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Political Circus: Welcome back Kumar

By Ed Hornick, CNN
Actor Kal Penn is back to work at the White House.
Actor Kal Penn is back to work at the White House.
  • Actor Kal Penn, who left the White House to film a movie, is back at his job
  • Bristol Palin shoots down rumors of a Tea Party 'Dancing' conspiracy
  • Get a glimpse at some of the first class food on Air Force One

Washington (CNN) -- Politics is serious business -- but not all of the time. From the halls of Congress to the campaign trail, there's always something that gets a laugh. Here are some of the things you might have missed:

Take 2

Actor Kal Penn, better known as Kumar from the "Harold & Kumar" movies is back at the White House, ABC News reports. He left this summer to film another H&K movie.

The actor, whose real name is Kalpen Modi, began his duties on Monday as the associate director in the Office of Public Engagement. He served in a similar role prior to heading off to the movie set.

Who knew he had time to write another book?

President Obama's children's book, "Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters" has been released.

The 31-page book, featuring illustrations of his daughters and his dog Bo, begins: "Have I told you lately how wonderful you are? How the sound of your feet running from afar brings dancing rhythms to my day?"

Proceeds from the book, which has a suggested retail price of $17.99, will be donated to a scholarship fund for children of fallen and disabled soldiers.

Notable quotable

"Hey have you heard that President Obama's picture book for kids comes out tomorrow? That's when you know things have changed right? When Bush writes a 500-page memoir and Obama hands in a coloring book" -- Jimmy Fallon

No tea (conspiracy) for me

Bristol Palin is knocking down claims that there is a conspiracy by Tea Party activists to keep her on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars." She has consistently received low scores throughout the show and yet remains in the top four.

Bristol Palin was quick to dismiss the notion that she's only there because of her mother's supporters. In an interview with E! News, she said "Think about all the people who hate my mom!"

I'll have what the POTUS is having

CNN's Eatocracy blog takes a look at just how first class the food is aboard Air Force One -- complete with pictures and a critique from senior photojournalist Mark Walz.

Who knew there was an Air Force One Tabasco sauce?

Picture you need to see

From Getty Images: Members of the U.S. Park Police arrest gay rights activist and former Army Lt. Dan Choi, who handcuffed himself to the fence of the White House during a protest Monday.

The protesters are calling on the Obama administration and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to keep their promise on repealing 'don't ask, don't tell' -- the law banning gays and lesbians from openly serving in the military.

Headline of the day

"The Economy of the Aging Sex Kitten"

Late-night laughs

Conan O'Brien: "Recent reports suggest that passages from former President George W. Bush's new book may have been lifted from other books ... Yes especially the parts about Dumbledore and Voldemort."

Jon Stewart: "[Cindy McCain is] against what 'don't ask, don't tell' does but she's for 'don't ask, don't tell.' No wonder they have so many houses! They need them to keep all their different beliefs in them."

Jimmy Kimmell: "Sarah Palin's reality show premiered last night on TLC. Huge ratings -- 5 million viewers. It was the biggest premiere in the history of that network. If you didn't see it, it's basically 'Jon and Kate' plus about four meets 'The Deadliest Catch'"