The memorandum from the White House’s chief of staff Denis McDonough, deputy chief of staff for implementation Kristie Canegallo, senior adviser Brian Deese and deputy assistant to the president Natalie Quillian has a deliberately lighthearted tone. It urges staffers to “See the burn marks” (the only original part of the White House, in the basement on the north side) and “Find a representation of a non-American in the residence.” (France’s Marquis de Lafayette qualifies, as does John Quincy Adams’s wife Louisa, who was born in Britain.)
The suggestions range from the daring — “Take a peek at the pool on the South Lawn (don’t even attempt to do more than peek)” — to the athletic — “Shoot two shots on the basketball court (making the shot is optional).” And perhaps the most challenging task: “Find and name one type of wood in the new table in the garden.”
Since the White House could not be reached for comment Thursday evening, it is unclear how many of Obama’s aides actually completed the hunt. But it’s hard to argue with the memo’s recommendation at the bottom: “That you do this. YOLO. Senior Spring.”
The full text of the memo is below.
MEMORANDUM FOR THE FEW LEFT STANDING
FROM: Your colleagues (Denis, Kristie, Brian and Natalie)
SUBJECT: Last Day Scavenger Hunt
This memorandum outlines the elements of an optional scavenger hunt on our last full day at the White House. Team off, if you like, or be a lone wolf. But get it done, because when else will you get to do this …
Shoot two shots on the basketball court (making the shot is optional)
Putt twice on the putting green (sinking the putt is also optional)
Take a final lap on the South Lawn (speed is discretionary)
Take a peek at the pool on the South Lawn (don’t even attempt to do more than peek)
Sign your name on the old WH pool under the briefing room.
Find a representation of a non-American in the residence.
Find and name one type of wood in the new table in the garden.
Take a look at the one-lane bowling alley.
That you do this. YOLO. Senior Spring.