Recently, like many others, I’m sure, my Facebook feed has been flooded with three things: 1. Donald Trump, 2. Ken Bone memes, and 3. “We Will Miss You Obama” videos. After spending probably an hour and a half watching dozens of them this weekend, I got to thinking about why our generation likes President Obama so much. Is it his humor? His race? His policy? His family? His speeches? Obama is the president that our generation grew up with, and whether individually we agree with his policies, I believe that he has captured our collective millennial heart.
My own Obama love affair started when my mom brought me along to campaign for him back in 2008. As an eleven-year-old I called undecided voters, went door to door, went to rallies and the works. I was just old enough to kind of maybe understand what was going on, and you better believe that my angsty pre-teen self hated John McCain more than Justin Beiber or Twilight. I vividly remember trying to talk politics with my teachers, and was personally offended when my witch of a music teacher Mrs. Putz told me she would never vote for someone so liberal. Obama was the candidate that made me care about politics. As sappy and sentimental as that sounds, I care not. I do not agree with all of his policies, he has not been a perfect president, and though he has done much for our country, I do wish he could have accomplished more. Nevertheless, number 44 has been a winner, it seems, in all of our hearts.
Democrat, Republican, Independent, Libertarian, Green Party, Undecided, it doesn’t matter: Obama has charisma and has undoubtedly made us all smile at some point during these past eight years.
So, without further ado, I wish to present a list I compiled of ten of Obama’s most hilarious and heartwarming moments (in no particular order).
1. When Obama told Zach Galifianakus “Uh, if I ran a third time, it’d be sorta like doing a third “Hangover” movie. It didn’t really work out very well, did it?”
2. In 2011 during the White House Correspondents Dinner when he promised a video of his birth and played the intro to Lion King instead. (He followed this up by making sure Fox News knew it was a joke.)
3. When he admitted that, “In my final year, my approval ratings keep going up. The last time I was this high, I was trying to decide my major.”
4. In 2015, after pardoning a turkey, he told America “Time flies, even if turkeys don’t.”
5. When there was an upset and crying baby that neither the parents nor Michelle could calm down. Obama reached over and picked it up—immediately calm.
6. When he sang a part of “Let’s Stay Together” by Al Green at the Apollo Theater.
7. When Barack and Michelle danced with a 106-year-old woman who visited them at the White House.
8. When in 2009 a five-year-old asked Obama if his hair felt like his own, and Obama bent down to let him touch it.
9. When he roasted Trump in 2011, saying “No one is happier […] to put this birth certificate matter to rest than the Donald, and that’s because he can finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter—like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?”
10. When Obama did a video in which he couldn’t fit his cookie into his glass of milk and deadpan yelled “Thanks, Obama”.
11. When he was featured on an episode of “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” with Jerry Seinfeld.
12. Lastly, and my personal favorite, when Obama ended his last White House Correspondents Dinner by saying “Obama out” and dropping a mic.
No matter your political stance, it would be unfair to say that Obama has not warmed the hearts of millions. These are only a few examples. As the generation that grew up with Obama, we, more than any others, have found his dorky-cool, funny and heartwarming moments ways to make America’s politics more accessible. As a group, it will be hard to say goodbye to our beloved Dad Joke King.
Obama, you have been the POTUS with the mostus, and we will miss you.