the amounting of 750 American dollars to process your prize of cash. Once we receive your check, the money will be deposited in your choice of banks. Congratulations to you and have a day of niceness.

 Snappy Reply:

 Man, this is the best news I’ve heard in months. It might be a few weeks before I can come up with the 750 bucks. I might have to borrow it from my sister. But as soon as I get my hands on the dough, I’ll send you a check.

 Letter #4:

 Hey, Milo! You and all those other military veterans are some seriously lucky bastards. While all the rest of us have to struggle to pay for health insurance, you guys get it for free, just because you spent a couple of years in the service. That doesn’t seem fair.

 Snappy Reply:

 Actually, veterans do pay a price for health care. And it is dear. They risk their lives, limbs and sanity, in some of the most dangerous shitholes on earth, in the service of their country. If you ask any veteran, I’m sure he or she would say, “It would probably have been easier just to send Blue Cross a check every month.”

 Letter #5:

 Bro, have you gotten rid of that rotten cat yet? I finally got rid of the miserable fuzzball that’s made my life a living hell for all these years. Of course, when my wife found out, she immediately started divorce proceedings. But, everything considered, it’s a pretty good tradeoff. Let me know if you need any help disposing of your cat. I’ve got some excellent ideas.

 Snappy Reply:

 I appreciate the offer, but I’ve already figured how to settle the cat’s hash. I’m in negotiations to sell Otis, the rotten bastard of an alley cat who bamboozled his way into my household, to my dear friend, Mr. Choi, who owns a popular homestyle Korean restaurant on Ashland Avenue. He assures me that he’ll take real good care of the cat.

 Letter #6 (via cellphone email):

 Milo! Will you quit screwing around with that stupid blog and give me a hand. I need some help with the yard work. We have to re-pot plants, dig up some weeds and spread some manure. You’ve been down in the basement sitting in front of the computer all morning. I can hear you muttering and cursing down there. I know for a fact that you’ve been drinking. And you’re probably sneaking out to the garage to smoke reefer. I need your help now. I mean it!

Snappy Reply:

Yes, dear. 

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Letter From Milo: Elvis Came to Town (And Gave Me a Cadillac)

August 17th, 2015

The first celebrity I ever met was Duncan Renaldo, who played The Cisco Kid in the 1950s TV series of the same name. Mr. Renaldo must have been down on his luck when I met him because he had been reduced to appearing at a third-rate county fair in Lake County, Indiana, just outside of Gary, where he was selling autographed photos for two dollars each.

If I remember correctly, Mr. Renaldo charged a little extra if you wanted him to pose for a picture with you.

Before Duncan Renaldo paid Gary a visit, the most well known people in town were Fat Willie Bosco, whose claim to fame was eating 22 Coney Island chili dogs during a half hour lunch break, and Harold Wozniak, who became a prominent professional wrestling referee. So, it was understandable why even a minor TV star, 15 years past his glory days, would draw a crowd. Mr. Renaldo did very good business at the Lake County Fair.

There was, and probably still is, a severe shortage of celebrities in Gary. It’s not like Los Angeles, where you can bump into Lindsay Lohan at a liquor store, or New York City, where you can run into Woody Allen hanging out at FAO Schwarz.

So, you can imagine my surprise when I ran into Elvis Presley on the streets of Gary.

It was an early Saturday evening and I was walking home after spending the day at Gene’s Billiards, playing pool, smoking cigarettes, and trying to win some money on the pay-off pinball machines. I was nearly home when a flashy maroon Cadillac Eldorado, with Tennessee license plates and carrying four passengers, pulled up to the curb in front of me.

One of the Cadillac’s tinted windows rolled down and a voice with a distinct southern accent said, “Son, can you help us out? We’re having trouble finding an address.”

I was hesitant to approach the car. I intuitively understood that a Cadillac loaded with hillbillies is something to be avoided. Still, I didn’t want to be rude, so I said, “What’s the address?”

When the man told me the address, I said, “I know where it is, but it’s a rough neighborhood and real hard to find. I doubt a map would help you.”

