Dinner With Bill Gates


[The time is the late 1990\'s and the setting is an unidentified city in the
northwest United States, in Washington. Three employees of Microsoft, the
narrator, Encolpius, and his co-workers Giton and Ascyltus, have been invited to
the illustrious mansion of billionaire Bill Gates, for a banquet.]

It was slightly drizzling as we approached the house. We were simply
amazed at it\'s size, it was a good quarter mile in length and equally long in
width. As we approached the enormous wooden door, lights flicked on and a
computer generated voice greeted us. Not knowing what to do, we waited, letting
the rain soak our dinner suits. When the door was opened, we were prompted to
enter by a servant. Stepping into the entrance way, our coats were taken by a
different servant than the one who had opened the door. We were ushered into a
nearby room, an enormous lounge of some kind furnished with an indoor volleyball
court, arcade and a pool. Giton and I were simply amazed. This guy had an
amusement park in his living room. There were some young boys on the volleyball
court, playing a game. I couldn\'t help but notice a middle-ages guy, dressed in
a pair of worn jeans and a sports coat, watching the game with furious intensity.

I turned to the servant, our guide, I suppose, and asked him who this man
was. "Oh that\'s Master Gates, the proprietor of this house. You\'ll be dining
with him shortly."
The servant led us through this room, past the pool and into a narrow
corridor. This hallway was adorned with pictures of Bill Gates, in various
characters and positions. The only one I recognized was the cover from the
recent issue of Time Magazine featuring him on the cover.
From here, we were led into the dining room and seated at the large
dinner table. The table occupied a majority of the room, however, there was an
enormous hole in the middle, obviously for a dinner show of some kind.
Immediately, our glasses were filled with wine and our hands were scrubbed with
rose water. I looked at Ascyltus, and he was simply amazing at the luxurious
nature of the dinner. I suddenly felt underdressed but I was relieved when Bill
Gates entered, wearing a different, much darker shade of jeans and a simple, red
pullover.
Once Bill Gates seated himself, the dozen or so people in the room all
silenced themselves, waiting for this legendary man to speak. "Welcome to my
home," he began, "I hope you will have an enjoyable evening."
At the snap of his fingers, a rotating dais rose from the center of the
room. This dais was filled with an entire orchestra and when it had finished
rising, they began to play a soothing melody.
We waited about five minutes and were amazed when a troop of singing
busboys exited the kitchen, all carrying trays containing some of the rarest
delicacies known to man. Caviar, truffles, and the sweetest meat I have ever
tasted were all served has appetizers. My two companions and I indulged
ourselves until a second troop of singing busboys carried our plates away.
Suddenly the room was filled with a loud crash as a busboy lost footing and
dropped his tray. Scrambling to save face, the busboy fell to his knees and
began to scrape up the mess. All this time I had been watching the expression on
Bill Gate\'s face. He didn\'t seem to mind that the busboy had ruined his
luxurious carpet with half-eaten caviar; that was until he began to clean up the
mess. "Get out of here you incompetent fool! You\'re fired and if you\'re not
off the premises in five minutes, I\'ll set the dogs on you," he yelled. Two
guards, appearing out of thin air grabbed the busboy and escorted him from the
dining hall. At the beckoning of their master, two maids entered the room,
armed with brooms and spray bottles full of cleaning implements. As they began
scrubbing the mess, the three of us glared at Bill, who now appeared calm and
composed. He must have seen our puzzled expressions because he quickly said, "My
servants must not step out of their duties. I hired that busboy to serve food,
not to clean up accidents. Had he concentrated on the task I hired him for,
that tray would most likely not have been spilled." An awkward silence filled
the room, however, it was quelled as the orchestra broke into another song and
the singing busboys delivered another course, filet mignon