Ironically the Bay Area is among the worst places on Earth for improving your social life if you're straight and male. I noticed that you don't live in the Bay Area, you're married, you probably meant a much broader meaning of "social life", so your experiences are likely very different. But the typical clean cut, well-spoken, hard working, respectful, male SWE in the Bay Area making $120K+ a year in his 20s or 30s, who should be a magnet for women, turns out to be living in one of worst places because of male-female ratios among singles (and some other cultural factors).
My advice would be work hard, save your money, travel when you can to better locales to improve your social life, but with the eventual goal of permanently moving out when you've saved enough. If you pick your destination within the USA well, dating prospects will improve greatly, and if you look worldwide (and can overcome the language and immigration issues), it could improve dramatically.
Perhaps the problem is in thinking those things mean a guy "should be a magnet for women". I regularly get an earful from women about guys who think they're God's gift to the populace. And one of the first hits for "Bay Area dating as a woman" confirms that: https://violetfog.com/dating-in-san-francisco/
In a section about what she hates most, she writes: "The number of guys there that have a disgusting sense of entitlement and attitude towards dating. THAT was annoying. Often they’re the ones getting such great praise (and pay) at work that they think it translates into them being hotshots outside of work as well. Like they are too good or something. What sucks about these bad apples is that they often come off as charming at first. But alas, the arrogance and shallow attitude always reveals itself eventually. So just run when you suspect that big-paycheck-big-ego persona thing going on. Don’t walk, RUN."
The fact that there are way more men than women in the Bay is a statistical reality, which you admit yourself.
Then you bring an opinion blog-post by a single woman as counter-evidence.
Ironically, all these complaints about "guys there that have a disgusting sense of entitlement" just go to show how picky she is, and can afford to be, in San Francisco.
Nothing in GP's post exhibits an arrogant attitude. He makes the simple observation, that the sort of guys who would be considered attractive and desirable in most other locations, are struggling to get dates in the Bay. This is easily explained by the high male/female ratio, which we already established as a fact.
Given this fact, no amount of hand-wringing will help: if there are far more single men then women, then the women would set a very high bar, and the men below that bar would have to remain single.
There are simply not enough women for all the single men in the Bay. No spectacular feats of mental gymnastics, nor nice-sounding dating tips, nor seeking to blame men for being "arrogant", will get around this reality.
As a final anecdote, I did know women who dated executives and VCs in the Bay. Some of these guys had mammoth egos. Curiously, that didn't prevent them from having far better dating lives than any engineer I knew.
Your conception of what women are looking for in a man might not hew as closely to reality as you think.
What specifically each individual is looking for doesn't matter. It's supply and demand.
There is a lot of data showing that even with a balanced gender ratio, women are much more selective picking partners than men are. This is for obvious evolutionary reasons. Now, take that and add in a 50% male surplus, and you have a city where most women openly say they only date 6/6'1+ and high earners. This can be verified on practically any dating app with a few hours of data.
Dating != relationship. Women can have fun too, just dating, and sometimes they are the ones using you just because your ego doesn’t allow you to see it.
It’s not a matter of being picky. It’s a matter of self respect.
And my observation of relationships with those high ego men is that being alone is better. Regardless of how much money they earn, they look more like trap then win.
I think that one parallel issue is the low opinion men have of other males. They assume everyone else is dirty and instantly rude and it just is not so.
Considering how many executives and SVPs in tech have been caught in sexual harassment (if not outright sexual assault), you might want to think quietly for awhile about what your definitions and standards are.
I live in the South Bay, don’t work in tech, make well under $100k a year, live comfortably and have had no issues dating. I’m a local, white and over six feet tall, so that probably helps, but I’m certainly nothing special looks wise.
OKCupid's dataset also shows white men are the most desired on average.
But there is also a second way to make money. That’s the rentier way: by leveraging control over something that already exists, such as land, knowledge, or money, to increase your wealth. You produce nothing, yet profit nonetheless. By definition, the rentier makes his living at others’ expense, using his power to claim economic benefit.
For those who know their history, the term “rentier” conjures associations with heirs to estates, such as the 19th century’s large class of useless rentiers, well-described by the French economist Thomas Piketty. These days, that class is making a comeback. (Ironically, however, conservative politicians adamantly defend the rentier’s right to lounge around, deeming inheritance tax to be the height of unfairness.) But there are also other ways of rent-seeking. From Wall Street to Silicon Valley, from big pharma to the lobby machines in Washington and Westminster, zoom in and you’ll see rentiers everywhere."
Ceptr.org - the most promising attempt I've seen who are trying to better make visible, and then democratize and distribute, the rents.
But yes, they should definitely be fighting the system, not getting mad at women and/or society at large. Of course, the whole of incel culture is pretty good at explaining why no woman wants to come near them.
Just curious, why wouldn't there be an equivalently large lesbian female population?
Your statement that "a city that has a large group of gay men doesn't necessarily have a large group of lesbians" is accurate, but this is a bad piece of evidence to cite in favor of it. Almost all cities with large LGBTQ+ populations have far more bars and clubs targeted at gay men than at lesbians.
