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10 January 2011 @ 09:23 pm
Are you sitting comfortably?  
I am going to tell you a story that is true.

There are a lot of women in medicine. I would go so far as to say the ratio is 60:40 in our favour. Yay feminism! However, the social restraints against older women-younger men relationships prevail, so the higher you rise in the medical hierarchy, the more interest is focused on the men in more senior positions - ie, the ones who are older than you.

As a result, a male doctor does not have to be that good-looking, witty or nice in real-world terms to be considered a paragon of beauty, wit and niceness. One such is a registrar I know and thought cute, as do many others, because he combines pale pretty looks with a complete lack of realisation of them plus a willingness to see consults, which above all things is what you want in someone else's reg.

Gossip spreads like fire in medieval London in this small, closed community. Apparently, this reg broke up with his girlfriend of five years for an intern who worked with him last year. So far, so unastonishing; young, pretty interns with no expectations and no heavy responsibilities as yet are often more alluring than their older, tireder counterparts. What is shocking is that this intern is not very pretty. Oh, she's not heinously deformed in the face, but the principle that makes male doctors more good-looking than they would otherwise be works in the opposite direction with girls. I could understand if she was the one he broke up with, but not the one he broke up with for.

My friend is now this reg's intern. I told her their story and she said: "Oh! When they met on the corridor today, I knew there was something. He just lit up when he saw her."

And that, ladies and ladies, is what came as the biggest shock of all. That this superlative reg could not only get together with this average girl, but that to him, she was incandescent. I always thought romance worked a bit like our intern and SHO matching schemes. You list your jobs in order of preference, then you and the other applicants are listed in order of suitability, with added points for academic prizes, research and high exam scores. (For which read: beauty, money and humour.) Everyone wants the same top five jobs; only the best five get them; the rest settle for as far up the scale as they can manage. The idea that in the Match of romance that you wouldn't carve out a niche with the best-looking/richest/funniest/all three person you could manage - that there's something else, more to it than that - well. I CAN HAS SURPRISE. (Also depress, as I am well down this pecking order without this intangible Other Thing to cope with too.)

In other news, I'm showering out of a bucket because my landlord won't fix my shower. Happy days.
 
 
Current Mood: confusedconfused
Current Music: grenade // bruno mars
 
 
 
(Deleted comment)
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: collapsingnight: pretty orange facescoradh on January 13th, 2011 05:51 pm (UTC)
I regard it as more a spectator sport, but this is interesting commentary from the box. :D

Ha, I thought that was an entirely different song! This one, actually. Which fits in a lot better with my worldview, lol.
(Deleted comment)
Sereniaserenia on January 10th, 2011 11:27 pm (UTC)
I guess there are no real set rules about falling in love! Or lust, or whatever.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Discworld: Mobscoradh on January 13th, 2011 05:51 pm (UTC)
Such a pity! :|
SpinFrogspinfrog on January 11th, 2011 12:38 am (UTC)
I don't see why this story couldn't also be interpreted as a hopeful thing. If he didn't "trade up" but just fell in love with someone else, and not because of her looks/qualifications, then it doesn't matter if you are the best or the prettiest, and the things you/some may see as unappealing, others may see as endearing and awesome, and those could be what would make you "the one".
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: iconomicons girl of lightscoradh on January 13th, 2011 05:53 pm (UTC)
I would be super mistrustful of a dude who thought my unappealing traits (ie most of them) were attractive. I would assume he was kind of touched in the head and hence not exactly a great contribution to the gene pool.

(Translation: I still don't GET it - if it's not based on looks, achievements and personality, WHAT IS IT?!!)
pir8fancier on January 11th, 2011 01:05 am (UTC)
Maybe she sees him for exactly who he is. An average joe who is awarded a lot of points for just being an older male in a sexist profession.
And maybe he resents it. Not being awarded points for who he is but just because he's of a certain age with a dick.

The laws of attraction aren't only bounded by money and beauty.

You are far too young to be this cynical.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: jillicons: disco rabbitsscoradh on January 13th, 2011 05:58 pm (UTC)
You are far too young to be this cynical.

There's an age restriction?!

I realised long ago that romance is a duck pond, and the prettiest ducks will get the best bread while the rest scrabble for the stale crumbs. Then I realised that even doing all you can looks-wise still isn't going to get you the bread if you don't have the winsome personality to go with it, and I gave up. This shit is just too hard.

And maybe he resents it. Not being awarded points for who he is but just because he's of a certain age with a dick.

Is this a recrudescence of 'be yourself'? I never got that advice; I mean, what if you're like 50-70% of the population, and your self is crap?
pir8fancier on January 15th, 2011 08:21 pm (UTC)
Very few of us are winsome. Very few of us are gorgeous. We all manage.

Case in point: my daughter is gorgeous. We didn't raise her to manipulate her looks, although it's impossible to ignore that she's exceptionally attractive. Her boyfriend is your 50-70% type. Not particularly attractive, but intelligent, sweet, and wonderful. And they are pretty damn happy in their 50-70% little world.

So yeah. Be yourself. Even if your only 50-70%. Just like the majority of us. We manage.
l.m.: gillan - blahincandescent on January 11th, 2011 03:14 am (UTC)
I think we can all have a bit of surprise on that one.

Also, good luck with the shower. *hug* You shall win through on that!
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: halowrites: awesome tightsscoradh on January 13th, 2011 05:54 pm (UTC)
My shower was fixed! It's a terrible story: I was in bed post-call, in my rattiest pjs, without washing my face because TIRED, and the plumber called. The super-hot plumber. And it turned out I just had a switch turned on wrong. MY LIFE.
l.m.: pond - curiousincandescent on January 13th, 2011 09:22 pm (UTC)
Oh no! (I didn't realize there actually were super hot plumbers. I thought that was a myth. So they're real... *envious*)

But at least it's fixed. XD
(Anonymous) on January 17th, 2011 05:56 pm (UTC)
age thing
'However, the social restraints against older women-younger men relationships prevail, so the higher you rise in the medical hierarchy, the more interest is focused on the men in more senior positions - ie, the ones who are older than you.'

Do you think that's the only reason? I always assumed- ever since I first became aware of male junior doctors' predatory approach to female med students- that it was just the power and status thing- ie men are supposed to have it and women aren't. Therefore the senior ranking male doctors take their pick whereas the senior ranking females have to find a male who's even more senior ranking.
Never even considered the age thing to be honest but I guess it makes sense.

-anonmedic