“Well, you have to understand the context,” Obama says, chuckling to himself as he makes coffee for a loose gathering of reporters early on Friday morning, a few hours after the Nobel Committee decided to honour the anti ‘blowing-up-the-world-to-prove-you’re-a-real-man’ organization ICAN, an event which the former president used as an excuse to remind Trump that he received that very award his first year in office, unlike some other people he knows.
“We have a lot of friendly back and forth, you might be surprised to know. Trump ribs me about how I look so relaxed and happy that I must be on some great meds and can I get him some, and I rib him about being a total failure. It’s good-natured.”
Obama pulls out his phone, and after flipping through a few Trump memes Bill and George sent him earlier this morning, which he tries – unsuccessfully – to shield from the gathered reporters (he paused to chuckle again at the one making the rounds of the current president’s face superimposed on the body of The Simpsons character Ralph Wiggum holding a roll of paper towel and saying ‘I’m helping’) he eventually finds his messages to Trump.
“So this is me with the Peace prize, back in ’09. Now look, that award is extraordinarily humbling, and one I accepted on behalf of the entire nation that had, less than a year earlier, voted me into power. But, that having been said, Donald doesn’t have one, and I’m not going to let him forget it.”
Saying he sent ‘between twenty and thirty,’ photos of himself receiving his award, standing with his award, watching movies with his award, and shooting hoops with his award, Obama swipes down through his messages to find Trump’s response.
“Ah, yes, there it is,” the former president says, wiping tears of laughter from the corners of his eyes. He holds up his phone. At the bottom of the message chain is a single emoji: the upraised middle finger, a yellow one.
“I’m not sure he knows you can change those to match your skin colour,” Obama says, then pauses for a moment before beginning to laugh again. “Or maybe he does.”