Lunch at Michael’s: And Then Gil Schwartz Dropped By To Talk About ‘Bullsh**’

UPDATED: The tips keep coming in. Table 22, back room. See below for more!

As we were paying our check at Michael’s today, Gil Schwartz began walking towards us from Table 14, slipped into his Stanley Bing persona en route, and stopped by our seats at the bar to hand us a copy of his next book, “100 Bullshit Jobs (…And How to Get Them)” which goes on sale May 2. We (which today consisted of mediabistro.com correspondent Greg Lindsay and editorial director Dorian Benkoil) asked Gil how many of the jobs in question were applicable to media. “Most of them,” he said. And when we opened the book to the ToC, we saw what he meant. Listed on the first page alone were “Advertising Executive,” “Agent,” “Best-Selling Author,” and “Book Editor,” and we realized the question we should have asked was “How many of the jobs in questions were applicable to the room today?” He may have read our minds when he pointed out that his publisher, Marion Menaker was lunching over at Table 11, and his editor, David Hirshey (who has “forgotten more about bullshitting than most people ever know”), was at 18. (Not that Gil & Bing weren’t accounted for — there were also listings for “Corporate Spokesman” (we think) and “The Author of This Book” (definitely.) Is your job description in there as well? Grab a copy on May 2 (or just have your assistant wrangle up the galleys) to find out. On to lunch…

Table 1: Dominick Dunne, in the Dominck Dunne suited uniform, with Diane Diamond and another woman who seemed to appear halfway through the meal.

2: Ex-Variety publisher and Chairman/Founder of the Quill Book Awards (not to mention a regular) Gerry Byrne, having lunch this week with Peter Brown.

3. Time Inc. editor-in-chief John Huey with an intense-looking guest whom everyone noticed and yet no one seemed to remember…

4. Former Clinton cabinet member (and legendary charmer) Vernon Jordan with a beautiful woman who also did not go unremarked upon, nor was she identified, either.

5: At his usual table, Stanley Shuman, head of the media practice at Allen & Co. with a pair of guests.


6. Gerald Schoenfled, the chairman of the Shubert Foundation (which provides grants to non-profit theaters) with a gentleman we were told was Warren Hoge (?) Not the The New York Times-man, or was it?

7. Despite the 70-degree heat today, the imperial Andre Leon Talley was wearing a mesmerizing tan crocodile coat (Prada, of course) and his companion, Manolo Blahnik president George Malkemus, was wearing a powder blue sweater tied around his neck. Perhaps there was a draft by the door?

8. The New York Post’s Keith Kelly was too caught up in conversation to tell us who he was lunching with today, but he emailed us after the fact to say “that was the writer Kevin Haynes and the Glamour deputy editor Maryellen Gordon.”

9. Debbie Bancroft with companions unknown…

11. We had to take Gil’s word that Marion Menaker was sitting here, as we couldn’t see much over the wall. Jonathan Wald was his tablemate.

12. Jane publisher Carlos Lamadrid has his back to us, but we could see the small, all-female army of colleagues he brought with him.

14. As noted above, this was Gil’s table, and today he was with Cablevision honcho John Moran.

15. Famed photojournalist Harry Benson was sitting here.

16. Here was Nick Verbitsky, the radio pioneer who co-founded, along with Dick Clark, United Stations Radio Networks, the country’s largest independently owned and operated syndicated radio network. No clue who else was at his table, though.

17. Former Harper’s Bazaar publisher (and current Hearst International honcho, I believe) Jeanette Chang, seated with Estee Lauder’s global communications EVP Sally Susman.

18. We caught Publishers Weekly editor Sara Nelson on her way to her table (we used to work together at Inside.com) and she invited Greg to keep David Hirshey’s seat warm until he got there, at which point Greg (sigh) scuttled back to the bar. It might not be his table for long, however. As he was leaving, he sufficiently prodded Steve the Maitre’d to the point where the latter mock-threatend to “call Michael Wolff and give him back a table!” (This raises a question to discuss amongst yourselves: which did more to hurt Wolff’s visibility? Disappearing from New York magazine every week, or disappearing from Michael’s every day?)

19. The Celestine Prophecy producer Beverly Camhe and we don’t know who else.

20. Hearst corporate communications chief Deb Shriver was sitting here, we’re told, as she was in the middle of our blind spot.

21. Elle editrix Robbie Myers was the only non-De Beers exec at a table that also included De Beers USA CEO Alyce Alyston, and her colleague Joan Parker.

22. We couldn’t see this table, but a little bird tells us Adam Bly, head of the burgeoning Seed science media empire, was with Nobel prize winner James Watson, who writes for Seed and is on their advisory board.

23. Steve Abram (?) was sitting here, we were told, but to be honest, there was a column in the way.

24. Ad man Martin Puris, who once ran Ammirati Puris (and sold it to Interpublic) was back here.

25. We saw one Dan Wassong get up from this table and make his way to the door with a frown on his face. That would make sense if he’s the same Dan Wassong who’s the ex-CEO of the cosmetics company Del Laboratories, the one who’s being sued by a former security employee. Wassong was replaced at Table 25 by Teen People/People en Espanol publisher Jacqueline Hernandez-Fallous.

26. There were more fashionistas lurking in the back today: 7th on Sixth’s Fern Mallis and Full Frontal Fashion’s Judy Licht.

28. Marie Claire publisher Susan Plagemann was here, although we couldn’t tell you if she was with her magazine’s newly appointed editor, Joanna Coles.

29. And last, but certainly not least, Simon & Schuster CEO Jack Romanos.

41. Emily Denito, formerly of Crain’s, now features editor of Worth Magazine, Nancy Chemtob, a prominent matrimonial attorney and Chris Giglio, VP of Rubenstein Associates.

Back room: We’re told Gabe Pressman, Howard Stringer and Agnes Gund were there.

Please write Greg AT mediabistro DOT com or Editors AT mediabistro DOT com if you would like to correct the record above. Thanks!

Map of Michael’s
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