When billionaire businessman Bill Gates appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in February 2018, it was his first time on the long-running TV talk show. All was going well until the host invited him to play a game she called “Bill’s Grocery Bills.” And when the software tycoon was asked to guess the cost of common groceries, the audience was left stunned.
DeGeneres introduced Gates by showing footage she claimed was from rehearsal. It featured a man dancing onto the talk show’s set with Gates’ face comically superimposed on him. The host then went on to talk about the billionaire’s self-made wealth. Gates’ 21-year-old daughter was in the audience, which is the age at which the businessman made his first billion dollars.
Gates was passionate about software as a child and it was, of course, through his company, Microsoft, that he earned his fortune. Today the businessman is worth around $105 billion. Despite such a healthy bank balance, however, Gates described himself as relatively frugal, with some of the few indulgences he’s allowed himself being a Porsche and eventually a private jet.
Although there was no mention of Gates’ multi-million dollar lakeside mansion in Medina, Washington, he did describe its trampoline room. However, the billionaire stays grounded by investing his personal wealth into his foundation. But DeGeneres wanted to know how in touch he really was, and she had devised the Bill’s Grocery Bill game, in which he guessed the cost of everyday groceries.
The game started badly, with Gates guessing $5 for a $1 Rice-A-Roni, and $4 for $19.17 Tide Pods. With help from the audience, however, the billionaire guessed near enough the correct price of dental floss, Totino’s Pizza Rolls and TGI Friday’s Spinach & Artichoke Cheese Dip, earning those in the studio a return visit for DeGeneres’ 12 Days Of Giveaways.