The leader of the free world and perhaps the coolest President in the world, Barrack Obama is dapper on the cover of the latest issue of GQ Magazine.
Obama talked to GQ’s Bill Simmons about Donald Trump, Gun control, Smoking, his teenage daughters and how ready his wife is for him to complete his white house tenure among other things.
Read excerpts from the very interesting interview below!
On the one thing he’d tell himself if he could go back to 2008:
“You’re going to be busy.”
On if he ever felt overwhelmed with the job in the beginning:
I had a pretty good handle. One thing I learned during the campaign was that I’ve got a good temperament. I don’t get too high and I don’t get too low. I’m able to stay focused even when there’s a lot of stuff going on around me.
On the only calls he can interrupt dinner with Michelle to answer:
Malia and Sasha. [laughs] And maybe my mother-in-law. My national security adviser, Susan Rice, and Denis McDonough, my chief of staff. Those are the only people whose call I would take during a date night with Michelle.
On the most entertaining conspiracy theory he has read about himself:
That military exercises we were doing in Texas were designed to begin martial law so that I could usurp the Constitution and stay in power longer. Anybody who thinks I could get away with telling Michelle I’m going to be president any longer than eight years does not know my wife.
On if anyone has been to the White House to pick up Malia for a date:
No, but I’ve seen some folks glancing at her in ways that made me not happy.
On campaigning against Donald Trump:
I would’ve enjoyed campaigning against Trump. That would’ve been fun.
On the number of cigarettes he’s smoked in the White House:
Zero in the last five years. I made a promise that once health care passed, I would never have a cigarette again. And I have not.
On the perk of being president he’d miss the most:
So the clear answer would be Air Force One: an amazing plane with an amazing crew, they clear out airspace so you don’t have to wait. And you land anytime, you leave anytime. But it may be Marine One, because even post presidency, I may be able to round up a private plane sometime, but it’s tough not to have your helicopter waiting for you. [laughs]
On how he’s finding life with his teenage daughters:
My daughters are amazing girls. They’re smart, they’re funny. They take after their mom, and Michelle’s done a great job with them. You get these teenage moments—they love you, but what I think really affects you most is they just don’t have time for you. It’s not an active disdain for you. It’s just their calendars start filling up and they’ve got all these friends who are much more interesting.
On no longer being the coolest person in his daughters’ lives:
And you just have to let go, you have to acknowledge that if you say to them, “Hey, you want to go watch this movie?” or “Hey, you want to go take a swim at the pool?” “No, sorry, Daddy. I love you, though. See you tomorrow, ’cause I’m spending the night at somebody’s house.” The golden age is between, say, 6, 7, and 12, and they’re your buddies and they just want to hang out. And after that, they will love you, but they don’t have that much time for you. And my understanding is, based on friends of mine who have older kids, is that with a little bit of luck, as long as you’re not so completely annoying during these teenage years, they’ll come back to you around 23, 24, and actually want to hang out with you. But that stretch is painful. The compensation you get for the fact that they don’t have time for you is: Nothing beats watching your children become smarter and cooler than you are. And you suddenly will hear them say something or make a joke or have an insight and you go, “Wow. I didn’t think of that.”
Read the full interview here
Photography: Inez + Vinoodh
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