‘Always Be My Maybe’ star Ali Wong says her biggest career risk was getting pregnant

The comedian, ‘Fresh Off the Boat’ writer, and star of the animated Netflix series ‘Tuca and Bertie’ takes our career questionnaire.

‘Always Be My Maybe’ star Ali Wong says her biggest career risk was getting pregnant
[Illustration: Mercedes Debellard]

Fast Company: What’s your best habit, and your worst?


Ali Wong: I drink a ton of water, but I pick my nose.

FC: Do you have a work uniform or wardrobe staple?

AW: My Opening Ceremony varsity jacket. It was a gift for walking their runway a couple years ago. I’m usually wearing that, a black Helmut Lang T-shirt, sweatpants from Stateside, and velcro sneakers from Acne or Stella McCartney.

FC: How do you unplug?

AW: Drink a cup of hot tea while I pick up piles of children’s books, clothes, toys, or bags lying around the house. It’s quite meditative when nobody else is awake. And I have a rule where I don’t look at any devices for an hour before going to bed.

FC: What advice would you give your younger self?


AW: Stop drinking all that malt liquor!

FC: What’s your favorite object in your office?

AW: The baseball I threw out for the first pitch at a Giants game. I was pregnant with my second daughter while my first was on the field watching me.

FC: What service or tool can you not live without?

AW: If you’re a parent who’s resisting for fear of looking uncool, you need to let the fuck go and buy a minivan. Just give in to that seven- to eight-passenger life. All of the cup­ holders are life-changing.

FC: Is there a book you recommend to everyone?


AW: Homegoing, by Yaa Gyasi. I’m always interested in innovative storytelling and this book just shows how the actions or trauma experienced by ancestors can really affect a family for generations.

FC: Do you have a guilty pleasure?

AW: People magazine. It’s like Twizzlers for your brain. I grew up reading it with my mom at our kitchen table. Every week, over the phone, we still debrief about the latest issue. We’re really looking forward to all the J. Lo–A-Rod wedding coverage.

FC: What’s your favorite form of exercise?

AW: Zumba. But the teacher has to be full of passion. Otherwise, it’s not worth it.

FC: What’s your get-pumped song?


AW: “Lean Back,” by Fat Joe and Terror Squad.

FC: What was the best career decision you ever made?

AW: Moving to New York when I was in my late twenties. That’s where I became a real stand-up.

FC: Do you have a favorite classic product?

AW: A Casio digital watch that costs $23. It displays the day of the week and date, and has an alarm and stopwatch function. I’ve worn it in both my stand-up specials.

FC: Who is the businessperson you most admire?


AW: Oprah.

FC: Looking back, what’s the biggest career risk you took?

AW: Getting pregnant.