The Absurd Epistolary Adventures of the Astonishing FartMan chronicles the amusing escapades
of the lovable, stinky, and obnoxious Cape & Tights Super Hero, and his maudlin Alter Ego, W____,
as they learn to cope with Stage IV colon cancer, each other, and their annoying fellow human beings.

Monday, July 18, 2011

All the Perfect Drugs and Super Heroes

From: T. A. FartMan
Sent: July 18, 2011 10:03 AM
To: W_____
Subject: Our Theme Song

Hey W___,

Sorry 'bout the dustup over Phoenix the other day. I've explained to Bowel Boy that he can't just let loose like that near a populated area.

Even though the AZ Haboob wasn't exactly my fault, I wanna make amends with you. So here's a little goodwill gesture. If you haven't heard of Aimee Mann, then introducing you to her music is one of the best favors I could do for you, or for anybody.

Click here to listen to a clip from the Official T. A. FartMan Theme Song, Humpty Dumpty, from Aimee Mann's album Lost in Space.

An excerpt of the first lines of lyrics:
Say you were split, you were split in fragments
And none of the pieces would talk to you,
Wouldn't you want to be who you had been?
Well baby I want that too.

So better take the keys
And drive forever.
Staying won't put these

Futures back together.
All the perfect drugs

And Super Heroes
Wouldn't be enough

To bring me up to zero.

Baby, you're great. You've been more than patient,
Saying it's not a catastrophe.
But I'm not the boy you once put your faith in,
Just someone who looks like me.
Fits you and me just about perfect, doncha think?

Now you owe me one!

T. A. FartMan

P.S. Here's a link to a fun video of Aimee performing the song live, with a little help from the audience: Fans Help on Humpty Dumpty.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

"Haboob" Does Not Mean "Oops" in Arabic

From: W_____
Sent: July 9, 2011 11:05 AM
To: T. A. FartMan
Subject: You and BB Flying Out of the Haboob

Dammit all, FartMan, this time you might have finally blown it.

Have you seen the photos they got of you and your new sidekick, Bowel Boy, flying side-by-side out of that haboob over Phoenix last week? (Here's a link to the news story with the pictures.)

Yes, I know, just like always you'll come up with some half-ass excuse to avoid responsibility. You'll say you were just taking Bowel Boy out over the desert for his first training flight. You'll say nobody could have anticipated how powerful the little fella's poots would turn out to be.

Well, don't try to blame this dust up on BB. I've been around you long enough to know exactly what happened: You had to start showing off for your new sidekick. You just couldn't help yourself, could you? So it all started innocently enough, with you demonstrating the Astonishing Subtlety and Variety of your poots and bragging about how many thousands of feet high you can soar on a single blast.

Two and half beers later, whoooosh!!!!!, there's a 100-mile wide fart storm engulfing half the population of Arizona.

That's pretty much how it went down, right? That's the way it always goes with you. It always starts with you talkin' smack, and it always ends with some kind of previously unheard of unnatural disaster.

And now you act like it's no big deal, like "haboob" just means "Oops, excuse me, I farted," in Arabic.

(I don't wanna know, so please don't tell me, if you've already been teaching Bowel Boy the "flatulentio ignitio." How could we live with ourselves if your carelessness set off all those wildfires out west last month!?!?)

Lucky for you, the authorities at Roswell and Area 51 are so fixated on the aliens that they haven't been able to pinpoint you and The Cutest Little Thing as the obvious culprits. Good thing your haboob wasn't a very smelly one, or the feds would already be knocking on our door. The lawsuits would have put TAF Enterprises out of business, and you'd personally be looking at jail time for reckless endangerment, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, unathorized emission of a noxious substance, and who knows what all else.

Don't get me wrong. I'm So Happy You Ditched Cappy as your sidekick that I could write a song about it. Yes, I had warned you that hiring Cappy was huge mistake in the first place, but that's all done and over, so there's no point rehashing. I'm also thrilled you chose Bowel Boy to replace Cappy. BB is such a big step up for you. All the other Cape & Tights Super Heroes keep telling me how they can't help loving the little fella, 'cause he's just so dern cute and sweet. But could you please try to be more careful the next time you take him out farting around?

