A.R. writes to say:
I cannot resist asking this question: I recall reading somewhere that a nineteenth century explorer - possibly Sir Richard Francis Burton (the chap who translated the Kam Sutra in 1883) encountered a community of Tibetan monks who had devised a code or private language through a series of intricately nuanced farts.
This is probably an early 'urban myth', but have you heard of or encountered anything like this on your travels, or any evidence that such behaviour might be within the range of normality? For, although I am interested in and respectful of Tibetan Buddhism, I can't help hoping there's some truth in it!
I will ask my Tibetan contacts, A.R., and get back to you.