Sunday, January 01, 2006

Dating... sizing it up (part two)

Thanks for the comments on the last post, all. Since some of you hinted that you'd like a follow-up post, here it is.

First of all, let me say that was got me about the exchange was the "blanket statement" quality of the conversation. To me, it would have been similar to saying, "Black women are more interesting"; "Short women are more interesting" or "Brown-eyed women are more interesting". It was the idea that there was a certain quality that makes some people interesting and others not.

But as one female friend pointed out to me, skin colour, height and eye colour are not things that most of us can change (at least not on a longer term or permanent basis)... except if you have vitiligo, as another friend does, a condition which causes her lovely chocolate-coloured skin to turn porcelain white in patches.

Weight is something we can change and society (and medical professionals) urge most of us to either change (as in, lower) or keep an eye on. For many women, weight is a particularly sensitive issue (damn the media!)

The idea that shocked me was that for this fella, there’s a direct relationship between size and interest, with “bigger” being “better”… in his experience of course. Being the pragmatic, analytical type, I went for the logical extrapolation… as a woman gets bigger, she becomes more attractive; smaller, less attractive.

Apparently though, you can’t apply logic to matters of the heart.

I did probe the matter a bit further. Turns out that some of those “bigger women” (still left undefined) suffered from depression, which had also had a direct -- i.e. negative-- effect on the relationship. So… it seems that he was drawn to these women because he perceived them to be “interesting” (still left undefined). It appears as though there was a coincidental (rather than cause-effect) relationship between these women’s quality of being interesting and their size. There was, however (in his opinion) a cause-effect relationship between the women’s size and their sense of confidence… and perhaps another link to their depression… thought that was left unexplored… whether the depression was coincidental or cause-effect.

In the end, the negative effects of the depression outweighed the women’s attractive qualities (no pun intended) and the relationships ended.

The issue of cause-effect versus coincidence here is a key element for me. If someone said, “Women who are vegetarian are more interesting.” or “Women who have llamas as pets are more interesting.” I would probably retort with the same, “Excuse me?!” Meaning, “There’s no logic at all in that statement. Explain yourself, please, because I don’t get it.”

Next time perhaps I’ll just say that.

But wait… that’s right… there IS no logic to matters of the heart, is there?


ipodmomma said...

no logic that I know of... :)))

having been large, I remember not being happy with it, but resigned to how I assumed I would always be. then, things changed rapidly, and for the most part I have been very happy with my body... flab notwithstanding. ha ha ha...

but how that matters in a relationship... Peter knew what he was getting from day #1. I never was a diet-type that had many different weights... he must have just liked the entire package.

but, still a very interesting topic... especially with fitness and that sort of stuff high on the agenda this time of year...

Bast said...

Just have to say it - women who have llamas as pets are more interesting, dammit! But then again, you knew that, I knew that, we all know that.

Turtle Guy said...

On reflection, for future consideration, might I suggest to your friend that he consider a more thoughtful presentation of his arguments. As you've discovered, blanket statements are the matches that light the fires of ambiguity. Ambiguity can cause a chain reaction resulting in poor communication and misinterpretation.

zouzou said...

Aaah! take a break from blog-world and see what happens! an entire juicy thread has been MISSED by MOI. My response to your earlier blog was "why was this conversation happening in the first place?" and second, "ewww. what a wierd thing to say" - along the lines of "x group of people are "y", a classic prejudicial statement.

Of course, after reading your second post it sounds like all is well. Otherwise I'd say ditch the dirtbag. Broad generalizations and philosophical pulpit-slapping only work if you're talking about a subject that is not sensitive to either party. In this case, either a bad call in conversational choices or a freudian slip into his actual opinions...

Chrystal said...

Sometimes a person just makes a comment, simple as that. We have to be careful about assuming what people mean. If a person has deduced from meeting a lot of women that "bigger women" are more interesting, then that is his experience. Simple as that. What he finds interesting will not be what the next guy finds interesting. Same group of women with a different guy could come up with very different results.