0513: "Friends"

This forum is for the individual discussion thread that goes with each new comic.

Moderators: Moderators General, Prelates, Magistrates

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:31 pm UTC

blue_eyedspacemonkey wrote:I have been ninja'd something rotten, by people far more eloquent and qualified to respond to this than I, but seriously? This line made me so angry I could shit. I'm not sure if you're assuming that everyone finds the same people attractive as you do, thus meaning some people can never be attractive to any member of the opposite sex or not, but either way...ugh...


ethraax wrote:And here is where I whip out "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder." Because, like so many other things in this world (desirability comes to mind), your opinion on how someone looks is your opinion, and is not necessarily shared by others.


You're both missing the point. The question isn't whether I find someone desirable, the question is what percentage of the population finds a person desirable. A lot of people like to think that because there is disparity amongst individual assessments of desirability that means everyone is effective equally desirable. This is obviously wrong. If you are desirable to 90% of the population and I'm desirable to 10%, for the purposes of finding a relationship partner, you ARE more attractive than me, because your chances of success is simply much higher. What I'm saying that it doesn't matter what you think, what you feel, what mannerisms of that 90% desirable person you ape, that percentage figure for you simply will not change.

jfpbookworm
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:36 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby jfpbookworm » Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:34 pm UTC

mako wrote:I just had a sudden thought, vaguely inspired by this discussion (since, of course, it's all about stating intentions clearly):

What is the appropriate, socially acceptable, non-jackass way to respond to a pretty clear inquiry like "Do you want to get coffee/dinner sometime?"


This is a good question. In my experience, the majority of guys tend to agree that they want clear signals as to whether someone they're asking out is interested or not.

My responses (male in grad school; YMMV by age and gender):

If I might be interested in them non-platonically and want to see where it goes: This is the easy one. "Sure, when would be good for you?" I tend to like to make specific plans then because if I don't I might procrastinate or chicken out.

If I'm not interested in them platonically, but like them as a friend and want to hang out: "I'm not interested in a date, but I wouldn't mind getting coffee/dinner sometime if you'd still like to." Typically, this gets the point across, but if it doesn't a flat-out "I'm not interested in you that way" might be necessary.

If I don't want to even interact non-platonically: "No thanks." The goal here is to not be insulting, but not be ambiguous either.

Things not to do:

Don't pretend to be interested when you're not in order to get a free meal. I don't think nearly as many people actually do this as are accused of it, but it's obviously a bad idea.

Don't agree to a date you're not interested in and then keep postponing it in the hopes that they'll eventually just give up. This is why folks who legitimately have to reschedule can get so worried that they won't seem interested.

Don't go into the reasons why you're not interested. They really don't matter, and all it leads to is either a needless blow to the other person's self-esteem, the other person arguing that your reasons aren't good enough, or a misunderstanding that you've agreed to go out with the other person if they address those reasons. If the other person asks "why not," tell them it's none of their business. (Yes, maybe it'd do them good to be told "you smell funny, shower more often," but that should be addressed at a time when the context is more appropriate.)

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:37 pm UTC

setzer777 wrote: I agree that inborn characteristics can often set a kind of "upper-limit" on general desirability within a society, but some people are being held back partly by things they can change (which cause them to have trouble even with people at their "level".) Why did you assume that the original commenter (the one you made the wing-transplant comment to) wasn't just trying to fix problems caused by changeable behavior?


I didn't assume that. I said that he'll find out soon enough whether his problems were simply changable behavior, in which case he's merely realizing his already existing desirability, or that he's just not desirable. Or, in your terms, just how high his "upper limit" is.

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:44 pm UTC

Rinsaikeru wrote:Yes, there are certain people who will, as a rule, be defined as most beautiful by a large proportion of society. This is not to say that this is a singular overarching STANDARD by which all people are measured. There are lots of different sorts of beauty and appeal--not everyone is attracted to a singular model of what beauty is.

I can tell you, for instance, that guys my friends find attractive will not get my motor going and vice versa. We like different things in terms of appearance. That said, I've dated guys that don't fit the category I find most attractive--just because I liked who they are as people. That's the important bit.


