In last month's post "Obama Gets Drama," I wrote about our new president's first departure from his "No Drama Obama" nickname, the epithet he had earned for his uncanny ability to stay calm and collected during the very rough and tumble election campaign. The departure came when he showed his frustration during an impromptu speech to House Democrats after his economic stimulus package had run into the initial heavy Republican opposition.
There was actually an earlier incident in which Obama let his emotions show, and it came the day after his soaring Inaugural Address. Vice President Joe Biden was about to administer the oath of office to new senior staff members when he made a joke about Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts having stumbled over the oath of office the day before with the new president. Biden said, "My memory is not as good as Justice Roberts." Hearing those words, Obama suddenly scowled and stepped next to Biden to grab his elbow. You can see the clip on YouTube.
Otherwise, the cool "No Drama Obama" bearing prevails at all other times; in speeches, press conferences, White House events, and public appearances. So much so, Maureen Dowd of the New York Times described him as "a detached observer who 'travels light,' as friends put it."
Last weekend, NBC's Saturday Night Live cast spoofed the president's cool demeanor. In a skit, actors depicting Republican Senators McCain, Hutchinson, and Coburn came to the Oval Office to oppose the president's stimulus bill. Fred Armison, the rail thin SNL cast member who usually plays Obama began the skit, but when the Republicans turned hostile, Armisen slowly began to anger, and then, with a bit of television razzle-dazzle special effects, suddenly transformed into a Hulk-like creature, called "The Rock Obama." The new altered Obama, who proceeded to lift and throw each senator out of the window, was played by muscular actor Dwayne Johnson, the former professional wrestler-turned superstar movie actor, whose own nickname is "The Rock."
The essence of comedy is either an exaggerated or incongruous interpretation of real life. In real life, it's still No Drama Obama.
Please share a cool--or hot--Obama moment you've observed.