Ask just about anyone what they’re seeking in a potential mate and you’re likely to get the same answers: Nice. Smart. Cute. Funny. Employed.
But what if the person sitting next to you at the movies is REALLY funny? What if they are a veritable comic genius.
If you’re a woman, you’re probably going to want to see him again. If you’re a man, you’re probably going to bolt after the credits.
An unfair generalization? Maybe. But owing to my observations and personal experiences, I can’t help but wonder (with apologies to Carrie Bradshaw) — when it comes to dating, do funny girls finish last?
Hey, let’s ask science!
“Research indicates that, when asked what traits they find attractive in a potential partner, both men and women rate a sense of humour as being very desirable,” says psychology Prof. Dr. Rod Martin. “However, it appears that there is a difference in what men and women mean by a ‘sense of humour.’ What women mean by a sense of humour seems to be someone who will make them laugh, whereas what men mean seems to be someone who will laugh at their jokes.”
Martin conducted a study where young men and women were asked to select traits they found most attractive of members of the opposite sex. “Women were more likely to choose the one who made others laugh, whereas men were more likely to choose the one who laughed at others’ jokes,” he says.
“Being funny can help in the beginning, but it can be a novelty that wears off,” says comic Michelle Shaughnessy (myspace.com/michelleyshaughnessy). While meeting friends of a guy she was dating and making them all laugh, her date took her aside. “I thought he was going to tell me how great I was doing and how he was happy that his friends liked me,” she says.
“He informed me that when it comes to the guys, he was the funny one and I was making him uncomfortable.”
But for all the men out there who find funny women a turnoff, there are some gents who appreciate a quick female wit. Such men are clearly smart enough to hold on tight when they snag themselves a funny girl.
And it’s those lucky fellas who will have the last laugh.