San Francisco had a few lesbian bars a few years ago, all of which have since closed. That pattern - lesbian nightlife disappearing - is pretty consistent across other cities that have large LGBTQ+ populations.
Yes, it's quite simple: there are many more men in the Bay than women, so women have their pick, and they can afford to raise the bar far higher than $120k.
Also, $120k can be a nice annual salary in much of the US, but doesn't go far in the Bay where median house price is over $1m.
Consider just FAANGs in the Bay. There's probably not enough available single women just for every straight FAANG male employee (who would be making more than $120k/yr).
Anecdotally, I know some women in the Bay, working in areas like recruiting and marketing, who are dating VCs and CEOs exclusively and consider dating "plain engineers" to be beneath them.
Fair or not, your "male SWE making $120K+ a year" has become the "common guy" of the Bay. The number of women is small enough that most of them can aim higher.
I’m in Manhattan. The single sex ratio is reversed. (More single women than men.)
Male FAANG employee rants about how they should be magnets for women, but can’t find a date because something is wrong with all women, are equally prevalent here.
They’re all (a) the same rant and (b) as boring as the last one.
There’s a selection effect among well-paid software engineers at large tech companies that explains more of this than local statistics. That or these jobs turn interesting people into those who believe they should be magnets for the opposite sex, which tends to be a turn-off for most people.
Tech selects for people who are object focussed as opposed to people focussed.
Most women prefer to date men who are good at wooing and entertaining them. Which means more people focussed than object focussed.
The tech men are frustrated because they are basically their best selves -- financially and professionally successful, able and willing to support a family. Traditionally that would be enough to make them a catch.
But dating women with careers limits the value of their financial support. And they don't have the skills to wow the women socially.
Realistically they can't develop those skills easily.
This is probably going to sound incredibly cynical, but the best advice I've heard for NYC techies is to try to date ballerinas.
They're beautiful and disciplined. But they retire before 30 and have to decide to either start a family or open a studio to start teaching. At that point most of the men they know are married or gay.
So likely to be more willing to overlook the social weaknesses of tech men.
There's so much going on in this response, but my favorite parts, in order of appearance:
> The tech men are frustrated because they are basically their best selves
The tech men are frustrated because of entitlement. Handed everything on a silver platter hand-delivered to them by a person of color driving a rented Toyota Prius for half of their monthly income.
> This is probably going to sound incredibly cynical, but the best advice I've heard for NYC techies is to try to date ballerinas.
Leave my goddamn ballerinas alone.
> But they retire before 30 and have to decide to either start a family or open a studio to start teaching.
Most of the people I dance with are software engineers of one kind or another. San Francisco may be somewhat unique in that regard--I wouldn't know, but most of the dancers I know both professional and retired are insanely enterprising and know how to hustle better than most of the people I know in tech.
> At that point most of the men they know are married or gay.
Most of the men I know that dance both professionally and at an amateur level do not identify as gay--some have families--with other dancers.
> So likely to be more willing to overlook the social weaknesses of tech men.
Nope. It's _impossible_ to overlook the social weaknesses of tech men.
software skills can't be developed easily either, yet programmers have powered through, persevered, and figured it out. where would programmers be if they shied away from skills they couldn't develop easily?
also, if you have underdeveloped social skills, you are not 'basically your best self'. i believe in the tech men! i believe that they can put their cleverness & perseverance to work developing their social skills! you can do it!
> And they don't have the skills to wow the women socially.
Your standard of what qualifies as a man's "best self" is pretty low.
Yet... as computing becomes more popular, I expect this stereotype to become obsolete. It roughly applies to myself and many of my friends. My wife calls me a robot. But hey, somehow most of us managed to find a spouse.
While I don't doubt that some guys have trouble in more favorable conditions, nothing will change the mathematical reality that even if every single man in the Bay found his perfect match, 40% of them would remain single because there are simply not enough women for all the men in the area.
I agree completely.
> Her exes and her friends' husbands are shockingly anti-intellectual, didn't attend college, have some substance abuse issues, and/or make well under 6 figures.
Here's what happened:
Guys who are intellectual, attended college, have good discipline, and stayed away from substance abuse and similar problems - they moved to the Bay to get that "six figure job".
The Bay has thus become chock-full of these men.
The few women who moved to the Bay can have their pick. What would be a rare find elsewhere, is commonplace and boring in the Bay.
One of many anecdotes I could cite:
A friend of mine is a 25yo female working in recruiting in the Bay. If you pitched a date as an "intellectual, college-educated man with a good life and a six-figure job" she'd literally laugh in your face. She had 2 different guys courting her at the time, a startup CEO and a VC. She once showed me her Tinder account. Just by swiping 30-40 times, she'd find at least one guy who is an exec or VC making 7 figures per year, and it would usually be a match.
"120k/year"? You'd make her laugh.
> "120k/year"? You'd make her laugh.
I don't understand this fixation on earnings, I wasn't making half that when I found my partner. Making 7 figures won't get you a girlfriend, but thinking it will makes it likely any partner you do find won't stick around long.
