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Otter Uncensored

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Is Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter in need of a cold shower? The red faces got redder throughout the afternoon as Otter addressed a live-radio broadcast of the City Club of Boise. First it was the joke about the hunter who, when he needed to relieve himself in the woods, accidentally sat on a bear trap, which "slammed shut on that part which was exposed." Audience members were also treated to Otter's recounting of philosophical discussions in the men's steam room at the Boise YMCA, where participants are "modestly draped." But Otter seemed most engaged when he discussed the hidden gem of Idaho's export market: Rocky Mountain bull elk semen, which has been sent abroad to help generate elk herds in, among other places, Europe. "I cannot tell you how much semen we shipped," Otter said. There was a point to that bear-trap-on-the-privates joke, however: Otter was responding to a question about proposals to sell some public lands to offset hurricane recovery costs, an issue that dogged Otter in the campaign against Democrat Jerry Brady. Otter said, as in the joke, the worst pain was not sitting on the bear trap, but in finding out the hard way that bear traps are often attached by steel chain to the ground. The worst part of his rhetorical encounter with the trap, he said, was "when I hit the end of that chain."