I'm not saying there is one single standard of desirability, I'm saying that the individual standards of desirability held by people have high enough of overlap such that some people appeal to more members of the opposite sex than others, and that for the purposes of dating, that is effectively a higher level of desirability, because the probability of success for them is higher.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:00 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:Ah yes, the "EVERYONE IS A UNIQUE SNOWFLAKE AND VERY VERY SPECIAL" argument. Like it or not, there ARE overarching standards of desirability in our society. Whether they are fair or not is not the point, the fact is that they EXIST. There are exceptions, of course, but the fact that these standards of desirability are so universals means that the likelyhood of an individual with high desirability, but who do not share the common social desirability standards, will be paired off very early, is very very high. Which means that effectively, the fact that these people exist mean just about nothing, because they're not very likely going to be available to you anyway.

So basically what you're saying FireZs is that without ladder bullshit we won't get laid?

The only problem with this is that huge swaths of the male members of this fora have gotten laid despite treating girls like human being instead of games to be mastered.

Therefore you are wrong.
~= scwizard =~

jfpbookworm
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:36 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby jfpbookworm » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:02 pm UTC

Belial wrote:
And all of this bs leads me to believe that there is a huge group of men out there who view dating as some sort of dating sim game made flesh.

It creeps me out and when I spot hallmark behaviours of it I cut and run.


Exactly. It speaks to viewing the opposite gender as a game or a puzzle to be beaten, rather than an actual person. It's a fundamentally creep-ish way of looking at things, made even moreso by the way someone who is good at it can actually mimic being an actual sincere human being.


One of the especially creepy things about it, and the one that leads back to the whole Nice Guy(tm) thing, is that, if she (because, let's face it, we're talking about mostly guys here) is a game or a puzzle, then either (a) there's some way to "win"- some thing the guy can say or do that will make her fall for him - or (b) she's broken. Woman-as-puzzle is incompatible with "she's not into you, and there's nothing you can do about it."

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:07 pm UTC

scwizard wrote:So basically what you're saying FireZs is that without ladder bullshit we won't get laid?

The only problem with this is that huge swaths of the male members of this fora have gotten laid despite treating girls like human being instead of games to be mastered.

Therefore you are wrong.


I guess you haven't been paying attention. Ladder bullshit is bullshit precisely for the reasons I've outlined. I agree it's bullshit.

The problem with your statement isn't that it's wrong, it's that it's meaningless and irrelevant. Treat girls like human beings if you want (preferrably, for the girls' sake), treat girls like games to be mastered if you want, neither one alters your fundamental desirability to the population as a whole.

moto_tx
Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:35 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby moto_tx » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:15 pm UTC

@FireZs: I agree that there is effectively an objective way to rate one's desirability. I disagree that it is impossible to move yourself up the scale through change.

You seem to put a huge emphasis on beauty. I think most of that ladder theory stuff is tripe, but I do agree with the statement that men and women rate potential mates in different ways. Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men. You thought this was absurd, but is it really any more ridiculous than the way men practically rate beauty as the only thing that is important? For many men, this is a good thing. You can become more confident and thus become more attractive.

There are plenty of other ways for both sexes to increase desirability, but I just wanted to point out that it is possible for almost everyone.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:15 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:
scwizard wrote:So basically what you're saying FireZs is that without ladder bullshit we won't get laid?

The only problem with this is that huge swaths of the male members of this fora have gotten laid despite treating girls like human being instead of games to be mastered.

Therefore you are wrong.

The problem with your statement isn't that it's wrong, it's that it's meaningless and irrelevant. Treat girls like human beings if you want (preferrably, for the girls' sake), treat girls like games to be mastered if you want, neither one alters your fundamental desirability to the population as a whole.

Treating girls like human beings does make you more desirable to the type of girl who will treat you like a human being though.

Why should I care about the population as a whole? I only care about how attractive I am to the girls I'm attracted to.

For example if we look at the comic, he wasn't treating her like a human being, and she wasn't treating him like a human being either.
~= scwizard =~

User avatar
Belial
A terrible sound heard from a distance
Posts: 30450
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:04 am UTC
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby Belial » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:18 pm UTC

Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men.


General generalization is general.

Also, not necessarily true even in a general sense.
addams wrote:A drunk neighbor is better than a sober Belial.


