Illustration: Sam Woolley (GMG)
FunbagTime for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Got something on your mind? [Email the Funbag](mailto:funbag.deadspin@gmail.com).   

Your letters!

Kevin:

In which sport do the athletes fart most frequently during the course of play? My gut instinct is that it’s tennis players, who have that wicked combination of twitch reflexes and quick moments of full body exertion that has gotta be leading to some serious wind; perhaps they’re grunting that loudly to cover up the noise.

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Yeah but tennis has so many quiet moments that are NOT conducive to farting. You’re out there all alone on one side of the court, with TV mics trained on you and everyone in attendance listening raptly. That’s horrifying. I would hold it in until the changeover and then fart into a towel if I could.

There are a lot of other sports where you can not only get away with farting, but can actively deploy farting in the name of gamesmanship. Here’s how I’d rank them:

  1. Distance Running. If you run, you fart. No other runner is gonna blame you for letting it rip on the marathon course. We’ve all been there. Whenever I run, there’s a steady vapor trail behind me for the duration of my jaunt. Once you get those legs churning and your buttcheeks rolling, there’s no stopping the farts. They are inevitable, like war. And if you eat some kind of protein bar along the course for energy? Forget it. You could power a fucking resort with that much expelled gas. Secretly, every distance runner loves to fart and leave a souvenir behind for anyone trailing.
  2. MMA. Farting is often caused by physical strain. This is why your average weight room smells like a toilet that’s been stuffed with cheese fondue. So if some dude has me down on the canvas in a rear naked choke, I’m farting. Hell, farting is the most dignified possible outcome there. I think UFC octagons should be encased in a big plastic bubble to keep the farts in and up the urgency.
  3. Baseball. Spiritually, baseball ought to be number one. It’s the perfect farting sport because it involves occasional bursts of running (big fart moment), plus it has the position of catcher, where your asshole is open wide to the ground at all times. Baseball is also played by filthy pigs who ENJOY farting, and have ample opportunity to fart with impunity. Farting is the original dugout prank. If I can crop-dust the catcher, I will. If I can get a big lead at first base by laying down a methane cloud and distracting the first baseman, I will. David Wells alone has probably farted during games more than your entire family has in a lifetime. I bet there’s an entire subset of unofficial farting rules that govern the sport, and I would read 20,000 words on it.
  4. Football. You’re bent over so often on a football field that farting is natural. No one even blinks if you fart, or barf, or piss your pants out there. I spent the bulk of my football playing days just making sure not to die. I wasn’t about to get all prissy about farts in the huddle.
  5. Rowing. Think about the motion involved. You’re steadily bringing your heels to your ass and then sliding back straight. That would hypnotize my asshole. Farts would just fall right out of me. Plus the added wind would give me just the edge I need to win the Henley regatta.
  6. NASCAR. You’re alone in a car. Who’s gonna know? When I’m alone in a car, I gas myself to death.
  7. Esports. Everything I know about Adderall comes from this Reddit question: “Why the fuck do i shit my brains out every time? Then proceed to have fart’s like never before? I am literally hotboxing my room with my fart stank, it is pretty intense.”
  8. Cycling. You’re hunched over a Cannondale and barreling down a mountain at 40 mph. By the time you’ve laid down a fart, it’s a mile behind you.
  9. Horse racing. Look at these jockeys, man. Look at them! Swap out the horse for a gas station toilet and tell me the pose is any different. They’re bent over and lifting their asses while a one-ton thoroughbred is tearing up the earth underneath them. I’m surprised more jockeys don’t shit themselves. Maybe they do and people don’t talk about it.

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Kent:

I tend to walk faster than most people. What’s the best way to pass people on the sidewalk without feeling like a predator and/or weirdo?

So long as you don’t hip check them when you pass by, I think you’re fine. The slow asshole is front of you is gonna think you’re a huffy prick regardless. I have gone off the sidewalk and into the street to pass by hordes of Ohio tourists. Sometimes it’s my only recourse. If they wanna get mad about it, tough shit. DURRRR WHAT’S THEM THERE FELLA THINK HE’S DOIN’ WALKIN’ FASTER THAN US? I am veteran walker in a country full of people who generally loathe bipedal locomotion. I’ll pass you. I don’t give a fuck. I’ll tighten up my asshole and do the whole New York walking thing. I got places to be.

