Mr. Bubble Dead

August 7, 2008

“A bubble is how a child’s breath can make something beautiful…from nothing – just like God made the universe. Do bubbles have to break?”

Mr. Bubble passed away this last Tuesday evening, as announced from his Hamilton, NJ home by short-term corporate family associate and restructuring officer; Doug Booth. The official cause of death was a brief bout of bankruptcy, however, those who knew Mr. Bubble, attributed his demise to an agonizing and protracted struggle against avarice, after firstly suffering from a self-inflicted business roll-up some few years earlier. According to the bankruptcy obituary, Mr. Bubble is survived by three layers of debt; levereged, senior and junior, neither of which had anything left to speak of.

Had Mr. Bubble lived, he would have been 88, being born of the Lander family in 1920. Mr. Bubble’s father gained his reputation selling perfumes such as “Romantic Days” and “Samedi Soir.” Lander relinquished his prodigy several times before it was adopted by the Hermes Group, a private equity firm, in 2003, according to the perfunctory regulatory inquest.

Two years later, Lander was placed in another consumer-products home, and took in Mr. Bubble from Playtex in 2007 to reside with Coty’s “Healing Garden.” Final arrangements for the disposition of Mr. Bubble’s remains, if any, are being handled by the firm of Houlihan, Lokey, Howard & Zukin.

And so it goes, but begs the question – in business, is greed ever good? Greed, as opposed to what – honest competition, ambition and hard work? In my grief, I’m going to think about that, as I reflect on fond memories of growing up squeaky clean with Mr. Bubble. It’s just kind of sad, and likewise ironic, that the first business roll-ups to be done in the 1970’s were Mom and Pop funeral homes and neighborhood trash haulers. Tech bubble, stock market bubble, Don Ho and “Tiny Bubbles,” housing bubble – so long, Mr. Bubble…

YOUR MOTHER WON’T KNOW YOU (vintage commercial, and only 49 cents!)


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