Barack Hussein Obama, the current president of the United States is one of the most influential personalities in the world. I have collected some interesting facts about Barack Obama. To make this article simple to read, I have categorized it in three parts: 1. Early and Teenage Life, 2. Young Obama, and 3. President Obama.
1. Facts about Barack Obama – Early and Teenage Life:
- Born in Hawaii (became the first and only US President to be born there).
- His late grandmother used to call him “bear”.
- He doesn’t like ice-cream! (Why? Reason – he worked in Baskin-Robbins as a teenager).
- In Indonesia, he had a pet ape called Tata. While living in Indonesia, he ate dog meat, snake meat, and roasted grasshopper. Many of his friends in Indonesia were “street urchins” (street children or homeless children who live on the street).
- His dream was to play basketball as a teenager. He was known as “Barry O’ Bomber” at high school for his skill at basketball.
- He used to collect the Marvel Comics as he was a big fan of Spider-man.
- He admits that he experimented with drugs as a teenager, as he did many during that time period. He was a member of the “choom gang” – a self-named group of friends that spent time together and occasionally smoked marijuana. He also tried cocaine in his early days. Obama expressed regret for his high-school drug use at the 2008 Civil Forum on the Presidency.
2. Facts about Barack Obama – Young Obama:
- Barack Obama was known as Barry until university when he asked to be addressed by his full name.
- He visited Wokingham, Berks, in 1996 for the stag party of his half-sister’s fiancé, but left when a stripper arrived.
- He shared an apartment with a Pakistani Columbia student, during his stay in New York.
- He was also the president (first African-American president) of the Harvard Law Review which is a very prestigious position.
- He applied to appear in a black pin-up calendar while at Harvard but was rejected by the all-female committee.
- Due to his status as a transfer student, Obama had to live off-campus. He claims to have spent his first night sleeping in an alley, and taking his morning shower with the homeless next to an open fire hydrant, as he had arrived too late to be let into the apartment.
- He practiced as an attorney and that’s how he met Michelle (also an attorney). He took Michelle to see the Spike Lee film Do The Right Thing on their first date.
3. Facts about Barack Obama – President Obama:
- President Barack Obama used to live in Chicago where he was the US Senator from Illinois. His house in Chicago has four fire places. Currently he lives in the White House at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, Washington D.C.
- Obama is first United States president to participate in social media. He has a personal Facebook page and a Twitter account, and often posts YouTube videos. He is also the first sitting President to own and use an iPod, Blackberry (custom made for security purposes), and iPad.
- He says his worst habit is constantly checking his BlackBerry
- Obama is named as number one of Time magazine’s “100 most influential people in the world” list in 2005 and 2007.
- Mahatma Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln, and Martin Luther King, Jr. are the three men he admires the most.
- He speaks English, Spanish, and basic Indonesian which he learned in Jakarta during his childhood.
- A school in his father’s hometown in Kenya has been renamed the Senator Barack Obama Secondary School.
- He is an author of The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream, of Thee I sing: A letter to my daughter and Dreams of My Father. After signing his book deal, he repaid his student loan. He and Michelle made $4.2 million (£2.7 million) last year, with much coming from sales of his books.
- He promised Michelle he would quit smoking before running for president – he didn’t. He was a smoker. He tried to quit smoking several times, sometimes using nicotine replacement therapy, and in early 2010, Michelle Obama said that he had successfully quit smoking.
- While on the campaign trail he refused to watch CNN and had sports channels on instead.
- His desk in his Senate office once belonged to Robert Kennedy
- He carries a tiny Madonna and child statue and a bracelet belonging to a soldier in Iraq for good luck.
- He keeps on his desk a carving of a wooden hand holding an egg, a Kenyan symbol of the fragility of life
- He won a Grammy in 2006 for the audio version of his memoir, Dreams From My Father
- He is left-handed, the sixth post-war president to be left-handed
Few other Facts about him:
- Favorite meal – Michelle’s Shrimp linguini
- Renegade – the code name which was given by his Secret Service handlers
- The car he drives – Ford Escape Hybrid (he had Chrysler 300 before it)
- Laptop he uses – Apple’s MacBook
- He hates the youth trend for trousers which sag beneath the backside
- He wears $1,500 Hart Schaffner Marx suits and owns four identical pairs of black size 11 shoes
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