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Dung-Struck: The Latest Media Darling

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As censors and civil-libertarians squared off last week over a Brooklyn Museum show, an unlikely substance took center stage: elephant dung. The New York media gleefully mentioned it as often as possible in reporting the "Sensation" scandal, but to the rest of the world, it seems, elephant dung is yesterday's news.

* "Park owners Ian and Lisette Withers are offering dried, vacuum-packed elephant dung. . . . 'It sells. I don't know what people do with it. But it sells,' Ian Withers said." -- Reuters

* "The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus performing at Compaq Center wants to give something back to Houston today -- heaps of elephant dung, called a rich fertilizer." -- The Houston Chronicle

* "Picture your dream vacation. Perhaps it's trekking across Zimbabwe scouting for piles of elephant dung. . . ." -- The Fort Worth Star-Telegram

* "Some heartstring-tugging love ballad playing in the background as you and your date sway from side to side, the sweet scent of that perfect corsage mingling with the pungent odor of elephant dung?" -- The Arizona Republic (in a story about a prom at the zoo)

* "A printing firm in Dewsbury is installing an extractor fan after winning a contract to produce 20,000 children's books infused with the smell of elephant dung." -- The Guardian (London)

*" 'The score card notes that if your ball lands in elephant dung, you are allowed to move it two club lengths and resume play,' says Michael Roseto about a golf course in Zimbabwe" -- USA Today

* "We tenuously scaled the huge boulders and were startled to find mounds of fresh elephant dung near the top. How could an elephant get up there, we wondered." -- The San Diego Union-Tribune

* " 'It seems a man in Kenya has found a way to make paper out of elephant dung. Paper out of dung. Don't we have that already? It's called the National Enquirer.'" -- Jay Leno, quoted in the Hartford Courant


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