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Steve Jobs hosts Mark Zuckerberg for Ping pong?

A report suggests that Apple's CEO invited Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to his house for dinner and that they enjoyed a back and forth about Ping. But might they have talked of more exalted things?

Many will have wished they could have been a fly on the wall. The trouble is, that wall would have been so pristine any flies would have been swatted before their ears got beyond a hello.

You see, the L.A. Times is reporting that a vastly important dinner took place at the house of Steve Jobs. The Apple CEO reportedly invited his Facebook counterpart, Mark Zuckerberg, to dinner and a stroll.

As the Times would have it, the subject of discussion during dinner was a back-and-forth about Ping, Apple's musically inclined social network. Before its launch, Apple spoke to Facebook about Ping, but, in Jobs' words, Facebook suggested "onerous terms that we could not agree to."

Now, so the straight-line thinkers would have it, Jobs is trying to charm Zuckerberg into a little give by allowing him to partake of a bit of home cooking.

It's easy to assume that all conversations between CEOs are strictly business. It's easy to imagine that two such focused individuals would only spend their time doing something that might offer profit, power, or profit through power. And it's very easy to imagine that an invitation to Casa Jobs is an invitation to cede to the Apple CEO's will.

Hey, Mark, want an iPhone 5 prototype? Maybe after dessert. CC Whatcounts/Flickr

I fancy, though, that they might have enjoyed more exalted topics than merely the Ping thing. Here are two CEOs who, though allegedly of different temperaments, focus the whole of their thinking on the human experience. From their very different starting points, both believe in changing human behavior, not merely enhancing it. Both are said to have visionary tendencies.

So how sad that they might have only talked about something as relatively prosaic as Ping.

Why can't one speculate that they talked about a world of permanent 20 percent unemployment and what it might look like? Why shouldn't one wonder if they discussed just who of Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman would make the bigger mess of running California? Why shouldn't one imagine that they talked about love and family and giggled about just how much of a dork Eric Schmidt is?

At the very least, I fancy, they discussed what it's like to have a film made about you and know that the actor playing you is better looking than you are. They surely sniggered about what it's like to have the media write every day about you. They must have held a long disquisition about what it's like to wear the same clothes to work every day. They must have discussed the relative merits of sharing and keeping everything to yourself.

And, surely, surely one of them must have said: "How about those San Francisco Giants?"

They might have even compared the relative fun of driving a Mercedes and an Acura. Zuckererg might even have tried a joke about ninja stars. Jobs might have parried with a privacy gag or two. How could he not?

Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg had dinner and you think all they did was talk about Ping? Wouldn't that have been slightly dull?