Saturday, November 12, 2011



Short review… in my previous post I hope that the point I was able to get across was that the ‘man shortage’ isn’t really a shortage.  I hinted that the factors that make this shortage of marriageable men may be one of ‘qualifying for bowl eligibility’ and maybe there is something to the ingrained traits that differentiate between male characteristics and female characteristics may play a role in the ‘shortage’, too.

Since numerically the idea that there are not enough men for every woman is untrue, why then, does the meme of a shortage exist?  First, it is with some irony that I use the ‘bowl eligibility’ construct to define the courting and success in relationships, because there are actually more than enough slots for half of the Division I football teams to make it to a bowl game, i.e. ‘more men than every woman’ are available.  Yet I still think that it represents how the process works… teams (men) with better records are invited to play (date better grade of women) in better bowl games, with the best ‘teams’ (or Mr. Perfect’s) getting to play in the Bowl Championship Series (or BCS), with two team (that enviable couple with the perfect relationship that nearly everyone knows!) playing in the National Championship game (said perfect relationship).

And the reason that it is ironic that there are more than enough slots for qualifying teams to play in a bowl game is, the reason there seems that there are not enough men seems to me to be a matter of them not being judged ‘bowl eligible’.  Think about it for a moment… what happens when a cat grows up called names, pushed around, and left to socialize with other outcasts and rarely interacts with the opposite sex as they mature?

I am also aware that women have to undergo the similar agonies, but I do think that because of design, it expresses itself differently in women and more importantly, seen by society very differently.  For instance, there remains an acceptance, maybe nobility even, in being a hermit, nomad, a bachelor.  When you contrast that against, old maid and spinster, I think you can see the difference and how unmistakable that difference is.

Between men not being bowl eligible for whatever reason, the difference in remaining single is another reason there seems to be a shortage of men and here is why; I think that more men ‘drop out’ of the pool, simply remove themselves from consideration of any kind.  Men have to compete with other men, again going back to how men need to judge themselves among their peers.  Once their rank is established, I think that what happens to ‘Alpha’s’ and ‘Beta’s’ is that they are pursued by more females.  In short, the reason that the meme persists is due in part women trying compete for the same man, figuratively (and sometimes even literally).  When they fail to find someone who meets the criteria of the partner they feel they deserve, or want, the idea that there is a shortage of men. 

One of the things that are stressed out on the relationship advice (for women, exclusively) circuit is the idea that anything less than what you hope for in a man is ‘settling’.  While the idea of having high standards in a partner is not new, the whole ‘good provider’ ideal as well as the misuse of the notion and its purpose has created a divisive environment when it comes to relationships.  I think that women often look for substance in superficial things, that they overrate material goods and how someone looks, and often they over-estimate when estimated how they are valued by men.  I think that were women to own more of their bad judgment, then there would be less talk of this alleged shortage and a different demand placed on men.


…has grown into a redefining of how male-female relationships are viewed.  Women all want the same ‘man’ and then there are some men who prefer fiddling on the computer (or whatever consumes them instead of sex) and pretending to be in a relationship than dealing with the risk involved in actually connecting to a real person.  Whatever ‘variables’ that one has to plug into the ‘equation’, the result will remain the same.

Listening to my favorite radio program, ‘This American Life’, one weekend, I heard the travails of Harvard physicists as they struggled finding a match.  They would employ their version of the Drake Equation to explain why they don’t have any girlfriends.  Once they began to ‘run the numbers’ (and if you listen to the first 5 minutes of the show, you would really understand why), theRE even existing a potential good match.  For a female colleague there was no one at all according to their estimates.

And it is the difference between ‘unlikely’ (for the men) to ‘zero’ (for the female colleague) is why she and women like her remain alone.  The fixation on ‘the perfect man’ will undo them and the expectation of this person existing doesn’t even make sense. 

So even someone is reading this and thinking that they might be gaining some insight on men and wonders why so much of what I talk about is dealing with an ethnic, racial, or even a regional view, the reason why is the adjusting for the new information that is being made.  The formula itself, never changes.


