Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Rich Man, Poor Man . . . invisible man

Channel 7 went to the videotape, and its story about Big Mama's was as I expected.

Which means they got about half the story -- the North Omaha half.

KETV didn't notice was the South O half of the story -- a half that may be even more illustrative. Because in South Omaha, it wasn't that the area was ignored completely -- it wasn't -- but what restaurants there were ignored, amigo.

HERE'S WHAT the TV folk reported -- or some of it, at least:
She said her restaurant wasn't the only one in the area left out of the Berkshire Hathaway guide.

"North Omaha is here," she said. "We're on the map. We've been here. Why were we left out?"

Her daughter contacted Warren Buffett's office directly, twice in the last two years, but she wasn't able to get an answer.

After KETV NewsWatch 7 got involved on Wednesday, Barron received a surprising voice mail from the head of Berkshire Hathaway himself.

"Hi, this is Warren Buffett. I was calling Patricia Barron," the message went. "I'd appreciate if you'd give me a call. Thanks."

"I'm just thrilled," she said. "He called me."

She said she plans to ask Buffett to get north Omaha in the loop.

"That I'd like to be included on his list, this year and next year, and that I want him to come down and have a meal at Big Mama's," Barron said.
ALAS, this is a story older than ol' Jim Crow. It, in fact, is as old as the Good Book.

It's as old as Lazarus begging for crumbs from the rich man's table and getting none. And in what might be a nice visual hook for television audiences, it also features the fantastic spectacle of rich people and trying to squeeze camels through the eye of a needle.

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