Character

The most important aspect of a relationship is trust. Without trust, you have nothing at all. If someone tells you they’re going to be somewhere at a particular time, you have to be able to trust that they’re going to be there. Otherwise, you have zero incentive to show up when they told you to meet them. If someone tells you they’re only involved with you, you have no reason to believe them if their word doesn’t mean anything… If someone tells you they’re pregnant and their word is worthless, you won’t believe them when they tell you it’s yours. There are an infinite number of chicks that went on Maury swearing up and down that so-and-so was the father, and according to the DNA test, he was NOT! 😀 OTOH, there are tons of guys that went on that show swearing they WEREN’T the father, and they were.

So… TRUST is CRITICAL. However… Trust is worthless if the person doesn’t have any character. No constitution. No integrity. If we consider TRUST to be a finger plugging a hole in a dam, CHARACTER is the ability to KEEP that finger in the dam. This is another area where people fall short in relationships. They’re perfectly trustworthy, but that trust is easily broken by someone mentally superior to them or by their own shortcomings. How many times have we heard people say they cheated because they were drunk? Whose fault is THAT? :/ The cheater is at fault, because even if they were trustworthy, their ability to keep their promise to someone disappeared when they got drunk. Even if they were so drunk that they were incapacitated and someone took advantage of them, they’re STILL at fault, because they drank so much that they put themselves in that position. Unless it was the very first time, and they had no idea they could get that drunk, they’ve been there before and they allowed themselves to go there again. If they promised someone they’d be faithful to them, they destroyed their own ability to maintain that promise.

Even without being inebriated, people demonstrate their lack of character and they chalk it up to “temptation”. What’s THAT supposed to mean? :/ You’re saying you can be faithful until ANYONE ELSE offers you something to do. Temptation? You mean like a snake came out of a tree with an apple and you ate it temptation? You mean like “an offer you couldn’t refuse” temptation? What kind of temptation is it that makes your word suddenly meaningless? It’s not temptation. It’s lack of character. You couldn’t stand on your own word, so as much as you might have meant well by promising something to someone, you don’t have the personal power or strength of character to deliver on that promise.

Women: Career vs. Kids vs. tick tick tick

Penelope Trunk: “For example, sixty percent of women with MBAs are working at home, and an epidemic number of women are leaving corporate life when their children come. Women approaching age thirty face these statistics.”

Children are incredibly influential on women… biologically… This was used a lot in passing over women for promotions because the company didn’t want to lose a manager to maternity leave. That’s probably been changed now, by law, but there’s a tremendous effect on women simply when they realize that they’re pregnant. Their focus and priorities change immediately, as they well should. I think a lot of women underestimate their ability to handle the situation differently from men. Obviously, since men don’t get pregnant, there are no internal biological changes tugging their lives in a different direction than “career”.

Work and Family by 30 is a pretty lofty goal to begin with. Work should be pretty easy, since the average person who doesn’t get left back in school graduates @ 21, that leaves nine years to get it together….. assuming that the person is content NOW with the career they have because of what they took in college, which they decided on when they were 17 years old. Family, on its own, is easy as well by 30… at least getting INTO family is. I don’t know about age/divorce correlation, so I’m not aware of how many couples married before 30 are still married by 40.

Doing both together is a longshot unless the woman knows ahead of time what her plan is and is able to focus on and be effective in starting/maintaining a satisfying, progressive career while looking for and corralling “Mr. Right”, who happens to A) want to get married to her and B) have kids with her. This is why it makes sense that women would leave the workforce entirely or work at home, because it’s much tougher to work on Family after 35. They can get back to Career when their family life stabilizes….

… hehe assuming they’re not already pregnant again. 🙂

Does your baby know your name? :D

So I’m talking to this chick, and she’s telling me she thinks her baby knows what her name is. The baby’s only a few months old, so there’s clearly no way this is possible.

