Brady's Bunch

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Why are we in Iraq? In my Crain's N.Y. Business column of March 24 a year ago, I began, "I do not like this war. ...I am often wrong and hope to hell I am again. But I think this is the wrong war in the wrong place ...a war that promises a hard and bitter peace. I've felt from the start that Mr. Bush wanted this war. Why? Because `terrorism' is amorphous and Osama a will-o'-the-wisp. Iraq is easy." Or so they thought 13 months ago. And today? Bush & Rummy, Wolfowitz & Condi, so many hawks, so little wisdom. They've mired us in a religious war in a fanatics' bedlam. I haven't the vaguest idea how to get out. The tragic part, neither do they. And the body bags keep coming.

I once interviewed Alistair Cooke over tea in his apartment just off Fifth Ave. What stories! Told me about the time Hitler came into the brauhaus where Cooke and some pals were having a beer.

Got your dance card handy? National Magazine Awards this year May 5, the Waldorf. They're "pretty jazzed" over at Popular Science for their first-ever nomination in the prestigious General Excellence category. They're also up in ad pages 15% through May.

Dan Lagani of Better Homes & Gardens says their April number is "the biggest single issue in the storied history" of the mag.

And Men's Health closed May with a 139 ad page issue, up 24% from `03. Are we seeing a trend here?

Publisher Kimberly Anderson Kelleher, whose Golf for Women closed 2003 up 20% in ad pages and 48% in dollars and an Ad Age Media Maven last year, closed its May/June issue with a record 85 ad pages.

Time Inc. promoted publisher Robin Domeniconi to president of Real Simple. Its brand extensions now include TV, books, licenses. At Time's Health, the new Eastern ad manager is Jennifer Melin from Fairchild.

Love the Jay Leno remark, "If you can't live on what I make, there's something wrong with you."

Cottage Living named Deirdre Finnegan ad director.

At the book party Myrna Blyth says her "Spin Sisters" was already No. 19 on the Times Book Review extended list.

Peter Ustinov and I once shared a lift in the Hotel Connaught. There we were, a Yank and a Russian in London. What did we do? Discussed the weather.

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