Writes Susan Patton, in "Marry Smart," and NY Post columnist Naomi Schaefer Riley says "Ewwww."
But "Ewwww" constitutes laughing at what Patton obviously intends as a joke, and Riley doesn't disagree with the proposition that women want to pair with men who are at least not significantly below their intellectual level, which is just not a startling assertion at all. The real issue is whether women had better find their life mate while they are in college — and thus in close contact with lots of single men who are on their level — or whether they can risk putting off mate-finding until later in life. That's a serious question, and nothing about squicking over juice that comes out of males is going to change the odds about where women and men are going to find someone they can live with on a permanent basis.
At the bottom of her column, Riley switches over to another woman who has also written a book titled "Marry Smart," Christine Whelan, a professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin. Riley chooses to mention only an older book by Whelan with a less Patton-style title, "Why Smart Men Marry Smart Women." At this point, Riley is refuting something Patton might be saying: that it's easier for a man to find a mate later in life, because men are willing to to marry women who are significantly below their intellectual level. Riley says that Whelan "analyzed Census data" and found that "educated men may be just as embarrassed to have a bimbo on their arms as women are to have a 'himbo.'"
So... suddenly it's about embarrassment? And how do you detect embarrassment in census data?
That himbo/bimbo talk is — in my book — embarrassing, but it seems to be what caught the attention of The Wall Street Journal, which did a video interview with Riley titled "College Women Won't Marry 'Himbos.'"
I suspect you need to use inflammatory words — like "stupid juice" and "himbo" — to grab traffic. Riley seems serious and intelligent in the WSJ interview, but also pedestrian. The odds of finding a mate change as you age, and the pool of potential partners may be biggest when you are in college, but finding a mate is not your only interest at that point in life, and you are also relatively young which might weigh against marrying.
At about 3 minutes into the video, the WSJ interviewer throws out the word "hypergamous" — which to my ear is not as exciting as "stupid juice" and "himbo," but might excite some people. I'm thinking it excites: 1. Women who get pissed off at the notion that they have any disadvantage, and 2. Less-than-fully-attractive males who feel heartened/hardened at the dream of pretty girls flocking their way if only they get a good enough job or create the impression of having whatever that amount of money is that gets the pretty girls to flock.
The question about "hypergamy" is (I'm paraphrasing): If all the other women are trying to marry up and the men they're chasing are okay marrying down (if the woman is pretty), don't the smartest, most professionally accomplished women face terrible odds?
Riley's response is that the world has changed, so that men are now ashamed to be with women who are not their intellectual equals. She utters this astounding sentence: "If you're a Stanford graduate, you don't want the UMass girl on your arm." That's some big time propaganda for elite women. Did you know that our society had become that snobby... and that the snobbery was so much about what school you got into?
Ah, what do I know?! I went to college back in 1969, when the idea of taking out loans to go to college was never even mentioned. I went to the University of Michigan because that's what my parents told me they could afford, and I married a very smart man who went there for the same reason. We stayed together for 17 years, and after we broke up, when I was 36, I went more than 20 years without finding someone I could be with. Now, I'm with Meade, who found me when I was 58, and I'm not ashamed or embarrassed at the difference in our education. The schools to which you submit your time and your money don't tell us all that much about the quality of your mind. But more than that, forming an intimate partnership is not about avoiding shame and embarrassment.
If you're a big shame-and-embarrassment-avoidance woman, I'd like to recommend celibacy.
Then you won't get any man juice on you.