Oval Office Makeover Snafu Leads to Hilarity on Twitter

jenny erikson
Jenny Erikson
Love it, hate it, or mock Sarah Palin for it, President Obama has redecorated the oval office. It's a president's prerogative to put his (or someday her) own personal touches on the office, and during one of Obama's many vacations this summer, the design team came in and replaced the wallpaper, some furniture and fixtures, and the rug.

It's not exactly my taste, but to each their own.

One of the key pieces of the redesign was the rug. Beigey, oval, and made of 25% recycled wool (Phew! 25% less naked sheep!), the new rug includes famous quotations around its border. Four of the quotes are from former presidents Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, and Franklin D. Roosevelt, and one is from that great Republican activist, Martin Luther King Jr.

Except it's not.


The quote attributed to the assassinated civil rights leader reads:


King did say that, but he was quoting (with credit) an abolitionist he admired that had lived a century earlier. Theodore Parker died before slavery was ended in our country, but his words and work resonated with King, who regarded him as a kindred spirit.

With the news of Obama's misattributed rug quote broken, a fun new hash tag game on Twitter began. When tweeting, people often choose to add a hash tag to their tweets to make them searchable. For example, when I tweet about conservative politics, I add #sgp (Smart Girl Politics) and #tcot (Top Conservative On Twitter), because they might be of interest to people doing searches for those tags. I also use hash tags to be funny; tweeting about mommyhood often gets a #glamlife added. After all, diapers are the height of glamour.

The games happen when witty people try to outwit each other using the same searchable hash tag. The misquoted rug sparked #ObamaRugQuotes, in which people did their best to come up with famous quotes to intentionally attribute to the wrong person.

Here are some of my personal favorites:

From @CPrater:

"A wise Latina woman would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male." -- Dora the Explorer #ObamaRugQuotes

"We are living in a material world and I am a material girl." -- Barney Frank #ObamaRugQuotes

From @Snarkandboobs:

"What we've got here is a failure to communicate." -- Robert Gibbs #ObamaRugQuotes

From @NathanWurtzel:

"Don't cry for me Argentina" -- Mark Sanford #ObamaRugQuotes

"Houston, we have a problem." -- BP #ObamaRugQuotes

From @ChrisBarnhart:

"Say hello to my little friend!" -- Eric Massa #ObamaRugQuotes

This one from @TheRickWilson was the winner in my book:

"I am sick of all these mother-f'ing snakes on this mother-f'ing plane." -- Orville Wright  #obamarugquotes

I'd like to personally thank whoever dropped the ball on the rug quote. Sure, it might look bad in the most powerful office in the world, but it led to side-splitting (and free!) entertainment on Twitter. God bless America.


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