One of two things are happening, either a, all the women you're meeting truly are fixated on nothing but a man's wallet (highly unlikely but possible) or b, you have some seriously unhealthy views towards women and relationships that you should work on before attempting to enter a meaningful relationship.
> "A man can move himself two points higher on the attractiveness scale we used if his salary increases by a factor of 10," study author John Speakman told The Times.
People treat it like a character flaw for a woman to choose a man based on wealth and status, but why? A woman committing to a relationship likely means pregnancy and that requires resources and protection for years and years.
That's how it's been for hundreds of thousands of years. Expecting widespread birth control and changing societal norms to overcome all those years of evolution in only a few generations seems foolish.
Try "millions" :)
That literally says nothing about what makes that person interesting or fun to be around.
Thinking that people boil down to salary and education level will make you only able to display those things.
Find a hobby that you like, enrich yourself in ways that aren't measured by the IRS.
Does she have them audited? Because my "Tinder Salary" is an order of magnitude greater my actual salary.
For example, with LinkedIn and its profile pics, it's very easy to figure out whether the guy you're chatting with really is the CEO of a hot startup.
Depends on the startup and what stage it is. If it's a successful startup, then the CEO is sitting on a pile of stock that will likely be worth millions. If it's also a later stage startup, then likely he is making at least as much as his senior developers on top of that.
Either way, he's a much better bet if you want to be a millionaire's wife some day. Also, executives typically have expense accounts that afford them a very nice lifestyle _right now_, even if their salary isn't that high. You can be making a modest salary, but leading a jetset life on business expenses.
> Are there really very many VCs out there?
Yes there are. Here's just one random list of them:
However, it's a different path for top executives versus the rest of us.
If you follow folks at that level, you'll notice that even when their startup fizzles, they tend to come out on top.
There are ways to get paid well at an exit even when your stock are nominally worthless. If you're an executive. Not to mention that if their startup was worth $100m+ at one point, they would likely get a chance to start another.
None of this is criticism, by the way: many of these guys worked harder and longer than most engineers.
They did get disproportionately compensated for it, though.
Congrats, you just got paid $30m+ as an exec for an exit that paid nothing to all other shareholders.
I did meet plenty who just happened to only date men who make high six to seven figures. It was a serial coincidence!
If you take the sum of all the comments, it goes something like this:
1. Women are disproportionally flocking to a few guys at the very top of the income / success curve.
2. Those guys have amazing dating life, and no pressure to commit.
3. They will go through dozens of women and eventually settle with one. So if they date X women in their bachelorhood, only one 1/X will end up marrying them, and X-1/X will be left disappointed and unhappy.
4. X can be 200+, so that's a lot of unhappy women.
5. Meanwhile tons of guys below the top would love get a date, and can't. They're also unhappy.
6. Evolution isn't optimizing for happiness.
I don't think so. It's only when males are desperate to settle; living alone and spending their money on their hobbies/travel might be a much more attractive option to them than to bind to an unattractive female that went to SFBA specifically to capture a high-value male.
Women in the Bay Area can easily score a few points higher than in more competitive cities and the opposite is true for men.
That sounds more like bullets dodged than a loss (for the engineers that is).
More seriously, while we'd love to impose moral views on reality, the simple fact is that when people can afford to be picky, they will be.
I don't know what you value in a romantic partner, but for simplicity, let's assume it's looks. If you arrived at some magical island where it was just you and hundreds of women, and 50% of those were supermodels, would you ever date an average girl?
I would start acting like an asshole because that would be the only way of keeping most of them from making advances on me all the time.
No matter ones income, it's better not to go anywhere with that kind of women. Also life tends to adjust this pretty quickly: they can be that picky until their early 30's, maybe even late 20's. After that available options narrow down substantially.
Basically men have vastly overestimated the importance of wealth.
A chart of the importance of wealth would drop off a cliff as you go from third-world conditions to a non-starvation civilization. Then it approaches zero as you get to NYC/SF where literally everyone is rich or else they wouldn't be living there. Guys who get mail order brides are basically arbitraging this (probably temporary) geographical difference in the importance of wealth.
Are not usually exactly the winners in life.
One of the major factors - aside from the gender ratio - behind tech guys not finding partners is this weird expectation that if they shave, clip their fingernails, and don't act like an outright dirtbag that women will flock to them, regardless of whether they have any personal appeal or not.
A lot of dudes in tech are just bores with zero interests and a outsized sense of entitlement to the opposite sex (talking about the het guys, don't know how it works on the other side of the fence). Just to top it off, they expect to be magnets to interesting women, too - these guys are the first to sneer at gold-digging women who are, frankly, their appropriate mirror image. That is, if the only thing you can say about yourself that isn't table-stages normal person stuff is that you're "a SWE making $120K+ a year" who exactly do you think you're going to attract?
Bonus points: deciding that the one thing that's missing from the above picture is being swole, and filling in any extra time not spend being a "respectful male SWE" with incessant iron pumping.
Do Bay Area men really think interesting women would be irresistably drawn to their unremarkable income and mastery of basic hygiene if they moved to New York?
