When President Bush was just plain George and running flat out for the White House, we didn't hear much about his Ivy League education.

We were told he was just a good ole boy from Texas who ate pork rinds, pitched horseshoes and listened to country music.Then, during the Inaugural parade, he stunned us by standing up as the Yale University concert band marched by and singing the words to "Boola Boola."

Since his public departure from the closet we have learned that the president really likes popcorn better than pork rinds.

Once he was safely in office, we were allowed to discover that Bush jogs and plays a good game of tennis. But we also found out that when it comes to pitching horseshoes, the president is less likely to toss a ringer than hit the side of a barn.

On his desk in the Oval Office - where any visitor can't miss seeing it - is the old mitt Bush used as Yale's first baseman.

It's almost impossible to get an exclusive interview with the president. But when the Yale Daily News asked him for one, Bush sat right down and banged out his answers to the campus newspaper's questions on his own typewriter.

Bush acknowledged to the newspaper in a story written by senior editor David Halbfinger that "running for public office in Texas is not necessarily enhanced by a Yale education."

Halbfinger wrote that Bush's rise to the White House has been "a sore spot for today's Yale students."

He contended that Bush embarrasses liberal Yalies "while the growing number of conservatives have waited for a chance to claim him as their own. Yale women oppose in large number the president's stand on abortion."

Halbfinger complained in his story that the White House had omitted some of his questions and changed others before giving them to the president.

A question Bush did not get a shot at asked, "What's it like to open the newspaper and find yourself raked over the coals in `Doonesbury?' And by a fellow son of Eli, no less."

Halbfinger was referring to Garry Trudeau, creator of the comic strip that portrays the president as an invisible wimp who flips burgers at "informal press get-togethers" beside the White House horseshoe pit.

Since the president is in Brussels for the NATO summit he may have missed Sunday's strip which had him congratulating a television newsman for deftly clanging a horsehoe onto a stake.

"Ringer!" shouts the president. "Excellent, Guy."

"Thanks, Mr. President," replies the newsman. "Beginner's luck."

"Maybe," responds the leader of the Free World, "but it was a marvelous throw."

Most Texans and all horseshoe pitchers never say "marvelous," which is word used by Ivy leaguers.

"White House Media Manipulators," as the Yale Daily News ungratefully dubbed them in a headline over Halbfinger's story, are having a difficult time peddling their image of the president. They insist that we believe he just loves pork rinds, horseshoes and country music.

A real horseshoe pitcher from Texas - say, one afflicted with an Ivy League education - might say that the Old Blue of the Class of '48 and his handlers have been heisted by their own petard.