Did Stevie Wonder feel like a freshman at the senior prom? (AP photo)
Did Stevie Wonder feel like a freshman at the senior prom? (AP photo)

Barack Obama is now turning Wednesdays into his own upscale version of Chamber of Commerce/Rotary Club mixers, serving up cocktails, Maryland crab, Wagyu beef, Nantucket scallops and citrus salad — according to a recent Associated Press review of 2009 White House parties.

I confess to not knowing what Wagyu beef is, but I do know the Cardinal Law of Networking: Never act too excited or overeager, regardless of how powerful your potential contact is.

The last thing you want is to be perceived as a fan instead of a potential business partner.

Apparently, several congressmen who have been invited to nibble on Maryland crab this year have been too starstruck to care.

Check out what U.S. Rep Mike Honda (D-Calif.) told the AP about his experience being in the same room as Barack Obama:

“People like me felt comfortable in his presence,” said Rep. Mike Honda, D-Calif., a self-described “poor country boy” who said he felt like a “freshman going to the senior prom” when he attended a White House reception for leaders of the congressional caucuses.

“Sometimes when you’re in the presence of the most powerful person in the world, in the most powerful democracy in the world … I was in awe that I was comfortable,” said Honda, chairman of the Asian Pacific American Caucus. “I think that’s his style and how he grew up, who he is.”

OMG, Mike, please text me and let me know what you’re gonna wear the next time you meet the president!

U.S. Rep Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) is blown away that Obama watched a football game with him.

Smitten even more is U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), a guest at the same Super Bowl party.

“My favorite part was when he personally served us cookies — oatmeal raisin — when we were watching the game,” she said.

It is true that relationships and status can dramatically change when your colleague gets a big promotion. But Klobuchar served for two years in the Senate with Obama, likely rubbing elbows with him before at left-wing ice cream socials.

Now, she’s openly gushing about him serving her cookies.
Darren Garnick is a Boston-area freelance writer and documentary filmmaker. For more political schlock, visit www.cultureschlock.com

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