Tales from the Trail

Gibbs sports Canadian hockey jersey for briefing

March 12, 2010

Joking that a new “casual Friday” dress code had been instituted in the West Wing, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs showed up at the podium Friday wearing a Canadian hockey jersey to make good on a bet he had made with his counterpart in Canada.

OBAMA/Gibbs and Dimitri Soudas, spokesman for Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, had a wager on the men’s hockey final, which Canada won 3-2 in overtime.

His jersey had a number 39 on it in honor of U.S. goalie Ryan Miller. He had promised to wear it for 15 minutes but took it off after about five to uncover the Team U.S.A. Hockey jersey underneath.

President Barack Obama had to pay up too after betting Harper a case of beer over the March 1 game in Vancouver.

“We’ve instructed the embassy, our embassy and our ambassador to make arrangements to deliver one case of Molson Canadian and one case of Yuengling lager from Pottsville, Pennsylvania, America’s oldest brewery, to the Prime Minister’s office today,” Gibbs said. “I’m sure Dimitri will take most of that home and consume it.

Soudas couldn’t resist the urge to gloat a little bit.

“Good friends can make a bet for beers, or to wear each other’s jerseys,” he said in a statement issued in English and French. “That said, it’s always a smart idea to bet on Canada.”

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Photo credit: Reuters/Larry Downing (Gibbs in Canadian hockey jersey)

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