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frelkins comments on Interpersonal Entanglement - Less Wrong

44 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 20 January 2009 06:17AM

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Comment author: frelkins 22 January 2009 05:25:53AM 9 points [-]

@Mike Blume

"On Firefly, Kaylee is beautiful, has an above-female-average sex drive, and falls in love with the introverted, socially awkward intellectual character - isn't she exactly the sort of catgirl most male sci-fi fans would want?"

No. That would certainly freak the nerd out. M. Vassar and I have several times discussed this problem - nerds seem to integrate their low status, so often if any even half-decent skirt shows an interest in them they reject instantly, thinking "wow, I know I'm a loser, so you must be worse to like me." Nerds would do better to uncoil from the defensive crouch of that identity ASAP.

Comment author: [deleted] 15 December 2011 11:27:56PM *  10 points [-]

I think nerds fantasize about women being more like men psychologically in the sense of them being the ones who take initiative and risk loss of face in courtship.

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 12:08:19AM 4 points [-]

I think nerds fantasize about women being more like men psychologically in the sense of them being the ones who take initiative and risk loss of face in courtship.

You know when you generalize about "Women", you are probably going to annoy most the females on here, who tend to be less gender-normative. (I'm not saying it's "right", I'm just saying it's likely to happen.)

For example, there are those of us who are quite willing to take initiative. I expect you'll find a higher percentage of females in rationalist communities v. general population fall into this camp, as they are more likely to examine research which has shown that when a female chases a male, she is more likely to end up with a higher quality mate.

The theory is that if she waits for guys to ask her, she is operating in "rejection mode", where instead of going after exactly what she wants, she ends up with the lowest common denominator of a guy she's dated that didn't get rejected. (I don't have time to find and back this up with a link to said research, but feel free to post it if you find it, or if you find research that shows the opposite).

It has certainly been my experience that if i just go after a guy I am interested in (ask him out, make the first moves, etc), I am more likely to end up with what I want, versus if I only date guys who chase me.

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 12:11:35AM 5 points [-]

You know when you generalize about "Women", you are probably going to annoy most the females on here, who tend to be less gender-normative. (I'm not saying it's "right", I'm just saying it's likely to happen.)

I was generalizing about male nerds, specifically their fantasies and perceptions not women.

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 12:21:18AM *  -1 points [-]

You were directly generalizing about males, but indirectly generalizing about females. By saying "Men wish women took more initiative." (paraphrased) Then you are indirectly saying that women don't take much initiative.

True? Probably....But I assume less so in the LW community, and us LW females are only too happy to point that out.

Likewise, if I said "Women wish men weren't so messy", then there is an indirect generalization in that statement that "Men are messy".

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 12:35:45AM *  4 points [-]

I didn't think I was generalizing women, rather the generalizations nerds (and by this I obviously meant male nerds) tend to believe.

Whether the generalization itself was accurate or not didn't cross my mind since it seemed mostly immaterial to the subject at hand.

Likewise, if I said "Women wish men weren't so messy", then there is an indirect generalization in that statement that "Men are messy".

I read that as implying "Women think men are messy". I'm not a native speaker, perhaps to avoid such miscommunication I should rather stick to my regular, more verbose style, English writing style. So thanks for the feedback!

But since we are on the subject. Men are messy. Women are more passive in romance. At least it seems more likley than not.

True? Probably....But I assume less so in the LW community, and us LW females are only too happy to point that out.

Why? Perhaps women adopting on average a more passive strategy is a good thing in some way. In any case I don't see why talking about specific populations needs to be followed by disclaimers that people on LW might not be like that ... well duh, the site is pretty non-representative.

Comment author: dlthomas 16 December 2011 12:41:51AM 1 point [-]

men are messy

Sorry for dragging down our average, guys!

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 12:43:48AM *  2 points [-]

Shun the group norm violator, he makes us look bad in front of others. Shun! Shun!

