12/08/2010 12:01 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Almost Knowing Elizabeth

I had no idea who she was in 2003 when I met Elizabeth Edwards. Covering a debate for the Democratic nomination I was chatting about the candidates with a media colleague in the so-called spin room when a smiling woman approached us, saying, "So this is how you guys decide these things, you just talk to each other and make it up."

Despite the tough words, her demeanor was more like she was teasing. I remember saying, "Yep, that is what we do. Isn't it awful?" She said, "Oh that's fine. What else could you do?"

A few weeks later this episode repeated itself. The same woman approached me and a media friend after a debate and said, "Here you are again, doing your group think." Again I plead guilty, but this time wondered, who is this woman?

Moments later, I saw her walking out of the building with John Edwards. Only then did I realize who she was.

After the next debate I saw her across the room, approached Elizabeth Edwards and said, "So now I get it, you're a trouble maker." She laughed and said, "So are you."

From then on we teased each other on many occasions, especially when I wrote more than a few unflattering articles about her husband. Whenever she griped to me about that, I offered the same response: "You should be the one running." And there was something about her demure smile that made me think she thought so too.