Tales from the Trail

from Summit Notebook:

No time for fun for White House officials

WASHINGTON-SUMMIT/While senators like Lamar Alexander have time to play classical piano with the symphony or attend sporting events, some people in Washington don't have as much time for fun or relaxation.

Take Austan Goolsbee, the new chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, who until recently worked as a member of the council and a long-time economic adviser to Obama.

Goolsbee used to compete in triathlons. Now he jokes that he is so out of shape he can hardly make it up the stairs without losing his breath.

"I stopped working out completely when I got here," Goolsbee told the Reuters Washington Summit. Now I can't walk up the stairs without going a-huff, a-huff, a-huff," he said as he made the sounds of someone gasping for air.

Of course the trim Goolsbee -- who doesn't look at all like he would be panting for air going up the stairs -- is also a jokester.

Obama in bed with the press?

President Barack Obama poked fun at his close relationship with the press on Friday and teased radio and TV correspondents their industry “was more relevant than ever,” despite more and more Americans turning elsewhere for news.

Obama said he had trouble coming up with fresh jokes after delivering a similar routine just five weeks ago at the annual White House correspondents dinner, a glitzy affair attracting big Hollywood stars.

“The jokes may not be as good, but neither is the guest list,” Obama said at the Radio and Television Correspondents  Associations Dinner. “For me, there’s no contest. Why bother hanging out with celebrities, when I can spend time with the people who made me one?”

Welcome to St. Paul!

“The Daily Show” has this welcome sign for Republican convention-goers in St. Paul, as posted on flickr: