The Inquirer-Home

How Nintendo boss silenced Steve Ballmer

Balls in the other court
Thu Jan 06 2005, 09:10
NOW HE IS safely retired, the 77-year old former Nintendo boss Hiroshi Yamaushi is regaling Wired magazine about how he reverted to abuse to silence the mighty Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

Apparently Microsoft was making a bid to buy Nintendo for absolutely huge amounts of money. Vole was confident that Nintendo would take it. The Game Cube wasn't doing particularly well at the time and there was a lot of money involved. Ballmer himself showed up at the negotiations to have a quiet word.

However Yamaushi didn't like the deal, which he saw as a loss on a level similar to World War Two. He said he ranted a bit about Japanese values and identity but it went no-where. So in the end he said in Japanese "suck my yellow balls Mr Ballmer".

The translator looked embarrassed and was clearly not translating the phrase exactly, although Ballmer did smile at a sentence that included the word 'yellow' in it.

Frustrated Yamaushi stood on a chair, put his hands around his mouth and very slowly and in English said: "Hey Ballmer why don't you suck my tiny yellow balls."

He said Ballmer and team were speechless. They were as scandalised as if he had shown them a nipple at the Superbowl, he said.

It is nice to know that high powered board room meetings involving billions of dollars use the same language and methodology of a Kave piss-up. A copy of the interview can be found here but is probably illegal so you should buy a copy of the February issue of Wired.


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