One last thing. Forgive me if I'm stepping over the line by saying this: I think it would do us both good if you would sleep more and drink less, as I remain  . . . .

Your Loyal Alter Ego,


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Introducing: "The Cutest Little Thing"

TAF Enterprises, Inc.

in conjunction with

Bubbles Toy Company


T. A. FartMan's
All New Sidekick


(AKA "The Cutest Little Thing")

Pricing: $25,000 ea. (volume discounts available)

Wholesale inquiries only, to:

TAF Enterprises, Inc.
One FartMan Plaza
10001 Main St.
Houston, TX 77002

Sunday, July 3, 2011

The Astonishing FartMan Action Figure

TAF Enterprises, Inc.

in conjunction with

Bubbles Toy Company


The Astonishing FartMan
Action Figure

Pricing: $25,000 ea. (volume discounts available)

Wholesale inquiries only, to:

TAF Enterprises, Inc.
One FartMan Plaza
10001 Main St.
Houston, TX 77002

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Cappy Was Bilious! And Other Shocking News!

From: T. A. FartMan
Sent: Saturday, July 02, 2011 7:59 PM
To: Benedict A. Brain-Must
Cc: M______
Subject: Cappy Was Bilious!

Dear Dr. Brain-Must,

A couple (2) of things:

One (1):
My “hepatic subcapsular fluid collection,” also known as "Cappy," was successfully aspirated by Dr. K_____ at the L____ S____ Interventional Radiology Department on Thursday. You might remember that when we talked on the phone a couple (2) of weeks ago, I had asked what that fluid might be. You said you were pretty sure the fluid was lymph fluid. When I had asked if it might be bile you insisted, "no way it’s bile."

Turns out, the goop they sucked outta my liver capsule was indeed a fascinating grass green color. Nothing official yet as to whether that grass green fluid actually was bile, but based on the color, that seems like a pretty good guess.

Yup, sloshing around inside my liver capsule were two hundred and ninety (290) cc of grass green slush, about a coke can’s worth, which for the last several months had felt like a piece of stiff leather luggage poking me under the edge of my ribs and making me mix my metaphors every time I moved my upper body or tried to sit upright for more than a few minutes. I don’t know whether it’s necessarily a bad thing to have the surface of the liver marinated in a digestive fluid like bile juice for several months on end, but can tell you that in addition to the pain going away immediately after Cappy was drained, for the last two (2) days I’ve felt about a thousand (1,000) percent better than I have in the last four (4) or five (5) months. The everyday fatigue that I’d been telling you about for so long now seems to be gone. I feel so much more energetic with that yucky green stuff outta my liver capsule.

Hopefully, Cappy the "subcapsular fluid collection" will not come back, although it seems possible, if not likely, that some bile duct plumbing might still be leaking. It would probably be a good idea to have a follow-up ultrasound or some such diagnostic procedure done in two (2) or three (3) weeks to see whether there is something still leaking in there and whether the fluid collection is reappearing. I’ll be in touch with Dr. J_____’s office about that, but thought you might want to know these details since you are still officially my onc (but not my uncle). They are going to do cytology and infection tests on the fluid, so I’ll let you know if anything interesting comes from those tests. Even though you won’t be my onc much longer (and never were my uncle, thank heavens!), perhaps all this info might be useful for you to know and have in mind when caring for other patients who might have symptoms like mine.

And I do need very much to get my port flushed in the next couple (2) weeks, so I hope that can still be taken care of there at the MBC Clinic.