The entire show is not about the Drake Equation but just the first 5 or so minutes of the prologue.  The other half of the prologue is about the problems of being honest in one’s assessment that out of the billions of people in the world, by their logic, there are a few people with whom they can experience a rich and fulfilling relationship.  And yes, it was the male who expressed his opinion that there was this possibility and the female who got upset, wanting to believe instead in the magic of their unique coupling, no matter how he rationalized his answer.  Needless to say, I agree with the guy, that there is more than ‘one’ person that you can be a match with, at least that is what I believe for ME.

Going back to the summer where my Aunt buoyed my confidence by reminding me of what I do have going for me, I have been able to find pretty much whoever I am looking for.  And this brings me to the last factor in why people, both men and women, have so much trouble finding a person.
The reason that so many people have problems finding partnerships and enjoying their experiences in their relationships is because they are sh*tty people.  Pure and simple, and is a quality that is often overlooked by individuals, even when they are given advice that their outlook and personality could use some work.

I think I have been as objective as I can talking about relationships and especially when considering that I am letting people get a ‘peek’ at my secrets!


The goal tonight is to meet with Ken and watch the Irish play Maryland later this evening.  I am excited about that and hopefully I can return the favor soon, by making my way to Nutwood and visiting him on his ‘home field’.

School is school.  I turned in one of the two essay’s for my composition class and I have to gather together my bibliography and attach it to my research paper and that will be that with that (did I mention how invaluable Nebraska’s help was with my Power Point presentation?)!

The situation at Penn State was a shocker.  To me the fail began with the Assistant Coach, Mike McQueary, who is to have saw Coach Sandusky sodomizing a 10-year old.  He slipped away to call his father to ask what should he do?  A grown man raping a young boy??  I am sorry, but there isn’t much air in that, if you ask me.  And then for Coach Paterno to go through whatever he had to do for the cover up to begin… I mean, how to you condone something like that?  I say ‘condone’, because when you don’t take a decisive action against such abhorrent behavior, you send a message that it is permissible to the offending party.  Coach Sandusky would go on to abuse more boys through his connections to the Penn State football program.

Sorry about the length.  Woke up this morning with my ‘fingers loose’ and started my ramble.  Hope everyone has a nice weekend and the Lions beat the Bears in Chicago on Sunday!!


Jonthy, Alice the uppity white cat's babysitter said...

Mark, the Penn State situation is very sad. But, like you, I think there were many who turned their backs on this monster. I'm betting that we are just seeing the tip of the iceberg in the news. This is one story that will bring down many.

Good for Nebraska on helping with the Powerpoint presentation!

Have Myelin? said...

Penn State. I can't believe he simply walked away instead of pulling the man off.

I mean the kid was being raped.

That tells me it was more about football and money. I don't think we've gotten to the whole story.

Heather said...

I read somewhere that McQuery broke up a knife fight between players... it wasn't that he was afraid of Sandusky physically harming him. It was protection for the program, pure and simple. It makes me sick.

As a woman (old maid/spinster, whatever) who has intentionally removed myself from the dating pool, there's a lot more to it than wanting a BCS champ of a guy for a mate... for me, anyways, it's realizing that I don't have the energy to be a good relationship partner during this season of my life. That might change... as my 6 year old niece said to me, "you might find someone like Cinderella's father" because, you know, I want to be someone's wicked stepmother... but for now, this spinster lifestyle suits me well. I'm just sorry that it took me 43 years of bad relationships to realize that sometimes it's better to be alone than to be with the wrong person.

Beth said...

Great to hear your voice tonight, and hope you and my hubby have a great time watching the game! Looking good for the Irish so far. You are welcome at Nutwood any time!

I agree completely about the Penn State thing. If I saw some poor kid being raped, you can bet that all 5-foot-nothing of me would be goin' medieval. No excuses.

That corgi :) said...

This makes perfect sense, Mark, what you wrote about with there being enough men out there for women, etc. I can see that happening with men removing themselves from the field (conversely wome too). Enjoyed reading this!

Penn State; so sad. So many mistakes in judgment from so many; feel so sorry for the victims!


Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

Great two days with you friend, loved talking with you, watching football, and getting a workout in. This is what it is all about. Love and Rockets!