Shame on Suzi

By staff January 12, 2009

Restaurants—including ours in Sarasota—deserve more respect than they just got on Oprah.


By Judi Gallagher


Shame, shame on Suze Orman. It seems the financial author and TV guru has pushed her advice a bit too far recently on Oprah. She actually told millions of viewers not to eat in restaurants. That’s right, if the economy were not bad enough and restaurant staff were not struggling as it is, Suze Orman told everyone to stop eating out. Period- end of discussion. Man, that is a broad statement and so wrong on many levels.


     First- we do need to cut down on spending as Americans, or at least this American could stand to go three months without buying a pair of shoes, but let’s get a reality check here. Restaurants in Southwest Florida feed, literally and figuratively, our economy. Owners and workers pay taxes, support our numerous charity events and often offer our children their first real-world work experiences, whether they’re scooping ice cream, clearing tables or making the froth on a cappuccino just right.

 Carrabba's supports Girls Inc.

Second- If Suze can make a #79 with lemongrass pork as healthy and delicious as Pho Cali for under $ 9, than I will personally erect a statue of her in my kitchen. By the time you buy the soy sauce, ginger, lemongrass, peanuts and romaine, you would be over budget and I have not even gotten to the bean sprouts and marinated carrots- let alone of bbq pork. If Suze can make a salami and provolone sandwich that feeds two on the most incredible Italian bread since Jersey AND include oil, vinegar, lettuce and tomato and roasted peppers for six bucks I will hand in my resignation as a frequent diner at Piccolo’s Italian Market.

Morton's Market Firehouse Chili Cookoff supporters.

 Third- How can we expect all these businesses to support all the fundraisers at schools and the arts without us giving back a little ourselves? True, if you don’t have it, don’t spend it. I don’t have enough to make caviar a staple. And, if I did have it I still wouldn’t order the $1,000 omelet that a NYC hotel offers. But, come on- if you have any doubt whatsoever how much these restaurants do for our community and support our lifestyles just get a ticket to some of the upcoming culinary events. All Faiths Food Bank “Taste of the Suncoast” on Thursday January 15th at the Westfield Shopping Center (100% of the ticket price goes to feeding the hungry) and the Lung Association’s Sarasota Food and Wine Festival in Southside Village on January 24 are both prime examples of our giving culinary community.

LeeRoy Selmon's supports the Mark Wandall Foundation.


 So, when you do go out to eat, please stop and thank those that have been serving us so well for so long. Oprah, if you are reading this blog, it would be my honor to treat you, and Suze Orman, to a $6.50 bowl of chicken noodle Pho in Sarasota, Florida.



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