The first feeling I got was of a casual familiarity. President Obama comes across somebody who could be your next door neighbor. He’s down to earth. But at the same time a bit guarded- it’s hard to explain. Maybe another way to put is that there are people who want to be your friend and then there are people who want you to be their friend – Obama being the latter. I don’t know if this makes sense but it’s the best way I can think to describe it.
I think he’s also a family man and really loves his family. This normally doesn’t come out in public because I think the man wants to protect his family from the usual crap that high profile DC figures must endure.
Here’s an example of his focus on family. We took the photo with the President. He was very kind to my in-laws and made quick small talk with them. He then turned his attention to my very pregnant wife and asked her what we were expecting. My wife told him we were expecting a second daughter. So while my toddler is doing pirouettes in the middle of the office the President stops and begins discussing how much fun it is to have two daughters. He gave my wife a piece of advice and essentially said, “Don’t get concerned about how messy your house gets. There will always be time to clean it. Just enjoy your daughters and spend time with them.”
He likes to analyze all the possible options and all of the potential outcomes for those options. I know it drives some of my colleagues crazy having to answer every hypothetical situation but we also understand it as man trying to make sure he gets things right.
I think the most interesting thing you’ll find most people say when they meet President Obama is how he is exactly the same both on and off camera. So you would find him to be exactly how you expect. He is very calm, very thoughtful, and very curious. His sense of humor may be a point or two more barbed in person, but President Obama is very much the person you’ve seen speak on TV many times.
Again, I wasn’t a close confidant or someone in the inner circle who spoke to the President all the time. These are just my impressions from a small number of professional engagements.
My purpose in writing these comments about Presidents Bush and Obama is to hopefully show that they are real people. Too often Presidents are personally demonized because of their policies. I think it’s healthy in a democracy to debate the policies but I don’t see how it’s helpful to claim the President, as a person, is an idiot, evil, or whatever.
1. The writer describes President Obama as someone who …
A. wants to be everybody’s friend
B. offers himself as a good friend
C. would readily accept you as his friend
D. needs as many friends as possible
E. doesn’t want friends at all
2. What can we infer from paragraph 2?
A. Obama doesn’t want to show in public he loves his family
B. It seems that Obama does not really love his family
C. Obama wants to protect his family from the public
D. Obama wants the public to know he protects his family
E. It seems that Obama protects the public more than anything
3. Paragraph 2 and paragraph 3 talk about President Obama as a man who … .
A. has a special room in his heart for his family
B. believes that a man should protect his family
C. likes to spend time talking with a pregnant woman
D. hopes everyone should be a family man
E. wants to protect his family from usual crap
4. Paragraph 3 suggests that when the writer’s toddler played in his office, President Obama … .
A. got very angry
B. didn’t mind at all
C. felt disturbed
D. felt annoyed
E. didn’t like it
5. We know from paragraph 4 that President Obama is very analytical, which in this particular context means he … .
A. breaks things down into smaller parts
B. views things from multiple perpestives
C. calculates everything mathematically
D. finds a solution for every problem
E. examines things closely and thoroughly
6. The reading suggests that the writer … .
A. believes President Obama is an ordinary man
B. has a positive view of President Obama
C. is not a big fan of president Obama
D. thinks there is nothing special about Obama
E. is a close friend of President Obama