Comment author: dlthomas 16 December 2011 12:24:21AM 1 point [-]

You were doing both. Male nerds is obvious, women is more implicit:

women being more like men [...] in the sense of [X]

clearly implies a belief that, generally, women are to some degree less X than men. It's possible that you meant to attribute this belief to the male nerds as well as the desire in question, but this was not clear in the post. The generalization, as well, may be correct or not - it certainly corresponds to traditional western courtship ritual of the past century.

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 12:31:37AM *  2 points [-]

It's possible that you meant to attribute this belief to the male nerds as well as the desire in question,

This.

but this was not clear in the post.

My mistake then. Thanks to daenerys for pointing it out! :)

Comment author: cousin_it 16 December 2011 05:31:51PM *  2 points [-]

research which has shown that when a female chases a male, she is more likely to end up with a higher quality mate

Was it an observational study or a controlled trial? If the former, then correlation doesn't obviously imply causation here. For example, the female's decision to chase could depend on the quality of the male.

Comment author: TimS 16 December 2011 06:24:51PM *  6 points [-]

The Gale-Shapley solution the the stable marriage problem shows that suitors get their best choice among stable pairings. It seems like a reasonable conclusion to draw that women who behave as suitors will get a "better" match than those who are passive.

Comment author: [deleted] 16 December 2011 10:07:37PM 1 point [-]

For example, the female's decision to chase could depend on the quality of the male.

I don't remember any of the details, but the fact that "the female's decision to chase" relies on the quality of the male was pretty much how the whole theory worked...

(I am going to quantify/rank people's matability, so that I can make my point quickly. But I do not necessarily think you should do this to actual people, IRL.)

Say Sue is a 6. She will probably be "chased" by 4s and 5s. If she doesn't pursue men herself, then she will date these guys until she finds one that is good enough to not break up with, and end up marrying him.

IF however, she is willing to do the chasing, she will probably chase 7s and 8s (she has 4s and 5s knocking at her door. There is no reason to "chase" them.) Men have had less practice and experience being chased, and are therefore less likely to turn a female down.

Another way of thinking of it (for guys)- There might be girls that you wouldn't bother to pursue, but if she pursued you, you would probably date her.

Comment author: cousin_it 16 December 2011 10:13:43PM *  2 points [-]

Imagine a hypothetical world where every female has an equal chance of deciding to chase if the stars align just right: the man is above her rank+1, there's a convenient opening, the circumstances are such that society won't frown on her chasing, etc. In that world, the females who ended up chasing would have better mates, but that would depend only on random circumstances and not on the female's inner dispositions.

I'm not saying that world is our world, just that an observational study doesn't provide an obvious way to distinguish that world from ours. Adopting the habits of successful people can sometimes help, but only if those habits are among the causes of success, not just correlated with it.

Comment author: wedrifid 17 December 2011 11:14:44AM 6 points [-]

Say Sue is a 6. She will probably be "chased" by 4s and 5s. If she doesn't pursue men herself, then she will date these guys until she finds one that is good enough to not break up with, and end up marrying him.

She will probably also get persued by 6s, 7s and lazy 8s - just not for long term relationships.

Another way of thinking of it (for guys)- There might be girls that you wouldn't bother to pursue, but if she pursued you, you would probably date her.

This is definitely true.

Comment author: wedrifid 17 December 2011 11:16:28AM 6 points [-]

Was it an observational study or a controlled trial? If the former, then correlation doesn't obviously imply causation here. For example, the female's decision to chase could depend on the quality of the male.

And if the latter then I'm rather impressed with the open mindedness of the ethics committee!

Comment author: Articulator 13 June 2013 09:45:23PM 0 points [-]

You know when you generalize about "Women", you are probably going to annoy most the females on here, who tend to be less gender-normative.

Less gender-normative being key. We're not complaining about the statistical outliers, as nice as you are, because most people aren't lucky enough to find many of them.