the sometimes senseless ravings (and the occassional rant) of an aspiring marine ecologist who may enjoy killing things a little too much

Thursday, March 24, 2005

The Science of Relationships

so, i was busily reading laura zigman's Animal Husbandry, and i just had to take a break and share an insight. there is a quote at the beginning of each chapter, and i started really thinking about this one:
"The female chooses not the male which is most attractive to her but the one which is the least distasteful."
~Charles Darwin (a very smart man), The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex (which doesn't refer to sex, like the act of sex, but the concept of sexual selection, i.e., picky females and horny males that'll pretty much attack any chick that crosses their path)

this is a very insightful quote. i, and i think most females will agree with me, think that most men have a pretty screwed up way of thinking. and the more i learn (from my husband) how guys really think, the less i like them. chad is really into the show Cheaters...and judging by the commercials aired during the show, a lot of men share his taste. anyway, when i watch the show, i always ask why the cheating bastard featured (sometimes, the cheaters are women...but mostly they're men) didn't just break it off with his significant other if he didn't want to be with her anymore. and chad always tells me that a guy will not break up with a girl if he doesn't have to...especially if she's still sleeping with him. or, he just wants to have someone else lined up before quitting an established relationship, even when he is truly out of love and sick of his current girl. not cool. i wouldn't do that. if i don't want to be with a guy, i'm not going to cheat on him. i'm going to dump him and then find someone else, not the other way around. i know, i know. it's not only guys who think this's just seems like typical guy thinking.

so chad has a theory about women and relationships. he says that when they're young, girls want a bad boy - someone who is cool, aloof, and probably not that into her. the typical high school relationship. but when they get older, or grow up if you will, girls realize that the bad boy thing will never develop into anything and want someone a little steadier, a little safer - a good guy. however, some girls don't realize that they don't want the bad boy until they've married him, then they're stuck. chad tells me i am a freak - i skipped the bad boy phase and went straight for the good guy. really, i think i was into my share of bad boys, i just never attempted a serious relationship with any of them. i learn fast - bad boys are bad news.

now, let's think about chad's theory in relation to the darwin quote. so, before a girl is thinking ahead, she wants what is attractive to her - the bad boy. no relation to the darwin theory. but, when a girl is thinking about her future, she realizes that the bad boy is no good. he won't make a good life partner. he won't make a good father. he probably can't even take care of himself. so she turns to a steadier, safer man - the good guy. but what exactly is a good guy? someone with a steady job, good personality, protective instincts, who won't run off and jump every hot girl who comes along? actually, yes. but do we know these things about a guy when we first meet him? nope. so really, what are women looking for in a man, according to chad and darwin? we don't really like the workings of the male mind. we may like they way they look - some eye candy is always nice, but looks cannot make a relationship. there will always be something that drives us crazy. no one is perfect. the perfect man does not exist. once you accept that there will always be something distasteful about any man, you realize that darwin is absolutely correct. females choose the least distasteful, not the most attractive, male. because women are often attracted to men for all the wrong reasons.

the inherent pickiness of women compared to men is biological. the same in almost every species. females invest more time and energy in children than men do, therefore they are pickier when it comes to choosing potential fathers than males are in spreading their seed. natural selection has made us this way. without it, we couldn't have survived as a species. we women can't help the way we are. and neither can men. but once they've committed, they should honor that commitment. it's hard to find a man with a brain that can overcome his biological programming, and that unfortunately causes women a lot of grief. so keep searching ladies, i swear there are good guys out there...and remember darwin. don't look for the most attractive male. instead, think about all of a guys qualities and choose the least distasteful package you can find. you'll be happier that way, i swear.


Deva said...

I wonder if Chad heard that comments on Lex and Terry because their views are exactly like his. Or this is just mens views overall.
hmmm ...

Vanessa Mae said...

I think of all the guys I've ever been interested, only one can be considered the typical bad guy. But even the nice guys, *if they are not into you*, can be jerks. However, you just have to find the right nice guy.

Ah, now there's the rub.

I read recently in a Dear Annie letter that a good way to find a guy who'll commit is to look to how the guy was brought up. Example: A guy who was brought up with traditional family values by parents who have stayed married through his entire life will most likely follow suit. A guy with divorced parents will most likely repeat his family's history. This isn't always the case, but it's what I think is a good rule of thumb.

The movie Someone Like You is based on Animal Husbandry (Which I prefer over the movie, of course), but what the movie does do a good job of is give us females hope by introducing Jane's sister and her sister's husband. Her sister's husband is proof that some guys can commit for good. You're right, there are some great guys out there (You know this firsthand ;-)). We just have re-adjust the radar and rule out the ones with flaws we just can't live with.

Ever since I read that book, I have used that exact quote for my AIM away message :-).