“Do you know how to get there?”


The man quickly conferred with his fellow passengers. “Why don’t you hop in the car,” he said to me, “and show us where it is. We’ll pay you for your help.”

“Do I look like some sort of dumbass? What makes you think I’d get in a car with a bunch of strangers from Tennessee. You’re probably all perverts.”

When I said that, the guys in the car started laughing. Then the rear passenger door opened and the guy I had been talking to stepped out of the Cadillac. I was getting ready to run when another guy followed him out of the car. To my complete amazement, it was Elvis Presley.

Elvis stood on the sidewalk for a moment, looking around and sniffing the fetid Gary air. “Man, this place is a real shithole,” he commented. Turning to me, he said, “You know who I am, don’t you?”

“Of course.”

“The address we’re looking for belongs to Mr. Jimmy Reed. He’s a famous blues musician. I want to visit the man and pay my respects, because I’m putting one of his songs on my next record. I would consider it a personal favor if you’d show me to his house.”

I got in the car, sat between Elvis and a 300-pound man named Lamar, and gave the driver directions. After a while, someone asked if we were getting close to Jimmy Reed’s house.

When I said “We’re in shouting distance,” Elvis began singing a tune.

“Big Boss man,
Can you hear me when I call,
Big boss man,
Can you hear me when I call,
You ain’t so big,
You’re just tall that’s all.”

When we parked in front of Jimmy Reed’s house, Elvis went up the door, knocked, and went inside. He spent about 10 minutes in the house. When he came back to the car Lamar asked if he had seen Jimmy.

“Yes I did, but the old boy was passed out drunk in his easy chair. I heard he has always enjoyed hard liquor. But I had a nice talk with his wife. She’s a real sweet lady.”

After we left Jimmy Reed’s house, the guys gave me a ride home. Before I got out of the car, I said, “I recall someone saying I was going to get paid for showing you where Jimmy Reed lived.”

Elvis laughed. “Just give your address to Lamar. I’ll make sure you get paid for your trouble.”

Two weeks later, a sleek, cherry red Cadillac Eldorado was delivered to my door, compliments of Elvis Presley. I wasn’t old enough to drive, but my father enjoyed tooling around town in the Eldorado. Unfortunately, shortly after Elvis’ Cadillac arrived, the Old Man lost the car in a poker game in East Chicago.

I wrote Elvis a letter, explaining what had happened to the Eldorado, hoping he would send me another, but he never wrote back.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Due to numerous complaints from readers about the frequent exaggerations and outrights lies in Milo’s blogs, The Third City’s fact-checking department has been keeping a close eye on his posts. After weeks of painstaking research, we have been forced to conclude that there is absolutely no evidence, factual or anecdotal, that Elvis Presley ever set foot in Gary, Indiana. And although Indiana’s municipal record keeping is notoriously unreliable, it appears that during the period that the Elvis Presley incident allegedly took place, Milo was serving a lengthy stretch in a downstate reformatory.

However we were able to verify, through employment records at the Armour & Company meat packing plant, that Jimmy Reed did, indeed, live in Gary, Indiana, during the period in question. He was also known to have a drinking problem. Finally, we were able to ascertain that Duncan Renaldo did, in fact, once make an appearance at the Lake County Fair.

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Letter From Milo: Pull My Finger

August 16th, 2015

To the best of my knowledge, the lovely Mrs. Milo has never cut a fart. Although we’ve never discussed the subject, I’m sure she considers passing gas beneath her dignity.

Unlike my ragged and freestyle upbringing, my wife was raised properly, learning the basics of correct behavior at an early age. In her waspishly proper household (both parents were from Boston and of English descent) farting was, no doubt, frowned upon. That’s why if there’s any farting to be done in this family, I’ll be the one doing it.

I don’t recall ever farting in church, but I’ve cut the cheese just about everywhere else. I’ve flatulated in schools, hospitals, taverns, restaurants, pool rooms, government buildings, Marshall Field’s on State Street, elevated trains, board rooms and foxholes. I have released unpleasant fumes in many of these United States and on four different continents. And I’m not done yet. My bucket list includes the Taj Mahal, the Great Pyramid at Giza, Buckingham Palace, the Pentagon and Carnegie Hall.