They/them

moto_tx
Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:35 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby moto_tx » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:22 pm UTC

Belial wrote:
Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men.


General generalization is general.

Also, not necessarily true even in a general sense.


The whole point is that it is generalization... because the goal here is to make yourself more attractive to the general population. Of course there is some degree of variance, but like FireZs said, there is a large amount of overlap. If you are more attractive to the general population, it is more likely that the next person you meet that you are attracted to will be attracted to you as well.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:29 pm UTC

Women put a much larger emphasis on beauty than men do. It should be easy to see how some men can improve desirability -- by exercising more and shaping up. Almost all women will rate or guys with six packs as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these men. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, men look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the kindness, confidence, and intelligence you mentioned earlier, matter more to men than they do to women.

It are fact, I know so because of my learnings.
The goal here is to make yourself more attractive to the general population. Of course there is some degree of variance, but like FireZs said, there is a large amount of overlap. If you are more attractive to the general population, it is more likely that the next person you meet that you are attracted to will be attracted to you as well.

Of course the point of this is to demonstrate that all generalizations are equally bullshit.
Last edited by scwizard on Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:31 pm UTC, edited 2 times in total.
~= scwizard =~

jfpbookworm
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:36 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby jfpbookworm » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:30 pm UTC

moto_tx wrote:
Belial wrote:
Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men.


General generalization is general.

Also, not necessarily true even in a general sense.


The whole point is that it is generalization... because the goal here is to make yourself more attractive to the general population. Of course there is some degree of variance, but like FireZs said, there is a large amount of overlap. If you are more attractive to the general population, it is more likely that the next person you meet that you are attracted to will be attracted to you as well.


Yes, but "women don't care about looks as much as men" is just something men tell themselves because it's more comforting to think that attractiveness is due to factors that are, at least in theory, under their control.

User avatar
setzer777
Good questions sometimes get stupid answers
Posts: 2762
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:24 am UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby setzer777 » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:34 pm UTC

moto_tx wrote:@FireZs: I agree that there is effectively an objective way to rate one's desirability. I disagree that it is impossible to move yourself up the scale through change.

Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?


I'm not sure it's true that women care *that* much less about looks than men do. I think there is just more pressure on women to not appear shallow and to *say* that looks don't matter. In the vast majority of couples I've seen the two are roughly equal in terms of society-defined good looks. There are a few exceptions, and women might tend to be somewhat more likely to make exceptions, but looks still plays a big part in male attractiveness.
Meaux_Pas wrote:We're here to go above and beyond.

Too infinity
of being an arsehole

moto_tx
Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:35 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby moto_tx » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:36 pm UTC

jfpbookworm wrote:
moto_tx wrote:
Belial wrote:
Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men.


General generalization is general.

Also, not necessarily true even in a general sense.


The whole point is that it is generalization... because the goal here is to make yourself more attractive to the general population. Of course there is some degree of variance, but like FireZs said, there is a large amount of overlap. If you are more attractive to the general population, it is more likely that the next person you meet that you are attracted to will be attracted to you as well.


Yes, but "women don't care about looks as much as men" is just something men tell themselves because it's more comforting to think that attractiveness is due to factors that are, at least in theory, under their control.


No. Believing that nothing is under your control is something that men and women tell themselves because they don't want to put in the effort to change.

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:38 pm UTC

moto_tx wrote:@FireZs: I agree that there is effectively an objective way to rate one's desirability. I disagree that it is impossible to move yourself up the scale through change.

You seem to put a huge emphasis on beauty. I think most of that ladder theory stuff is tripe, but I do agree with the statement that men and women rate potential mates in different ways. Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men. You thought this was absurd, but is it really any more ridiculous than the way men practically rate beauty as the only thing that is important? For many men, this is a good thing. You can become more confident and thus become more attractive.

There are plenty of other ways for both sexes to increase desirability, but I just wanted to point out that it is possible for almost everyone.


I was speaking in the context of ladder bullshit, which cannot change most of the fundamental factors of desirability. I could tell people "sure, be a movie star or a rock star, that helps" but that's also not very practical.

moto_tx
Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:35 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby moto_tx » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:40 pm UTC

setzer777 wrote:
moto_tx wrote:@FireZs: I agree that there is effectively an objective way to rate one's desirability. I disagree that it is impossible to move yourself up the scale through change.

Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?


I'm not sure it's true that women care *that* much less about looks than men do. I think there is just more pressure on women to not appear shallow and to *say* that looks don't matter. In the vast majority of couples I've seen the two are roughly equal in terms of society-defined good looks. There are a few exceptions, and women might tend to be somewhat more likely to make exceptions, but looks still plays a big part in male attractiveness.


I didn't say it played no part, just less of one. The classic argument is "How many attractive women do you see dating ugly men? Okay, now many attractive men do you see dating ugly women?" From my own experience, and likely yours, the population in set 1 is much larger than set 2. Even if physical beauty were the only thing that matters, there is still a degree of it under your control. Weight and strength, hygiene, fashion, etc.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:40 pm UTC

Where the hell does this "women don't care that much about looks" thing come from anyway?

Whenever I overheard girls in highschool they were talking about how this one boy had a nice ass, or this other boy looked good in a hokey uniform, or how a third boy looked really attractive with his shirt off...

Also stop it ninjas.
~= scwizard =~

moto_tx
Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:35 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby moto_tx » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:41 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:
moto_tx wrote:@FireZs: I agree that there is effectively an objective way to rate one's desirability. I disagree that it is impossible to move yourself up the scale through change.

You seem to put a huge emphasis on beauty. I think most of that ladder theory stuff is tripe, but I do agree with the statement that men and women rate potential mates in different ways. Men put a much larger emphasis on beauty than women do. It should be easy to see how some women can improve desirability -- by losing weight. Almost all men will rate HWP or thin girls as preferable to overweight ones, so there is a direct path to becoming more attractive for these women. Do you disagree?

In the same manner, women look for more than physical beauty from their mates. Behavioral things, like the assertiveness, confidence, and decision making you mentioned earlier, matter more to women than they do to men. You thought this was absurd, but is it really any more ridiculous than the way men practically rate beauty as the only thing that is important? For many men, this is a good thing. You can become more confident and thus become more attractive.

There are plenty of other ways for both sexes to increase desirability, but I just wanted to point out that it is possible for almost everyone.


I was speaking in the context of ladder bullshit, which cannot change most of the fundamental factors of desirability. I could tell people "sure, be a movie star or a rock star, that helps" but that's also not very practical.


So you're saying that the way in which we are judged cannot be changed, but it is possible to change how you rate in each category? Because if so, we agree.

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:44 pm UTC

scwizard wrote:Treating girls like human beings does make you more desirable to the type of girl who will treat you like a human being though.

Why should I care about the population as a whole? I only care about how attractive I am to the girls I'm attracted to.

For example if we look at the comic, he wasn't treating her like a human being, and she wasn't treating him like a human being either.


Given the set of all girls who will treat you like a human being, unless they treat everyone like human beings, it cannot be the case that treating them like human beings necessarily makes any given guy more desirable to every single girl in that set.

Why the disparity? Because the "girls who wil treat you like a human being" already view you as desirable.

Unless you're only attracted to girls who are already attracted to you (and some guys are like that), the desirability level you command in the population will affect your success rate within the pool of girls to whom you are attracted.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:44 pm UTC

What's FireZ arguing again? He said he didn't agree with Ladder "theory" but he also seems to be saying that we should make ourselves "fundamentally more desirable" by doing stuff like "acting disinterested in women you are actually interested in." And that's the same thing that Ladder "theory" says.
~= scwizard =~

User avatar
setzer777
Good questions sometimes get stupid answers
Posts: 2762
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:24 am UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby setzer777 » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:49 pm UTC

moto_tx wrote:
I didn't say it played no part, just less of one. The classic argument is "How many attractive women do you see dating ugly men? Okay, now many attractive men do you see dating ugly women?" From my own experience, and likely yours, the population in set 1 is much larger than set 2. Even if physical beauty were the only thing that matters, there is still a degree of it under your control. Weight and strength, hygiene, fashion, etc.


Yeah, but aside from rich guys, rock stars and such the classic argument isn't usually relevant in my experience. I almost never see attractive women with ugly men. So even if it is slightly more common, it still seems to be a rare exception, and not a good basis for making assessments about dating in general.

