October 18, 2003


Interview Solves the `beef Man' Mystery (TOM RAUM , October 18, 200, Associated Press)

The White House on Saturday released the transcript of a Fuji TV interview with President Bush that let Americans in on the joke that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi shared so publicly Friday with Bush.

Koizumi had teasingly referred to Bush as ``beef man'' as they talked to reporters after dining at Tokyo's Akasaka Palace. The remark had Bush chuckling and repeating the moniker. ``Beef man,'' he agreed with a laugh.

But even though the main course that night had been Japanese beef steak, Koizumi's joke baffled Bush's traveling press corps. [...]

It appears the origin of the joke is a question from Tarao Kimura, who asked Bush in the Fuji TV interview about the president's well-known dislike of sushi.

"I wonder whether you will bear tasting sushi this time,'' the reporter asked the president after earlier queries on Iraq, North Korea and currency policy. ``I know you're not really particularly in favor of the raw fish.''

"Well,'' Bush replied, ``I'm a beef man.''

"I'm also,'' the president added diplomatically, ``hopefully a good enough guest not to demand a particular menu from my host.''

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 18, 2003 6:51 PM
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