To cleanse the palate, a short but vivid look at what America’s Pericles cooks up for those special occasions when he’s welcoming world leaders to the Oval Office. He’s getting a bad rap on “one of our strongest allies” — it’s standard diplomatic boilerplate — but the backhanded compliment about “punching above their weight” is distinctly O in its well-meaning condescension. By the third iteration, I was laughing. See how long you last.