About Me

April 19, 2011

The best way to date (weirdly, it involves math)

Apparently the best way to date involves math. Go figure!

That's according to this Psychology Today article, "Why Dating is Difficult in New York (or London)," by Satoshi Kanazawa: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-scientific-fundamentalist/200910/why-dating-is-difficult-in-new-york-or-london

Turns out we should reject the first 37% of the potential mates we meet (no matter how good or bad they are), then pick the first candidate who is better than any of the other earlier candidates. Dating in New York City, or in any highly populated city, is harder and more time-consuming than dating in a small town because there are more potential mates to choose from. According to the paper by Gilbert and Mosteller that Kanazawa quotes in his article, if you live in Ames, Iowa, and only have 10 potential mates to choose from, you should reject the first four, then start dating the next potential mate who is better than any of the pevious four. But if you live in New York City and have 1,000 potential mates to choose from, you should reject the first 369 potential mates you meet, then start dating the next one who is better than the earlier 369. If you follow this strategy, there is a 37% chance you will choose the right mate -- which may not sound all that high, but as Kanazawa writes, "there are no other strategies that you can consistently follow which will produce a higher average probability of choosing the best of all candidates."

Geez. No wonder dating in New York was always so exhausting!

This study is from 1966, though. Makes you wonder how Gilbert & Mosteller would even define the number of potential mates we can come across today on the Internet. What's 37% of infinity??

June 11, 2010

Speed-Dating for charity

Sorry it's been a while since I posted. My dad passed away in March, my job (teaching middle schoolers) has been getting to me, and I've been posting a little more regularly on my general blog instead at http://HerArtichokeHeart.blogspot.com

But I wanted to post about the photo my friend Lord Lillis (http://lillispad.blogspot.com/) took in February and thoughtfully sent me. It is of a sign that said "SPEED-DATING FOR HAITI"! That's right, a speed-dating evening where all the proceeds went to help Haiti's earthquake victims. Sounds a little weird, but it's nice to think you could meet the person of your dreams while helping others. They should do more speed-dating events for charity.

January 10, 2010

Dating for Dummies: Your Quickie Guide to Love Books

A January 1st New York Post article, "Dating for Dummies: Your Quickie Guide to Love Books" by Mandy Stadtmiller (http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/dating_for_dummies_neRJofkRlRYLskPQoZuMbI), discusses five new dating advice books. It includes a passage from the book "Prince Harming Syndrome" by Karen Salmansohn in which Salmansohn writes, "“Do you really prefer to place a higher value on a guy’s superficial aspects (his sexiness, funniness, smartness, wealthiness)? If so, then there is a big danger you will wind up involved with a guy who’s rude, angry, dishonest, disloyal, hurtful, selfish!" I don't really understand that. Wealthiness and possibly sexiness may be superficial qualities, but I think intelligence and sense of humor are pretty important. Maybe it was taken out of context.

January 4, 2010

Another Match.com success story; and Six Singles

Happy New Year, everyone! Guess what? One of my friends got engaged over Christmas vacation -- to a guy she met through Match.com a mere 7 1/2 months ago! They live in the same city and love to go out dancing, so I have a feeling they may have met each other eventually anyway. But Match.com brought them together first. They are really happy. A summer wedding is in the works. :)

Also, December 28th was the one-year anniversary of when the Nicest Guy in the World and I started dating! It doesn't feel like a whole year has gone by already. Which I guess is good -- better to feel like it hasn't been long at all than to feel like it's been way too long. ;)

A reader commented on my last post about a web site called Six Singles (http://www.SixSingles.com). It's an on-line dating site, but they also have interesting articles like "What If Your Profile Is A Dud?" and "What To Talk About on the First Real Date" -- worth checking out.

October 12, 2009

Dating errors, & dating success

If you're not having much luck on-line dating, check out David Wygant's article "14 Fatal Online Dating Errors That Single Women Make" (http://dating.personals.yahoo.com/singles/datingtips/33451/14-fatal-online-dating-errors-that-single-women-make;_ylt=At1N9.lxWma9fjGxbbqbYlRfjLR_). An interesting read, but I don't think I made any of the errors he mentioned (not putting up current photos, listing what you hate about Internet dating, lying about your age, etc.), and by the end of my on-line dating time I still wasn't having much luck.

