The Real Deal

From Holden:

Knowing the president for the petulant child that he is I had very little doubt that yesterday’s photo of him scribbling a note to Condi requesting a potty break was real. Now we have confirmation from Reuters.

REUTERS/Rick Wilking

In what seems destined to become one of the most joked about photos of the month, a well-known Reuters photographer on Wednesday captured President George W. Bush scribbling a note to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice during a session at the United Nations. On the note is a message revolving around the need to take a “bathroom break.”

The photo, which appeared on Reuters’ official photo site, was quickly published all over the Web, though dismissed by some as a likely photoshop special. Others suggested that surely someone must have hacked the Reuters site. But a Reuters spokesman on Thursday told E&P the photo was legit.

“The photographer and editors on this story were looking for other angles in their coverage of this event, something that went beyond the stock pictures of talking heads that these kind of forums usually offer,” explained Reuters’ Stephen Naru. “This picture certainly does that.”

The photo by Denver-based Rick Wilking, taken over a man’s shoulder, shows an official — identified in the caption as President Bush — scribbling in pencil on a small white piece of paper that already contains the words: “I think I MAY NEED A BATHroom break?” It is unclear if Bush is in the process of responding to that message or wrote it himself.

That last bit about how “It is unclear if Bush is in the process of responding to that message or wrote it himself” is bullshit.