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The Man Thread

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In light of the discussion about physical attraction, I thought it would be fun and informative to have a discussion about particular men people find attractive. (I've also started a thread about women.)

Reasons are important in this thread. Is it his physique? His smile? His confident stance? What about this man makes you happy?

Posting links is cool, too. Particularly if he's not so famous.

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If we're talking about celebrities- That Vigo guy from Lord of the Rings and Hidalgo. I like rough looking men cause I believe it symbolizes toughness. I hate GQ cutey boys_like Orlanda Bloom

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Ok, first let me say I was never a Pitt fan until I saw Fight Club. In it he was totally funny and witty and a smartass. Before the Passion came out... I used to think Jim Caviezel was handsome. In Count of Monte Cristo he was so young and debonaire looking. I think its more personal preference but I like tall, manly guys who are smart and funny. Manly doesn't mean bulging muscles...just not the pretty-boy type. Cary Grant is quite handsome in Notorious...I heard they modeled James Bond after his spy movies.

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You are all going to think I'm nuts, but I think Leonard Peikoff is a hottie. I LOVE men with glasses and a lean, spare build. Also, I personally think men look best in suits. Especially with suspenders.

Long, slender hands with prominent tendons are good; so is a wry or mocking sort of smile and a graceful posture. Gold wire-rim glasses are the best. I personally prefer blue eyes.

Geeks are cute.

So there. <_<

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I'll second you on that, I think LP is a very handsome man.

Jen, can you elaborate on something for me? You say:

Long, slender hands with prominent tendons are good; ... I personally prefer blue eyes.

Yet earlier, in another thread, you said:

I can't think of a single thing that I consider to be a factor of "good looks" that isn't a matter of how you take care of and present yourself, btw.  I mean, who cares if a guy has thinning hair or a square jaw or what? 

Perhaps you can elaborate on how these two statements jive?

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No, as in "Aren't the length of hands, the prominence of tendons, and the color of eyes hereditary?" That is, these aren't "a matter of how one takes care of and presents oneslelf." I just want to know how this preference jives with the comment on good looks.

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Taking care of his appearance is absolutely mandatory in determining whether a man is "good looking" or not. A man can lack any or ALL of the traits I listed here and STILL be "good looking", hence my earlier statement that the determination "A is good looking" is dependant upon the fact that a man takes care of his appearance.

The traits I listed here are more the determinor between "he looks good!" and "can I take a picture of him and frame it and stick it up on my wall?"

My earlier statement was referring to that mandatory-for-good-looking thing, whereas my current statement was referring to optional-but-better-looking, get it? Like softwareNerd said.

Edited by softwareNerd

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Hm, I guess I took the earlier statement to mean that you didn't care one bit for things that weren't rooted in how one took care of or presented themselves. Just as you said "who cares if a guy has a square jaw," I could say "who cares if a guy has blue eyes?," because jaw shape and eye color aren't character-based traits, so why care for them, whether in a mandatory or preferential manner. Right, so why even care for them?

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Right, so why even care for them?

Do you prefer roses or daffodils? Liver and onions or pizza? Blue or red? Most people I've met can answer those questions definitively and roses pizza and blue don't have character traits, either.

Now, I don't know how important this is, but there's been some psychological research indicating that women tend to "prefer" physical traits that are genetically similar but not too similar to those possessed by their father. (The initial research was based on smell, go figure). (My dad is tall, lean, has blue eyes and wears glasses, btw.) The researchers weren't really certain what you could conclude from that, if anything, but there was some suggestion that it may be a mechanism for preserving good genetic traits while not reinforcing bad ones. I'm not a psychologist, I don't know. What I'm saying is that there may be a reason for these preferences regardless of whether they are under direct conscious control.

Humans also have pheremones that encourage us to be a little bit more relaxed. That doesn't mean you should intentionally try to be tense and irritable in social settings because you might be affected by pheremones! You are responding to a real stimulus and there's nothing wrong with that; it doesn't interfere with your ability to think, it may actually improve it by making it easier to decide between two very similar alternatives.

