A View of Can't See For Looking
Some people see what's in this text, which is from an e-mail making the rounds on the web. You may have received it from a friend like I did this week:
Recently, Michelle Obama went to serve food to the homeless at a government funded soup kitchen.
Cost of a bowl of soup at homeless shelter: $0 dollars.
Having Michelle Obama serve your soup: $0 dollars.
A person who is receiving government funded meals while taking a picture of the First Lady using his $500 BlackBerry cell phone: Priceless.
Pretty funny, whether or not you're an Obama supporter, liberal, conservative, or just don't care one way or the other.
But look again at the photo. What do you see?
There. Did you catch it?
What homeless shelter do you know of that serves Mushroom Risotto? Or uses romaine lettuce?
There's more to this photo than meets the eye. Anyone willing to laugh, but look past the obvious could've merely typed in the phrase, "Obama serving in a soup kitchen" into the search engine of his or her choice. Once they did, they would've received a link to one of my favorite sites, the Urban Legends Reference Pages. This site dedicates itself to clearing up all sorts of internet rumors, urban legends, half-truths, and stories that seem to good to be true but sometimes are true.
This photo op, according to the good people at Snopes, falls under the half-truth category. The photo was taken back in March 2009 at Miriam's Kitchen, a social service agency in the Washington D.C. area. It's a privately funded organization, not taxpayer or government funded as stated in the e-mail. Moreover, it's not clear if the person with the cell phone is homeless, a volunteer, a guest, or staff member. Nor is it clear if the phone is a BlackBerry device, or if it's worth $500. Not only that, cell phones aren't necessarily for the affluent anymore given the proliferation of pay as you go phones available in many convenience stores throughout the country.
It's like my mom used to say all the time: Sometimes people can't see for looking. For another example of this, check out this story about President Obama checking out a woman's backside during the recent G8 Summit.
Or is he?
More later, and keep those eyes peeled y'all.