Valeria Lukyanova, real life Barbie doll.

The Attractiveness Dichotomy (Men vs. Women)

(Disclaimer: when I refer to a group {for example: women}, I’m not necessarily referring to all members of that particular group, but to a significant number of those members. Nothing I say is meant as an all-inclusive blanket statement. I’m lazy, and don’t want to preface my usage of words like men with a quantifying word like some or many.)

di·chot·o·my – noun \dī-ˈkä-tə-mē also də-\ : something with seemingly contradictory qualities. (See: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dichotomy).

There’s nothing wrong with wanting to have a mate that you find attractive. Back in ye (very) olden days, attractiveness was based mainly on the physical attributes that helped to ensure the further survival of the species; childbearing hips or a broad back, for example. Nowadays, however, we’re far more discriminating. Those healthy women with childbearing hips of old are now considered to be fat, and a broad back is no longer an indicator of the ability to provide. We’ve moved from attractiveness being measured purely biologically to being measured on aesthetics. This is where the dichotomy between the sexes starts.

What men find attractive requires a lot more effort on the part of the other person than what women find attractive. Men often wonder why women find a lot of gay men attractive. It’s because all men play to their audience, and women can enjoy the show that gay men put on from the back row. Heterosexual men play towards what they think women want, which isn’t very much, while homosexual men play towards other men who are just as discriminating as heteros. Because of this, gay men put more time and effort into their appearance, believing that they need to be more attractive than average to find a mate. Straight men tend to do the minimum because women place less value on appearance than men, so we don’t push the issue much.

Let’s take a closer look at the minimum requirements for both sides.

What men minimally EXPECT women to do in order to be considered attractive (I think I may have missed a few things that should be in this list):

1. Be skinny.

2. Have large breasts.

3. Have no wrinkles or grey hairs.

4. Have a pretty face.

5. Have good muscle tone (without looking like a weightlifter).

6. Have a flawless complexion with a perfect tan.

7. Shower.

8. Wash and condition hair.

9. Remove every hair on their body that exists below the neck (yes, ALL of it)..

10. Put on lotion for that smooth, soft skinned feel. (“It puts the lotion on its skin, or else it gets the hose again!”)

11. Put on “sexy” (uncomfortable) underwear (e.g. ass-floss and under-wire torture bras. Whupsies! Did I say torture? I meant to say push-up. My bad).

12. Apply antiperspirant/deodorant.

13. Put on clean, stylish and potentially uncomfortable clothes and shoes.

14. Brush teeth.

15. Blow dry, comb and style their hair (which can take a half hour or more).

16. Pluck, wax or thread their eyebrows into a pleasing shape (this stuff hurts!).

17. Apply makeup (depending on style of makeup, this can take a while).

Now they’re ready to pickup on, or be picked-up by men.

What women minimally EXPECT men to do in order to be considered attractive:

1. Don’t be morbidly obese.

2. Shower.

3. Wash hair.

4. Shave or trim facial hair. (I, for one, don’t care whether or not a man has facial hair, but either way, it’s best to keep it in a state that doesn’t feel like a cactus, whether it be because they’re clean-shaven or because the hair has gotten long enough to not be sharp.)

5. Brush teeth.

6. Put on clean underwear.

7. Apply antiperspirant/deodorant.

8. Put on clean shorts/jeans, a T-shirt and a pair of sneakers (or whatever their normal casual wear is).

9. Comb and style hair.

Now they’re ready to pickup on, or be picked-up by women.

Anything beyond these steps is an unexpected bonus for us ladies, and believe me, women appreciate it when men go the extra mile. “Coz’ every girl’s crazy ’bout a sharp dressed man,” (ZZ Top, 1983).

Note the large difference in the number of things to be done, as well as the amount of time involved in doing those things. Also note that the things men are expected to do fall into the good hygiene category, as opposed to the strictly appearance category. Women are expected to do the equivalent of the things men are supposed to do, along with 8 or more other things.

A lack of good hygiene is the only appearance related deal-breaker for me, because it’s the only thing that a person has total control of. There are no are no excuses for having consistently poor hygiene. Smelling bad and being dirty after mowing the lawn, exercising, or other things of that nature is unavoidable, but easily repaired by bathing.

A lot of men think they should be able to pickup a perfect 10 to shag just by having good hygiene, and when they can’t, they get angry and blame women for it. This is part of what people call “the male privilege” or “male entitlement.” These men think that they’re owed sex just for showing up and that hot women are obligated to give it to them. If they don’t, men will call them snobs and bitches (among other things in their large vocabulary of derogatory terms). Society has taught them that they are owed a perfect mate (even if the mate is way out of their league) just for having a penis. Google “The Nice Guys of OK Cupid” and read any of the articles from news or blog sites to get a better idea of male entitlement. Most of those guys are the spokesmen for male entitlement/privilege it without even realizing it.

They seldom give women who don’t meet the minimum requirements of attractiveness (see above) the time of day. On the occasions that a man goes for anyone that’s less than an 8, they will often ask the woman to change, regardless of the cost or the fact that, in some cases, meeting those minimums require going under the knife to “fix” even though it’s not broken.

As for myself, if a man meets those minimum requirements and we have good compatibility, I’m not going to ignore him because of, or try to “fix” the fact that he doesn’t have great pecs, or whatever. I also won’t undergo most of the pain and discomfort that following most of the female attractiveness regimine requires, nor take a ridiculously long time to get ready every day just to get laid or find a mate. I like my granny panties, t-shirts, loose fitting jeans and inexpensive, comfortable flats. I like only spending 20-30 minutes getting ready in the morning. I still do the hygiene related parts, because it disgusting to me and everyone else not to.

