The presidential campaigns are ramping up, even though the heavy action doesn't come until after the conventions and Labor Day.
But while we still have time, perhaps it's best to take one last look at White House activity that doesn't include attack ads, policy positions or focus-group polling.
Let's look at the president interacting with kids.
Fortunately for his fans, President Obama seems absolutely comfortable around children, something you couldn't say about, for instance, Richard Nixon (and you can just go ahead and substitute "human beings" for "children" in that previous sentence).
And the administration is diligent about recording such moments. The White House Flickr page offers countless intriguing shots of life at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, including behind-the-scenes peeks that you can't find elsewhere.
One of the more famous Obama-kid shots is the one above and to the right, featuring a young guy who wasn't convinced the president's hair was just like his own.
But there are others -- like these ten, all courtesy of the White House.
10. He belongs to the blank generation Mohawk? Check. Plaid shirt? Check. Unimpressed snarl as he's held by the most powerful man in the free world? Double-check. The only thing detracting from the DIY punk attitude here is the neon-green pacifier strap by Obama's thumb, but maybe that's for raves.
9. I'm flllyying Puts us in mind of John Candy as Divine playing Peter Pan on SCTV, but that's a good thing. The kid seems to be enjoying himself, to be sure.
8. Sir, yes sir!! No, he isn't holding his nose. He's concentrating on giving the most important salute yet in his young life, and doing a great job at it.
7. Second place is first loser, kid The kid's got the right idea, taking the corner tight while Obama drifts wide, but she's got some serious ground to make up.
6. And don't give me that half-assed autograph, either, old man She put in a lot of work on that coloring book and she's going to allow Obama the privilege of signing it. She's also got a wary eye out to make sure he stays inside the lines and doesn't mess things up. Adults -- you gotta watch `em every second.
5. You're doing peek-a-boo wrong Unless this is some new game called "Another Joe Biden Gaffe" or something like that.
4. What's it going to take for me to get you behind the wheel of this shiny new Camry? Coffee is for closers, and you can smell this kid's cup brewing from here. Obama never stood a chance.
3. Room to grow Pump up the volume, kid.
2. We'll just say it's healthy Attack that dessert like you mean it, soldier!!
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SHOW ME HOW
1. "It is true that liberty is precious; so precious that it must be carefully rationed" Is that some apple-cheeked Iowa lad, or is it a young be-capped Vladimir Lenin lecturing Obama on the downfall of capitalism? Anyone seen Bill Ayres lately?