This comment is the most reassuring thing I've heard out of Washington since the election. Cabinet-level nominations are fairly small ball in my eyes - the tone and attitude of an administration is set a) in the Oval Office and b) in the sub-Cabinet nominations and appointments.
One of the things that scared me the most about Obama was his Carter-like earnestness and apparent lack of spontaneous humor. He seemed to have no goofiness to him. That gag about Richardson's beard sounds spontaneous and unscripted - either Obama's speechwriters are really, really good at scripting ad libs, or he actually made a Joke. A real one, the sort of stupid, doofus gag I'd expect from Bush the Younger in the days before the office ground him down into a grey stolid paste.