Late 30s is a good time to date. I had the same issues as OP describes in my 20s, not in the Bay Area. It was all about how I subconsciously chose to approach things. I worked on myself, was genuine, and have had great success finding a mate up here.
(Not all that attentive, about 50 lbs overweight, fwiw)
That's one hell of a dating site opener.
To expand on this: Develop yourself outside of your work. You are not your career.
People don't really care much about what exact job you have, as long as it provides stability - both financial and mental. You're no good for anyone if your job takes up all of your time, energy and attention. Your significant other should not need to carry your work-related burdens.
Have interests outside of what you do for a living. I got weird looks when I admitted at my previous job that I don't do much coding in my spare time, but honestly the guy I talked to did coding for work and most of his spare time, all the time. I mean good for him if he's enjoying himself but it's just not for me.
Use your intelligence to expand your horizons. Know what's going on in the news and politics. Read books outside of your niche (outside of fantasy/sci-fi, biographies of people that aren't called Steve or Bill, history of countries on the other side of the world). Find people and social communities outside of your industry. Get out of your comfort zone.
All of this makes for better conversation on a date, or to get a date than what you do for work or how much you make.
People who do what they enjoy and try new things, instead of trying to be interesting, tend to be interesting.
From experience, this will already put you so far outside of the usual spectrum of what people meet that this is more than enough. There's a nice side-effect that you don't need to feel like you need to "do things" to be interesting, which really isn't a healthy stance to have towards yourself.
My anecdotal advice is to change environment. Depending on where you move to the demographic (men/women ratio), race preferences and what is considered as interesting changes. As an engineer in engineering university, I had more luck on dating apps focusing on women from non-tech field with different men/women ratio. As a half-asian guy, I had way more success in an Asian country than a predominately white country. (independent from race/age of the women)
Starting with exploring genuine interests which have maybe not been 'listened to'. Being a bit adventurous (determine if things you've been curious about you actually care about), and trying new things (discover and identify new areas that exist) which could end up being interesting to you.
From what I've seen, the key to being interesting is weirdly being more of "your true self".
(not sure if any of that is actually helpful)
According to census statistics, there are 1.63 single men for every 1 woman in Marin County. 1.34 single men per single woman in San Mateo County. 1.55 single men per single woman in Santa Clara County.
So I really like your advice; if every man in the Bay became a "multi-deminsional, multi-faceted person", they would transcend the boundaries of plain arithmetic so there would be enough single women to date every one of them!
Yes, each one of them could become ultra-competitive about it, and crawl on top of the others to be among the fortunate 60% who get dates, instead of the 40% who don't.
But do you really want to live in an area where 40% of men can't get a date because there's simply no women available to them?
We also haven't discussed the downsides to these fortunate 60% men. You worked on yourself, became interesting, and got a girlfriend. However, she knows with 50% more men than women in her area, she can easily replace you. That may make the relationship less pleasant than you think.
"Just become more interesting to overcome all adverse effects from 50% gender diversity" is unfortunately quite naive.
> "How does one become more interesting"
Sure, you can change your environment to be more *relatively interesting. But that was also not the core of the question as I understand it.
Rather, providing a method or tips to be more OBJECTIVELY interesting today than your yesterdays self is something useful in any kind of 'dating market'.
- Make (significantly) more money (than most other guys in the bay area)
- Be more attractive (than most other guys in the bay area)
Making $120k in the bay area obviously isn't impressive. Neither is being fit without being on gear. It's all about the other guys around you. Both quality and quantity. These things would make you interesting in other parts of the country, or outside of the USA. Not here, though.
Now how about $500k? You can afford a starter home, a nice car, custom-tailored clothing. Plastic surgery if you think you need it.
You're presumably good at something that you're passionate about if you're being paid that much, even if it's "just" software engineering, and that's something people like. You can even date other software engineers who will be impressed by your skills and knowledge. Yeah the gender ratio sucks, but this is also the best place in the world to make your dual-FAANG-engineer-income power-couple dream come true.
Come up with something that isn't (video/board)gaming, cycling, bouldering, or photography, that you do maybe once a month and say it's your hobby. Yoga is a decent choice.
Grats, you're now interesting. Assuming you don't have any physical or psychological dealbreakers that can't be overlooked no matter how rich or ripped you get, that is.
I would not say that any of that makes you particularly interesting. Some of it might make you attractive to certain people, but I think that's quite different from what was originally intended by "interesting" in this thread.
"Say it's your hobby"... I suggest actually finding a hobby. Because it will make you happier, not because it will make you "look interesting".
Is it? Being interesting is a competition. You are competing for the interest/attention of others. How interesting you are depends on how much better or worse you rank compared to others, in regards to the factors that make a person interesting. Relationships, friendships, jobs -- it's all competition for limited resources.
>"Say it's your hobby"... I suggest actually finding a hobby. Because it will make you happier, not because it will make you "look interesting".
