Bill Gates plays Bridge/Gaye Watkins
The Qwest for The Oracle of Omaha
What an experience at Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway shareholders weekend in Omaha, Nebraska. My friends and I scored great seats for the shareholders meeting on the Qwest Center’s arena floor and enjoyed the complimentary continental breakfast. We arrived sometime around 7:30 am. And good things come to those who wait. Suddenly a swarm of tall young men in suits vied for a glimpse of a prized celebrity. I was pushed and shoved like paparazzi at the Oscars. Security made sure the little shutter bug swarm and I kept a safe distance from Warren Buffett sitting with his son Peter Buffett and his daughter Susie Buffett in the middle of the arena floor just a stones throw away from where I was seated. He sat to watch the 30 minute movie which runs at the top of the meeting. An authoritative voice with a dash of humor, boomed over the sound system in the arena and announced that the nearly 37 thousand people should stop messing around and take their seats for the movie.
This year it was all new, starting off with an animation short called “The Governator” with a voiceover by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who’s character is asked to help Warren Buffett fight a “Terminator “ like robot from the future. Another short was done on the the set of the NBC show “The Office”, with Michael played by Steve Carrell introducing Warren Buffett as their new manager in the meeting room. Office workers asked various questions such as how one could get the 81year old’s Long Life Elixir? Warren – There is no Long Life Elixir. Privately to the camera Warren says in a serious tone, – The Long Life Elixir is only for the “A” shareholders. At one point as office worker Jim, played by John Krasinski, does his usual knowing smile towards the camera in the room, Warren says firmly- Don’t look at the camera when I’m talking. And of course Meredith the sometimes drunk and promiscuous redhead, played by Kate Flannery, Asks Warren if he’s up for a little fun. He declines and says he’s married. She later hits on Warren’s second in command, 87 year old Charlie Munger. Warren says to the camera that this time he’s glad that Charlie got the girl. And Stanley, the always uninterested coworker, played by Leslie David Baker, says to the camera,- I do everything like Warren Buffett. I buy, I hold, and I don’t give my kids diddly squat.
However, The Berkshire Hathaway meeting conducted by CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger, took a serious tone as some people who emailed questions and comments, criticized Buffett for not being tough enough in a news release letter regarding his resignation acceptance of David Sokol, Chairman of several Berkshire subsidiaries. According to Buffett, David Sokol went against Berkshire Hathaway’s company rules during the process of Buffett making a deal to buy the company Lubrizol earlier this year. Describing Sokol’s more sincere and generous side, Buffett said, Sokol had at one time, given 12 million dollars to a person who worked for him because he felt the person deserved it. And Sokol’s disregard for internal policy seemed so out of character. Charlie Munger added he believed Sokol’s actions were brought on by hubris.
At the sunday brunch at Buffett’s Borsheims jewelry store, Warren sold high end jewelry to customers. And his good buddy Bill Gates, Chairman of Microsoft and Co Founder of The Gates Foundation, played a couple of games of Bridge with various people. As Gates touched his cards to his lips, even being one of the richest men in the world couldn’t get him out of a tight spot in a card game. One lucky person who played with Gates, actually gave Gates a little heads up about Peter Buffett’s future concerts. And to Bill’s surprise, learned he also missed out on at least one private party during the weekend. It must feel good to have one up on Bill Gates. So whether you played Bridge, bought exquisite jewelry, or sat back and enjoyed the complimentary brunch, you were part of the Woodstock for Capitalists’ family.
- “Warren Buffett lunch sells for $2.3m” and related posts (thenewspundit.com)
- 20 Questions for Warren Buffett (fool.com)
- Warren Buffett lunch sells for $2.3m (tamebay.com)
- Buffett Lunch: $2,345,678 (money.cnn.com)
- Warren Buffett Lunch Costs $2.63 Million (huffingtonpost.com)