Warren Buffett Is No Parrothead

Parrotheads are now free to boot the Oracle of Omaha from any upcoming Buffett family reunions. Biotech upstart 23andMe has determined that you have to go back 10,000 years to find the last ancestor that tropical crooner Jimmy Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-A  ) (NYSE: BRK-B  ) frontman Warren Buffett have in common.

Both famous Buffetts submitted to DNA sample requests -- saliva samples, OK? -- earlier this year. The company then ran the appropriate tests to debunk, once and for all, the myth that the two are actually distant cousins.

Now, if only we could get Gordon Gekko to submit to the test. I've got a laundry list of nefarious corporate chieftains who seem to have been separated at birth. And wouldn't it be a hoot to see whether Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) Steve Jobs and Microsoft's (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) Bill Gates are related somehow?

It's not the first time that 23andMe has made headlines this month. Investors began to question the nepotistic conflict of interest when Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) revealed that it invested $3.9 million in the early-stage biotech company. One of 23andMe's cofounders is Anne Wojcicki, the new wife of Google cofounder Sergey Brin.

However, solving the Buffett mystery illustrates how a stake in 23andMe is a good fit in Google's portfolio. The one thing that blows me away here is that a simple spit test was enough to uproot a family tree deep enough to find an ancestral link before surnames were even around.

I'm not naive enough to think that 23andMe's elaborate tests can ever be cheap enough to create a deep genealogical database loaded with data of anyone within spitting distance. However, it would certainly be cool if this was the start of a genealogical social networking hub -- a Zillow for the family tree scrapbooking set.

Until then, it's just a matter of time before spittoons come back in fashion. It's OK, Jimmy and Warren. You can still be friends.

Berkshire Hathaway and Microsoft are recommendations in the Inside Value newsletter service. Check it out with a free 30-day free trial. No DNA sample required.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz was wondering what 23andMe stood for, until finding out that it referred to the 23 paired chromosomes. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. He is part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.


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