Judith Warner, the author of a book titled Perfect Madness: Motherhood in the Age of Anxiety begins her op-ed in the New York Times, (a “newspaper” that despite its anemic stock price, is still one of the most influential spokes in the legacy media), thusly:
The other night I dreamt of Barack Obama. He was taking a shower right when I needed to get into the bathroom to shave my legs, and then he was being yelled at by my husband, Max, for smoking in the house. It was not clear whether Max was feeling protective of the president’s health or jealous because of the cigarette.
Who dreams of having the President of the United States in their shower while their spouse is yelling at him for smoking? Worse, who admits to this in public? Warner herself provides a clue, here:
“This is the first president I’ve known who looks, talks and acts like a peer,” is how one Washington man explained it to me. “Notwithstanding his somewhat exotic life story, I feel like I understand what he’s like and where he’s coming from. And despite his incredible achievements, he still seems like a lot of people I know. If you stopped the clock in 2004, in fact, or maybe a couple of years earlier, he’d feel roughly like a peer in terms of accomplishments, too.
Which means that if he had an (R) after his name instead of a (D) that Washington man would be calling him grossly unqualified for the White House, instead of admiring his rapid rise to power and vapid, chameleonic style.
More from the “Washington man” Warner quotes:
“Of course I know nobody with his political gifts, speaking skills and confidence, and he’s also a gifted writer and thinker. But I feel like one or two different turns for Obama or me and he could have been someone my friends and I wouldn’t think it extraordinary to have in our circle.”
Sometimes this sense of close identification turns a bit dark. There’s a subcategory of people who feel that they really should have true intimacy with the Obamas.
Included in that category are people whose shame is so diminished, they begin op-eds in a newspaper read by millions with embarrassingly mawkish dreams of showering with the President of the United States while simultaneously reaming him out for having a Marlboro 100 in the house.
Update: “Mind-sexing Obama??? File under Things I Could Happily Lived The Rest of My Life Without Thinking About.”