Why a good man is so hard to find
REGULAR readers will be aware of a politically incorrect statistical technique that I invented a few years ago. Developed in response to the man drought, the ‘‘ fella filter’’ is the process that some young women say they apply to screen candidates for their affection.
I hasten to add that the idea for the filter was suggested by women.
The upshot of this process is that at the 2001 census, some 1.3 million men aged 25- 34 are whittled down to 86,000 candidates that have never married, have no children, are not gay, and who earn a reasonable income, which I defined as no less than $ 60,000 a year in today’s dollars.
The lesson for women looking for a partner was that barely 5 per cent of men meet these most basic of their criteria. And then a woman has to decide whether she likes him: is he too short, too fat, too arrogant, too ugly?
When the filters were being developed I rejected a final filter that would have eliminated too many men.
Single women said they didn’t want a man who was young, single, without children, heterosexual and earning the required income, but who lived at home with his mother.
Women have worked out that mummy’s boys are not a good investment of either time or affection.
I soon copped flak from women for constructing the fella filter. Not because it was politically incorrect or because it treated men as tradeable objects, but because it set the income bar too low. They wanted to know the number of men in this category who earned at least $ 100,000 a year.
I applied the new filters to the results of the 2006 census.
Remarkably, the pool of young men remains at 1.3 million. This number is then whittled down to isolate the single, those without kids, the heterosexual, and those earning $ 100,000 or more.
The resultant figure is 19,000 men. This is the pool of premium male product as determined by the fella filter.
I extracted the top 10 occupations of men who survived the unforgiving blade of the fella filter using the 2001 census.
The leading occupation at that time was accountant. This information was seized upon by accountants everywhere, who paraded it as evidence of their ‘‘ undeniable sexual allure’’.
However, I never saw it that way: I think the reason that so many accountants survive the fella filter’s blade is that they are regarded by single women as the last resort.
Applying the fella filter to the 2006 census results yields an upset.
The leading occupation for single men is now sales & marketing managers. Accountants have slipped to No 2 in the hot job stakes.
Maybe all that publicity about accountants coming out on top of the fella filter prompted women to take a second and perhaps lingering look at their local accountant.
In either case I was never really happy about the way this analysis was conducted.
The reason accountants and sales and marketing managers head the list of men surviving the fella filter is that there are a lot of them.
For example, there are only 29,000 doctors in Australia, compared with 123,000 accountants and 89,000 sales and marketing managers. This is a game of numbers. When filters are applied to all occupations, those left standing at the end of the process will be, in all probability, those who began the process with the highest number. The underlying philosophy of the fella filter is that single women need help to sidle up to men in those occupations that offer the best prospects of meeting their expectations.
For example: is he single; does he have kids; is he gay; and is he gainfully employed? ( Although this last filter has been replaced by: is he doing well enough to support a family?)
And so for this reason the fella filter needs to be driven to new heights, or to new depths ( depending on how you view this discussion), so as to identify the best prospects for young women’s affection.
Which male occupations contain the highest proportion of single, heterosexual men without children, and who earn $ 100,000 or more a year? And, yes, I have completed this analysis. There is one male occupation where one in three young men fulfil all the criteria of the fella filter: clinical hematologist.
And not far behind are dermatologists, urologists and ear, nose & throat specialists who go by the delightful name of otorhinolaryngologists.
There you go, ladies, if you bump into a young man at a party who works in any of these jobs, there’s a pretty good chance that he’s a pretty good catch.
But of course the reason these men are available is that it takes years of focus and sacrifice to get to become a medical specialist.
Put simply: these lonely boys have been studying far too hard to have met Ms Right.
Or, more likely, there may have been a Ms You’ll Do throughout university, but she didn’t stick the distance into matrimony.
But why should women have all the fun using the 2006 census for the outrageous purpose of narrowing the odds of finding a partner?
I applied the same fella filtering technique to young women, although this process is better known by its technical name, the sheila selector.
The occupation containing the highest proportion of women who are single, heterosexual, without children, and who earn more than $ 100,000 per year is gastroenterologist.
Indeed 75 per cent of female gastroenterologists in this age group are single!
Fellas, all you need do is find out where these gastroenterologist babes hang out and away you go.
However I suggest you brush up on your knowledge of diseases of the stomach to really impress her with your small talk.
Other leading jobs for single rich young women are plastic surgeon, orthopedic surgeon and urologist.
I’m not sure whether the single male urologists know that there are also a lot of single female urologists.
I reckon the urologists’ ball must be a pretty steamy affair to get invited to.
The fella filter and the sheila selector are, of course, highly discriminatory. There are undoubtedly worthy candidates for affection in both genders across all social and occupation groups.
Nevertheless, there is something about this process that we all find irresistible.
At the end of the day we all want our stocks to rise in the intoxicating world of love and attraction.