Thursday, January 29, 2009

What The Obit of James Brady Didn't Tell You

I used to be his copy girl 42 years ago. Where have the years gone? In those days, a copy boy/girl was a glorified messenger. I sat at a small desk in the middle of the city room. When someone ran the bell on his or her desk, I would run over, grab their story and deliver it to the copy desk. I also looked up the spelling of words, made trips to the library to research information and delivered hand written messages to friends in the building.

This was all before someone invented email,, Wikipedia and Facebook.

But the activity kept me 40 pounds thinner.

James Brady was among the handsomest men I had ever seen. He was Publisher of Woman's Wear Daily and he and John Fairchild were tall, tanned and dressed like they had just stepped out of the fashion pages themselves. No casual days for them.

Because of them and a guy named Marvin Klapper, I was promoted from copy girl to a reporter on a B2B newspaper called Home Furnishings Daily five months after I joined Fairchild Publications.

The reason for my promotion? I knew the subway system so well that I was able to get back and forth from 12th Street and Fifth Avenue to Panasonic in Long Island City in less than an hour.
They needed a new clock radio (wholesale) for their lunch date, Jackie O, and I was able to make that happen.

So with no skills or experience, I started my career.