The No Fear Aphrodisiac Hypothesis - Scott Adams' Blog

The No Fear Aphrodisiac Hypothesis

Even ugly rock stars have groupies. Kid Rock comes to mind. It’s the same with famous actors and powerful politicians. The usual explanation for this phenomenon is that evolution predisposes women to seek alpha males who can produce excellent children and then protect them.

But that doesn’t explain the occasional ugly guy with no job, and no ambition, who has inexplicable success with women. My hypothesis is that the common factor is a lack of fear. When women see a man who is apparently not afraid, in a situation where most people would be, that triggers the “must have your child” reaction.

If I asked you what a rock star and a cop have in common, you might say they both have power, and that is the part that attracts women. But how do you explain the appeal of firemen? Fire fighters aren’t particularly powerful in society, yet they are like catnip to women. I think it has to do with their lack of fear.

Likewise, while the appeal of “bad boys” might have something to do with the fact that elevated testosterone levels are implicated in both bad behavior and sexual attraction, bad boys are also relatively unafraid of consequences. I think that is part of it.

To trigger sex appeal, being unafraid isn’t limited to physical risks. Rock stars and business executives perform in front of crowds and risk only embarrassment and financial consequences. My hypothesis is that any man who has a high tolerance for risk of any sort is naturally attractive to women.

Lack of fear should not be confused with confidence. A man who is confident about things unimportant, such as his rightness of opinion, isn’t exhibiting a lack of fear. Confidence only attracts women when it is applied to situations where real risk is involved.

You might wonder why evolution would favor those who take risks. Risk takers tend to die young. But when they don’t die, they accomplish more for the tribe than all the cautious people combined. So I can see why nature encourages risk.

This hypothesis seems quite testable.