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You know what the hardest thing to pass is when you’re walking? A Rascal scooter. This is extremely dickish, but old people on Rascals are fucking terrible at driving them. They swerve all over the sidewalk and never drive in a straight line. I swear it’s like they’re deliberately attempting to sweep the area clean of pedestrians. If you drive a Rascal AND it has some kind of pro-life bumper sticker on the back, I’m gonna judge you. Rascals are a menace. FACT (not a fact): Half the people driving Rascals can actually walk just fine, they just don’t want to.

Chris:

Hi Drew, sometimes I lay down on the green and hit the ball with the end of my putter like an asshole, but it tends to be more accurate than me actually putting. I only do it when drinking a ton, but could this ever be a viable strategy for a golfer?

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I don’t think there’s a formal rule against it, but I think it’s one of 10,000 different things that would be frowned upon by other golfers. There’s a lot of frowning upon things in golf. That’s what makes it such a beautiful game. Every man is entrusted to keep his own score, and will be socially shunned forever if he does it in a manner that is deemed unsatisfactory by his rich asshole peers. SO MUCH INTEGRITY. What fun would golf be if I couldn’t become indescribably unhappy because another golfer did something I didn’t approve of? Not very! I think I spent 95 percent of my golfing career angry.

You shouldn’t do the pool shot every time anyway, because it’s an iron law of golf that whatever gimmicky thing you attempt to improve your game will work for exactly three days. After that, you’re back to being the same chump you always were. “Oh wow, when I use a belly putter, I’m a completely different golfer! I COULD GO PRO!” That’s a very standard golfing delusion. As it stands now, I think you’re doing the pool shot at the proper frequency. You should do it only when you’re totally blotto and want to golf like you’re Bugs Bunny for a second.

By the way, the USGA is so up its ass about its rulebook that it even has a virtual museum of rules on its website called “Rules of golf: a journey through time.” FASCINATING. I must know more about the rich, deep, noble history of golfers narcing on each other.

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Matt:

How do I find a goth girlfriend?

Hmmmm, can’t you just scroll through Tinder? Do they let you filter for things like BLACK NAIL POLISH and INTO MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE? They really ought to. I’m sure NOTHING could go wrong if they added that kind of advanced sorting power. “Man, I wonder why there are no white cougars under 100 lbs. who are big Fortnite players in my area? Tinder must be broken!”

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In all seriousness, I would just start following more goth bands and getting into extracurricular activities that might lure in a Suicide Girl: volunteering at haunted houses, checking out the Church of Satan, and hanging out around your local Spencer’s. You’re still gonna have a rough go of it, because the average American grows out of their goth phase by, oh, age 15 or so. But if you’re willing to do the legwork, you can still probably find an adult woman out there who’s way too into Rob Zombie directorial efforts.

I would also suggest you not worry all that much about what kind of girl you’re looking for. One of the few enjoyable things about being single is that it’s fun to keep an open mind and become attracted to people you never thought you’d be attracted to. You thought all accountants were lame as shit until you met TINA. Now your whole world has been turned upside down! Embrace the variety, my friend. When I was single, the most attractive quality I found in any woman was if she was attracted to ME. Huge, huge turn-on. It’s why I was super into that one girl whose head was made entirely of raw cabbage.

Evan:

I pack my 5-year-old son’s lunch and he gets a treat. He is arguing that Fig Newtons are not a treat, I say they are. Will you settle this for us?

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They’re a treat but you’ll NEVER get a kid to acknowledge them as such unless that child has been in prison for over a year. Fig Newtons are a fruit course to a child. The only way a treat is a treat to them is if it is made entirely of corn syrup and xanthan gum. If there’s any trace of fruit, or even wheat, it’s not a valid dessert to a child.

