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Hanging out at the Obamas’ new pad


The Obamas invited a couple thousand special guests to their backyard a week ago. By “special” I mean you had to be any old vagrant wandering around 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue on a Sunday afternoon. As long as you didn’t have a fear of park rangers or wide-brimmed hats, you could get free tickets from them. I suppose they did have some standards, because I didn’t see the man in Lafayette parked dressed as an aborigini stuffing a ticket into his loincloth.


I believe the Obamas were out of town, which is the only reason I was able to wander this close to the Oval Office.


Or that I was able to glimpse the presidential basketball court, or rather half court.


But truly the highlight of the visit was this:


The Presidential swingset! It really is within view of The Oval Office, just like they said on TV. I bet I could have gotten a good 3 or 4 feet towards the swings before that nice man in black tackled me to the ground and hauled me off for a full cavity search.

It is odd visiting a place that I have seen on TV. Everything seemed so familiar – the portico, the rose garden, the colonnade – yet I’d never actually been here before. It was the same feeling I got when visiting Times Square for the first time, or when I walked past the David Letterman theatre. There it was! It was a real place! Not just a TV set! Ironically though, even as I stared at the white facade of The White House, I found myself thinking, “This is just like The West Wing!”

You can view more photos from my trip in my Flickr set.

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Naantje • April 27, 2009 at 11:00 am

Wow, that is so cool!

BTW, what’s happend to your feed? My feedreader pointed out an entry of August 20, 2009 and one of June 4, 2009. Left for the future, have you? Quite surreal :P


Also Naantje • April 27, 2009 at 11:04 am

Oh, I just checked the archives, and one of them, “How to build self-esteem” is not in there. (That’s the one of june 4). The other one, from august, is a future repost of your viking-guard!


Lauren P • April 27, 2009 at 11:05 am

That is so cool! How is it that I live here in DC and didn’t even know about this.


Merry • April 27, 2009 at 11:05 am

Bizarre… those photos look real, but the experience must have been surreal.

Also bizarre was the ‘Take Our Survey!’ pop-up that I got when I clicked on this page. Are you doing surveys for World Peace or something?


cher • April 27, 2009 at 11:18 am

I’ve never been to DC, but May 20th my son’s 5th grade class is going, and I begged to chaperone so I could go! I can’t wait!!


PastaQueen • April 27, 2009 at 11:29 am

@Also Naantje – Yeah, I’ve been very busy lately and posted entries with the wrong dates. Your feed reader must have saved them before I updated them to the correct day.


marty • April 27, 2009 at 11:31 am

That is so cool! I’m jealous :)


Reyna • April 27, 2009 at 12:06 pm

Not to get all English teachery on you, but your use of apostrophes is, um, wrong. The title of this should be “Hanging Out at the Obamas’ New Pad.” More than one Obama so the apostrophe goes after the s. In your first sentence, there should be no apostrophe. It’s just “The Obamas” plain and simple.

People are so random about apostrophes but there are rules!!!


Reyna • April 27, 2009 at 12:11 pm

I hit send before adding what I meant to add, which is that I love your writing and it’s only because I want the very best for your blog that I’m pointing out (very common!) grammar mistakes.


Elizabeth • April 27, 2009 at 1:06 pm

BUMMER! I wish that I had known/realized that you were in DC this past weekend … I totally would have found you for an autograph! Or coffee! In a non-stalkery way. Hope that you enjoyed the city!


PastaQueen • April 27, 2009 at 1:12 pm

@Reyna – OK, fixed. Like I said in an earlier comment. I’ve been really busy lately, no lie.


Marissa • April 27, 2009 at 1:39 pm

What a great experience!


Shelley B • April 27, 2009 at 2:14 pm

Very cool – I was there back when the Clinton’s lived in the WH…nice to see the youthful touches there!


Quix • April 27, 2009 at 4:08 pm

Y’know, I thought the very same thing (just like the West Wing) when I saw the oval office picture. Looks like a great tour!


Amanda4Sensei • April 27, 2009 at 4:57 pm

That is so cool! I was there back when Bush Sr was in office-definitely changed since then! :-) Can’t wait to check out your Flickr pics


dee • April 27, 2009 at 7:41 pm

That guy looks hot I might want him to tackle me!


june • April 27, 2009 at 9:55 pm

Wonderful pictures; thanks for sharing. Definitely not a fan of Mr. Obama as President but respect the office and all it stands for. Nice swingset. He must’ve gotten some stimulus money to be able to afford that. :) Oh, no, wait, WE paid for it!


ChrissyS • April 27, 2009 at 10:37 pm

Hey, thanks so much for these great pics. I feel like *I* was on a field trip. =) [Btw, your food choices looked Yummy!]

I am so happy for you, and for all the things you get to do, and appreciate you including all of US. As I looked at the pics of you, and noticed how nice you look…I got to thinking/wondering if you DO more now that you are thin. Would you have tackled this trip ‘back then’ ?

Speaking of nice, you look cute in your shades, too.

Is this the same camera? Or did you get one? It seems like it is working well for this type of shot. Maybe the other ones not being clear was due to the fact that someone else took the photos.


Charlie Hills • April 28, 2009 at 8:34 am

You know, on a hot day, there’s nothing more refreshing than a icy cold glass of colonnade.


JennC • April 28, 2009 at 2:38 pm

Did you lose even more weight? Those self-portraits in front of the white house make it look as though you are thinner than I remembered from earlier photos. Not htat it matters, you’re an inspiration to me either way. Thanks for sharing your trip photos.


Michelle • April 28, 2009 at 3:47 pm

Hey you know if I’d been paying attention I would have known you were going to be in town and I’d have made arrangements to take you out for lunch or something. Guess I’ll just have to bask in your awesomness from afar, next time maybe?


~liz • April 28, 2009 at 8:09 pm

Swingset? The only think I noticed in that picture was the ss guy. I think the Secret Service guy is hot! hehe.


Nina • April 28, 2009 at 8:21 pm

Bummer, I didn’t know you were going. I’m a Washintonian so if you ever need a tour guide, lemme know. :)


Comments are now closed on all PastaQueen entries. The blog is an archive only so I don't have to deal with spammers. For fresh discussions please visit my new blog at JennetteFulda.com.

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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JenFul now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for keyboards ruined by coffee spit-takes or forehead wrinkles caused by deep thought.


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