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Lunch: Cindi Leive, Harold Ford, Jr. & The Gang

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— DIANE CLEHANE

We heard we missed quite a scene yesterday when the dining room was filled with the likes of dirty joke diva Sarah Silverman, Pedro Almodovar, Harvey Weinstein and his oh-so-fashionable wife, designer Georgina Chapman, Ron Perelman and a long list of other movers and shakers. But there were plenty of fabulous folks to chat with today, so I made the rounds before they got down to business over their Cobb salads.

I was delighted to see ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong, who had been across the pond enjoying some time in London and missing from his regular perch at Michael’s for several weeks. He’s right back into the swing of things, having been at Sunday night’s Tony Awards to see his friend Sir Elton John, who wrote the music for 10-time award winner Billy Elliot celebrate with the cast on their big night. Monday night Joe attended the benefit for Paul Newman’s Hole in the Wall Gang Camp hosted by Julia Roberts, Robert Redford and some other A-listers. “We raised $2.5 million,” reports Joe, who volunteers at the camp every summer. “It’s great to see all of Paul’s work is still going strong.” Joe was lunching today with the charming — and funny — Harold Ford, Jr., chairman of the Democratic Leadership Council who moonlights as a news analyst for MSNBC.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. The ‘Imber Gang’: Dr. Gerald Imber, Jerry Della Femina, Jeff Greenfield and Andy Bergman.

2. A dapper duo: Nielsen Business Media’s Gerry Byrne and Henry Schleiff. I stopped by Gerry’s table to catch up since we last crossed paths at Showtime’s party for Nurse Jackie and its star, Edie Falco. Coincidentally, Gerry, who is one of the greatest guys in the business, is getting a ‘Made in New York’ Award from the mayor’s office next Monday night and his fellow honoree is none other than Edie. Small world.

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and Harold Ford, Jr.

4. Stan Shuman with another gent we didn’t recognize…


5. Arnold Scaasi, Parker Ladd and Diana Taylor.

6. Lisa Linden, lobbyist Suri Kaiser and Manhattan borough president Scott M. Stringer. My friend Lisa, the consummate PR pro, brought Scott over to introduce us. Turns out Scott is somewhat of a foodie and came up with an idea for a cookbook when he was working on the ‘Go Green East Harlem’ project. The resulting tome, The Go Green East Harlem Cookbook, published in January 2008, is a compilation of healthy recipes from local restaurant owners and public housing residents. Here’s the kicker: Scott can’t cook, so he penned a ‘Top 10′ tips list for ordering healthy takeout. A true New Yorker…

7. Susan Magrino and David Kuhn

8. New York Social Diary‘s David Patrick Columbia and Barbara Tober, who we’ve known since her days as editor in chief of Brides

9. Hearst publicity maven Deb Shriver (loved those red tights!) and Barbara Lee Diamondstein Spielvogel.

11. Glamour editrix Cindi Leive, who opted to keep her leopard raincoat on during lunch. “It’s a look!” she quipped. A Glamour ‘Do’ for sure!

12. Nicki Haskell and pals

14. Herb Allen III and a mystery man

15. My friend Tony Hoyt and Missy Godfrey. I chatted with Tony when he arrived and asked him about our mutual pals, former Hallmark magazine editor Lisa Benenson and ex-In Style editor Charla Lawhon. Tony reports both gals are keeping busy and Charla, who announced she was leaving InStylefor ‘the digital world’ back in March, is set to reveal more of her plans sometime this summer.

16. My good pal Joan Gelman and Sandy Pearl

81. Robin Leacock

17. A fedora-sporting Eduardo Verastegui

18. Steve Rubenstein

20. Ambassador Carl Spielvogel with The Financial TimesChrystia Freeland, who is due any day!

21. Beverly Cahme

22. David Poltrack

23. Nina Link

24. Randy Bassett

25. Harold Matzner

26. Dayle Haddon and a very elegant-looking lady we didn’t know

27. Jamie Niven

Please send comments and corrections to DianeClehane AT mediabistro Dot com and lunch at mediabistro DOT com.

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