Sunday, 11 January 2015

The Day I met Fred Gruen

I liked Fed Gruen as an academic. He was a Professor of Economics at the ANU if my memory serves me correctly.
He wrote a book on economics or a chapter in a book ( I forget which one) which I found very useful at University in third year. His contributions in the media on public policy were also terribly helpful.
He was the father who begot Nicholas ( of Club Troppo fame and the nicest bloke in the blogosphere)) and David. David is such a brainiac he did a Phd in physics but got bored and so did a Phd in economics!!  I got to know him whilst he was at the RBA. Indeed I had lunch with him and a young Glenn Stevens one day down at the Quay!).

Anyway I had a few mates who were concerned that I never went out on the weekend. I was usually at Macquarie University library reading up on topics that were of use to me during the week. I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed doing this.

However one Saturday I was cajoled by some mates into going down to Bowral and play golf there. I took extra clothing as we were going to stay overnight in Mittagong.

I cannot remember whether I have just finished lunch or dinner but I recognised Fred Gruen in the same restaurant .  I went over to him and introduced myself and told him how much his work had helped me both at university and at work.

To my great surprise he insisted I sit down with him and his lovely wife. We then talked ( well actually he did as I didn't want to embarrass myself too much).

I have no idea of how long it took (I think at least one bottle of wine) but it was the one of the most enjoyable hours of my life. I was always taken by his wife. It was like this was a perfectly normal thing that occurred during the day.

I took two three things from that day.

  1. Fred had a great knack of making hard to understand concepts sound easily comprehensible.
  2. He was one hell of a nice guy.
  3. I was lucky enough to meet and talk to him