I struggle with this sliding scale all the time. I want my kids to eat well, and I try to model good eating habits to them. And yet, they never want to eat a fucking thing besides Welch’s fruit snacks. I end up begging them to eat bacon even though bacon is AWFUL for you. But that’s how warped it gets. If they eat anything that isn’t a Fruit Roll-Up, I consider it a victory. I’m gonna go jump off a balcony now. YOU KNOW ORANGES USED TO BE A CHRISTMAS GIFT YOU UNGRATEFUL LOUTS.

Paul:

The other day I was taking a client to a pretty nice steak house. Love me some protein. I asked for my steak to be cooked medium rare, and when the steak was brought out to me, it had been cooked medium well. I did not want to make a fuss in front of the client, and look like I was some kind of dickbag. The drinks and service were great! Which got me to thinking, what is the right way to send back a steak?

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Oh, you could have sent it back. Steakhouses are expensive! If they fuck up a big-ticket item like a $45 ribeye, you have the right to politely tell the waiter, in your best WASP accent, “I’m sorry sir, but this is overcooked.” I don’t think the waiter or your client would have been offended by that. In fact, your client would probably be impressed. “Oh wow, this guy accepts nothing less than the BEST. I’m tripling my budget with him from now on.” That would definitely happen.

I think the true dickbags are the ones who send food back as a matter of routine, even when it’s a small thing, and even when they don’t have a good case for it. It’s also the guys who make a big stink about the order being wrong. It’s not like the average restaurant WANTS to fuck up your dish and take a loss on your cover. Two decades ago, I was at a business dinner and one of the guys sent back his order and told the waiter, verbatim, “This is the worst thing I’ve ever tasted.” And the waiter was like, “Oh.” The poor server just had to stand there and absorb that insult, and there’s no way that whatever the dude was eating was the worst thing he’d ever tasted. He was just trying to make the waiter feel like crap. Don’t do that. You can send food back without being a colossal prick about it.

UNLESS… they put mayo on something without asking. Whenever a restaurant does that, it is a deliberate personal attack on me and those responsible must be punished SEVERELY. I want heads on a platter, and I want them done medium rare.

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HALFTIME!

Steve:

I’ve developed a March Madness bracket theory, never pick a team with a top 5 NBA prospect to win it all. Sure, there are exceptions like Carmelo Anthony. But overall, they’re usually one and done prospects who, while incredibly talented, usually lose at some point on the tournament to some better run team of less-talented seniors. Am I crazy or does this theory hold muster?

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Well, let’s check the numbers. You only have to go back to 2015 to find a player who was both a top 5 pick and a national champion (Jahlil Okafor, Duke). And the 2012 Kentucky squad that won it all had players go 1-2 in that draft (Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchirst). Billy Donovan’s 2007 Florida team had three dudes go in the top 10.

I’ve had similar thoughts about MEGA BUCKS GLORY BOY college players, because there are such striking historic examples of great future pros flaming out in the tourney, ala Shaq and Kevin Durant and Trae Young. I think it’s reasonable to assume that if a college team has ONE incredible player who really stands out because he’s got a bunch of puds around him, that team is gonna have trouble in the tournament because good defensive teams can triple-team that stud and keep him in a headlock all game long. But if you’ve got some tiny, Gerry McNamara motherfucker who can drain threes when the stud is covered, you’re probably gonna do just fine. Turns out that having really good players does help college teams win.

Ben:

Does Trump have to worry about charging his own phone? I’m constantly searching for a charger at home, work, and my car. He’s got to be using his 10x more than I do so I like to think he’s constantly looking too.

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Oh no, he has someone do that for him. Why do you think reports said he felt so lost without Hope Hicks around? Without her, he probably throws away his phone after every bathroom break and expects a fresh one after the fact. I bet the day Hope left, he was stranded on the toilet, with half a log broken off, unsure what to do next. “Hope? Hopester? WHERE IS HOPE?!!!!!!!!!!!” If Trump can have someone else do something for him, he’ll never do it himself. He’s living the true American Dream.

