I don’t know about you, but the world seems to be getting pretty (insert your favorite colorful word here) intense. While I like to stay informed, I also like to laugh to deal with stress. And, I need some chuckles these days.
Today, the wonderful Jen Jensen is here to help us laugh with an embarrassing story. Also, Jen is giving away 2 signed copies of Jamis Bachman, Ghost Hunter. Below the guest post, you’ll find more details about the giveaway.
Take it away Jen.
Kale Farts & Ikea
You asked for my most embarrassing story, and you’re getting it. This is a cautionary tale about good intentions gone wrong with kale, a blender, and a trip to Ikea in Elizabeth, New Jersey.
I was living in New Jersey with my twenty-something nephew. He decided to get fit and took my credit card to buy a Ninja blender for the apartment. He started making smoothies every morning before he bounded off to the gym.
He then drank this smoothie every day for a week or two. I encouraged it. I was busy with work, not really paying attention to what he was doing. We’d also just begun to recover from an apartment flood. A fire sprinkler pipe had burst during an arctic blast and all our furniture floated away. I needed to wait for the insurance check so I could replace our furniture so we could toss out our air mattresses. It came on a Wednesday night and I told Mick we’d need to make a trip to Ikea Friday night.
Hearing that he’d soon have a bed again made him generous. “Let me start making you a smoothie. You know, to help you. It’s been stressful.” So, I agreed. I mean, what could it hurt? I asked what was in the smoothie. He told me apple, banana, carrots, kale, spinach, ice, and water.
Looking back, I should have asked for the amount of each.
I was all in. I heard him blending my smoothie that morning before he left for class. He proudly told me it was waiting for me in the fridge.
It was amazing, and after, I was so full. But by late morning, air started leaking out of my butt against my will. I walked around all day, a tiny cloud of putrid air-puss floating behind me. People looked at me from the corners of their eyes. I could see their disdain and judgement. I heard someone whisper, “Is that her?”
It hurt so much to hold it in, but I was afraid of what would happen if I let it go. At lunch, I got in my car and felt the sweet relief of release. I had to roll down all the windows.
I texted Mick.
Jen: What did you put in my smoothie? Tell me exactly. I can’t stop farting!
Mick: Two Apples, banana, cup of carrots, three cups of Kale, two cups of spinach, some weird algae superfood I saw on a Netflix documentary, ½ cup of blueberries and strawberries, maybe a peach, protein powder, coconut milk, and ice.
Jen: You are trying to kill me! Do you know how tender my intestines are? I have Celiacs! That’s three days of servings in one smoothie!
Mick: Dude, it’s the kale. It’s good for you.
I held it together as much as I could at work, but driving home, my car filled with gases so noxious they wouldn’t be welcome on Venus. I could have powered the Hindenburg.
I texted Mick: Oh my f-ing Gawd!! My guts are on fire! What did you do to me?
I got home and sounded like a marching band as I walked the dogs. Each step expelled more of the gas festering inside of me. The smell was pure evil mixed with a dark descent into the abyss. My guts felt like I was listening to alt-right talk radio.
When Mick got back home, around eleven, he said, “Oh my god, dude. I had to hold this fart for the whole class. I thought I was going to die! I’m not kidding. It’s still coming.”
It was too. As he stood talking to me, air leaked out of his butt. It sounded like air seeping from a balloon when you pull it tight after blowing it up. (Do you know what I’m talking about? I used to do it all the time as a kid. I’d inflate the balloon, and then grab both sides of the air entry way, and let it hiss. Sometimes, I’d let it go so it flew all of the room.)
I laughed hysterically, my eyes watering from the laughter and the smell. “I got to my truck and let it out and it was so sick. It wouldn’t stop. It went on and on.” He made the sound for me.
I heard it coming out of his mouth and his butt the same time.
“Oh my god, go away,” I said, throwing a pillow at him. “Slow down on the smoothies. It’s too much.”
He disagreed. “Dude, it’s the kale.” He said this as the noxious gas leaked slowly from his butt, steady in its release. I don’t think he even realized it was still happening. It was totally involuntary.
The next day at work, I had a bit more control, but not much. I hadn’t eaten at all because I was so afraid of adding to the chaos inside my body. I told Mick to meet me at the office with his truck so we could go to Ikea. It had snowed heavily the night before and everything was buried under at least ten inches of snow. I was cold, tired, miserable, homesick, and the smoothie was rotting inside me.
He showed up, oddly on time, still farting. I could hear it as I stood by the truck window while we discussed our plans. He followed me to Ikea. I hate shopping. I really hate shopping at Ikea. But I dig the furniture, so did what I must.