Now, I do think society expects women to work more on appearance than men. A man with natural good looks will have to do less work to be considered super-attractive than a woman with natural good looks.
Meaux_Pas wrote:We're here to go above and beyond.

Too infinity
of being an arsehole

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:50 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:Given the set of all girls who will treat you like a human being, unless they treat everyone like human beings, it cannot be the case that treating them like human beings necessarily makes any given guy more desirable to every single girl in that set.

Why the disparity? Because the "girls who wil treat you like a human being" already view you as desirable.

Unless you're only attracted to girls who are already attracted to you (and some guys are like that), the desirability level you command in the population will affect your success rate within the pool of girls to whom you are attracted.

So what you're saying is that a girl won't ever treat me like a human being unless she's already attracted to me?

Because that's bullshit.
~= scwizard =~

User avatar
setzer777
Good questions sometimes get stupid answers
Posts: 2762
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:24 am UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby setzer777 » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:55 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:Unless you're only attracted to girls who are already attracted to you (and some guys are like that), the desirability level you command in the population will affect your success rate within the pool of girls to whom you are attracted.


Wow, I just realized I might be somewhat like that. I've almost never had an unrequited huge crush because as soon as I'm sure they aren't interested in me, I stop crushing on them. Does that make me a narcissist?
Meaux_Pas wrote:We're here to go above and beyond.

Too infinity
of being an arsehole

MissConglomeration
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:33 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby MissConglomeration » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:56 pm UTC

Alright, to everyone who's posted angry here at generally just the entire opposite gender, I'd like to give you all a big hug, but I can't because there's x number of miles in the way. Sorry.
Keep in mind, I haven't read all the posts in here, because there were eight pages of this stuff and: geez, kids.
Here's my ideas on the subject. The great big theme of this comic is that anxiety, neuroticism, and relatedly low self esteem (or maybe more just the kind of self esteem issue where you're not really certain where you stand) gets in the way of going for the person you want. Nerds are usually high in these sorts of thing, in the first place, so I think that's why we all get this comic so much. Hifive nerds. We're damaged.

But lets go a little deeper, and think about why the typical nerdboy is so -emotionally- attracted to this girl in the first place. It's not just that she's sexually attractive, or he would never invest so much time, the biology imperative is way more practical than that. It would give up as soon as it saw a low probability and go have sex with uglier girls. What's really happening is that that girl who the nerdboy always unconsciously seeks out goes after those jerks because she is Unattainable Girl. Now he doesn't know he's doing this, so you can't really blame him, but he picks her because she is the girl that will never out and out tell him what she objectively thinks of him. He's not her type; she knows this and therefore can be friends with him. Which is great, because unconsciously he doesn't want to know what she thinks of him. Because of the anxiety thing. And that way he can stay in limbo and not go after someone who will actually affect his self esteem. At the end of the comic, even when he gets her, he's -still- in limbo about that. Whether he's really what she wants. And no matter how much validation he gets there, it won't be enough. Getting Unattainable Girl doesn't fix the underlying problem.

I really think that's the point of the comic, and I felt like people were missing it.

So, where do we go from there, huh? Now I might just be resentful, because I'm the basically equivalent low self-esteem, high anxiety nerdgirl, who is trying to break free of that same mirroring pattern with more alpha male boys. But doing that requires that nerdboys buy into my plan, and they aren't, and that's frustrating. Plus, with nerdboys there's this new issue where both of you wait for the other to make the first move, because both of you think the other is too good for you, and on and on and on, until infinity comes up and flies past and you're all looking out the window and going: hey was that infinity, because I wanted a picture at least. Maybe a t-shirt?

And what if nerdboy thinks he is in a situation like the comic, but really Unattainable Girl is just nerdgirl coming to grips with her anxiety stuff and finally figuring out that jerky alphamales are dumb, but nerdboy still thinks that the comic thing is going on, and will never be certain whether she actually wanted him or is just settling? Huh? What then? Blargl.