Obviously you should have hobbies for the sake of personal fulfillment, and I don't see what would make you think I feel otherwise. But your hobbies are also part of your personal brand, and a factor in making you interesting (or boring), so it's important that you project as someone who has interesting hobbies (whether they actually qualify as hobbies or not, depending on the time and effort/money that you invest). Right? People list their hobbies on dating profiles. People (usually) talk about their hobbies on first dates. It's not uncommon for hobbies to be a discussion during job interviews.
>Some of it might make you attractive to certain people
Yes, hopefully (but not assuredly) attractive to certain people that you want to attract in the first place.
What wwould this better your odds for? Short-term dating success perhaps. I'm pretty sure there are better long-term strategies for happiness.
Be yourself, like what you like (unashamedly), and you will likely attract people into your life who like those same things, and indeed you.
However, when we have a discussion about Bay Area dating, and most comments blame men for "not being interesting" and completely ignore, deny, or fail to even mention the gender imbalance, I don't think it helps men to make informed choices.
I'd expect fewer young women?
I know a guy who makes $350k and has a security clearance but wears white socks, is overweight, eats with his mouth open and is super awkward. That’s not a “catch,” in women’s eyes, unless he owns it without the usual creepy awkwardness, shame and/or insecurities.
Sense of humor, directness, interests outside tech, goals in life, socioemotional self-awareness and demonstrated relentlessly-resourceful go-getterness is what makes women run. And don’t be so damn predictable.
PS: skip Tinder unless you’re a 19-year-old sports player or an 20-/30-something model.
When I think of my social life I think of my community and the people in it. Board game nights at my friends’ apartments, playing destiny 2 together, going canvassing with folks politically aligned with me. I’ve met so many interesting platonic and romantic relationships by intentionally building community first and my romantic life second.
If your entire socialization scheme is build around winning at dating and you come from it with a scarcity mindset... you’re the problem.
if there are 150 applicants and 100 jobs, there are 50 people who miss out. waging war to "one up" those other 149 (or 99 i guess) is certainly an avenue of possible pursuit but is likely to lead to misery IME.
alternatively, removing yourself from a systematically horrible situation is probably pareto optimal. if there are 100 jobs and 80 applicants, you're suddenly in a way better situation.
if you make six figures and can work remotely, the world is literally your oyster. there are opportunities to arbitrage your income and freedom and create the life you want - but it starts outside SFBA.
Also, newsflash: not getting attention from the gender(s) of your choice doesn't make you a "victim". We're back to the entitlement thing, I guess.
But yes, moving out of the Bay Area will help. However, I'd hazard a guess that unless someone moves to somewhere where a six-figure salary makes them a minor princeling, your problems may follow them. Because a boring dude in SF or the Bay is still a boring guy in Des Moines or Scranton.
If you know so much then what's your prescription for them?
It's also a pretty great way to blind yourself to what 'league' you're actually in. A number of my tech friends have wasted an extraordinary amount of time chasing women absurdly out of their league because they've been convinced that "having a decent job", "being well-spoken" and "eating with their mouths closed" somehow puts them in the top 3% of desirable men. Really, no.
Second, go have a life. You know, other activities outside work? Socializing? This is important anyhow. Preferably do activities because you're interested in them and socialize with people you like, not because you're there to "pick up chicks". Nothing is more tiring than dudes relentlessly on the make in every situation.
This isn't guaranteed to work... especially with dire male/female ratios (although not living like a schlub probably evens the odds a bit). And plenty of people are just really unattractive, uncharismatic, whatever. Not sure what to do then.
When you are told you need to meet specific criteria to achieve a goal, it's not entitlement to expect those criteria to lead to that goal. When trying to get people to listen to what you are saying, try not to start with a put-down.
It's even harder to fix the overall messaging than it is to realize it in yourself. But each person who realizes that they have been sold an entitlement, and gets past it, is one more person who can say, "No, all of the assumptions you've been sold are wrong."
the good news is now that you know that you've been sold some bad goods, you can start to figure out what the real story is. and only good things can come from that :} there is some great advice in this thread, especially this comment: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21977225
It was merely a rant about how they felt people shouldn’t feel entitled to anything and that expecting to be able to date if you’ve got your life in order is too much entitlement.
Because last time I checked, "expecting to be able to date" involves the decisions of other people and you're not really generally entitled for other people to do much more than treat you with decency and respect. Not, necessarily, want to jump your bones. Sorry.
By your standards I’m not hot shit but my girlfriend loves me so I’m wondering why I should even care what you think?
I'm curious as to what's driving your serial misinterpretation, if anything. I suppose it's possible you're just having difficulty with parsing out arguments and reasoning about them (is English your first language?), but it seems just as likely you're on the insecure side. You keep cropping up and asking complete strangers on the Internet to validate your relationship.
So, ok. Dude, you're probably fine. Although it's not a guarantee; there's still a possibility that your girlfriend runs off with Mick Jagger, or a rock-climber who works in a cafe who has $18.23 in his bank account, or a temperamental chess player with a huge schlong who bathes once a month, whether he needs to or not. Keep your eyes peeled at all times!
This is not a problem of interestingness. This is a problem of skewed gender ratios. In India and China there are way more men than women. That means that some men will remain without partners regardless of what they do or how interesting they become.
