As of now, I am in control here, in the White House

Obama’s Heroic Effort to be Normal

It’s encouraging to have a president who leads a fairly normal existence, with friends, kids, participation in fun activities, and so forth. Obama has made a determined effort to do normal things, like hitting burger joints, attending sports events, and watching his children’s sporting events.

Too many leaders, including past presidents, seem remote from the real world, and even from their own families.

Obama’s normalcy is important because it gives a sense that his policies, whether one agrees with them or not, are motivated by a concern for real people. It makes one think that he will not get carried away to the logical extremes of his ideology.

But one never knows. Obama is very ideological.

She's gone with the Hula Hula boys, she don't care about me ...
White House photo of the Obama's at church in Hawaii

Of course, the White House is eager to convey this sense of normalcy to the public. That’s why, for example, the president dragged his personal White House photographer to church with him the day after Christmas, and it’s why there is little effort to hide the kids from the public eye. In fact, photos are regularly released of the children, a practice the blog thinks may not be very wise.

But Obama clearly is a real person. Without doubt, he’s egotistic and narcissistic. Honestly, I’m not sure you can make it to the presidency without these qualities. Nevertheless, he seems to lack the brooding preoccupations, social detachment, and self destructive pathologies of some other presidents. Except for golf.

From yesterday’s pool report:

POTUS and his party raid a shave ice parlor.

At 4:15 the motorcade screeched to a halt in front of the “Island Snow” shave ice parlor in Kailua, a couple miles from the Obamas rental. POTUS and more than a dozen adults and young kids, among them Sasha and Malia, were already at the counter when your pool was ushered in through a back door.

“Once you’ve ordered, go back!” said POTUS to the giddy kids. He wore beige khaki shorts, a black polo shirt and black rubber flip flops.

Sasha got a yellow and red shave ice cup while Malia got a tropical blue one. Hard to gather the orders with such exotic flavors as “lolo lilikai” and “godzilla grape”. POTUS turned back to the pool and said: “You guys having one? Last chance!” To which a shameless AFP photographer (who shall remain anonymous) replied: “Are you buying?”. “I’m buying”, insisted POTUS, but your pool was too busy tinkering with their blackberries, mikes and cameras to take him to his offer and silently declined. POTUS paid for the whole order in cash and left a banknote (value unknown) in the tip jar.

POTUS ordered a “melona, cherry and lemon lime” shave ice cup, and tasted it in front of your pool. “It’s really good”, he said.

He then got Pete Souza to take group photos with the beaming young clerks. “Thank you guys!”, POTUS said, before exiting at 4:23. Your pool then got to see him and his party enjoying their ice on the parking of the parlor, whose access was blocked by Secret Service agents. Motorcade rolled again and hit the rental at 4:40.
And we have a lid.

8 Responses to Obama’s Heroic Effort to be Normal

  1. Since we haven’t had minor children living in the WH since PrezCarter’s days, it’s hard to compare the life style of the different Prez’s. The Office is comparable to a CEO of a large corporation (except the Prez has that “hot” button) and the demands are enormous and time consuming.
    Times and expectations of a father’s role in the family have changed from previous generations; Dad is no longer the sole wage-earner and now is expected to participate in the children’s activities. MrO seems to be doing a good job by involving himself with the two girls.
    In a non-PC opinion:
    When most people think of a typical Black family it is usually described as a “single mother with multiple children fathered by more than one man where all live on State subsidies”. The O’s, by comparison, are a whole family, Mom and Dad married, Dad the father of all the children, highly educated and now, wealthy. It’s a nice picture and brings out great pride(rightfully so) within the greater Black community. They’re proud of the O’s and are thrilled that MrO is involved in his children’s lives.
    I agree that bringing the children to the public eye might not be the right thing and could be detrimental to their self-esteem and maybe even dangerous. It’s the O’s choice, right or wrong.

    • I just had a neat brainstorm…what if the president went to a re-creation of “real America,” sort of like Colonial Williamsburg…People pay for electricity as they go–cash, on a card, which goes into a meter. They get payday loans to make it through the last week of the month–interest, 250%. Ramen is a binge food. He could go over to the fridge and open it and hear that faint thrum noise of empty shelves. Bill collectors call, if you still have a phone. The good part is not much cable left uncancelled–he won’t have to watch himself. Arugula is not much in evidence (good or bad depending on your POV). Ditto for lobster. And shaved ice–though this you could make for yourself if you paid the water bill.

      • How stupid they still think we are, that we believe that the Prez is now going to listen, talk with and ‘learn’ with us. He won’t like what he is sure to hear from us and then it will be S.o.S.

        One thing for sure, we won’t have to worry about MrO heading to a townhall meeting here in AZ.