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The Eligible-Bachelor Paradox

The article talks about the ‘problem’ or perception out there that there is a shortage of eligible bachelors. In other words there are more eligible single women than there are single men. It goes on to mention this is paradoxical and here’s why. The most attractive women are very confident in themselves are waiting to find the perfect man who fits the mold of an eligible bachelor. He’s attractive, has a good job and is sociable. These women will pass up on a man because they are waiting for a better man. Women whose most visible characteristic is not their beauty are more decisive and less picky and therefore marry quicker to most of the most appealing men. This leaves the “ineligible bachelors,” ┬ámen who are only attractive but not sociable or men who are sociable but not attractive, basically men who are not “good enough”.

This situation was likened to an auction where the attractive women are the strong bidders and the other women are weak bidders. Each person has their own value and none of them know each other’s value. The best strategy for each bidder is to bid their true value. This is because if they bid too low, they might end up with a man they dont like that much because he is of lower value to them. If they try to cheat and place their value too high, they pass up on great men who have the value they want. Unfortunately this is what the attractive girls do. They hold out, waiting for a better option and a more perfect man. The other ladies, the weak bidders bid earlier and therefore the quantity and quality of men decrease leaving the strong bidders with less appealing men.


The Black Stars


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September 2012