Where the Wild POTUS Was

By Dan Froomkin
10:10 AM ET, 04/14/2009

Wanna watch President Obama howl?

The Houston Chronicle's Hailey Branson writes in a pool report about Obama's visit to the storytime area of the White House Easter Egg Roll yesterday morning: "After greeting the group of a few dozen children sitting on the lawn in front of him and the onlookers behind a green wooden fence, the President began reading 'Where the Wild Things Are' by Maurice Sendak. As he read, he held the pictures out for the children to see. He stood on the grass, close to the children.

"Mr. Obama pointed to one picture in the book and said, 'That's a wild thing. It's like a dragon-looking thing.' At one point, he got the group of children to try staring without blinking their eyes. There were some highly-amusing kids' bug-eyed faces, and one little girl's eyes were so big the President started laughing.

"Mr. Obama asked the children if they had ever been in a 'wild rumpus' like the book was describing. As he read about the imaginary beasts in the book and the adventures of the book's main character (a little boy named Max wearing a wolf suit), Mr. Obama howled and spoke in a monster voice.

"'You guys look like you have a wild rumpus all the time,' he told the kids.

"When Mr. Obama finished the story, almost all of the children clapped, but one started crying. 'These wild things can be a little scary,' Obama said with a smile as someone picked up the boy and held him."

Petula Dvorak has more in The Washington Post about the festivities enjoyed by the largest crowd ever.

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