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Thinking about the long comment that the Merciful, the Lovingkind left on Michele's blog, which has sparked off quite the debate on what men and women are looking for when they go looking for someone to settle down with...for a night or for a lifetime. Quite a few comments worth reading there, though of course a lot of it is on a par with what you'd hear down at the NCO Club/neighborhood bar.

And of course Professor Death was absolutely right to hook Michele's post together with this none-too-gentle essay by Ann Althouse, because that's another aspect of the question which the crowd over at Michele's wasn't touching on too much; they're mostly all about the booty over there and whether baby got back.

Philosophizing on men & women follows.
I don't claim to be an expert on this stuff, having been somewhat reluctant to play the field when younger on account of not really being in shape by most girls' standards, and having been signed to a long-term contract pretty early on besides. I do think I'm entitled to an opinion or three, so here goes. If you're on the top of the bell curve, physically speaking, you're probably going to get more play than somebody carrying some extra weight or somebody else who's on the extra-skinny side, and this applies to girls as well as boys - though I'd say the skinny boys are more in demand than the girls doing their best to follow the heroin chic fashion. As the women get older, if they want to have kids and haven't found the fellow that matches their shopping list in all particulars, they're going to start throwing out qualifiers until they're settling for somebody that might match just a couple of the points on the original shopping list - as in, has steady job and isn't obviously abusive towards women & children.

Men, on the other hand, will be fairly picky - which is to say they want a woman who's willing and at least a 3 on a scale of 10 in the physical beauty department, though that 3 may be reading as an 8 or 9 on their particular scope at the time due to the effects of drugs, alcohol, or excessive horniness, which is why most preachers & JP's won't marry you if you look like you're wasted. Seriously, though...I think most guys are less demanding than women when it comes to looking for a mate, because unfortunately for women, guys have always been able to just up and walk out, and only the tight bonds of religion and societal mores have kept them staying tied to women and kids they can't stand.

It all got started by this MoDo column, which bewails the fact that smart, intelligent women can't find men who are interested in them. ("But enough about me. What do you think about me?") I don't know that that's really the case; instead of actually going out and talking to people, Dowd relies on Hollywood movies and university studies to prove her point that what men want is their secretaries or servants, preferably ones not speaking English. I smell PROJECTION! Seriously, though, if your concept of a relationship is one of unending Foucauldian power struggles in and out of the bedroom, I can't imagine that you're going to find too many guys interested in being your husband for very long unless they like losing those kind of arguments on an ongoing basis. Also, if a woman wants a husband who will be perpetually awed by her marvelous achievements, how is that different from a man wanting a woman who is (to use the feminists' stock horror phrase) barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen?

I think there's a happy medium here, and if you're lucky you actually get this in a marriage: two people who have similar interests, are complementary in other interests, and care enough about each other to cut their spouse some slack when their spouse wants to do something with the boys/the girls that they themselves aren't interested in. There has to be some give and take, some respect, and a lot of love and patience, but I guess that last is sort of redundant.

Okay, that's enough chum in the water for one night.

Additional comment: While I appreciate the feedback, the speed of some people's responses makes me wonder whether they bothered to follow the links. I don't think it's really possible to understand what I'm saying here if you don't read the comments/essays/posts linked to, because you're coming in at the middle of the conversation. That's the whole point of providing those links, to give some context to what I'm talking about here.


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 19th, 2005 04:12 am (UTC)
Bah fucking humbug........I am a prefectly decent red headed independent woman w/a strong sex drive & can have loads of organisms who scares men......

Jan. 19th, 2005 04:14 am (UTC)
I forgot cute and doesn't play games.......men.....bleck. I would be lesbian but I don't like women that way and LOVE hairy men w/dicks.......*grumbles*
Jan. 19th, 2005 04:22 am (UTC)
That would kind of rule out the lesbian thing. *nods*
Jan. 19th, 2005 02:13 pm (UTC)
Yep.....I don't know how two women can date? I mean w/all our hormones....damn.
Jan. 19th, 2005 04:21 am (UTC)
Been meaning to ask this, but you do mean "orgasms", right?

Well, the post was talking about average people, and about "highly successful" woman like Maureen Dowd & the unnamed actress who appear to have the career thing down pat but can't figure out why men avoid them like the plague.

I don't know what it is about you that scares guys off, never having met you and knowing you only through your LJ. (Well, okay, I did ask Rick who the heck you were, but I didn't ask for details.) I don't scare too easily, for what that's worth. Plus, I'm not from Minnesota. ~_^
Jan. 19th, 2005 02:16 pm (UTC)
Yes, I mean orgasms.....I can't spell if you hadn't noticed. Rick G? He is my buddy:) I heard that he is helping you guys out w/Anime Detour, which is coolness.

Well, we will have to meet. I try very hard to be honest in my LJ. I do change names sometimes cause I just do....I am in an orny mood today:) And out of sheer curiosity, what did Rick say?
Jan. 20th, 2005 05:10 pm (UTC)
I usually don't complain about spelling, but in this case I was legitimately confused and wanted to be sure I knew what you were talking about. As for Rick, I didn't ask him for the whole 411, so he just told me who you were and said you were a nice person.
Jan. 20th, 2005 06:38 pm (UTC)
AHHHH....that was nice of him:) I can't spell and sometimes what I am thinking comes out quicker than what my fingers can type....strange how that happens! LOL!
Jan. 21st, 2005 01:55 am (UTC)
I know what you mean about the spelling. I'm pretty obsessive about my own spelling and will go back & edit a post several times to root out all the mistakes, but I don't expect everyone else to do that.
Jan. 19th, 2005 02:43 pm (UTC)
And yes, I read the links....*cough* I tend to think that some men are terrified of successful women cause they know they can't be that successful....does that make sense?
Jan. 20th, 2005 05:08 pm (UTC)
It does, actually. The thing is that relationships and marriages shouldn't be just another competitive arena, yahmeen? Competition can be healthy, but I think if you're trying to maintain a marriage it's going to be nothing but trouble if you're constantly trying to figure out who's ahead on points. It's all about supporting each other and being the yang to the missus' yin, the way I see it. Kind of like sex. If you're only in it for your own satisfaction, your partner isn't going to be too happy with you and eventually is going to decide he wants to find that satisfaction somewhere else.
Jan. 20th, 2005 06:39 pm (UTC)
Amen! I also know women who are very vidicative so we aren't all as wonderful as I am.....Just kidding:)
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )



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