What’s in a name?
A headache, if the name of your business is “A-Rod.”
That’s the predicament that a New York City bodega owner finds himself in after the name of his grocery went from being cool to being disturbing.
Since New York Yankees player Alex Rodriguez was said to have used performing-enhancing drugs from the Biogenesis anti-aging clinic throughout the 2010-2012 seasons, the A-Rod Bodega’s owner has gotten a lot of grief, according to El Diario La Prensa.
“We are thinking of changing the name, because the outcry from neighbors is intolerable,” the owner, Ricardo Rodriguez (no relation to the player), is quoted as saying in Spanish to El Diario. “The bodega’s name has been ‘A-Rod’ for 12 years now. Back then, our [A-Rod] awning was the pride of Dominican fans. No one imagined the downfall of ‘The Ace.’”
The bodega, which has been a mainstay in the diverse Clinton Hill section of Brooklyn for 40 years, once was named Pena Grocery.
The bodega’s name has been ‘A-Rod’ for 12 years now. Back then our [A-Rod] awning was the pride of Dominican fans. No one imagined the downfall of ‘The Ace.’
- Ricardo Rodriguez, owner of "A-Rod Bodega"
“We don’t know what to name the bodega now,” Rodriguez said, according to the newspaper. “But the fact is some customers are boiling mad, even though they still come to buy food here because of our history in Clinton Hill.”
Gerardo Dominguez, a worker at the A-Rod Bodega, lamented the bad example he said the third-basemen sets for young people wanting to play baseball.
“All of us who work in this bodega love baseball and we believed in A-Rod’s ethics,” Dominguez said. “But without respect for the sport, talent is beside the point.”
To anyone who visits the bodega, the love of baseball becomes immediately obvious.
One part of the bodega has a photo gallery of Dominican baseball players. And the owner and his workers often watch baseball games on a flat screen TV during lulls.
One customer, Francisco Abreu, said A-Rod Bodega’s name needs to be changed because of the disgrace he feels the Yankees player has brought to Dominican baseball players.
“People buy groceries here because the bodega is very beloved in this community,” Abreu said, according to El Diario. “But the name is no longer loved. Now people pass by this store, read the name ‘A-Rod’ in huge blue letters and they ask themselves ‘What are they thinking?’”