Because they can’t all be good-looking and funny.
Last year, we took a look at a survey in which Japanese women were asked who they’d rather date: a man who’s ugly yet rich, or one who’s handsome but unemployed. The vast majority of respondents said that good looks can’t make up for poor finances, but now comes a new questionnaire weighing men with opposite traits against one another.
Internet portal My Navi Woman polled 106 working women between the ages of 22 and 34 and asked them if they’d choose a guy who’s handsome yet dull or one who’s ugly but interesting to be in a romantic relationship with. Specifically, the theoretical non-handsome man was referred to as omoshiroi, a Japanese word that combines aspects of mentally stimulating, humorous, and fun.
Proponents for both options were found. Among those favoring the handsome/boring boyfriend, rationales given included “Even if he’s boring, I can be happy just looking at his face” and “I’m not really looking for a guy who’s ‘interesting,’ because I like quiet men.”
On the other side of the debate was the woman who worried “If it’s not fun being with him, I don’t think I’d be able to permanently commit to a guy.” Reflecting the fact that the question was framed as what type of man the women would want in a continued relationship, many in the interesting/ugly camp spoke about the long-term benefits of an interesting romantic partner. “Being with an omoshiroi guy makes your whole life more cheerful,” declared one respondent.
When the dust settled 62.9 percent of the women had cast their vote for interesting but ugly, which brings to mind an oft-repeated Japanese saying.
Bijin ha mikka de aki busu ha mika de nareru.
The translation is “After three days, you’ll get tired of a beautiful woman, but you’ll get used to an ugly one.” It’s a phrase men often tell one another to remind themselves that looks aren’t everything in choosing a lover, and it looks like many of the women polled would say the same about a handsome man.
You can follow Casey on Twitter, where he’s more likely to be interesting than handsome (but he’s not making any promises either way).