Ever walk into your house after you’ve been away, or walk into a room and notice a strange smell?

That happened this week, after the Midwest hurricane knocked three trees and multiple branches onto my house and around my yard. The power was out, my phone was out, and internet was (and still is) out, and my son and I walked around outside later that evening, after the storm had cleared, to check out the damage in our own yard and around the neighborhood.

When we arrived back in the house, before dark, there was a strange smell.

“Was that you?”

“No, was it you?”

Nope on either.

Now, of course, once you do encounter a strange smell in your house, you have to try to find it, because who wants a strange smell in their house?

I’ll usually look for some dropped food or something behind or under furniture, and sometimes that’s the case. Some bit of stray potable that tried to escape and sadly discovered its motion was limited to whatever got it there in the first place, and then was left, saddened and chastened, to rot in bitterness and disappointment. It’s like the Willy Loman of pizza toppings. Poor green pepper. You coulda been a contender.

But what if it’s not a rogue vegetable?

The Answer To One Of Life's Incredibly Deep And Important Questions Is Under Your NoseMy next guess is that it’s a croaked mouse. They’ll get into the house from time to time, especially in the winter, and will end up kickin’ it, and not in the sense that they put on Hammer pants and break dance. And once they get to a certain ripeness, they’ll emit a foul stench.

But what if it’s not a mouse?

Something else? Something in the vent? Something downstairs coming up through the vent?

Nope, nope and nope.

Whiff your underarms.

Not you.

Not me.

Did you fart?


You sure about that?

Then what is it?

Maybe it’s a ghost?

Do ghosts fart?

I’ve often wondered about this, since ghosts seem to engage in some fairly banal and goofy activity. People will talk about ghosts leaving cabinets open or opening kitchen drawers or moving little items around.

Because of course that’s not the people in the house, who have just forgotten they left a kitchen cabinet open.

It’s ghosts, dammit!

That always seems strange to me. If ghosts do exist, and our energy forces transcend our physical beings, and if our ghosts can travel anywhere across the world or the universe, and have the expanded power of our energy unencumbered by physical bodies or concerns, wouldn’t you think there would be more exciting things to do than open people’s cabinets and knock crap off the walls?

I don’t know, maybe those ghosts don’t have much imagination. Many people don’t, so maybe that limited focus continues on into the afterlife?

So if some ghosts love spending their time doing goofy, little stuff like that, playing practical jokes and such, why wouldn’t they step into a room and pop one?

Why not get someone to blame the other person in the room for their farts? Or get them to think there’s something else going on, and then ghost giggling as they look around and under the furniture? I mean, really, if you’re a ghost, you must get bored. Playing practical jokes on people is probably one of the highlights of your day. Otherwise why bother opening and closing the cabinets?

So my vote is that yes, yes, ghosts probably do fart.

And aren’t you glad that incredibly important question has been answered?

Oh, and the smell?

Food gone wild in the powerless fridge.

Much scarier.

The Answer To One Of Life's Incredibly Deep And Important Questions Is Under Your Nose
Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.
The Answer To One Of Life's Incredibly Deep And Important Questions Is Under Your Nose

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