Warren Buffett's $46 billion net worth makes him America's second-richest man. So while he certainly could afford multiple chefs, his own orange grove and all the Wheaties he wants, what does Buffett eat for breakfast? Ice cream. Haagen-Dazs to be exact. (And yes, Berkshire Hathaway owns Dairy Queen, not Haagen-Dazs.)
Buffett sat down recently with CNBC "Squawk Box" Co-Anchor Becky Quick for the premiere episode of "Off the Cuff," a series that will feature top leaders in candid interviews about life off the clock.
Buffett famously still lives in the Omaha house he bought for $31,500 in 1958 and drives a Cadillac he bought "about 6 or 7" years ago — adding that he's never really "had any great desire to have multiple houses... and multiple cars."
Flipping through his nearly empty appointment book, Buffett says his money does buy him one thing he values very much: his freedom. For him, freedom is the key to a happy life. His idea of a perfect day? Being alone with no interruptions so he can read and think.
And reading plays a big role in his happy life. Buffett says — besides the ice cream -- he starts every morning by reading a couple of newspapers (he reads five in total), starting with the Omaha World-Herald. (His company bought it late last year.)
Buffett also often jokes that he reads corporate annual reports with the same intensity that other men reserve for Playboy magazine.
Buffett tells Quick he has a pile of books by his chair. "I just keep going at them and I never get tired of reading." Most of those books are non-fiction — biographies top the list.
He's also a big fan of the Internet, using the web to find sometimes obscure information to make investment decisions. "The amount of time that it's freed up for other things is just incredible," says Buffett.
Okay, so this billionaire-many-times over must have at least one luxury item that he can't just live without, right? He fesses up: his private jet. It's "the only thing that I do that costs a lot of money" says Buffett.
Even though he loves the plane, Buffett says he would give it up — for the Internet. "I would gladly pay half my net worth just to have that kind of information available to me. They haven't figured out how to charge me what it's worth. That's one of the problems they've got."
The so-called "Oracle of Omaha" should have no problem ponying up the cash for all that data. But even as he's pledged to donate 99% of his wealth to charities like the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation, Warren Buffett should have plenty left over for the books he loves —and that breakfast ice cream.
- Warren Buffett