RIP to a real classy lady

New York Post - - NEWS - Cindy Adams

WHEN Liz Smith went away I was away, so my timely good­bye got away. Prob­a­bly a first time ei­ther of us ever blew a dead­line.

Liz be­gan a gos­sip col­umn pre-K. Be­fore Kar

dashian. Be­fore tweets, Twit­ter and TMZ. Go back. Long back. Even from her port­hole in the Ark, savvy Lizzie could sniff out which don­key was an ass.

The busi­ness of mind­ing who­ever’s busi­ness be­gan with Amer­ica’s first news­pa­per gos­sip colum­nist Ben­jamin Franklin. Our most pow­er­ful was the di­nosaur who pawed what­ever dirt the earth had — my husband’s brother-in­law Wal­ter Winchell. Oth­ers sprang up, but from it all sprung Liz.

Not mean. Not hurt­ful. She liked most everybody . . . maybe not so much me. With­out in­tend­ing to or even try­ing, I got thrown into her sand­box. Af­ter she’d be in and out of sev­eral news­pa­pers and landed at The Post, I in­vaded her queen­dom.

Down the line, she in­vited me to her events. I treated her to din­ners. She asked me to projects she em­ceed. I in­cluded her in my black-tie what­ev­ers.

But put it this way: Were she to have mar­ried again, she wouldn’t have picked

me as her ma­tron of honor.

She dredged good­ies on first-namers like El­iz­a­beth, An­gelina, Liza, Ma

donna, Hil­lary. In ’98, she hosted cock­tails at Le Cirque for au­thor Sid­ney Shel­don. In ’83, this pow­er­house headed Shu­bert Al­ley’s Lit­er­acy Vol­un­teers party. In ’89, she for some rea­son re­ported on Mar­garet Whit­ing’s sex life.

In 1990, she said if she’s ever out of work she’ll write the mem­oirs. In ’04, she pa­raded her live-in Iris Love’s dog at a pre-West­min­ster party. In ’07, she did the commentary for fo­tog Patrick McMul­lan’s “Glam­our Girls” book.

In ’05, came a hand­writ­ten gush­ing ador­ing wor­ship­ful fan-let­ter ad­dressed to me. I ea­gerly opened the en­ve­lope. Its first line read: “Dear Liz Smith . . .”

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