In a Staring Contest, Mike Allen Wins

Politico has a relatively new morning feature that is predominately performed by Mike Allen and occasionally Executive Editor Jim VandeHei.

Accompanied by catchy sitcom music they likely dance to when the camera isn’t rolling, they give us a few golden nuggets from the day.

First off, World Headquarters? We didn’t realize Politico is a world-wide operation. Why stop there…why not Universal Headquarters? VandeHei doesn’t call it “worldwide” — that’s a folksy Allen touch. It’s an earnest feature. But something has us both wildly impressed and frankly, concerned. Has Allen stopped blinking altogether? We nearly got hypnotized watching him. Does he have dry eye? In this morning’s edition, timed one minute, eight seconds, in which he pimps out stories by Alexander Burns and new blogger God Charlie Mahtesian, we counted a grand total of zero blinks.

In previous videos for this feature, Allen also never blinks. So if you’re considering a staring contest with him? Don’t do it. He’ll win every time.

Take a look. In at least one previous video, VandeHei and Allen perform the feature together in Vandeland (apparently his office has a name). This is the far more relaxed and superior option as VandeHei brings in some Politico LIVE charm and makes Allen laugh and blink, bringing out the more natural aspects of his personality and coming off as less of a Martian figure in the Politico stratosphere.