I'm reading a book called "The Interesting Bits (The History You Might Have Missed)" by Justin Pollard who, the book proudly announces, is one of the writers of QI*. In it there's a story about a bloke called Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford, who broke wind incredibly loudly while bowing to Queen Elizabeth the first. He was so embarrassed he went into exile for seven years. Only after that time had passed did he pick up the courage to return to court. A silence descended upon proceedings as he went forward to bow to his Queen for the first time in seven years. Everyone leaned in to listen, nothing. Then the Queen remarked "my lord, I had quite forgotten the fart". His shame returned and he never did.
My only problem with this story is that there's one which is almost identical in the play I watched recently. Given that Arabian Nights predates the reign of Queen Elizabeth I by quite some time I think it's almost 100% possible to dismiss this story about the 17th Earl and his noisy bottom.
It's taken the wind out of the book's sails a little, so to speak.
*Never watched it, looks like exactly the sort of programme that would just annoy me. I have of course therefore judged it on aesthetics alone. Is it any good? It looks really smug and annoying. I'm off to polish my glass house and have a little think.