Babies don’t come out of the box equipped with the ability to parse statements in the language of their parents. This means that it’s just as easy for the baby to select someone’s name from a bunch of gibberish which happens to be English for me to select someone’s name out of a sentence spoken in Swahili. I do not KNOW Swahili, so I would have no idea of knowing which bunch of syllables is a proper name. I wouldn’t know which words represent verbs and I wouldn’t know which words represent nouns. I’m not saying “if I were a few-months-old-baby”… I’m saying RIGHT NOW! 😀 I would have NO IDEA what someone is saying in a language that I don’t understand. The only way I would have a chance is if the name in that language is similar to a name in English, the language that *I* speak and understand. That comes from years of hearing and understanding people’s names as well as having a grasp of the English language, as well as being more than a few months old.

This is why you can teach babies any language you want. They don’t come out with abilities in English, Swahili, French… none of that. The baby learns language from whomever teaches the baby language. First of all, babies don’t understand that people are called by NAMES at all. That’s a construct. If people called each other by numbers, this same person would swear that the baby knew that that set of numbers pertained to her. 😀 Every time someone uttered those numbers in that sequence, the baby would think they were talking about her. This assumes that the baby understands numbers. This assumes that the baby understands sequences. This assumes that the baby can parse sentences. This assumes a lot of things that just aren’t true.

I’m sure women would LOVE TO BELIEVE that their children know their names the first time the doctor slaps them, hahaha but it’s just not true. Also, it assumes that people call that woman the same thing over and over. What if people call her different things in front of the baby? I’ve gone to a few places where someone foreign to American customs was not aware that Bill is another name for William. They had NO IDEA that both of those names refer to the same person. These were GROWN PEOPLE in service-industry jobs. Why is it that they had no idea it’s the same name? Because it’s not in their custom… It’s not what they grew up with. They also wouldn’t know that Chuck is a name for Charles or that Dick is a name for Richard (Dick Nixon?). Similarly, babies don’t come equipped with the understanding that when someone utters several syllables in a row, or even worse, one syllable made up of a couple of consonants and a vowel, that it’s a representation of ANYONE, including their own mothers.

If you believe this is true, feel free to record someone saying your name over and over, and see how many times your baby thinks that recording is talking about you. 😀 Maybe have someone hold your baby and have them say your name over and over and see how many times your baby looks in your direction. Better yet… have someone say your name in Swahili, since you think babies understand languages they haven’t been taught yet right off the bat! 😀

Fake it ’till you Make it! :D

~ response to Penelope Trunk’s post ~

PT: “For example, The Economist reports that men overestimate how attracted women are to them, and women underestimate how interested men are. This research comes from an article in Evolution and Human Behavior, and the conclusion is that the poor estimating is actually good for evolution, because men don’t miss opportunities to spread their DNA, and women make sure to mate with someone who will stick around.”

hahaha Biology aside, in most cases, I find both situations to be true as far as men overestimating and women underestimating. IMO that’s because of what men and women (stereotypically) approach “relationships” for in the first place. I’m not sure who said this, but I read somewhere that “men give relationships to get sex and women give sex to get relationships”. 😀 That pretty much sums it up.

Not that this never happens, but I don’t know ANY guys (who had a choice, that is) that chose their SO without being sexually attracted to her. ‘Matter of fact, I don’t know ANY guys that have ever even dated women that they weren’t sexually attracted to for one reason or another. I’m not saying these women were “hot”, but just that there was something about them that made that guy interested in having sex with her, and that’s what made her a candidate for dating, a relationship, becoming a girlfriend or a wife.

OTOH, women date men all the time that they’re not sexually attracted to. Women date men that they’re not even sure are attracted to women. Again, “stereotypically”, that’s not what they’re ‘in it’ for. They’re in it for the way they relate to him and how it is to spend time with him.

I think the over- and under-estimation is based on projection. Guys know that the main reason they would talk to a woman is that they’re attracted to her, so they project that onto her and figure she’s attracted to them BECAUSE she’s talking to them, or accepting their rap. Meanwhile, women talk to guys they like because they like their personalities and ways of being, so they project that onto the guy, and think he has a platonic interest in her… or, perhaps that he chose her based on what she said or has accomplished in life vs how she looks and how turned on he is by her.

PT: “Here’s another relationship study that makes me think of work: A good relationship hinges more on expressing joy from someone else’s good news than about how you react to their bad news. Benedict Carey writes in The New York Times that a slew of studies find that your reaction to someone’s good news is an opportunity to strengthen the relationship. So don’t brush off your spouse when she has a good day at work, and the same goes for your co-worker’s good news — express enthusisam. (Thanks, Mercedes)”

hmm. I don’t know that the two are different… responding to good news or bad news. I would think the important part would be the quality and value of the response instead of which format the information was received in.

