Monday, May 18, 2009

The Mating Game, Not.

The scientists think they have found the key to the courtship game. There is something missing here. Not the all men are always willing part, that is a lot less true that myth says it is, not the analysis doesn't work, because under this analysis, having sex early would always be a sign of being desperate, and it isn't. What is needed is something that has the stable range of responses. Let's do that.

First instead of dividing men into "good" and "bad," let's give men, from the woman's stand point three attributes "hot," "stable," and "loaded." 

A hot guy is one whose attributes are immediately obvious. He looks good, he smells good, he has that something. 

A stable guy is one who will care for children, and put up with our emotional and personal needs.

A loaded guy is one who can provide needs because of wealth, ability, skill, connections, etc.

Now in breeding, hot, stable, and loaded is best. However, the more desirable the male, the more likely some other girl is willing to have sex with him earlier, in hopes of catching him. So there are three competitions:

Men competing to get the best woman.
Woman competing to get the best man.
Men and women competing to divide the costs and benefits.

Let's ignore individual taste for a moment, which is important, but let's do that. Assume that a hot guy is hot to every girl, a stable guy is stable with any girl etc. Let's also put forward that women have the attributes of hot, fertile, and stable. 

Now courtship does not prove out hot as an attribute. It does prove out stable. Loaded is both, some aspects are visible, others show up with time. However, there are two problems with long courtship. First, the more desirable the male, the more other women will be willing to reduce courtship to get access to him. Second, preferences are going to vary. After all, if all of the stable males are snapped up, or in courtship, that will increase the preference for hot, but less loaded and stable, males. 

This model works better because there is a real equilibrium. Some women will take the strategy of focusing on hot and fast couplings. Mate hot, get his genes, and take chances that he can be made stable. Others will go to the other extreme and demand stable. But that means that they will lose guys who might be hot, and loaded, but are not as stable. There will be normally a curve, with the fast daters on one side, and the long engagement types on the other, with most in between, deciding to take a chance on a man when it seems that he is stable enough, and hot enough, and the likelihood of him being poached is starting to get too be too great.

We can then add in personal preference. Sometimes someone is just really into you, or you are really into them. And it happens. Fast. 

Let's also turn it around from the guy stand point. There are many that will take the mate fast strategy, some few that will wait a long time. The less valuable the woman is to him, the more he will want to do it now, when his time risked is lower. The more valuable, the more he will wait. 

Now why is it in second life that men have a mate now strategy, when the pay off isn't there? My response is this simple. For the male, this tells him more about the woman, and about his own value, than it does for a woman. A woman knows that if she lowers her standards enough, there is always a man out there willing. A man does not know this. So his serial probing costs him little, and tells him how "hot" he is versus local female taste. He's also got an rl reason. A man who has gotten to blow of steam is less likely to fall into a relationship with a woman who is very low on the scale, simply because he feels a sex need now.

This model is more complex, but it does create a pleasing splay of choices, and times. 

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