Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Why do men shave

For Baal's sake! do not take this piece seriously

It is a waste of time.

But women like shaven face (not always, just my experience. Some research I forget says that bearded men are more attractive). So men will waste time to be more attractive. After all getting laid is a central thing in life.

Now it also serves as signalling that you are in the business of women. So you want to look like you are in the talk even if you are remote.

It also signals that you are orderly enough to shave daily, which signals Conscientiousness (a personal;ity trait). Geoffrey miller in "Spent" (great book) says that much of what we do and buy is to signal our personality traits. Having a dog shows you are Conscientiousness as well as it needs constant care (I for one hate doing anything that shows Conscientiousness. The only place to be Conscientiousness is when it brings any real world value)


But the whole question is upside down and silly. Do people live with a utilitarian maximization outlook without exceptions?
Shaving can be enjoyable. grooming oneself is an interesting thing wiht various meanings. It can be kind of meditation relexation. It is always superior to watching TV

12 comments:

i.c.hir said...

how many actions of (wo)(men) are automatic (socially, biologically, historically determined)?
0%, 1%, 3%, 10%, 30%, 90%, 99%, 100%?

shaving or behaving or having?
fun?

Anonymous said...

We have been doing many things without stop and saying, why? I remember when I was 16 years old (now 32) my father was shaving at 6.40 am and I ask him why we do the same thing every day? waking at 6 am, take a shower, go to the school, etc? I think I got bored when I asked him but he told me that 'this is life', I was suspicios of that statement he could not helpme with my question. That morning at 11 o'clock he died of heart attack in his office. And still I keep asking life questions.

Yechezkel Zilber said...

I am no longer sure automaitc doing is bad.

In many cases automatic fares better.

Not to degrade the intuition that being aware an be more enjoyable etc. Just that in the xomplexity of life one hsould be very wary of making such assumnptions

i.c.hir said...

it's obvious that we couldn't live without automatic behavior...

in the nice tradition of second-order questions the next "logical" question is to ask which automatic behavior we should try to influence: my basic heuristic is an asymmetric one - change nothing as long as something works; maybe change if something doesn't work

and, the obvious consequence: no shaving

Anonymous said...

I wonder if these mecanisms are relevant to information theory, we can do many noisy things like shaving,playing,gossips,wearing stuff,watch tv,listen to music etc etc, but just little things are very important to our live like sleeping, eating, and sex?

Yechezkel Zilber said...

i.c.

do not change what works is great principle/ It also has great optimization value, once most parameters are fixed learning is more effective and you can also optimize better on the rest of parameters.

is no shaving the "do nothing"? it seems so, but some will say change nothing means keep current habits and prinicples. This appraoch has something to it certainly. Because non doing as a default will cause lots of changes......

Yechezkel Zilber said...

anonymous,

sex is not crucial fopr life. many do well without it. It is just a very strong motivation for men.
(actually baumeister has a chPTER "the tradgedy of the male sex drive, arguing that the sex drive does a lot of headache for men)

Anonymous said...

Good point.

Anonymous said...

If life is a problem solving conundrum then we have to learn from mistakes and from other peple, and that means automatic behavior can be dangerous in some circumstances, but that is happening because we live in a society, and many problems are ralated to society, I wonder if we are better off living out the society.Something like my laws doesn't apply with others is painful, but traveling in the other road too, like being humble and try to put our mind in neutral mode. So, seems automatic behavior it's ok(By nature) but defend it would mean closed minded.Notice that this mean laws and orders are necessary (in order to improve ourselves)and we have to be humble enought to follow them, if we don't want to be a closed mind person.

Anonymous said...

Another Question that I have is if we were born with the automatic behavior flawed, we can eat alot but it will be dangerous, we can sleep and don't work all day but..., we want some woman right now but.., etc etc, if these automatics behaviors are flawed then automaticly we have to change and change is against our will, would this mean good or bad?

Yechezkel Zilber said...

I think we are wired to live with people. This is our nature.

i.c.hir said...

for me: no shaving = doing nothing (no historic accident, no social pressure, no personal need brought me there); for others it may be the other way round

another question: is anything "crucial" for life as long as you don't add something like in "long life" or "healthy (?) life" or "content life"