A few months ago, Matt Levine, Bloomberg’s ascendant tech and finance columnist, schlepped from his home in Westchester County into New York with his wife and three small children to have weekend brunch on the Upper West Side, joined by his parents, his aunt and his uncle. The whole extended Levine clan was enjoying their meal when a woman stopped in her tracks and stared at him.

“Are you Matt Levine?” she asked.

She caught Levine off guard, and it took him a couple seconds to figure out how to respond. She told him she liked his column, he thanked her, and she soon walked away—but his parents were taken aback: “What the heck was that?”

Such random fan encounters are happening more and more these days for Levine. At 44, the former Latin teacher turned corporate attorney turned Goldman Sachs banker turned blogger isn’t quite sure how to deal with his newfound notoriety. “I feel like people who are true celebrities must have some charming repartee they can just kind of spin up automatically,” said Levine, “and everyone sort of leaves feeling good about the interaction. I don’t have that.”

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