Two (2):
Regarding the letter you sent informing me you would be terminating our doctor-patient relationship, it’s way beyond hilarious that, here I am the one (1) who’s s'posed to be the fussy attorney, but it’s you who’s sent out the certifried letter, return receipt requested, full of inane lawyer talk. Probably MBC's lawyers composed the letter for you, because only someone (some1) as silly as a lawyer could believe it to be a necessary redundancy to put a number in parentheses after spelling out the whole word, the way your letter does, like this: “Effective thirty (30) days from the receipt of this letter . . . , ” as if, without the number 30 in parentheses, a reader might get confused about what the word “thirty” actually means. How embarrassing for you, a physician, to be made to put your signature on such lawyer nonsense!

And the line in your eloquent form letter expressing your sincere “concern” about my “continued good health” was a hoot, too, since no emotionally sentient human being would speak to someone (some1) who was ten (10) months into fighting Stage IV (4) cancer as being in a state of “continued good health.” Again, only a dense lawyer at a big overpriced law firm (speaking of redundancies) would have the training to remain oblivious to the ridiculousness of that phrase applied to my circumstances. When I have been in indisputably bad health for the last ten (10) months, for you to be so inattentive as to express concern for my continued good health would suggest that you don't give a spit about my continued health, whether it be good, bad, or indifferent. However, since one (1) knows that the disingenuous language was penned by some anonymous lawyer (at great expense to MBC, no doubt), you are not to be blamed for it.

Yes, your certifried letter, return receipt requested, was good for several big belly laughs and numberless (∞) chuckles--comic relief for which one (1) is always thankful.

But really, Dr. Brain-Must, a certifried lawyer letter officially announcing the end of our doctor-patient relationship was quite unnecessary. I promise once again that, although I’m a Certifried Half-Wild (1/2-Wild) Native American Injun Lawyer, y’all can stop circling your wagons because I would never sue you or anyone (any1) else on my own behalf. That’s not my style or my morals. (However, you could expect, deservedly, to be teased about your latest screw-up for an appropriate period of time, or until you gathered the nerve to ‘fess up to it.)

Rather than wasting your limited attention span sending out legalese letters, if you had been as carefully attentive to the important medical details of my care, maybe you would not have forgotten about the reduced dexamethasone dose we had settled on that time, would not have forgotten that other time to change your written orders when we had agreed to discontinue the Avastin after I developed a blood clot, and most recently would have given prompt and proper attention to the fluid collection reported on my CT scan result, instead of overlooking what that report said about Cappy and telling me just to make an appointment to see you in August. (If these are facts you dispute, I invite you to contest them in any suitable non-legal forum, perhaps before some sort of medical review board there at MBC Clinic.)

So, yes, you are right that a certain lack of trust has developed in our relationship, but that lack of trust, at least on my side, concerns the “human” aspect of your doctoring more than it does your purely medical errors. If you had expressed the least slight regret about initially overlooking my fluid collection problem, I would have accepted any half-hearted (1/2-hearted) apology and been thrilled to have you continue as my doctor.

But because you reacted to my complaint by treating me shabbily, you are certainly right that you cannot be my doctor for long: Sometimes a doctor needs to be able look his patient in the eye.

I’ll let your assistant, M______, know as soon as I find a new oncologist.

T. A. FartMan

P.S. I have just this very moment learned from my deep sources that you, Dr. Brain-Must, were serving as Cappy's secret alter ego identity right up until his recent demise.

What a shocker! Dr. Brain-Must, my very own oncologist, was Cappy's alter ego all this time!

Lord knows, I hated having to appoint Cappy as my Super Hero Sidekick, but had no real choice in the matter, since he was right there kicking me in my side. So one can hardly imagine the confused self-loathing that must have tormented your surreptitious life as the alter ego of a bilious subcapsular fluid collection like Cappy. It almost makes me feel sorry for you. Nonetheless, your intimate personal, financial, and professional relationship with Cappy clearly constituted a conflict of interest, which you should have disclosed the moment you learned that Cappy's pernicious influence had somehow leaked into my life. Your undisclosed conflict of interest does explain why you were so hesitant to acknowledge Cappy's existence in the first place and then refused to help me find a particular person competent to get rid of him.