It is no secret that President Obama and House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) have had a rocky relationship.
There was the early, awkward attempt at bonding on the golf course; then one waited for the other's return call that never came; and now there is as little interaction as is required.
So the prospect of the two men leaving Washington this week for a breezy fundraising jaunt to California may have raised hopes of a reconciliation.
Any such hopes were dashed quickly. There would be no back-channel summit in the Golden State.
The closest the two men got was on Thursday, as they attended tony, if separate, fundraisers on the Westside.
Obama's motorcade pulled into the Brentwood home of actress Gwyneth Paltrow on Thursday evening after Boehner had already stopped by a Beverly Hills GOP fundraiser that morning.
Close, but still so far -- nothing more, it seems, than cars passing in L.A. area traffic as each seeks to gain advantage back in Washington.
"We can pick up seats in California," Boehner spokesman Cory Fritz said as his boss was criss-crossing the state, starting in Sacramento and making his way down to San Diego by Friday to raise money for Republican candidates he hopes can expand his majority in the House this fall.
As Obama put it during a stop to the campaign office of a Democrat running for another of the seats: "California is right at the heart of the battle for control of the House."