So, in the current relationship paradigm, I’m pretty much “doomed” to being alone, because there are so few men out there who would want me with my personal appearance standards. Men seldom stick around long enough to find out how stubborn and opinionated I am, because, to them, I’m a 4, so I’m a waste of their time. The system is very unbalanced and I’m on the losing side.

Just to reiterate my disclaimer: I didn’t mean all women or all men (“straight” or gay) when writing this, just a majority. I know there are some people out there who don’t support the current system. Thanks for reading all 1,264 words. I understand if you went “tl;dr”.

IMG_20120215_175046

VD is Coming to Your Town Next Week!

I just read this article (http://www.askmen.com/fashion/fashiontip/tip14.html) offering Valentine’s Day gift ideas for her.  If you need to go to the askmen.com website to find ideas on what to get the person you love, you probably don’t know them well enough.  Instead of askmen.com, try ask them no dot com.  The results will be better than these ideas.

I’d like to refute a few of these ideas.

Chocolates: they say they’re an aphrodisiac.  I have to disagree with that.  Why its a bad idea: its not that bad,

But I’d rather get something that requires some thought, that isn’t consumable, that I wouldn’t necessarily buy myself at my next grocery store trip.

Fragrances: don’t wear any, don’t care for em.  The site said this, “Regardless, if you snag her something you think smells delicious, then she’ll likely enjoy it as well.” Why its a bad idea: scent is a very personal thing.  What smells good to you may be revolting to me. If you go this route, get her what she usually gets herself.

Fancy (high thread count) sheets: while it may be nice, I’d rather have sheets I’m not afraid to ruin.  I also like my sheets to match the rest of my decor, which means sheets seperate from my bed spread probably won’t match.  The site says “Plus, this is the gift that gives back; with sheets like these, she’ll never want to get out of bed.” Why its a bad idea: if you’re buying them to keep me in bed more, it just may work, but not the way you intended.  Remember, dear, if I’m in bed I can’t be in the kitchen getting you a sammich.

Lingerie: “Speaking Of Gifts That Give Back, Lingerie Is Another One That Benefits You As Much As It Does Her.” Just no.  Ever wonder why lingerie doesn’t really exist for men?  Because its uncomfortable.  Itchy lace, fabric that compresses places, wires and boning (not to be confused with the boner you’re after). Why its a bad idea: I’m not utterly against lingerie, but its not a gift for her, its a gift for you, and she probably knows that.

Flowers: these are nice, and I enjoy receiving them, but sadly, they only live a few days before being consigned to the dumpster.  Why its a bad idea: its not, but they should be considered a secondary gift, not a main one, and I’d wait until after VD when the cost actually matches reality again.  You can give them any time, she won’t be mad.

At-home spa goodies: their list basically means expensive bath products with the addition of candles… in a basket.  Why its a bad idea: for the same reason fragrances are.

There are a couple more items in the list that aren’t that bad.  I reiterate, however, ASK THEM what they want.

The Ex on Sex

I once had a boyfriend when I was trying a little harder than now. He was a prize. He called me sexy a lot, and on rare occasions, beautiful. It was kind of nice, until I noted that when he specified what made me beautiful to him, it was because I have a large chest and a nice hair color. That’s it? Or thats all that’s important? Ouch.

Of course, this is the same guy who, after reading an article about Sharia law, asked me if I would willingly put myself into his “care” under Sharia law. I wasn’t raised that way, and I certainly wouldn’t choose it. He told me I was against it because I didn’t trust him enough, and that I was obviously a feminist.  A feminist?  Because I refused to even consider giving control of almost every aspect of my life over to him?  Alright, I’m a feminist. He seemed to be very interested in the level of power and control it gave him, as evinced by a later conversation we had about marital rape.

I had commented that marital rape was not considered a criminal act in all states until 1993, and Utah was one of the last states to put it on the book. He said that it never should have been criminalized at all. “What?!?” I said. “I should lose my rights to physical integrity because I got married? If you raped me before the wedding, it’d be a crime, but after, its not?” He had no response to this.

I once asked him a question I was asked in my psychology of women class. “If you could rape someone and never have any repercussions of any type, would you do it?” In my text, some 65% of men and 10% of women said they would. The boyfriend went with the male majority. Another friend of mine later commented that its pretty sad that a lot of people are only kept in line by fear of repercussions, not actual morals.

Sadly, its only looking back on all these things that I realize how many misogynistic tendencies he had.  I’m angry at myself for refusing to see it, and even angrier that those things weren’t the reason I broke up with him.     No, the reason I broke up with him is because he wouldn’t even look for work.  Of course, he had lots of lame excuses for why he couldn’t look for a job.  The “best” of these was “I need to wait until after the election.” Obviously all hiring stops in the months prior to the presidential elections.  Why didn’t I know that?!?

Now a note on that.  I don’t expect a man to support me and my son.  I do, however, expect a man to support himself, or, at minimum, make some kind of effort towards it.  During the entire time we were together, I was full time in college, when we broke up, I was taking a semester off, but I was also working a full time, paying job.  He was living in his parents basement, watching movies and playing video games…  Like that was a career…  For a 30 year old with a college degree…  I’m pretty forgiving, but there’s a point where lazy doesn’t cut it.  If you asked him though, he broke up with me for pushing him away.  If you call me inquiring once every month or so about his job search, then damn skippy I pushed him away.  Guess I’m just super naggy.