Taxpayer-funded parties. I mean, those three words alone mean that the president will always have a better bash than you. Yet, looking at photos of the White House galas, there’s a lot of pomp and circumstance: elegant debutantes, royal ambassadors and very proper dignitaries, crustacean risotto balls, and really no one you can picture playing Wisest Wizard with you.
But oh, my friend, how you underestimate the President.
The schmoozer-in-chief has had to charm a nation into thinking he’s a good enough guy to hand your country over to for four years. Of COURSE he’s going to know how to party. And while some of the presidents have gotten by on stern smiles and responsible/patriotic resumes, most of them can get down with the Dos Equis guy any day of the week. Below, we present the presidents proven to have particularly powerful (executive) powers in partying.
Barack Obama, Homebrewing
Yes it’s true: the POTUS has a home brew. Obama’s fondness for having conversations the right way leads him to unofficially endorse a brewery while he drinks it. So why not skip the angry calls from rival brewers and just go DIY? Obama’s White House Honey Ale (made with a homebrew kit he bought with his own funds) is the first beer ever brewed by a sitting president. (Jefferson brewed at least after his presidency, but more on that later). The beer’s made with real honey from beehives on the White House grounds. And Obama hasn’t stopped after his initial brew — they’ve brewed a honey blonde ale and a honey porter as well. He even recently gifted a bottle to a Minnesota beer connoisseur who had no idea he’d be meeting the commander in chief. Not too shabby, Mr. President.
Abe Lincoln, Cockfighting
Of course, some presidents got a little more rowdy. Like, really illegal and kind of “yikes” rowdy. Then again, Lincoln’s time also had slavery, so we weren’t exactly showing off the best ethics at that point in the country’s history. But leave it to Lincoln to give the classiest possible defense of cockfighting: “As long as the Almighty permitted intelligent men, created in His image and likeness, to fight in public and kill each other while the world looks on approvingly, it’s not for me to deprive chickens of the same privilege.” (Of course on the other hand, Dick Nixon was just an @$$#0!% about his cockfighting career.)
John Quincy Adams, Skinnydipping
You know how it is. You’ve had a great party, maybe there was some streaking, but somehow, you’ve ended up naked in the river at dawn. Of course, if you’re the president, you just do this every day, because of course you can. Adams wasn’t exactly a sculpted physique, but he said to himself, “Hey, I’m the president, and I’m going skinny-dipping in the Potomac, and who the hell is gonna stop me?” This was the case up until a reporter named Anne Royall found him, sat on his clothes, and promptly blackmailed her way into being the first female reporter to interview a president. (Man Cave legend has it that at a later party, she totally drew a moustache and glasses on the Vice-President when he passed out).
Teddy Roosevelt, Safari Kegger
Roosevelt was always a hunter, a drinker, and didn’t cage his party animal too much. But then again, America got to see what he was holding back when his term ended. Roosevelt promptly packed up for a 10-month safari in Africa, with estimates putting the kill count in the range of 11,400 animals. Most of these were bound for the Smithsonian or American Museum of Natural History, but since sending all that meat overseas would be pretty costly, Roosevelt and his men decided to eat some of their kills as well — 262 of the animals, actually. Good thing they brought 500 gallons of beer with them to wash it all down.
Thomas Jefferson, Pretty Much Everything
Thomas Jefferson did all the things. Can you think of some things? He did all of them. Well, at least the good ones. But despite history mostly hailing his contributions to the arts, science, and politics, we would like to call attention to the man’s ability to have rip-roaring good time. Wines? He made several. Whiskeys? You probably drink one with his face on it today. He also grew hemp, and even invented and released an open-source method of separating the fibers and stalks. And you know those awesome friends who bring massive amounts of snacks, which you and the housemates live off of for the next week after the party? Jefferson’s friends in the town of Cheshire took that to the next level: their wheel of cheese stayed in the White House for the next two years.
So there you have it! Whatsoever your political party, make sure you invite those five executives at your house party.
Dan Morgridge parties like it’s 1999, even though that wasn’t an election year.