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For $3.85, you get all the morning standbys—eggs any way, one meat (or dubiously delicious meat byproduct, e.g., scrapple), grits or home fries, and toast and jelly. And you get it sitting at a counter crammed with folks who’ve been enjoying cheap eats at the same counter since back when Kennedy Street didn’t need any revitalizing. (The oldest old timers can wax about the frosty lime rickeys served here in the 1950s, when the Brightwood joint was a deli called Nick’s.)
For years, city officials have been promising an overhaul of this economically stunted section of town and even commissioned planners to release a “Vision Statement” last year regarding the neighborhood’s future. But so far the only new construction has come several blocks to the east of the diner. Here’s hoping the pace of change doesn’t pick up, because the revitalizers’ vision doesn’t save room for places like Tony’s. And once this $3.85 platter goes away, it won’t come back.