Photos: Barack Obama Is Hanging Out in the East Village Like Right Now

We'd like to welcome our new office neighbor for the day, President Barack Obama, who got started speaking at the Cooper Union about five minutes ago. In the meantime, Cooper Square and the East Village has turned into a bona fide shitshow.

Yes, like, totally right now, President Barack Obama is delivering a speech on financial reform to a bunch of people possibly including some of the idiot savants who go to school at The Cooper Union. No, seriously, all the underclassmen there are basically Rain Man. I've tried taking them to Atlantic City for a weekend but they're all too busy chain smoking and calling their parents to scream at them for their "gift" to know a good opportunity when they see one. Anyway. The point is, the East Village has become a big game of IS THAT ______ A SECRET SERVICE AGENT? Here's what's happening:

Lots of cop cars and sanitation trucks in the East Village today. Except the dudes in the sanitation trucks are all wearing earpieces and could snap your neck by flicking your face.
Lots of cop cars and sanitation trucks in the East Village today. Except the dudes in the sanitation trucks are all wearing earpieces and could snap your neck by flicking your face.

They won't let us outside the building right now. I know this because our Senior Editor, "Grandpa" Ward Harkavy just walked in here renouncing his support for Barack Obama, screaming about not being able to smoke. Guess the old "when there's a will, there's a way" adage is a New Media thing. He's currently hotboxing Voice editor Tony Ortega's offices with a pack of Marlboro Reds and "airing it out" with a palm frond like they did "in my day."

Crazy white tents everywhere! Ten bucks to the crafty NYU kid who can tag the New Museum's HELL YES! sign on it without having his cock snapped off by a ninja from the Dept. of Treasury.
Crazy white tents everywhere! Ten bucks to the crafty NYU kid who can tag the New Museum's HELL YES! sign on it without having his cock snapped off by a ninja from the Dept. of Treasury.

There are cop cars everywhere and snipers -- SNIPERS! -- locked and loaded and they will shoot to kill. I know this because I asked one. They are likely on the lookout for people trying to get back Cooper Square on bikes very quickly and have been warned by the good people at the Village Voice that the guys on fixed gear bikes are likely the most dangerous, and who knows what one could hide in a rolled-up yoga mat, you know? Look out for those people.

Cops perched on scaffolding everywhere. But this gave me a great idea. If I can get WiFi up there, all I need then is an inflatable kiddie pool and a bottle of Parrot Bay, and boom: SoHo House, the Cooper Square Pop-Up, Summer 2010. And I'm the only member.
Cops perched on scaffolding everywhere. But this gave me a great idea. If I can get WiFi up there, all I need then is an inflatable kiddie pool and a bottle of Parrot Bay, and boom: SoHo House, the Cooper Square Pop-Up, Summer 2010. And I'm the only member.

That said, you'd almost expect a way scarier presence for the President of the United States. I didn't have a tough time getting to work this morning at all. To be fair, I actually came in early today, but I wasn't questioned and people were just kinda loitering around casually. I expected to be forcibly sodomized by a SWAT team-manned battering ram sometime after I disclosed that I was on my way to work at the Village Voice, but then I remembered that this isn't the RNC -- and also, Bloomberg got snubbed by Obama so like, if you perceive the security as slightly lax today, it just might be.

The Astor Place Cube is like "Bro. BRO. Do you know Rick Sanchez? HIIII MOMMMMMM GO BUCKEYES WOOOOOO!!!!!!"
The Astor Place Cube is like "Bro. BRO. Do you know Rick Sanchez? HIIII MOMMMMMM GO BUCKEYES WOOOOOO!!!!!!"

Finally, the best part of this morning was imagining that I was in an episode of The West Wing, because there are lots of White House people with badges walking around Cooper Union with shitty Bagel Cart bagels and coffee kinda hurriedly, but not looking hurried, you know? JUST LIKE THEY DID ON THE WEST WING. It's like they're in New York! With the crazy New York People! And they get to go eat at delis and cry in Times Square to Jeff Buckley! Life is awesome.

The Cooper Union kids still just standing outside, have no idea what's going on. I'm telling you, it's The Rain Man School. Also, no, neither myself nor Obama will bum you assholes a cigarette. Jesus.
The Cooper Union kids still just standing outside, have no idea what's going on. I'm telling you, it's The Rain Man School. Also, no, neither myself nor Obama will bum you assholes a cigarette. Jesus.

So yeah, that's what's going on. And even though we're saddened at the fact that, despite having presidential adviser Roy Edroso on staff, we still can't get a ticket to the Big Show, we've tried to do our part to help ensure the security of the Commander in Chief by alerting the Secret Service to the East Village's greatest security risk:

From: Kamer, Foster
Sent: Thursday, April 22, 2010 12:06 PM
To: info@departmentoftreasury.gov; info@WhiteHouse.gov
Subject: APB / Codename Papa Eagle / Cooper Square Speech / Security Threat, Code Yellow

Last name "Doll," first name "Jennifer."

Subject is 5"6, Brown Eyes, Brown Hair, "Petite" Build. Strong affection for "Adorable Animals in Trouble" serves as longtime deep cover for random episodes of inexplicably violent, uncontrollable outbursts. Outbursts noted as exponentially more dangerous than any other threat in the area right now as intelligence has brought back reconnaissance on target threat "Doll, Jennifer" showing militia-grade arsenal of explosives and Japanese steel weapons stockpiled behind supposed "Thin Mints" cabinet, in addition to target threat's potentially deadly mastery of Yoga-Tae Boxing.

Please be advised.

Have fun getting into the office today, Jen. Don't forget our meeting in 20 minutes.

[fkamer@villagevoice.com | On Twitter]


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