He felt slighted, according to a recent People Magazine article, to be mistaken for a valet — at some point in his life.
Gosh... he makes it sound like this work is among the lowest, most pathetic jobs a person could find themselves in.
There is a lot more to valet parking cars than people realize. It takes talent. Yes, talent. Knowing how to operate every car without screwing it up takes talent. Maneuvering, parking with flawless precision — sometimes in very tight spaces — takes talent. Real talent.
Some cars are tricky to operate. And clutch cars are all a little bit different.
The job also takes physical ability. You've got to be able to run for hours when it's busy.
And you have to be a contortionist to get in and out of some of these cars when the spaces they are parked in are tight.
It's a big responsibility to drive these cars, some of them worth over 6 figures. And certainly not everyone can handle it.
The driving skill involved and physical endurance required are just part of what is required to do this job well.
Obviously, Obama never worked as a valet for him to belittle the profession like that.
The reason why so many cars get damaged when they are valet parked, the reason why so many keys get lost, and why so often things suddenly disappear from inside valet parked cars, is because the valets who are super pros leave.
Inadequate pay flushes out the experienced who know what they are doing. Rookies replace them. And it takes a while to develop the know-how and skill to drive such a wide variety of automobiles. It's not like you valet park cars for a week or two and are an expert. No, it takes time.
For those in the valet business who have managed to persevere for any good length of time, the ones who have become "high level" with their skill and know-how, who take pride in the work they do, Obama's comment was probably a little bit insulting.