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10 Bizarre Circus Sideshows


9
The Flatulist Act
Le Petomane's body was so bizarre that his family requested doctors to study it after he died. YouTube
Le Petomane's body was so bizarre that his family requested doctors to study it after he died. YouTube

Flatulence is normal part of life — unless you can do it at will. This next sideshow performer figured out how to cash in on his ability. Le Petomane (real name: Joseph Pujol) was a French sideshow performer who made his name in the late 19th century. His act was flatulence, and his skill was unsurpassable. And like a few other acts we've seen, Le Petomane's brilliance was at least partly attributable to an interesting anatomical feature: He could take up great masses of water or air into his rectum, and then spout them out with great control.

If that doesn't sound great, you clearly aren't a 9-year-old, nor have you taken care to think the possibilities through. Because Le Petomane could blow out candles, jet water great distances and even play wind instruments (yeah, yeah — we all get it) with his flatus. He was wildly popular in France, where he eventually started performing at the famous Moulin Rouge. Although we're all probably wondering what exactly how he could do this, Pujol's family denied a medical school request to examine his rectum after his death in 1945.