Pete:

What if scientists discovered a cure for all cancer but it was a rare mineral found only beneath Augusta National golf course? Would the green coats be willing to tear up their precious course to save millions of lives or does a Tradition Unlike Any Other continue unabated?

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LOL tough shit for all you cancer patients out there. Augusta National would sooner exhume the body of Bobby Jones than uproot a single fucking azalea on their precious course. For all I know, the cure for cancer really IS down there, and they already know it, and the club’s board has already voted to do nothing about it.

Since it’s Masters week, it’s worth reminding you of how completely and utterly insane the people running the Masters are.

“Now look around,” my friend said again. “Find a squirrel.”

I couldn’t find a squirrel. Nobody seems to have any explanation for this, besides the questionable theory that squirrels prefer softwood trees and Augusta doesn’t let softwoods like the native sweetgum grow on the grounds.

“Now look up,” he said, obviously having performed this patter before. “Notice any birds?”

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If these guys are willing to forcibly remove birds from the sky in order to preserve the tranquility of their stupid golf course, they’re willing to do anything. They’re psychotic. I enjoy watching The Masters, but I also long for the day when that course is burned to the fucking ground and they dig up all the Nazi treasures hidden beneath. I bet there’s a skull made of pure emeralds under there.

Mike:

I think the XFL could be successful and benefit society. All it needs to do is to compete with college football instead of the NFL. If the XFL told high school seniors they would pay them the salary that they rightfully deserve and give them a full ride to college while they played in the de facto NFL development league, who would turn it down?

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That’s a good idea EXCEPT the XFL will never pay for that. When the league first started, they paid players an average of $4,500 a week. In other words, XFL players were the only football players alive who were more unfairly compensated than college players. There’s no way Vince McMahon is gonna pay for your college AND give you a decent salary on top of that. He wants the cheapest possible league so that he can turn a decent profit on the TV revenue from America’s olds tuning in to see pro football players standing for the anthem at gunpoint. Never count on one heartless corporate monolith to do better than some other heartless corporate monolith. We call this The Zuckerberg Principle.

I also think that college football is so deeply ingrained into the collective consciousness that you can’t simply replicate it in some other form. Like, if you take the roster and coaching staff of every SEC team, and you strip away all the college logos and pageantry and you rebrand the whole thing as some relatively generic B-level pro team, are you watching it? I don’t think I am. I think I would instinctively blanch at that. There’s an atmospheric quality to college football that people adore, and the NCAA takes full advantage of that. You can’t transfer that over to XFL2: X Harder without losing something intangible in the process.

In my ideal scenario, college football still exists, with all of the rivalries and quirks that already make it so popular. The infrastructure is already there, and I like it a lot! They just need to let players make some fucking t-shirt money. It’s not that difficult.

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Chris:

Convention says SBD, silent but deadly, however, I grew up with Silent but Violent. I prefer the latter. Thoughts?

I get why silent but violent is better because it rhymes and it because it connotes a particularly aggressive brand of fart. But I’m a traditionalist. Watch this:

Still makes me laugh. I’ll always be #TeamSBD. “Deadly” just sounds sneakier, which is what you want out of a silent fart.

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Marc:

What is the longest sex gap in a typical person’s life? Birth to loss of virginity, or the last time having sex to death?

The former. Old people are all bored and insanely horny. Plus they have the drugs to fuck now! Your average modern old person is gonna get the clap at a nursing home before kicking the bucket, and they’re gonna LOVE it. Those genital scabs are scabs of joy.

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I do wonder what the all-time record would be for the longest stretch one person has gone in between lays. Like, what if it’s 70 years? What if some poor schmuck got laid as a teenager, but then had to wait until he was 90 before getting another chance at it? Can you IMAGINE that? I’d explode. Literally. There’d be a loud bang and then nothing left but some leftover scraps of shredded wheat and old underwear.

Tony:

So during a vacation, I binge watched a few shows. In Season 4 of Weeds, they’re in a house doing laundry and Nancy transfers clothes from right to left, washer to dryer. I thought, “No one has that setup”. Then I remembered another TV show that has the dryer on the left. Please tell me it’s left-right for washer-dryer.

