The publisher of the New York Times is seeing a married-but-separated woman he met several months before announcing his own marital separation. This proves he never slept with Caroline Kennedy. What?

Page Six is reporting that Arthur Sulzberger Jr.'s girlfriend is Helen Ward of Aspen, Colorado, who he met on a trip to Peru "about a year ago." Sulzberger didn't announce his separation from his wife until four months or so after meeting Ward, but transferred an apartment to his wife's name prior to that, so it's entirely possible but not entirely clear that he was separated from his wife at the time his relationship with Ward started.

For what it's worth, Ward's husband is said by a Page Six source to be "crazy bitter" right now.

The Times won't comment on Ward. But a spokesman did give the Post a full-throated rebuttal to the speculation about an affair between Sulzberger and Caroline Kennedy:

"Mr. Sulzberger is not and never has been romantically involved with Ms. Kennedy."

Page Six goes on to say that since Sulzberger has a girlfriend, there's no way he could have slept with Caroline Kennedy. Because, presumably, Sulzberger's lover of the moment, who he's been seeing for an indeterminate amount of time, precludes him from having slept with someone else in the recent past.

And because boyfriends, like husbands, do not sleep around. As the Post's gossip columnists know particularly well.

(Top photo of Helen Ward from an Apsen, Co. dinner of the Aspen Institute, an organization that has collaborated, along with CEO Walter Isaacson, on several projects with the Aspen Science Center, led by Ward's husband Kevin.)