JRod and the 15 Carat Diamond

by Larry Hackett

"It's a romance that doesn't look like a career move."

The best brands are built on sincerity--or at least the appearance of it. In the celeb orbit, the brand of the moment is JRod, the union of ex-major leaguer Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer Lopez. On Sunday, it was announced the pair, having dated for two years, were engaged. 


As People magazine editor for many years, I ought to be a bit more skeptical about this couple's chances for survival. After all, I've covered J. Lo's romantic rollercoaster for years--Ojani Noa, P. DiddyBen Affleck (!), Cris Judd, Marc Anthony, etc. Still, when each romance ended in wreckage, Lopez managed to walk away unscathed. Unlike Angelina Jolie and, lately, Meghan Markle, Lopez has never been cast as the villain in any of her romantic dramas. No ex ever trashed her (well, not too much) nor she them. She seemed just like a woman looking for love and never managing to find the right partner. Don’t blame her for being rich and famous.

Perfect for Each Other

Call me a sucker, but I'm buying this thing with Rodriguez. They seem perfect for each other— good-looking, benignly self-absorbed, perfectly content with their accomplishments and their status. Whatever ambitions they still harbor they seem eager to share with each other. It's a romance that doesn't look like a career move. 

That said, Rodriguez has now successfully completed his public rehab. When he left the MLB, his career was in ruins. He’d lied about using performance-enhancing drugs, and during his years as a New York Yankee he’d never won the hearts of New Yorkers. The breakup of his marriage and his affair with Madonna only made him more unlikeable.

But he seems to have mellowed. His TV appearances as a baseball analyst steadily improved, and he seemed to put the past behind him. Now, with Lopez, he will find out if the public will finally forgive him. Judging by the response to the couple’s wedding announcement, I think chances are very good.

So here’s to JRod. May they find contentment. Because, by the looks of them, they seem to have everything else!