Me, Morris and the New York Times

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I would like to share something personal with you today about my father, me and our relationship around The New York Times.  This week I had the honor of having my quote selected by The New York Times as one three notable quotes in the paper during the previous week.  There I was, quoted on page 2 of the Sunday, February 1, 2015 New York Times along with the new President of Greece and a Chinese naval historian. Here are the quotes:

    “It’s like we’re living in the Middle Ages.” – “Zhang Qian, a naval historian complaining about China’s widening restrictions on the web.”

     “We will bring an end to the vicious circle of austerity.” – “Alexis Tsipras, the new Prime Minister of Greece, who threw down the gauntlet to European officials…”

    “The toy industry is essentially a 19th-century industry desperately trying to break into the 21st.” – “Richard Gottlieb, the founder of Global Toy Experts, a consulting agency.”

I knew that I had been quoted earlier in the week by Rachel Abrams in her article, “Shake-Up at Mattel as Barbie Loses Her Appeal,” but I had no idea my quote would be singled out for recognition.  I was overcome with emotion.

In fact, my reaction was so strong that I wondered why.  I then recalled how my father, in our small town on the Virginia coast, used to read The New York Times every Sunday.  He was maybe one of a half-dozen people who made their way to the Langley Hotel (our only hotel at the time) where the Newspaper was held for him after being dropped off by the Greyhound bus.  Sometimes he would take me with him, all of six or seven and I would watch as the very serious looking man behind the hotel reception desk would hand over my Dad’s copy.  It had his name written in pen right across the top:  Morris Gottlieb.

My Dad worshiped that paper and so it came to embody for me something that seemed almost holy; after all it came on a Sunday, it had serious black type, it had no comics and my Dad would read it front to back.  It was serious.  I can still remember him sitting in “his” chair, gradually moving through the sections.

My Dad is long gone from this world but I would like to believe that he somehow knows that my words were singled out by his newspaper of record.  If he does, I hope he’s proud.  “I made it Dad.”

10 thoughts

  1. So Beautiful! You deserve the best! I am sure your dad is proud of you and so we are in the business of play!

  2. I love your thoughts about your dad and how as a boy you walked with him to pick up the New York Times from the small town hotel every Sunday. But like others, I am curious as to your meaning. Having worked with small children for many years and now writing books for them, I am not sure that the 21st century child is different to the 19th century child or the 15th century child for that matter, in their inner core; one of the best toys is still the card board box!

  3. Richard, this is wonderful, I love your quote and the others and the synergy that results. Quantum physics suggest the possibility that no moment is lost, they are all still out there, real and viable as ever, as real as when we lived them. On that basis alone I would offer that your father is somewhere in that continuum now, looking on you with love. And he always will be. Best, Chris

  4. Kudos, of course!! But what I’d really like to see is much more of the explanation, of your thinking behind that quote, Richard!!

  5. Nice, Richard… That quote caught my fancy, too, when I read it. Very interesting and provocative… I’m sure your Dad would be very proud, although I expect you will be quoted many more times…

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