rump n. 1. The fleshy
hindquarters of an animal. 2. The human
buttocks (a pious euphemism for "ass").
The first dirty joke I ever heard --
overheard, actually, in fairness to my father, who
told it to his friends at an hour when he might have
reasonably expected me to be asleep -- featured a pun
on the word "ass," intentionally confused with
"donkey." The grown-ups laughed at a line about a
farmer "sitting on his ass."
That week, I smirked when I
mentioned to my mother something about sitting on my
ass. She did not laugh. My father
shushed me. "Rump," he whispered. "Sitting on your rump."
Many years later, I wrote and delivered
a 10-minute keynote address entitled Metaphors of
Modern Management. After a solemn
set-up in the form of a parable, the piece turns into
a collection of 35 double
entendres, none of which would work if I
followed my father's proscription. See for
yourself by clicking here.