A woman who took part in an online Secret Santa has discovered the identity of the man who gave her the gift: a certain Bill Gates.
The user, known only as Rachel (with the username NY1227) took part in a Secret Santa anonymous gift exchange organized by Reddit. It may well be the biggest such exchange: last year 44,805 people from 130 counties took part.
Although the participants usually don’t have any personal knowledge of one another as they might in an office, they do get the username of their recipient and are encouraged to take a look through their posts to figure out what they might like. The suggested gift amount is $20.
Rachel received her gift package this week and found it contained a travel book, which was a good fit seeing as she had regularly posted about her interest in travel.
The package also contained a stuffed cow toy, a Christmas card signed “Bill” and a note to accompany the toy, explaining that the person making the gift had also donated to the Heifer International charity, which would use the money to provide a real cow for a family in need to use for farming.
Although the card was signed with a full name, Rachel didn’t pay attention to the signature. However, it appeared out that the gifter either didn’t quite grasp the concept of a Secret Santa, or simply wanted to make sure Rachel got an extra surprise. The last thing she found in the package was a picture of Bill Gates holding the toy cow and donation note.
It turns out the picture wasn’t simply an attempt to get an ego boost. A spokesman says Gates intentionally took part in the Secret Santa to draw attention to Heifer International’s work.
Rating the gift package on Reddit, Rachel concluded “10/10 would receive gift from Bill Gates again”. She also noted that Gates would have seen a post she made suggesting some of the gifts she might like if money was no object and concluded by saying “Sorry for the apple ipad on my wishlist, that was really awkward.”
There’s no word yet on who got Bill Gates as their recipient, or what they sent.