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It’s left-right. The only reasons I can think of that show having the wrong setup is that Mary-Louise Parker is left-handed, or that someone fucked up, or that whoever designed the set lived in a place where the washer HAD to be on the right to be closer to the plumbing setup.

I have a bad back, so the act of transferring the wet laundry to the dryer is surprisingly dicey for me. Rarely do I make the switch without a wet sock falling to the floor and instantly gathering up a pound of stray animal dander in the process. It’s the worst, and having to bend to the LEFT instead of the right would only make it more agonizing. If I ever stumbled onto that kind of setup, I would punch someone.

Carl:

When is the proper time for people to stop talking to each other when watching a movie at a theater? During preview trailers? Once the opening title cards appear for the film in question? Once the movie itself truly starts with characters appearing on screen?

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When the lights go all the way down, everyone needs to shut the fuck up. I don’t care if you talk during the ads or during the Screen Scramble. I don’t even mind if you audibly offer your assessment of a trailer right after it comes on. My mom is big into that. She’ll watch a relatively inoffensive preview and then lean over and whisper, “Oh, that looks DREADFUL.” That’s all fine. The trailers are so loud I can barely hear anything else anyway.

But when the lights go from kinda dark to all-the-way dark (and whenever I go to the movies, I have a split second of panic where I wonder if they’re gonna forget to turn the lights all the way down), that is the time to sit quietly and shut your big American piehole. If you dare talk after that, I will club you to death with a mallet. No jury would convict me, except for 98% of them.

Email of the week!

Justin:

I recently quit my white collar professional job to make a career change. In the meantime, I’m a full-time stay-at-home dad to my 2-year-old daughter and part-time college student. Because my wife is due to deliver baby #2 any day now, part of my duties at home is to get the daughter as far along as I can in her potty training before we are so sleep deprived that we give up and start putting newspaper on the floor.

This morning, I was experiencing a rare moment of freedom where the daughter was so occupied with her peanut butter waffle that I had time to get the dishes done that had been piling up for a couple days. (Only a stay-at-home parent will understand this euphoria.) During this period of hyperproductivity, I also noted the urge to crap. Urgent, but not quite an emergency. I decided to push through to finally get the damn dishes done.

Upon finishing dish duty, with the urge to shit increasing in intensity, the daughter politely requests to both watch Finding Dory and use the potty. Awesome! We’ve been working on her actually letting me know when she has to potty, so this is a big win! Big enough, that I decide that I can continue to forgo my need to defecate. I wait (FOREVER) for Netflix to boot up the movie and get her plastic Fisher Price turtle potty set up in front of the TV, seemingly killing two birds at the same time. Killing it.

I got the daughter stripped down and set on the potty, then proceeded to go to the can to do the same for myself. Sometime during the preceding setup time, I apparently had grown a turtle head that somehow had managed to get smushed all over my shorts, legs, lower back, and ass cheeks. Great... I shit my pants. I quickly realized it was similar to a messy diaper situation, with crap everywhere, that was going to take half a pack of wipes. Except it was on my own body, I was going to have to do the cleanup backwards and blind, and all I had at my disposal was dry toilet paper. Needless to say, this was a fucking mess. In getting my lower posterior mostly clean, I had also managed to get feces smeared over various parts of my fingers and hands, which was somehow worse than the previous mess. It was at this point that the daughter proudly announced that she was done on the potty.

I did my best to wash my hands, and sort of pulled my pants halfway over my ass to cover my genitals, but hopefully avoid smearing any of the crap that doubtlessly remained on my butt, and go take care of the kiddo. To my surprise, she pooped in the potty! A first! We’d had success with pee, but this was the first poop. Very exciting stuff. While I was figuring out how to deal with kid crap in the plastic potty, I had the realization that my daughter and I had just experienced simultaneous poop milestones: her first poop in the potty, and the first time I shit my pants as an adult. What a special moment... It was a weird mix of pride and shame.

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Awwwww.