I don’t mean to come across as sexist, but I honestly believe that women are not very good at farting. They can’t seem to get the hang of it. On the rare occasions when they have to let off a bit of steam, they fire away with wimpy little tootlets that barely qualify as farts. Worst of all, in my opinion, they don’t seem to take joy in the act.

“Millicent, my precious, did you by any chance emit a bit of gas in the last few minutes?”

“Oh, Harvey, this is so embarrassing. I was praying that you wouldn’t notice. This hasn’t happened to me in years. I hope you won’t think badly of me.”

“Don’t be too hard on yourself, dumpling. Even the most refined and well-bred women are subject to an occasional lapse in dignified behavior. I’ll just fetch the room deodorizer, dear, and we’ll forget this unfortunate incident ever happened.”

Naturally, there are exceptions to male domination of the flatulence scene. A handful of women have equaled and, in some cases, surpassed men in the ability to break wind.  That said, men still dominate the arena. Passing gas, loudly, frequently and rankly, is a macho activity, associated with virile types like cowboys (see Blazing Saddles), firemen, lumberjacks, Navy Seals and, of course, bloggers. The editorial staff here at The Third City is a shining example of flatulent excellence, especially Benny Jay, who has eaten nothing but fried chicken and cheese grits for the past 20 years.

To prove my point, I’m going to release a partial transcript of the minutes of The Third City’s last editorial board meeting.

“Jesus! What the fuck was that!”

“Oh, lord, will somebody please open a fucking window!”

“Goddamnit, Mike! Have the decency to give a guy a warning. Smells like a rat crawled up your ass and died.”

“It wasn’t me. It was that asshole Benny.”

“It wasn’t me, either. It was that bastard Milo. The fucker’s been drinking beer and eating beef jerky all morning.”

“Don’t look at me. It was probably that shithead Randolph.”

“You idiot, Jon’s not even here.”

“Well, what about that greasy new intern we hired. He looks like a nasty fucker.”

“Will somebody please open a damned window?”

As bad as that experience was, it didn’t rank very high on my list of all-time fart horror stories. The absolute worst happened to me when I was in high school, back in Gary, Indiana.

I was driving around with five of my friends in the 1959 Mercury I had recently purchased for $110. My friends, Dickie Kaiser, Dave Spurlock, Sandy Bordeaux, Kenny Woodside, Jim Krock and I had pooled our meager resources and purchased two cases of the cheapest beer in Gary. I think we paid four dollars a case.

We were having some good clean fun, just surfing the streets, drinking beer and listening to WLS. It was a cold winter’s night, so we had the windows rolled up. At some point in the evening, when we each had four or five beers sloshing around in our bellies, Dave Spurlock cut a monster of a fart, a fart for the ages. It was so loud that I thought one of the guys had set off an M-80 in the back seat.

A second later, the inevitable occurred and the other smelly shoe dropped. The stink that permeated the car was unbearable. It was dense, clinging and as putrid as the grave. The odor was a combination of everything vile – rotten eggs, rotten fish, dog shit, dirty sneakers and a backed up sewer. I doubt anything on earth smelled worse than that particular fart.

I almost lost control of the car. Dickie Kaiser had his head hanging out of the back window, vomiting up all the beer he had been drinking. I could hear Sandy Bordeaux gagging. It was a dangerous moment.

Somehow, through sheer strength of will, I managed to pull the car over to the curb. The guys tumbled out of the car, gagging, coughing, eyes watering and noses running. Jim Krock threw up the beer he had been drinking. I gagged and spat a couple of times, but was able to keep down most of the evening’s refreshments. It was touch and go for a while, but somehow Lady Luck was on our side and we all survived.

After blowing his nose and wiping his eyes with a handkerchief, Kenny Woodside said, “Good one, Dave. That was a hell of a fart.”

Dave had a huge smile on his face. He radiated joy and satisfaction. “I thought you guys would appreciate that one,” he said.

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