, who worked for me for almost four years—two as a wee-pup intern and two as an official staff writer here at the Scene
—until Congressman Jim Cooper stabbed me in the back and lured him away with promises of, you know, changing the world.
The point of my nostalgia and that picture on the left? (Editor's Note: If you don't know Spragens, you can stop reading now.) Spragens is an all-white Obama, and Obama is a half-black Spragens. It's a two-way compliment.
It turns out that Spragens, Cooper's communications director, took some time off recently to help the Obama campaign jump-start a media operation in Tennessee.
Anyway, he and Obama have the same wide grin and pearly teeth, the same—how to put it?—prominent
ears, disarming sense of humor. (Though Spragens could use a Michelle Obama.) They're both brilliant, but most of all, they talk the same. Exactly the same. Not just the words, meaning, even ideology, but the friggin' sounds, cadences, pauses, the little puff of the cheek as they reel off their words. If you closed your eyes, you wouldn't know the difference.
In fact, I can't watch Obama in the debates without worrying whether a "fuck" is going to slip out.
Who's that handsome dude on the right, you're asking yourself. That's