BRADY'S BUNCH

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Was it really necessary for The Advocate or anyone else in the gay press to "out" the late Barbara Jordan?

Love the Jeep commercial with the hitchhiker headed for Mt. Kilimanjaro. Almost good enough to make me swap the Chevy Blazer for a Jeep.

Has there been anything more absurd in the primaries to date than those photos of Pat Buchanan brandishing sixguns and hoisting rifles while togged out in French cuffs and links? His military record is as pacifist as Clinton's.

Norm Pearlstine of Time Warner is not happy with my recent column about lunching with the Forbes lads. Norm thinks I show bias in favor of Forbes (the mag) and against Time Inc.'s own Fortune. Which is baloney. I dearly love Time Inc. and all its works & pomps and have written plenty of columns saying so, from paeans to the swimsuit issue to reminiscences of Luce and Hadden. If Steve happens to be elected Prez, of course, all bets are off.

A splendid fellow named Rick Cramer died after courageously fighting a brain tumor for three years. He was founder and president of Four Way Communications in L.A. and had been publishing director of Knapp when it had Architectural Digest and Bon Appetit. He also edited for leading mags, did good work for the MPA, and wrote me grand, perceptive letters. Rick leaves a wife and three children.

Boomer Esiason and pals having late lunch at a window table at Wollensky's Grill in Manhattan. Keith Hernandez, John Riggins and Walt "Clyde" Frazier also dig this joint.

Don't miss the Vanity Fair letter from Los Angeles by Kim Masters. Great inside H'Wood dish a la that "Celia Brady" stuff in the old Spy.

Anthea Disney, new boss at HarperCollins Books, could probably nail down my next novel for a low seven figures.

Reporting from Vatican City! (I kid you not; at least those are the postage stamps) is Gael Greene who says she'll be back in NY April 1 "hopefully toting 200 pages of a novel worth publishing."

Publisher Joel Kessler says things starting to move in Houston for his Southwest Art where April ad pages rose from 72 last year to 79 this time. The mag was without a publisher following Bob Phillips' stroke last May.

Gil Chapman jumped (after six years) from Gourmet to ad director for the sports group at Street & Smith.

Annual Matrix Awards (NY Women in Communications) this year go to Charlotte Beers for advertising, Amy Tan for books, Geraldine Laybourne for broadcast, Martha (Herself) Stewart for magazines, Liz Smith for newspapering, Patrice Tanaka for PR and Whoopi Goldberg for film. They'll hand out the hardware April 15 at the Waldorf.

Playboy's Richard Kinsler says their spring preview issue is up 21% in ad pages and 40% in bucks over '95.

Move over, Riles! Rochelle Udell's been promoted. She's coaching the Harrison (NY) Girls (11 & 12) All-Star hoops team.

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