So I guess my point is we should all try to recognize this behavior for what it is and not blame the other person in the situation, since it's no one's fault. Yeah. That was probably it.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:59 pm UTC

/me hugs MissConglomeration back (despite the fact that I haven't posted angry things about girls here)

Will reply with something thought out soonish, because that was one of the more interesting posts I've read here.
Last edited by scwizard on Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:00 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
~= scwizard =~

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:00 pm UTC

scwizard wrote:What's FireZ arguing again? He said he didn't agree with Ladder "theory" but he also seems to be saying that we should make ourselves "fundamentally more desirable" by doing stuff like "acting disinterested in women you are actually interested in." And that's the same thing that Ladder "theory" says.


What? When have I said "acting disinterested in women you are actually interested in?" What I'm saying is that ladder bullshit for the most part doesn't work, and the reason it doesn't work is that it doesn't make you fundamentally more desirable. What it is is people aping the behaviors of people who are fundamentally more desirable than they are hoping to increase their desirability, and it just doesn't work.

(On my decisiveness comment earlier: I only do it with whoever I'm already in a relationship with at the time, so they are already attracted to me. They do like the decisiveness, just like they would like it if I gave them a gift, or complimented them, but it doesn't change my fundamental desirability to them.)

Random832
Posts: 2525
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 4:38 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby Random832 » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:00 pm UTC

scwizard wrote:Of course the point of this is to demonstrate that all generalizations are equally bullshit.

User avatar
sophyturtle
I'll go put my shirt back on for this kind of shock. No I won't. I'll get my purse.
Posts: 3476
Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:19 pm UTC
Location: it's turtles all the way down, even in the suburbs
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby sophyturtle » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:03 pm UTC

As a female often seen as both 'forward' and 'attractive', when people act disinterested I move on. I have no time for their games. When I like someone I tell them, or show them. This has at times ended up with people giving me labels I do not deserve.
If you want someone to like you, you have to let them see who you are. Doing anything else will not work, at least not in the long run. If all you want is to get laid, sure, you can trick people into liking you that long. (prohint: not worth it. it cheapens both of you and any experience you share when you act in any way dishonestly.)

as for the female in the comix not treating the male as human, she totally is, she just does not date him. I treat lots of people like people without getting naked for them.
I think the point of the comic was he is not actually respecting her, then gets pissy when she dates someone he thinks does not respect her.
I want to get to a place where I am neither conforming nor rebelling but simply being.

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:04 pm UTC

scwizard wrote:
FireZs wrote:Given the set of all girls who will treat you like a human being, unless they treat everyone like human beings, it cannot be the case that treating them like human beings necessarily makes any given guy more desirable to every single girl in that set.

Why the disparity? Because the "girls who wil treat you like a human being" already view you as desirable.

Unless you're only attracted to girls who are already attracted to you (and some guys are like that), the desirability level you command in the population will affect your success rate within the pool of girls to whom you are attracted.

So what you're saying is that a girl won't ever treat me like a human being unless she's already attracted to me?

Because that's bullshit.


No, I'm saying that if just treating a girl like a human being causes her to be more attracted to you, she was already attracted to you, and the since she was already attracted to you, of course she's going to treat you like a human being. The inverse is not necessarily true. A=>B doesn't mean B=>A.

User avatar
sophyturtle
I'll go put my shirt back on for this kind of shock. No I won't. I'll get my purse.
Posts: 3476
Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:19 pm UTC
Location: it's turtles all the way down, even in the suburbs
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby sophyturtle » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:06 pm UTC

How about we just treat everyone like human beings? Saves effort and makes you less of an ass.
I want to get to a place where I am neither conforming nor rebelling but simply being.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:08 pm UTC

MissConglomeration wrote:So I guess my point is we should all try to recognize this behavior for what it is and not blame the other person in the situation, since it's no one's fault. Yeah. That was probably it.

That's why I think the point of this comic is in part to scare people. Because:
Plus, with nerdboys there's this new issue where both of you wait for the other to make the first move, because both of you think the other is too good for you, and on and on and on

If something like this is the case this comic might give the nerd boy the shove he needs to get him to confess his feelings and result in happily every after, however:
What's really happening is that that girl who the nerdboy always unconsciously seeks out goes after those jerks because she is Unattainable Girl. Now he doesn't know he's doing this, so you can't really blame him, but he picks her because she is the girl that will never out and out tell him what she objectively thinks of him. He's not her type; she knows this and therefore can be friends with him. Which is great, because unconsciously he doesn't want to know what she thinks of him. Because of the anxiety thing.

