This story starts with Once Upon a Time:
Once upon a time Mario Cuomo was governor of NY. I knew him long before he was even lieutenant governor. We loved one another. He’s been to my home. We’ve had dinners, parties, evenings, secrets together. I knew the family. I spent time with his wife.
Of my heartful of experiences, I right now remember five:
One, he brought me up to the official Governor’s Residence for a whole day. We went through all the rooms. He reminisced. Told stories.
Another time, when he came for dinner, he studied ceilings and walls covered with my hundreds of front pages. He was upset. The Jan. 5, 1992, screaming Post headline “DRAFT HIM” was accompanied with his photo. So why was he upset? Because it’s positioned half-hidden behind a table, said the Gov.
Back when some governmental ruling created a problem, it became a roundelay. Rupert Murdoch called Mario. Daily this sitting governor of New York state called me. Mario was the official thinker. Me the creative. Some of this has been reported in a book our Steve Cuozzo has written.
There’s when Mario invited me to his tiny table for three — him, Matilda, me — to a fund-raiser where Andrew and then-wife Kerry were speaking. Both Andrew and Kerry spoke. And spoke. And spoke. Forget that the crowd left years ago. They’re probably still at the mike.
Comes now Andrew. No interview. Never happened. Not on the phone. Not in person. No Q&A. Nothing ever. A p.r. guy, his close friend, standing with me at Yankee Stadium even called, talked to him and requested a meeting with me. Zero. Never happened. Not even a note, phone call, flowers, invite, acknowledgment, smart letter, nothing.
Now. Suddenly. He has two of his busy ants call. Not him personally. He’s too involved denying facts. I reported he flew to Buffalo. Quick photo op. Not commercial flight. Private plane which something/somebody underwrote. I listed the tail number. Once there he did not hang around long enough to rush behind the altar and prep the congregation a veal cutlet. Word was he went straight to the beach afterward.
His Charlie McCarthy called me twice. This hand-operated mouth moved twice to say I was incorrect, that Andrew did not FLY back. He drove. Yeah, OK. So he stuck that paid plane in the glove compartment? OK by me.
Also, another of his posse — one day before — called to bitch because I reported they were writing a book. NO. Nyet. Nisht. Non, they said. They got in touch twice. Didn’t do a book, didn’t call publishers about a book, didn’t plan a party about a book, didn’t ever even read a book. Don’t own a book. Reporters exist who say they have been told differently.
Where were all these calls over the last eight years? Phones in the senior citizen homes were disconnected? Maybe they’re all still on that plane?
IN the immortal words of Seymour Disraeli’s cousin: An honest politician is one who’s never been caught.
Only in Albany, kids, only in Albany.