When we last checked in with cool-dad-on-vacation Barack Obama, he was wearing a backwards hat. The exact timeline of when he doffed the backwards hat remains unclear, but the nearest anyone can tell is that, while he was hanging out with Richard Branson and enjoying the fact that the entire world was no longer resting on his shoulders, he tossed back a frosty beer or two and thought, “Shit yeah,” and then tipped his hat backward to let onlookers know that there was a new Barack Obama in town. The straitlaced, suit-wearing president of yore had been replaced by a chill guy who stays very lax and takes life one chill moment at a time. Pundits were left to wonder what was next: Dirt bikes? Home brewing? Making electronic music?
It turns out the answer is kitesurfing. In a video (and accompanying blog post!) Richard Branson describes the way that the Hawaii-born president had been forced to swear off his most gnarly aquatic hobbies when he became the leader of the free world, and so upon his return to civilian life Branson invited the Obamas to the British Virgin Islands. A challenge was issued: Could Branson learn to foil-board better than Obama could learn to kitesurf?
It does not matter what foil-boarding is, because this is all a setup, a framework. What was really going on was this:
Look at these goddamn knuckleheads! This is bona fide horseplay, a couple hell-raising pals rough-housing in the backseat. The only competition here is to see which dad is the coolest dad. Branson, who apparently keeps a videographer on hand for his outdoor adventures, or at least the ones involving former presidents, documents the whole thing on his site, including the fact that Obama smoked him at kitesurfing.
Where will Obama’s sick adventures take him next? Skydiving? Getting an ankle tattoo of a turtle? Paintball at his cousin’s property up by the reservoir? Edibles? It’s hard to say, but his future looks so sick, he’s going to have to wear rainbow-gradient Oakley shades.