Ross Goldberg remembers what his father told him 11 years ago when he asked if he’d join him again on opening day at Dodger Stadium. They had attended opening day together every year for 40 years.
“He said, ‘40 is a nice round number,’” he recalled. “‘Why don’t you start a new tradition with your son?’”
So Goldberg started pulling his son, Josh, out of school every year to go to opening day, just as his father had done with him since he was 10. The son would ask, “What should I tell my teachers?” The father’s answer was simple: “Tell them you are going to opening day.”
“I don’t remember ever not being a baseball fan,” Ross Goldberg said. And a Los Angeles Dodgers fan, of course.
His son, an 18-year-old freshman at Georgetown University, will fly back this week to go to their 11th consecutive opening day together and Goldberg’s 51st opening day.
For Goldberg, co-founder of Kevin/Ross Public Relations, it’s a way he watches his son grow up, just as his father watched him grow up.
“When you think about it, there aren’t many things in life that you got pleasure out of when you were 10 and you continue to get pleasure out of when you are 60,” he said.
Frequent guests walking into the lobby of the swank Peninsula Beverly Hills Hotel one afternoon earlier this month did a double-take when they saw managing director Offer Nissenbaum in a bellhop’s uniform offering to take their luggage up to their rooms.
Nissenbaum, 56, was the first participant in a program he set up called Walk in My Shoes in which the hotel’s top eight executives spend a half-day on the front lines, as doormen, front desk clerks or the like. Nissenbaum spent most of his half-day as a doorman and bellhop, and occasionally doing page duty, bringing items or running errands for guests.
Besides bringing management a greater understanding of what the staff goes through every day, Nissenbaum said the idea was to show that “no position in the hotel is more important than any other position.”
For Nissenbaum, the most surprising aspect of his shift was the response of the guests.
“I saw more guests in that half-day than I usually see in two or three days,” he said. “After getting over their surprise, they were thrilled. They thought it was wonderful and great. Many took photos with me.”
The only awkward moments came when some guests offered him tips. He said he had to explain that he is the general manager and politely refuse the tips.
Staff reporters Kay Chinn and Howard Fine contributed to this column. Page 3 is compiled by editor Charles Crumpley. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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