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    | California, USA |

    (Ok, to explain. I work in a company that sells landscaping materials. You know…rock, dirt, compost, etc. This is a phone conversation I had.)

    Me: “Hello, [Company Name]. How can I help you?”

    Customer:: “Hello, I had a question about compost.”

    Me: “Well, we have two kinds. Mushroom compost and chicken compost.”

    Customer:: “Well, I want to know what is compost.”

    Me: “Well, the mushroom compost is a mixture of horse manure, peat moss, gypsum, oyster-shell lime, straw and composted rice hulls. The chicken–” *customer cuts me off*

    Customer:: “No I mean…what *is* compost?”

    Me: “Decomposing organic matter?”

    Customer:: “I see…what do you mean by ‘decomposing organic matter’?”

    Me: *wondering if this is a prank call by now* “Well…as in organic matter that is breaking down in a natural process…”

    Customer:: “What is ‘organic’?”

    Me: “Okay. What do you think happens when you throw your coffee grounds, apple cores, and other scraps into a huge pile with animal manure?”

    Customer:: “…it starts to stink.”

    Me: “Because it’s decomposing.”

    Customer:: “…but what is ‘decomposing’?”

    Me: “It’s rotting.”

    Customer:: “…and we put this in our gardens?”

    Me: “Ironic, isn’t it?”

    Customer:: “Okay, so what do you mean by ‘matter’?”

    (I’m sure you can all figure out how this conversation went at this point. 20 minutes of my life I will never have back.)