That's their problem you might say. Sure, but only if you ignore the negative consequences of young men being unable to find partners.
The analogy to India and China is pretty good, aside from a few tiny differences, like the fact that most single males in the valley we're talking about intentionally came there from somewhere else, are hugely wealthy relative to poor Chinese and Indian workers, and that it's ever so slightly easier to cross a county line to somewhere less bizarre than Santa Clara than it is to emigrate out of India or China.
It's funny how I can post a ranty-but-true thing about how the world actually works (i.e. "having some table stakes attributes will not make you a 'pussy magnet'") and just get bombarded by people like you complaining about the dreaded ratio and philosopher1234 who clearly is wondering whether his girlfriend is about to leave him for a rock-climbing jazz musician who doesn't bathe or something.
All these dudes come flooding into an area to work in a dude-dominated industry and collect Big Valley Salaries and somehow this is a problem that needs to be worked out? If it's that big a problem, leave. Geez. How hard it that to figure out?
I just objected to this idea that they should work on their interestingness and that doing so would somehow solve the problem of them finding someone. I think you acknowledge that even if they all become incredibly interesting, they wouldn't all be able to find partners.
Wearing dress shirts instead of t-shirts was a good idea though.
Because no one owes you shit. If you don’t like your circumstances change them. Either change yourself or change your surroundings. You are not owed a relationship of any kind, for any reason. Being a single man in the Bay Area is pretty awful because of the ratio, even if you are reasonably good looking, professionally successful and confident. It’s no fun being a young professional woman in New York City either. The ratio is the ratio; it has its effects. People give women marginally more lip service sympathy but they do exactly as much to actually help. Nothing.
As for attracting interesting women you actually wanna marry. Yeah you should probably have interests outside of tech. If all you are interested in is tech that makes you really boring because it's one of those subjects with no spillover. If you're an artist people might not appreciate the technicalities of mixing oil paints but they will enjoy looking at your paintings. Tech is impenetrable unless you are also in it. No one gives a fuck about that graph problem you solved that just made your distributed system more scalable because they don't understand half of those words. Imagine two people speaking a language you don't speak to each other and all they want to do is talk in that language. So boring.
It's obviously not the case in the Bay Area, but it is in a lot of places. To be honest, I was a bit shocked with the kind of mismatched couples I saw in San Francisco. Lots of appealing men with less appealing women. Ratios do matter. Also, a SWE salary is not unremarkable in most of the country (look up salary statistics).
> Dude sounds like catch.
That's sort of the point.
And the idea of match is "willing to let me pay for her". There is no other standard for suitable partner ever mentioned. No expectation of shared values or similar livestyle (except valuing looks). No expectation of mutual support.
And the experts on what women want are people who "dated" over dozens of people last year - meaning none of them trying for long term stable relationship.
And everytime I read those discussions I kind of think I would not want to date them either. Mostly because they primary think in hierarchies instead of relationships and because I would not want a guy that would use his money as leverage over me.
This means that for you as a woman dating is first and foremost about separating life partners from sex partners. Your advice goes in that direction. But it is totally worthless for men, most women they meet will be looking for a life partner so they are not hard to find. Instead men face the problem that most women are very reluctant to date them, so men mostly need advice how to get more dates.
So women apply a higher standard to their casual sex. They want to know that somebody is going to be kind and considerate. That's going to take several dates, which means they're also looking for somebody who's interesting over the course of several evenings. And once they've found that person, they'll often want more -- not a lifetime, but weeks or months.
Maybe that turns into a commitment, but the stereotype that every woman is looking for a ring misreads the situation. If you go on each date assuming that sex is completely off the table for the first week, you'll find that a lot of women are willing to have sex after that without visiting a judge or priest first. And being genuinely interested in them during that time, rather than just counting down the days, will improve your odds.
And complained about women they date being primary interested in them paying for them. Like, he trying to attract her primary on money, who is going to take that offer?
If males look for sex date and women look for relationship, you have mismatch. And no group should feel angry or entitled about the other not being interested in them - they want fundamentally different things. In that case, he is not getting date because he is player and women around happen to be not interested in that.
And then he sees another dude in long term relationship with a woman that seeks that and is all offended about unfair world.
And also I kind of thing that if this is the need, prostitution should be an option. It is kind of same thing, except transaction is clear from get go.
They generally don't get that, and will give other reasons why they can't just hire somebody. But I believe that's the real reason: it's the one thing that they cannot buy, and therefore matters most when they have all the money in the world.
The assumption that the decision to have causual sex is somehow result of valuing the dude is imo wrong.
Not only is that incredibly demeaning to women, it's self-defeating. If they could just believe that many women actually enjoy sex for its own sake, if they can have it without being abused, harassed, and stuck alone with the consequences, they could get themselves laid a lot more.
Gold-digging isn't relevant imo given that they also have tech incomes, and generally have rich families overseas to boot. I really don't understand why most guys here pass on them. The only reason I ever get from my friends when I ask is "I just don't like fobs". Whatever, more for me.
