No wonder I’m still single!

John Tierney of the NY Times has an interesting article about how everyone has a “Flaw-O-Matic” when it comes to dating. The “Flaw-O-Matic” is a mechanism that basically kills a relationship based on one particular flaw or lack of criteria that a person wants (or doesn’t want) in their mate. In yesterday’s article, he points out that maybe New Yorkers have a hyperactive “Flaw-O-Matic” mechanism simply because there are so many prospects.

Someone who lives in the Ozarks may have a two-part criteria for a good mate (i.e. is she female, and does she have a pulse?) whereas New Yorkers may have hundreds of minute details that they would find objectionable simply because “in a city of 8 million, there’s gotta be someone out there that likes peanut butter and Peep sandwiches like I do!” (note: that was an example, I’ve never tried a peanut butter and Peep sandwich, and I’m not sure I would want to).

From my personal experience, I think Mr. Tierney is very much correct. I’ve ended relationships with women for various ridiculous reasons, including one where she showed too much gum when she smiled, and one where she was a stickler for the toilet seat down thing. On some level I think I said something to the affect of, “I’ll find someone more perfect.” Perhaps I wouldn’t have if the dating pool was much less. Anyone think that’s just a load of horse poop?

2 Comments so far

  1. Laiya (unregistered) on April 11th, 2007 @ 12:33 pm

    Hmmm… that is an interesting article indeed. Well, I think that people in metropolitan areas, not just NYC, are probably generally pickier than others because of the seemingly endless potential pool of possible mates. But as a bit of a gummy smiler myself, I can see how you might also potentially end up single forever if you don’t relax some of the criteria on your Flaw-O-Matic meter. I’m glad you included the link to the article. It’s a fascinating subject…


  2. Gwen >> My Relationship Resume (unregistered) on April 11th, 2007 @ 3:26 pm

    Gosh, I wish I knew there was a hot field of research that was sifting through online dating data and attending-to-observe speed-dating in order to postulate about the human psyche. Sure beats my research….



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