At a talk at NYU earlier this week, Alan Greenspan told John Paulson, "Whenever I get gloomy, I think of Winston Churchill. America always does the right things ... after it has tried every other viable alternative." Being pressed for time they had to go on to the next question, but if they'd had longer, Big Al would've shared all his tricks for turning that frown upside down.
1. Thinking about one of the last conversations he had before retiring, when Ben Bernanke was weighing taking the job and came into his office and asked what kind of shape things were in and he said "We're lookin' good!" with a straight face. (Seriously, that one never fails to crack him up, even today.)
2. Reminiscing about Barbara Walters' tits.
3. (And when memory won't suffice, digging out the nudie shots she sent him when they were dating).
4. Annoying the shit out of Andrea Mitchell by following up ever statement with "The Oracle Hath Spoken!" through a megaphone. ("Pick up some Lunchables while you're at the store- The Oracle Hath Spoken!" "Don't bother me when I'm in the Man Cave- The Oracle Hath Spoken!" "I need some new socks-- The Oracle Hath Spoken!")
5. Reruns of Silver Spoons (Alfonso Ribeiro is his spirit animal).
6. Staring at the 'Maestro' tattoo he had inked on his dick.
7. Getting off on the fact that in his day, being such a market-moving BSD, Goldman would have chemists analyzing his tissue spunk to determine how elevated his testosterone levels were and if it would influence his policy-making.
8. Remembering at all the people he put in touch with Angelo Mozilo to take out option ARMS on houses they really couldn't afford and how they literally got their asses torn out. (This can pull him out of even the worst of funks.)
9. Practicing feigning a look of shock when Lady Gaga pulls him on stage during her performance at the MTV Music awards, should he be invited.
10. Thinking about all the times Bernanke would call him freaked out in Fall 2008, and how he'd interrupt every story to pick up call waiting and then after clicking back, say "So where were we? Oh, right, you were telling me what you were wearing." And two minutes before the end of every call go, "I'm sorry, to whom am I speaking?"