If one is going to intentionally reject everything that isn't under direct conscious control, you'll wind up refusing to eat chocolate (causes a release of seretonin and a "feel good" sensation) heck, probably refusing to eat ANYTHING because all chemicals have some kind of affect on your body . . . but wait . . . not eating is kind of uncomfortable . . .

ARRRGH I'm stuck in this body that stubbornly insists on having an identity and providing me with all these stimuli! Help! Help!

Does that answer your question?

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I want to provide some extra context because I think I understand why you are confused. The initial post you quoted was responding to a thread where people were trying to come up with an objective definition of what "beauty" is, (especially pertaining to women) and I happen to think that such attempts are ultimately doomed to failure, much like trying to explain what "blue" is to a blind man. You may be able to come up with some reasons why some broad, general traits are considered desirable/undesirable, but ultimately you won't be able to say whether you find a particular person attractive until you see them.

Now then, something that annoys me terribly (and should, because it's ridiculous) is when a bunch of men get together and proceed to pontificate on the fact that women should be 5'10" with big eyes, small ears, wide lips, a narrow waist, etc. etc. etc. and these are the traits of "beauty" and other women don't measure up they need plastic surgery. (The same applies to women talking about men, btw, but I haven't noticed women doing this very often and I see men doing it ALL THE TIME.)

Any woman (or man) can put forth some effort to possess the only objectively definable attractiveness traits, and to be "pretty" or "handsome". However, whether a particular individual will find them more or less attractive than some other person is still completely up in the air.

If you check out old paintings and attempts to portray the ideal woman you'll notice that most of the little details have changed significantly over the years; not too many guys are fascinated with Ruben's (in the words of Dave Barry) "paintings of enormous naked women eating fruit", but back in the day they were considered quite attractive. The "big stuff" stays on, though; smooth skin, radiant good health, an overall appearance of being pampered and taken-care-of, etc.

Now I am going to wander off in a huff because I can't BELIEVE how difficult that is to explain. Hmph.

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OK, then let me repost the working definition of beauty we were using in that thread. Beauty is harmony of constituent elements. In the case of an individual, the constituents include content of character, so harmony consists of a fitting-together of the physical and the mental, to the extent that the physical has a basis in character (like, for example, cleanliness of teeth, hair style, body weight, etc.). I pointed out in the thread, however, that indeed there were constituent elements of the human body that aren't character based.

Now, in judging an individual as beautiful, some would say that taking into consideration, whether in a mandatory or preferential fashion, traits that aren't character-based is silly, because the basis for such traits are genetic, not volitional. Wouldn't you say that the defining characteristic of man is his rationality? Therefore wouldn't you say that the criteria for choosing a mate should be based on his defining characteristic? Then wouldn't you say that choosing a mate based on some non-volitional trait is, well, sort of like choosing to eat a cheese pizza rather than a peperoni one because you don't like circular cuts of peperonis (you prefer triangular or something)?

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Sure. But what does that have to do with liking to look at men? Are you trying to indicate that after you pick your mate you can't like looking at other men at all? DAMN I can't go to movies any more. :( Wait . . . I don't have a mate. I'm good.

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No, that's not what I'm indicating. I think it's perfectly fine to assess judgements of beauty to others, regardless of whether or not one is in a relationship.

Are you suggesting that, perhaps, there is a difference bewteen the criteria one uses to pick a mate and the one one uses to assess the beauty of strangers, a difference between the criteria one uses to pick a pizza to eat and the criteria one uses to pick a pizza to look at?

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For me the ideal man has been Cary Grant for a long time. He always seemed confident, like he knew what he wanted and he knew how to get it. Most of his characters were unapologetically egotistical. He is certainly handsome but I never would have noticed him if it wasn't for his personality. I do believe that the roles an actor choses reflect their beliefs-- which is why I could never be attracted to someone like Brad Pitt.

By the way I totally agree with JMeganSnow on Peikoff. I think he is very attractive.

