Correction to This Article
Some earlier editions of this Reliable Source column incorrectly identified Steve Scully as working for CNN.  Steve Scully is with C-SPAN. This version has been corrected.

Flourishing on the Birthday Cake Diet

President Bush blows out the candles on his birthday cake
President Bush blames birthday cakes for his weight gain this year. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais -- AP)
By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Wednesday, August 2, 2006

Is President Bush a seesaw dieter? He gained six pounds in the year and a half before the 2004 elections, then lost eight pounds by last summer -- only to regain five pounds since then, according to the results of his annual physical yesterday. He now weighs in at 196.

"Too many birthday cakes," explained POTUS, who celebrated his 60th last month, as he exited National Naval Medical Center. During six hours of tests, doctors also burned a tiny precancerous lesion off his left arm -- nothing serious, they said -- and gave him the old scold about sunscreen.

They nonetheless declared him "fit for duty." His resting pulse rate? A tranquil 46 beats per minute. His cholesterol? Lower than ever. His hay fever? Under control, thanks to a nasal spray. His acid reflux? Not bothering him these days. Whatta machine! "He's still healthier than we are," said White House spokesman Tony Snow .

Mosbacher, Lending Glitz to Costco

Georgette Mosbacher and Costco: Two things we never expected to find in the same sentence. But she shops there -- and she sells beauty in a bottle there. "I'm been going to Costco for a long time," said the glam red-haired triple divorcee from her Fifth Avenue apartment. "I have bought everything from my flat-screen television to my meat. The meat is absolutely outstanding -- beyond good." And: "I buy all my orchids there." The flashy Texas socialite made national headlines when she came to Washington in 1989 with her third husband, Commerce Secretary Robert Mosbacher . Like a character out of "Dynasty," she was bold, brassy, sexy -- and the object of constant gossip. The couple returned to Houston in 1992 and divorced six years later. Now 59, Mosbacher is too busy for boyfriends ("I wish") or any more husbands ("There won't be another.") She's raising money for Republicans, talking politics on Fox and running Borghese, a high-end cosmetics firm.

Georgette Mosbacher
Georgette Mosbacher runs the high-end cosmetics firm Borghese.(Marion Curtis -
After selling her La Prairie firm she took over Borghese six years ago. Its upscale creams sell for big bucks in high-end department stores; Mosbacher was shopping at Costco two years ago when she had her idea to "monetize our brand." Now there are kiosks with the cheaper "Kirkland Signatures by Borghese" in 364 stores. The 22 products in the line-- makeup and skin care -- sell for $9.99 to $19.99.

"That's what it's about," said May's cover girl on 22 million copies of "Costco Connection." "I'm in business. This isn't a hobby."

HEY, ISN'T THAT . . . ?

· James Blake, Mardy Fish and the Bryan brothers ( Bob and Mike ) at Lucky Strike on Monday night. The tennis pros, in town for the Legg Mason tournament, bowled three games; Fish, with scores of 154, 138 and 162 (average 151), was the best bowler of the bunch; Blake averaged 129, Mike Bryan 109 and Bob Bryan 102.

The Press Leaves, and the Rats Will Follow

Today is the last day reporters will meet in the West Wing's ratty old press room, so a celebration is in order: Former White House press secretaries Jim Brady, Marlin Fitzwater , Jody Powell, Ron Nessen, Joe Lockhart and Dee Dee Myers will join Tony Snow at the last briefing this afternoon. The press corps is decamping across the street to Jackson Place until long-overdue renovations -- state-of-the-art technology and wider seats -- and rat extermination are completed next May.

C-SPAN's Steve Scully, president of the White House Correspondents' Association, said it's "especially poignant" that Brady will be there since the room is named after him. No speeches are planned for the farewell party, but whaddya bet the alumni will be coaxed into a turn at the mike? Give 'em hell, Helen Thomas!

Got gossip? Join Reliable Source columnists Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts today at noon on

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