Category Archives: psychology

a+b x (S – F)

In my pricing class, our professor today tried to explain a concept of conjoint analysis by explaining this equation:

Happyness in Marriage = a + b * (S – F), where S = The amount of Sex in a month, and F = The number of fights in a month.  A + B are constants, so for simplicity I will ignore them in this blog post.

This might sound insane, but I think this seemly crazy equation deserves some thought.  Ok, I know I’ve just pissed you off.  This is NOT what I’m advocating for, but it IS WHAT MODERN PSYCHOLOGISTS / MARRIAGE COUNSELORS think about.

What I”m saying is that if you are having a problem with your marriage and you go to a marriage counselor undoubtably one of the questions they will ask is “how much sex are you having?”  Its a metric that at least in modern science takes into account a lot of the things, that if you and I were to respond to the question we might say things like:

  • commitment
  • mutual respect
  • fun together
  • romance
  • doing service together

Which all together is some part of what our equation of love would be. The sum of those things, each weighed differently depending on the person, along with a number of other attributes.  The list obviously is infinitely flexible depending on your own personal preferences, but I think we’d all agree that few people would disagree with the above points.

A psychologist or marriage counselor isn’t discounting these things when they ask “how much sex are you having” They assume that if you aren’t having enough sex, that one or more of the above things probably isn’t working out.

The other part of the equation is S-F, where F = number of fights in a month.  So here modern science is saying.. hm…

1) so maybe you’re having a bunch of sex, but you’re also fighting a bunch too… so you’re not that happy.

2) Or maybe you’re not having much sex, but your not fighting either, so your neutral.

3) Or worse, you’re not having sex and your fighting a lot, so you must be unhappy.

Ideally they hope that you’re

4) having a lot of sex, and not fighting, as this would be indicative of extreme happyness.

Pretty funny the way science works doesn’t it.  We live in a world where we try to quantify everything.  Love can’t be quantified, but it can be measured.  Sex, Fighting, yah, its two parts of love. But if that was all there was, then I could be married to someone that I spent no time with besides having sex and this equation would tell us we are an ideal couple.  There are words for those relationships but I won’t name them here.  Point is that relationship wouldn’t do much for the couple, and would do even less for the world around them.

I love science, and there is A LOT of science behind love.  I’ll blog about some real science behind love a later day.  For now lets just agree that sex and fighting are two important things that we will all do when we’re married, (ideally more sex than fighting) but marriage is much more complicated than that…

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the walk-by glance

What did he/she mean by that?  Have you ever been walking down the street, glanced at someone and they just kept looking forward pretending not to see you?  Have you ever just been gazing around and noticed someone looking intently at you?

Yes you have, and so have I.  There is a lot of subconscious thought that goes behind each of those thoughts.  Here are some examples:

1. Guy walks by and looks at girl, girl fidgets a bit and looks intentionally forward: maybe she didn’t notice the guy, but most likely she did.  You can just tell.  Nobody looks straight ahead for that long without blinking.  I’d say almost all of the time, unless we’re in a rush, we notice people that smile at us when we are walking by them.  So why doesn’t the girl look back.  Well, I dunno.  But one likely reason is that she is worried.  She is worried about how the guy will interpret that look, and what might come next…. Don’t worry! We’re just smiling!

2. Guy walks by and smiles, girl smiles back: She’s just being nice.  Even if you pretend she is doing more, and you approach her, she likely will just pretend that she was “just being nice.” Best move: Smile back, and hope you meet her again.

3. Guy walks by and gawks at girl: Guy is just being an asshole.  Ignore him. 🙂

4. Guy walks by and looks straight ahead.  Girl looks at guy.  OMG.  This is a rare occasion.   If the guy notices he is happy.  Last time this happened to him was when little cindy asked him to dance in the 3rd grade.  If he doesn’t notice, and the girl did it intentionally then the girl is probably a little upset.  Why didn’t he notice?  Jeez.  I was just trying to be nice.  Guys fault this time.

5. Guy and girl walk by each other, neither of them look at each other.  Neither of them smile. Maybe they are both busy, but they might have just missed their chance.  So smile next time, and hope to meet them again. 🙂