Edited by Michero

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Oh also the guy from Run Lola Run Moritz Bleibtreu. He has very masculine features (minus the plump lips) And his mouth is the very essence of contempt. I never quite understood what Ayn was talking about until I started watching german/dutch films.

bleibtreu1g.jpg

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Are you suggesting that, perhaps, there is a difference bewteen the criteria one uses to pick a mate and the one one uses to assess the beauty of strangers, a difference between the criteria one uses to pick a pizza to eat and the criteria one uses to pick a pizza to look at?

Sure, and there's a perfectly good reason for it. You don't choose your mate to be ornamental. (Esp. if you're female) Because the primary purpose OF your mate isn't to BE ornamental. Just like you don't pick a car on the basis of what it looks like; it's more important that it serve the other purposes that you need a car for. But you might have a picture of a Lambroghini on your wall.

When deciding what you think of people, you have to decide on the basis of what you know, and, in the general course of things the first thing you know when you meet someone is what they look like. So, if you were to bring to me two strange men, one of whom fit my personal preferences and say, "pick one", I'd have to go with my preferences. (After asking, of course, "pick one for WHAT?") It would be ridiculous to expect me to do otherwise.

I, personally, am not attractive and I don't expect people to pretend that I am (in fact it irritates the crap out of me when they do), I just like them to acknowledge that I still have value because the purpose I serve in their life is not primarily to be ornamental.

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I do believe that the roles an actor choses reflect their beliefs-- which is why I could never be attracted to someone like Brad Pitt.

Eww I'm with you on that one. That and the fact that his face looks like someone sucked all the flesh out of his cheeks with an industrial-strength vacuum cleaner. Every time I see him I want to reach for a baseball bat to protect myself. Anyone that gaunt has to be a vampire or something.

Orlando Bloom is okay in a vacuous sort of way when he isn't sporting a ridiculous little chocolate-milk-smear attempt at a mustache. (Oh and he looks absolutely the best with long blond hair impersonating an elf. Period.) Elijah Woods is cute, if you like the "chronically injured" look, but he's like 5'4". (Which is seven inches shorter than yours truly, knocking him out entirely)

I can't appraise Leonardo DiCaprio's appearance honestly because I DETEST him, I REFUSE to go see any of his movies. But I'm willing to admit that I can at least see why some women might consider him attractive.

Harrison Ford is cute. I also like Wesley Snipes, esp. with the fake vampire teeth. Meow. :(

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Someone I've always thought was attractive--especially for someone of his age--is Sean Connery. He was attractive as James Bond and he's still attractive now. He's always superb in any role he plays, which is probably what attracts me to him most.

I also think Terry Goodkind is very attractive. His face betrays a confidence in himself that you can tell he has from his writing.

Edit: Oops, forgot my reasons.

Edited by redfarmer

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Oh also the guy from Run Lola Run Moritz Bleibtreu.  He has very masculine features (minus the plump lips) And his mouth is the very essence of contempt.  I never quite understood what Ayn was talking about until I started watching german/dutch films.

I don't see what's so attrative about this guy--he looks clueless.

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"Clueless?" Hmm . . . I wouldn't have phrased it in a derrogatory fashion, though. He looks somewhat as I'd expect Eddie Willers to look; attentive and focussed, but confronted with something that is beyond his immediate ability to grasp.

His forehead and brows remind me a bit of Tom Hanks, who I think is quite attractive even though he is losing his hair. Do you like Tom Hanks, Michero?

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I was going to reply to the “Woman Thread,” but I couldn’t think of any women that I find especially attractive. Several men did come to mind though. (I’m not even going to bother trying to psychoanalyze that one)

I think it’s pretty clear what they have in common – they have all played a “cowboy” role at one time or another –tough, bold, smart, independent, just - and smooth with the ladies.

I can name the movies that symbolize them to me:

Harrison Ford – The Fugitive, Blade Runner, Indiana Jones

Clint Eastwood – High Planes Drifter, Outlaw Josey Whales

Sean O’Connery – From Russia with Love, etc

And a few others:

Brad Pitt - a weak character in terms of values, but he’s hot (are straight men allowed to say that?) and has a grungy macho style going

Mel Gibson – another mixed character. He’s unafraid to be heroic, but the values he portrays are usually stupid and self-effacing.

Edited by GreedyCapitalist

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