Thursday, December 14, 2017

Quickies: Figuring On The Downside

     I have the great good fortune to be old, married, and content with my lot. Moreover, I grew up before contemporary, “gender-war” feminism had gotten off the ground. So my memories of my years dating and mating are generally unthreatening ones. But today’s young men are in a quite different environment, sexually, culturally, and legally.

     Many young women have absorbed the notion that “he’s an oppressor,” and therefore deserves whatever she (or any other woman) might do to him. Many others have decided that the only reason to have anything to do with a man is to pump him for what she can get out of him. Still others, having married and decided that they “made a mistake,” see nothing wrong with punishing their husbands, or ex-husbands, for their own errors. Some even derive pleasure from it.

     What percentage of single women fall into those categories?

     An old parable, often used to argue against admitting Muslims to these United States, runs thus: There’s a bowl of M&Ms® before you. You like M&Ms® and are minded to enjoy a few...but someone whose word is good has told you that in that bowl of hundreds of M&Ms® there are ten that have been laced with cyanide, any one of which would suffice to kill you. Do you eat from the bowl, or do you pass on by?

     I think most of us would pass on by, no matter how much we might love M&Ms. The downside is simply too great to risk.

     Now, where you see M&Ms® in the above, substitute single young women. There are probably hundreds in the neighborhood of any given single young man. How great does the percentage of self-absorbed, evil minded women – women psychologically ready, willing, and able to make a man’s life a living hell – need to be to persuade a single young man to abstain from romantic explorations and “go his own way?”

     Do prevailing cultural currents or the state of “family law” have any bearing on such a decision? What about demographic factors, religion, education, and so forth?




In engineering there is a tool called FMEA (Failure Modes Effects Analysis). In this there is the concept of "RPN", in which not only the odds of something but the consequences are multiplied.

To use your example, let's say 1% of the M&Ms are lethal in one case, and 1% will merely give you diarrhea in the second case. The odds are precisely the same in both, but in one you'd say NO WAY while the other, you might risk it.

Bob T. said...

I'd hate to be a single man looking for a wife these days (going back to at least the turn of the century). I could speculate with considerable justification that the ease with which people can get married and divorced is simply one of the many manifestations of people who know nothing of delayed gratification and why that might be preferable to scratching an itch immediately.

A point to ponder... Absent an appreciation of what delayed gratification is all about, what's the motivation in the contemporary western world for settling down and raising a family? A few generations ago, when life was far more likely to be "nasty, brutish, and short," creating one's own pool of labor and attendants to help with the aged and infirm made sense to even the most dense of individuals. There was (and arguably *is*) also the matter of heirs to continue/grow a successful family business.

Without inappropriate disclosure of personal information, it's safe to say my life to this point has produced no children, and except for the slim possibility of divine intervention, none are likely. It's not what I had in mind back when I was a young lad of 25, but what turned out to be a poor choice of mate back then produced results consistent with that choice. G-d didn't want me to grow old alone, and sent me the wonderful woman (also childless) to whom I'm currently married. The extended family on her side includes many children who seem to understand and appreciate the implied obligation to older members of the tribe, probably as a consequence of growing up in a rural area.

So, as far as the M&Ms analogy, if a young man insists on partaking in spite of the risk, he can improve the odds of obtaining untainted product by "shopping" in venues more likely to provide same. Hint: it's not the cities. Regardless, there are no guarantees -- the rural communities are not as isolated as they used to be, and that doesn't bode well for the future.