Financial Times writer Gillian Tett was planning on poking fun at Nouriel Roubini for the absurd level of fame the economist and Stern professor has attained due to his accurate prediction of the financial crisis. “Celebrity is just noise,” she reports he tells her, while “draped” over a “vast leather sofa” at “the ultra-trendy” Soho Grand, then mentions that he’s going to Cannes to promote two films he’ll be in this fall, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps and Inside Job, a crisis documentary narrated by Matt Damon. Then she realizes that she, too, is a member of the same class of people whose formerly obscure interests have become the new hotness.
I suddenly recall that I also gave an interview for the latter, talking about complex credit instruments, and am apparently appearing in it too. Our conversation and the location begin to take on a surreal quality; suddenly the starry grandeur of the Soho Grand does not seem such a strange place to be chatting about mortgage-backed securities after all. …“You must come to Cannes too! We can be a wonk and wonkette together!” he says, laughing at such an odd thought. I laugh off his infectious enthusiasm. Then, as he leaves, find myself checking my diary; could I fit in a trip to the film premiere in Cannes? Should I?