If this is the case then the nerd boy telling the girl his feelings might cause unattainable girl to tell him her feelings, which might cause the nerd boy to stop going to girls like that to deal with anxiety, which might lead to him dealing with his anxiety on a more fundamental level.
~= scwizard =~

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:10 pm UTC

sophyturtle wrote:How about we just treat everyone like human beings? Saves effort and makes you less of an ass.


How about we just treat everyone like human beings because it doesn't matter either way? And it makes you less of an ass.

Bonus: sending "mixed signals" to scwizard.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:11 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:What I'm saying is that ladder bullshit for the most part doesn't work, and the reason it doesn't work is that it doesn't make you fundamentally more desirable. What it is is people aping the behaviors of people who are fundamentally more desirable than they are hoping to increase their desirability, and it just doesn't work.

What the hell are these things that apparently make you "fundamentally desirable" again?
~= scwizard =~

User avatar
setzer777
Good questions sometimes get stupid answers
Posts: 2762
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:24 am UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby setzer777 » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:13 pm UTC

FireZs wrote:What? When have I said "acting disinterested in women you are actually interested in?" What I'm saying is that ladder bullshit for the most part doesn't work, and the reason it doesn't work is that it doesn't make you fundamentally more desirable. What it is is people aping the behaviors of people who are fundamentally more desirable than they are hoping to increase their desirability, and it just doesn't work.


So, apart from looks (which I'm assuming isn't 100% of it), what do you think does make someone fundamentally more desirable? Because it seems like some fraction of it would be their behavior.

EDIT: Ah, ninja'd by scwizard
Meaux_Pas wrote:We're here to go above and beyond.

Too infinity
of being an arsehole

User avatar
Felstaff
Occam's Taser
Posts: 5178
Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 7:10 pm UTC
Location: ¢ ₪ ¿ ¶ § ∴ ® © ™ ؟ ¡ ‽ æ Þ ° ₰ ₤ ಡಢ

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby Felstaff » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:16 pm UTC

Right you 'orrible lot. Get back to the following:

  • Civility. Keep it here.
  • Comic discussion. Realise that once the tangent has hit the interstate, it's time to turn the car and head back on the right road.

Don't make me break out the red pen. 'Cause that would involve me reading back over the last few pages. Of which I'm not prepared t'do.
Away, you scullion! you rampallion! You fustilarian! I'll tickle your catastrophe.

scwizard
Posts: 519
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 6:29 pm UTC
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby scwizard » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:18 pm UTC

At least wait until he posts this list of "qualities that apparently make you fundamentally desirable" before banning him so we can laugh at that list later.
~= scwizard =~

User avatar
Felstaff
Occam's Taser
Posts: 5178
Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 7:10 pm UTC
Location: ¢ ₪ ¿ ¶ § ∴ ® © ™ ؟ ¡ ‽ æ Þ ° ₰ ₤ ಡಢ

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby Felstaff » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:20 pm UTC

You don't need no list when you've got an avatar like mine.

I am the eppy-tome of fundamental desire.
Away, you scullion! you rampallion! You fustilarian! I'll tickle your catastrophe.

FireZs
Posts: 371
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby FireZs » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:26 pm UTC

scwizard wrote:At least wait until he posts this list of "qualities that apparently make you fundamentally desirable" before banning him so we can laugh at that list later.


If only you had asked nicely.

jfpbookworm
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:36 pm UTC

Re: "Friends" Discussion

Postby jfpbookworm » Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:29 pm UTC

moto_tx wrote:
jfpbookworm wrote:Yes, but "women don't care about looks as much as men" is just something men tell themselves because it's more comforting to think that attractiveness is due to factors that are, at least in theory, under their control.


No. Believing that nothing is under your control is something that men and women tell themselves because they don't want to put in the effort to change.


Right, because nobody ever put in any effort to look good. You'd think there'd be entire industries devoted to it or something.
But men don't believe that their looks matter, because they're conditioned to be the ones doing the looking, and because, honestly, FireZs is right insofar as there's only so much you can do to improve your appearance.


Return to “Individual XKCD Comic Threads”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Google Feedfetcher, orthogon and 106 guests