I missed the chance to get tickets for Gordon Brown's appearance at Harvard, where he is now a Fellow. From watching the video, though (via the link here) he seemed a lot more relaxed and even humorous than I ever remember him being before, though hesitating quite often as he spoke.
Those who are wondering how this clever and hard-working man ended up being seen, at least in the British press, as an unpopular and unsuccessful Prime Minister can listen on the wonderful BBC iPlayer to Brown's former colleagues and aides asking themselves the same question. David Miliband for example describes his Cabinet meetings as 'inclusive... but inconclusive'. Another telling comment from one of Brown's aides -- that even when things were going well, 'he always seemed to be somewhere between rage and despair'. And there is plenty of evidence that Brown's team attacked members of his own Government in the press.
On the other hand, there is also testimony of how hard he worked, and nobody contests his intelligence. It is hard to see such a driven man wanting to enjoy his new-found leisure time. So Harvard is surely the springboard for some other ambition -- perhaps, as Edmund Conway suggests, to run the IMF or World Bank. Perhaps, in a position that involves relatively little exposure to public opinion, he'll be able to hold on to his new-found, more relaxed approach?