We walked through the sliding glass doors and I began farting again. It was a combination of stress, anxiety, and the prospect of navigating miles of Ikea. Their floorplan traps you. You can only move forward. Turning around is impossible. The yellow arrows on the floor demand you only walk deeper into the cavern of prefabricated modernity. It comes with the promise of well styled, cheap home decor, but that comes with a price. Maybe you leave a piece of your soul at the mid-point to help fund such a monstrosity.
By the time we finished, I felt like I’d just completed Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s journey. I was changed and had met many helpers along the way. A married couple with three kids were our companions on our long trek. I really wonder what happened to them. I’d overcome anxiety, over-stimulation, and overwhelming options and selected furniture.
We checked out, pushing two large and loaded carts.
I told Mick to run and get my car and then his truck. I’d wait with the stuff. I really wanted to just stand outside and enjoy the fresh air. In a few dark moments, deep in the heart of Ikea, I was worried I’d never see the light of day again.
Mick brought my car around first and I loaded it while he went to grab his truck. I saw him zoom around the corner and throw it into reverse, backing right up the loading dock where I waited. He is such a show-off. He jumped out, opened the tailgate, and the back of his truck was full of snow.
When I saw it, I farted so loud someone three cars away said, “Oh my god, what was that?”
Mick said, “Anything in your pants?”
“It’s all your fault. And I told you to scoop the snow out of the back of your truck this morning!”
“You did not,” he said.
“Well, I thought it. Anyway, you knew we were coming here? It didn’t occur to you to push it out?” I farted again. It felt like a baby dinosaur was hatching inside me. Or an alien. Something was breaking free, stretching out its arms and legs after long confinement. I was scared of what was happening inside me at this point.
“Dude, it’s the kale,” Mick said, pointing at me.
“It’s all the fiber you put in that smoothie. Who the hell does that?”
He shrugged. “You drank it dude.”
“Just clean out the snow,” I said. I had to walk away from the smell where I was standing. I was dying inside.
I leaned against the glass window by the door and watched him push the snow out with the brush I’d bought him to use to clean off the truck windows. He piled it right behind the truck, in two piles on either side of the tailgate and a small one in the middle. I pointed.
“So now we have to lift everything up and over the snow,” I said.
“It’s fine,” he said. “I’ll do it.” He lifted a long piece of furniture up and couldn’t get it to clear the pile of snow. He tried a different angle and still couldn’t get it in the truck.
“Want help?” I walked forward.
“Will you fart while doing it?”
I ignored him and lifted the other side. We slid it into the back of the truck but as I stepped forward to help him push it all the way in, my foot slipped off the loading dock and I slid from where I stood down the incline of snow in the middle of the tailgate. I looked like a tobagoner. Had I been in the Olympics, I would have won at least a Bronze medal. I careened under the tailgate and slid until I was under the truck.
I farted the whole time. I think it might have propelled me forward some.
When I finally came to a stop, I heard Mick laughing. I closed my eyes and just held still for a few minutes. When I opened them, Mick was hanging over the side of the truck. His face was upside down and he laughed so hard there were tears.
“You okay?” He didn’t really care if I was okay. “Did you poop your pants because it sounded like it.”
I twisted and stuck my legs out from under the truck, near him. “Please pull me out.” I heard him jump over the side of the truck. He grabbed me by an ankle and drug me out like that. A crowd of bystanders had gathered on both sides of the truck. Someone went to get the Ikea store manager, who rushed toward me, holding a walkie-talkie. I heard him say, “I’m on scene.”
I waved everyone away. Mostly, I didn’t want anyone that close if I had to fart again. I reassured the manager I was fine. They helped Mick load the rest of the furniture. I got in my car and drove away in a momentary lull of interest.
I never went back.
It took a week to recover from the smoothie.
by Jen Jensen
Jamis Bachman never stays in one place for too long. Retired from the reality TV show Ghastly Incidents, she’s now a social media sensation, chasing ghosts, demons, and inter-dimensional aliens—in an effort to avoid her own.
When a desperate young couple sends Jamis a video of a poltergeist disturbance, she jumps on a plane to Sage Creek, Utah, not knowing her world is about to change forever. Ghost stories she can handle, but a violent poltergeist, a brutal unsolved twenty-five-year-old murder, and meeting the love of her life? She’s in way over her head.
Jamis thought she was the one chasing ghosts, but it seems as though something is chasing her…
MEET THE AUTHOR
Jen Jensen lives in Phoenix with her partner, family, and pack of rescued senior dogs.
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