“I remember distinctly an image of--we were sitting on his couches, and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant,” Brooks says, “and I’m thinking, a) he’s going to be president and b) he’ll be a very good president.”The "creased pant" comment has gone on to symbolize the "moderates" who believed the Legend of Barack Obama and attributed future success to him based on superficialities. Although the Nobel Prize committee made no public remarks about Obama's tailoring or grooming, one gets the impression it was also under a Brooksian spell in 2009. Much has been written, including by Brooks himself, on the rehumanizing of the president over the last three and a half years, as though the gold leaf were slowly flaking off a statue of clay, revealing its true nature. Buyers remorse has truly set in.
However, rather than delve into those weighty matters here, I've chosen instead to focus on The Crease itself. Few of us will have the opportunity Brooks had to sit down with the president and observe firsthand the quality of the ironing of his trousers, so this photo taken just this week at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte will have to do (via the NY Daily News):
As you can see, whatever rumpling the president's policies and principles have undergone since his election, The Crease remains. This picture was taken fairly late in the evening on Thursday and, granted, the suit appears to have sustained some wrinkles. But The Crease remains. The president's acceptance speech was widely panned by friend and foe, but The Crease remains. Whatever November holds for Barack Obama, we'll always have The Crease. Which reminds me, note to Mitt Romney: If you happen to sit down with David Brooks in the next couple of months for an interview, do us all a favor, and just pull on a pair of sweats.