So, I'm sitting here in the newsroom, where the communal TV is tuned into "The View" to see what President Obama has to say to Barbara Walters and the gang. As I continue to bang away on my keyboard, only half-listening to the broadcast, my ears perk up when Walters asks the president a somewhat horticultural question: “In the last month, what has been the rose and what has been the thorn?”

Hey, they're in my territory now. So, what was Obama's July rose? Not a grandiflora, I can assure you. It was, he said, time spent in Maine on vacation with his family. They rode bikes, he said. The girls are at the precious preteen ages when they still like him. Sweet.

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And the thorn? Make that thorns: The oil spill, jobs, the economy. But the president assures us he reads fan mail at night and worries about struggling Americans, not himself.

I think what the man needs is a thornless rose. We all could use one, figuratively and literally. For the latter application, check out "Powerhouse," a bi-colored red and orange number or "Ambiance" in ivory. Both are almost thornless, which is as good as it gets in the rose world. For the former, well, maybe we all could use a vacation, too.