Oxford dictionary plural for:
A chain attached to a watch for carrying in a waistcoat or waistband pocket.
You are not a fob if you moved here from China at 9 years old, didn't read or speak your first word of English until then, and have no discernible accent as an adult.
No one would call a Hong Konger with a HK English accent a fob either.
Also clothing :-)
here's your problem
I and the vast majority of my friends grew up in the Bay Area. The vast majority of those I went to college with (and studied CS or EE or whatever) ended up working in the Bay Area. Almost all of them have girlfriends/fiancees/are married.
None of them are CEOs of hot startups lol. None of them are unnaturally attractive either. Just regular ole average programmers. :)
I dunno what's going on but I will take the circlejerk with a giant mountain of salt lol.
1. Lots of people in their early to mid 20s who aren’t interested settling down.
2. Lots of people who are career focused and not interested in settling down.
3. Lots of people who are students and not interested in settling down.
4. Lots of people who are already settled down. Long term, stable relationships are very common. Marriage, less so, but not uncommon.
5. A higher than average population who will have their parents arrange a marriage back in India.
Honest the whole social situation feels like an extension of college - not much opportunity for match making.
People don’t move to the Bay Area to find a spouse. They move there for career opportunities.
Why does social life only mean dating?
There are tons of social circles in the Bay Area. Hobbyist groups, aficionados of all stripes, non-profits galore and strange entertainment options. There is a diversity of bars and restaurants, and California’s unique outdoors are close.
Perhaps it would be more rewarding to focus on those, and be a little more passive when it comes to dating while you build up your interests.
Serious question: why do you think being "respectful" has any positive correlation with being a magnet for women?
I can't prove the "chicks digs bad boys" cliché is scientifically accurate, but as the only convict I personally know is both objectively ugly AND a magnet to girls half his age, I am pretty sure the converse is wrong.
The Dark Triad personality: Attractiveness to women
It has been suggested that the Dark Triad (DT) personality constellation is an evolved facilitator of men’s short-term mating strategies. However, previous studies have relied on self-report data to consider the sexual success of DT men. To explore the attractiveness of the DT personality to the other sex, 128 women rated created (male) characters designed to capture high DT facets of personality or a control personality. Physicality was held constant. Women rated the high DT character as significantly more attractive. More- over, this greater attractiveness was not explained by correlated perceptions of Big 5 traits. These findings are considered in light of mating strategies, the evolutionary ‘arms race’ and individual differences.
Outside of SF though, the situation is likely reversed - many more women than men are graduating college, and people tend to want to pair off with people of similar educational achievement.
My advice, stay in the Bay Area until you get your head screwed on straight.
If you think you are a "magnet for women" that very attitude repels any woman with enough self-respect to see through the bravado.
Concentrate on liking yourself enough that being single doesn't bother you and next thing you know....bam....there she'll be.
Or not, in which case like the person you see in the mirror each morning. Get there and the rest is easy.
Single by choice (Female) Software Development Manager in the Southeast US.
1. Your fatalistic attitude about m/f ratios (or whatever sexual orientation you fancy) is the least helpful and accurate response you could possibly have to dating travails. This is not a game. Nobody's keeping score. Statistics by itself won't land you the relationship you crave.
2. On the flip side, finding a relationship isn't just a test you need to hack. There's no formula to success. Stop thinking that a good salary, or being clean-cut, or avoiding substance abuse, are what you need to land a date – regardless of where in the world you look! For one thing, people date against these types all the time. For many other potential partners, they're table stakes at best.
3. You will have the best luck if you think of your potential romantic partner not as an automaton to be gamed, nor as a resource you ought to be entitled to, but simply as a human being with interests and needs that may align with yours, or not. Forget salary. Forget trying to look interesting. Be genuine, and care, and look for partners who appreciate that.
3a. (corollary) If you think of potential partners as only interested in some Scandinavian ideal that is tall, blonde, good-looking, and makes way more than you, then you are almost certainly projecting your own shallowness and anxieties onto them. You are failing to engage them as human beings. Stop doing that.
3b. (corollary) If you think female software engineers are just not cut out for this engineering stuff as a whole, you are probably going to have a really rough time trying to court them -- to say nothing of how miserable you are likely to make them. It will be nigh impossible for you to engage them as human beings with interests that deserve your full respect and support.
4. If you can't find the partners you want on Tinder, or in the marketing org at work, then (and it kind of dumbfounds me that I should have to explain this) don't look for a date on Tinder! Or in the marketing org at work! Get out in the world. Make connections. Join clubs. Have friends introduce you to friends. Stop thinking like a Silly Valley hacker, and start thinking like a human being.
5. Stay far away from Jordan Peterson, MRA, red pill, and all of that. It's not that there isn't a good idea or two in there somewhere, but it's all drowning in a toxic stew of entitlement, self-loathing, and objectification of women that won't get you where you need to go. If you can't discern between the good stuff and the bad stuff, best to steer clear altogether. Go read some Anne Lamott or something and flush that stuff out of your system.
