The New York Times just ran a profile of Anne Wojcicki, founder of the genetic testing company 23AndMe, and it’s exactly what you’d expect from a styles section piece headlined “The Doyenne of DNA Says: Just Chillax with Your Ex.” Yep. It’s Wojcicki talking about her ex-husband Sergey Brin and her ex-boyfriend Alex Rodriguez, with her mom popping in to share her thoughts on both.
This is some of what you can find under the subsection titled “What’s an A-Rod?” It begins by hammering home the fact that Wojcicki had no idea what she was getting into when she began dating Rodriguez in 2015:
“Do you know anything about baseball?” Ms. Wojcicki asked her friend Michael Specter, a New Yorker staff writer.
“I know how many innings there are, which is more than you know,” he replied.
“I think I’m starting to date a baseball player,” she said. Mr. Specter assumed she meant a lawyer who played baseball on the weekends.
“His name is Alex Rodriguez,” she said. “I think he plays for the Yankees.”
Mr. Specter explained to the woman who had never attended a professional baseball game that her new suitor was one of the 10 best baseball players who ever lived.
“When I started dating Alex,” Ms. Wojcicki says, “my mom was like, ‘What’s an A-Rod?’ I was like, ‘Mom, that’s his name.’”
But how could the cultured, intelligent Wojcicki relate to someone from an industry as fundamentally silly as sports? And how could someone who just hits a ball around for a living possibly relate to someone as brilliant as Wojcicki???
Being a math wiz, Ms. Wojcicki proceeded to learn every stat. When Mr. Rodriguez saw her watching a YouTube show called “Physics Girl” and asked her what it was, she told him, “It’s like the YES Network but for physics.”
The two enjoyed their cultural-collision romance, once Ms. Wojcicki installed TV sets in her house so A-Rod could watch baseball.
Wow, you may be thinking, if she was really resigned to translating everything to baseball metaphors in order to communicate with this neanderthal, what could they possibly have talked about??
“I didn’t realize that you need special channels to watch sports games,” she says. “Alex is a really sweet guy. He’s a smart guy. He’s a good person. Alex lives in this world of cash-flow businesses, and Silicon Valley lives in this world of the potential of the future. So it was actually kind of a really fun conversation. Alex was really into car dealerships, and I was like, ‘We’re all about self-driving cars. Nobody’s going to buy a car. You want to buy a car dealership? I’m going to short your car dealership.’”
Oh, man, actually kind of a really fun conversation. I love those. The other day, I bought a train ticket, and my boyfriend was like, “you idiot, don’t you know we’re all about the Hyperloop??” and ripped up the ticket in my face. I understood and thanked him for the fun conversation.
But time for the real question: what did Wojcicki’s mother have to say about A-Rod? Well, all the ordinary things you’d tell the New York Times about your daughter’s ex-boyfriend: he was very nice, but a total idiot who wouldn’t even go on the yacht if the television wasn’t working. For some reason, he was really passionate about his career field. And, also, he’s from a Hispanic family. Gotta mention that one.
“I liked A-Rod, he was a very nice man,” Esther Wojcicki told me. “He came from a Hispanic family. We liked them, they were very sweet. He seemed to be genuinely in love with Anne. But I right away figured out this was a mismatch. He had no academic background. We couldn’t have an intellectual conversation about anything. His main interest in life was something that none of us had ever focused on, which was baseball. He could park himself in front of a TV and watch baseball for 10 hours a day. He wasn’t even sure he wanted to go on the yacht with Anne because the TV might not be working. I wish J-Lo all the luck in the world.”
Thank you to the Times for making it crystal-fuckin’-clear that watching baseball with Alex Rodriguez is better than going on a yacht with Anne Wojcicki and her mom.