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Bill and Melinda Gates divorce: What we know so far

No good friend or reliable sources have spilled secrets about extramarital affairs or boredom in the bedroom. Yet, saying that the super-rich couple split up to save taxes is mundane and boring.

May 13, 2021 / 02:39 PM IST
Melinda and Bill Gates announced they were divorcing on May 3, 2021. The reasons for it are still largely unknown.

Melinda and Bill Gates announced they were divorcing on May 3, 2021. The reasons for it are still largely unknown.


Speculation over the Gates’ divorce is on in full force. There is the main specter of Jeffrey Epstein, the pedophile who supposedly killed himself but could have been murdered by his powerful former clientele. Bill Gates did hitch a ride in Epstein’s private jet Lolita Express going by flight records. Everyone is waiting with bated breath for more details to fill in the blanks. Epstein is back from the dead to haunt tabloid headlines once again. As long as the powerful men photographed with him do not publicly clarify their exact business with the deceased, suspicions about the nature of that friendship will continue to fly.

The fact that the three children of Bill and Melinda look like they are siding with their mom has turned all eyes on the dad. Seems like the couple is right now living at different addresses but that the kids are mostly with her, which doesn’t make him look good. Though the kids have not gone on record except for a neutral post by the firstborn, they seem to be supporting their mother, as eagle eyes have noticed.

A third-party existence would solve the mystery, so ex-girlfriend Ann Winblad and foreign interpreter employee Zhe Shelly Wang are both under the scanner. More denials are eagerly awaited so that they can be dismissed as lies. Cheating men are a common reason cited in marital disputes and we wait for someone to step out in a short skirt. That would clear the air.

Some papers are upset that the couple may have taken us by surprise but were apparently planning this for quite some time, with her having consulted lawyers on such and such date and him telling his golf buddies that the marriage has been ‘loveless’ for a longish time. Journalists are miffed they were not consulted at the beginning itself and had to learn of this personal decision along with everyone else. She may have idly asked her lawyers ‘what if?’ and then forgot she asked. And grown men moaning to each other about a lack of love is too Hallmark; the lack of sex, yes, however sexist that may sound.

Captions that go with the limited stock pictures of them together update us daily on the scant progress made by the page 3 writers. No anonymous ‘good friend’ or ‘reliable sources’ are going yak yak yak. What we know so far about this divorce is very little.

The most mundane and boring reason being pointed out is that they are separating legally for tax reasons. That a super-rich couple will resort to even divorce to save money makes a lot of sense but has little sensational value to it. So let that bit of info rattle like loose change in our pocket while we window-shop for the expensive extra-marital affairs and the exorbitant lack of love. Bank balance and bottom lines are sometimes bigger than boredom in the bedroom but that wouldn’t make good copy.
Shinie Antony is a writer and editor based in Bangalore. Her books include The Girl Who Couldn't Love, Barefoot and Pregnant, Planet Polygamous, and the anthologies Why We Don’t Talk, An Unsuitable Woman, Boo. Winner of the Commonwealth Short Story Asia Prize for her story A Dog’s Death in 2003, she is the co-founder of the Bangalore Literature Festival and director of the Bengaluru Poetry Festival.

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