(BOSTON) -- Barack Obama celebrated his 47th birthday today at a fundraiser in Boston with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., Gov. Deval Patrick, D-Mass., musician Harry Connick, Jr., and appoximately 850 other friends.
"If I'm not mistaken, the last time I was in this room we had just lost New Hampshire. Everybody was kind of raw. We had won Iowa, and there was this giddy sense that this thing is [rolling], this thing is moving," Obama said, referencing a January event here.
"And then, we lost. And it surprised the pundits and it surprised us... I said I thought it was a good thing because winning shouldn't be easy. Winning the presidency should not be easy, especially when we were campaigning against one of the finest public servants that we have in this country in Hillary Rodham Clinton."
He continued praising Clinton who he said "has dedicated her life to service. With whom I share 90 percent, 95, 98 percent of positions. The notion that we would waltz into the nomination made no sense. "
Obama also put his humility on display, perhaps due to the hammering he's taken from Republicans who have accused him of being too presumptuous.
"I am an imperfect vessel for this movement that you guys have pushed... But, the wonderful thing about this whole campaign, from the very start, is that it hasn't been about me. It hasn't been about me, it's been about you."
Musician Harry Connick, Jr. and his daughter serenaded Obama with a birthday song and before presenting him with a Boston Red Sox Hawaiian shirt. He thanked the crowd and joked "as a White Sox fan, this hurts a little bit. Particularly since we've been losing lately, but it is a very attractive shirt."
He also took the advice of a local newspaper, which suggested he not wear a Hawaiian shirt in public.
"I think the advice of Boston Globe was do not wear Aloha shirts. So obviously you did not read that before getting these gifts."
The Globe also suggested he not go windsurfing on his upcoming Hawaiian vacation (you may remember the windsurfing thing didn't really help his friend John Kerry in 2004).
Speaking of Kerry, during his introduction, he took a shot at his (what's seeming to be former) friend, John McCain.
"John McCain is looking for someone for vice president who has more economic expertise than he does," Kerry quipped.
"So congratulations to all of you, you're on the short list."