Let’s say the good news was “I got a promotion” and the bad news was “you look fat in that dress” 😀 The quality of her response to either one can strengthen or weaken a relationship. As far as “how the day was @ work”… Women are notorious for telling men things they never asked about. 😀 It’s tough to fake interest in and enthusiasm for something you didn’t want to hear in the first place. OTOH, your advice is on-point. FAKING that interest and enthusiasm is better for your relationship than telling her to get out from in front of the television because they’re about to kick off for the second half! 😀

Destiny? Fate? Meaningless Coincidence?

So I get on a bus, today. I normally don’t get on buses, but I decided to try one today. Not just any bus, but a bus going out of state. Not like a public bus or something. I get my ticket at the bus terminal and walk to the waiting area. I get in line behind this girl/woman/young lady, whatever your favorite term is. She’s relatively attractive. I don’t know that that has anything to do with the topic other than that’s the reason I noticed her in the first place. I don’t know that that’s not the ONLY reason I’m blogging this. 😀 So the bus comes, and we’re going to the same stop. It was an express bus, so I suppose EVERYONE was going to the same stop… or maybe they weren’t… maybe there were “points beyond” that that bus was going to. I call for my ride to pick me up, and she goes about her business. Meanwhile, I’m wondering to myself what the odds are that I’m going to see her on the way back “home” (at least for me).

Amongst others, I meet up with someone that took an earlier bus from NYC. I decide to leave my plans for going back home up to whenever he decides he’s leaving. That’s not exactly a fair statement. I should say that I was working with him today, so I definitely wasn’t coming back to NYC BEFORE he was… there was just nothing saying that I had to leave when he did.

Anyway… I leave it up to him, and when he’s ready to head back, I get ready to go. Our ride has to pass by Fedex, so we end up going for the 8:30pm bus instead of the 8:00pm bus. We get dropped off, and as we’re waiting for the bus, the same chick is dropped off @ the Park N Ride by her father (which I could tell because of their conversation). So now, the question has changed from “what are the odds that we will come back together on the same bus, when there’s a bus that runs every 30 minutes from the center of the universe (New York City) to some town in the sticks in Jersey” to “What’s going on here? Destiny? Fate? Meaningless Coincidence?”

It’s true that the odds were relatively good that I would come back on the same bus she did… at least, compared to other modes of transportation like New York Subways, where you can take several different lines, or you can take buses, or you can catch a cab, or you can walk. Between 10:30am and 8:30pm, there are 20 buses, but you can cut that number in less than half, considering I wouldn’t expect someone to take a bus to Jersey just for a couple of hours, then go back home. So let’s say the odds were 1 in 6.

For someone to believe that it was Destiny or perhaps Fate that caused you to run into someone twice in the same day, you’d have to believe there was a plan or someone/something pushing you in a certain direction, and also pushing the other person. Then again, you’re not supposed to be able to escape “destiny”, so what exactly WAS your destiny in that situation? Just to be there on that day, on that time? Your actions still come down to Free Will, so even when put in a situation of potential Destiny, what happens still comes down to what you choose to do, or what’s chosen for you.

Maybe it’s not a plan, but a suggestion from ‘the powers that be’. Then again… maybe it’s Meaningless Coincidence. If it’s a suggestion, and you don’t recognize or act on that suggestion, you miss out on something potentially great for you… IF the power suggesting this to you had your best interests in mind! 😀 Similarly, if it’s Meaningless Coincidence, and you act like it’s something special, you could overreact to ‘nothing’.

So I’m thinking about this on the subway ride home from Port Authority. What just happened? Did ANYTHING happen? DOES anything EVER happen? Is it all Meaningless Coincidence?…..

I leave the subway and walk home… just in time to meet a new chick simultaneously entering my building. 😀 She’s fun, friendly and attractive, and as we bid each other ‘good night’ as I leave the elevator, I’m glad that I didn’t stop to meet the first chick, because I would have missed the second one! 😉