6. If it doesn't work out, move on. Do not come crying to HN about how tough engineers in Silicon Valley have it (because facts!). Do not obsess over them and hope they'll turn their eye later on. C'est la vie! Be the troubadour who sings about their romantic woes with a twinkle in their eye.
I just created my HN account to emphasize this point. After 4 years in the Bay Area, I've come to the same conclusion. I've been saving money for 9 years now & should be at the $1,000,000 mark within 2 years. First 5 years of saving in Los Angeles got me to $200,000, and the last 4 years have pushed me to $700,000. Assuming Trump is re-elected, my portfolio should hit the $1,000,000 mark within two years.
A million bucks isn't much here, but its a sizable nest-egg in most places in America. Saving money in the Bay Area is much easier to do than anywhere else. I plan to move to a rural state as soon as I get to a million. The misery of living here has to end at some point.
OK, this will sound like I'm from a travel agency, hahaha, but here's why:
If you are single, spending just 1200 USD per month here you can live a middle-high class life, renting a cool and spacious apartment in a nice neighborhood, good health care, gym, car, dining out. (To give you an idea, most of the middle class singles would spend half that amount...)
There's a very nice tech scene (lots of startups, and several unicorns), where having a work exp. in SV companies is an instant door opener.
Climate is temperate, (lots of sunny days year round, average weather 8C winter / summer 29C).
Huge restaurant scene, very cosmopolitan city, with ethnic restaurants of all kinds (lots of euro, american and asian origins). Also, some of the best meat in the world, at very good prices.
Lots and lots of cultural activities.
Huge mass transport network. You really don't need to own a car, (but I prefer having one, just for convenience... specially if you want to improve on your social side). European looking city. But as a most big cities, it can get chaotic in rush hours depending on where you live.
And lastly, considering your quote: you have LOTS of pretty girls, that love dating foreign guys.
Although I should warn you there's very few Asian-origin girls... and almost no [black | Indian | Middle Eastern] girls, comparing to the Bay Area. It's mostly euro-descendants or latinas; so depending on what you are looking for (if you are that specific/picky) it might be a concern.
It's the kind of place where with 1M, you can afford to not work actively anymore (e.g. living off rental income, or investments abroad).
No thanks, I prefer to live in a free country.
>"a rural state" sounds like all the worst bits of living in the US.
I don't have the level of contempt for my fellow Americans that you have
I was going to ignore this as an obvious troll, but I'll take a stab at it. Rural Americans aren't the problem, America is the problem, but some of that is made up for by the cities.
Rural America has the same terrible public transit, the same grotesque healthcare problems, generally appalling internet and cellphone, the same incredible incarceration rate, the same terrible problem with opioids, the same terrifyingly divisive politics, the same endemic racial divide, the same problem with gun violence as the rest of the US, except that some of the cities have made some headway with these problems.
If y'all lost New York, LA and the Bay Area, GDP would fall by ~25%, and you'd be just another upper-middle-income country. America's greatness comes from the cities.
My wife is from Latin America, and while it's cheaper down there, none of those countries are as good of a deal as the rural US. More developed, safer, better public services. Can be nearby a major city for work.
I do like southeast Asia, my cousin's wife is from Thailand and I have a lot of connections there through her, they own a chain of hotels there. But I would prefer Latin America. It's a western culture for the most part, which if you're from Europe or the Americas, is less jarring in more ways than people realize. There's some indigenous elements, which actually enhances the culture, they're very cooperative and team players. I love Latin America, at least as much as I love Anglo America.
Just wanted to add two more cents in there, because there's good things about every place. Everything in life is a trade off!
Medellin in South America as well
I'm strongly thinking of doing this with the family when I retire as well.
Do you believe the stock market will get bad if he doesn't win the election? or is it the other way, i.e. if the does get re-elected, the market will be better so it will take you less than 2 years to reach your goal?
I've never heard this take before so I'm genuinely curious.
Markets prefer political stability. Average annual S&P 500 returns are around ~7% adjusted for inflation, but ~12% when a President is in his second term.
A Trump loss would be presumably be to one of the self-avowed socialists running which would certainly crash the markets.
Furthermore, even without a market crash, a socialist implementing mark-to-market capital gains taxation while also doubling the long-term capital gains rates (15% to 32% for me) would drastically slow down my march towards $1,000,000.
Oh bless, the tendency in the US towards labelling people still right of the centre by most countries' standards as "socialists" for being left of the Republicans is cute.
Of course people can agree or disagree with the ideology, but only you here seem to have attached stigma to the word.
(Though the same could have been said for 'fascist', which certainly now has widespread stigma attached, and most proponents have stopped self-describing as such.)
Social-liberal isn't socialist. I live in a liberal-social democracy, but very few workers own the means of production here.
> but only you here seem to have attached stigma to the word.
American society as a whole has attached a stigma to it. Claiming otherwise is either disingenuous or ignorant, I'll let you take your pick as you listen to the dulcet tones of Ronald Reagan disclaiming the dangers of socialised medicine.
While no longer living in mainland China, I still haven't left Asia (nearly seven years on)
Sometimes pushing yourself right out of your norm/comfort-zone can really help you find yourself.