Or, if you've been dating someone a while and are starting to think he's "the one," here's an article by Ruby Madren-Britton called "9 Signs Your Guy is a Keeper" (http://dating.personals.yahoo.com/singles/datingtips/88524/dating-tips-9-signs-a-guy-is-a-keeper). According to Madren-Britton, the nine signs are 1) he has his act together (i.e., not still struggling to grow up); 2) he puts you first; 3) he doesn't disappear when you're sick; 4) he asks about your family; 5) he makes time for your friends; 6) he's your biggest cheerleader; 7) he remembers the little things; 8) he's happy when you're happy; 9) he makes you feel the best you can be. A pretty good list, I think!

August 18, 2009

Date through your cell phone?

I just got a new cell phone through Sprint -- my first real cell phone, with 4.8 hours of battery life and a CONTRACT (!!) and everything. I was always too scared to get a phone with a contract before, and now I have one for TWO YEARS! Maybe I'm finally getting over my fear of commitment? ;)

Anyway, I was playing around with it today, and when I hit "messaging," I noticed this option on the bottom: "Chat & Dating." Huh? It's separate from "text," "picture mail" (whatever that is), "IM & Email," and a bunch of other choices. What would happen if I hit "Chat & Dating"? Would I just find myself talking to some random single stranger?? Weird....

July 31, 2009

I'm in love...with a pillow?

There was this fascinating-in-a-repellent way article by Lisa Katayama in the New York Times Magazine last Sunday July 26 called "Love in 2-D" (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/26/magazine/26FOB-2DLove-t.html?scp=1&sq=%22Love%20in%202-D%22&st=cse), which describes a "Lars & The Real Girl"-like situation (rent that movie if you haven't seen it) in which seemingly normal Japanese men fall in love with body-pillow girlfriends based on comic-book characters.

Yes. They fall in love with pillows. The article describes how some of these men even take their pillow-girlfriends out to dinner or to the beach, as if they were real ("the restaurant was packed with young families. Several mothers gave Nemutan [the pillow] inquisitive looks, but the majority seemed not to notice her"). That's weird enough, but what's more disturbing is these girl-pillows really are depictions of GIRLS -- around 10 - 12 years old.


My friends and I read about this together last weekend when they were visiting (actually, one of them read it aloud to the rest of us on the subway, which is probably the most awesome way to experience this article), and one of my friends, playing devil's advocate, asked, "But these guys aren't hurting anyone, so what's wrong with it?"

"They're hurting themselves!" I said. Just like people who fall in love with bridges, or towers, or other inanimate objects (see my March 31, 2009 post at http://www.bestdatesnow.com/2009/03/i-love-you-you-cute-inanimate-object.html), the more in love these men fall with pillows, the less chance they have of finding a real relationship, which is much more fulfilling. But apparently there are a lot of lovelorn people in Japan -- more than 25% of men and women between the ages of 30 - 34 are virgins. A 40-year-old man named Toru Honda, who writes books promoting the "2-D lifestyle," brings up the following issue:

"Honda wrote, 'As long as you train your imagination, a 2-D relationship is much more passionate than a 3-D one.' Honda insists that he’s advocating not prurience but a whole new kind of romance. If, as some researchers suggest, romantic love can be broken down into electrical impulses in the brain, then why not train the mind to simulate those signals while looking at an inanimate character?"

But when Honda "admitted to watching human porn at a panel discussion in Tokyo in 2005, several hundred hard-core 2-D lovers in the audience booed with shock that their dear leader had nostalgia for the 3-D world. Later, in an interview with a Japanese newspaper, Honda clarified his position, saying that he was worried 2-D love was becoming an easy way out for young otaku, who might still have a shot at success in the real world. 'I’m not saying that everyone should throw away hopes of real romance right away. I am simply saying that guys like me who have gotten to a point of no return can be happy living in 2-D.'"

He's only 40, and he's already given up on love? I think that is very sad! (Hasn't he seen "The 40-Year-Old Virgin"?)

This whole thing reminds of the red blue/blue pill choice in "The Matrix." The illusion of a girlfriend, or of any reality, may be safer, prettier, easier -- but in the end, it's just an illusion. Hate to say it, but no pillow is going to love you back.

(P.S. For non-dating-related posts, check out my other blog at http://herartichokeheart.blogspot.com/)