Warning: Manure Subject Matter

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There’s an old Harry Truman joke. (What other kind would there be!?) The press had followed Pres. Truman to his home in Independence, Missouri, where he was holding court in his rose garden. He was telling the mob of reporters the secret to growing his prize roses: plenty of manure! They couldn’t get enough of Truman’s down-home outspokenness; they were encouraging him, and this inspired him further, and so it went. Listening nervously, a young press aide to the president sidled up to the first lady, Bess Truman, and suggested, “Mrs. Truman, don’t you think it would sound better for the newspapers if we encouraged the president to use the word ‘compost’ instead of ‘manure’?” Bess looked at the young man and replied, “Do you know how long it took me to get him to say ‘manure’?” Of course, everyone here has heard that one.