There are a lot of different kinds of hotness out there. Some girls want the guy in the suit while others want the stripping firefighter…and many want both. But even beyond those kinds of differences, there’s a difference I want to cover briefly.
The first girls we ever think are hot encompass our entire world. It isn’t until our early 20s that we all realize that academic structure has defined our social lives and we’re left with churches and bars to fill the void of places to meet people. Remember how hot that girl in high school was, who went to another school? But, looking back at it, her hotness was augmented because she went to a different school? This is the basis of everything we’re talking about here.
Think back to being 16. You know a few hundred people, most of whom you see five days a week, 30-40 weeks a year. That pool is then broken down into smaller groups of 10-20 people – classes – where your social selection is extremely limited. You might be lucky to have a friend or two in a class, and extremely lucky if one of the Top Ten Hotties in the School were in there with you. So now you’ve got some settling to do: find someone to sit next to who you don’t hate and figure out who the hottest person in class is.
Along with the coolest.
The one you want to murder the most.
High school is a tumultuous time.
But this is where we learn to categorize hotness. Just because Jessica Biel was my fantasy girl didn’t mean I wasn’t also looking at the OK-looking girl’s ass-crack when she leaned forward in third period. Jessica was Globally Hot. Third Period was Class Hot – the hottest in the class.
And so it goes, though school, until we hit the real world. The system is set up to expand our world incrementally – by our early 20s, we know at least a few thousand people, a few dozen we might see daily, and we’re ready to exit academia and enter the falsely-named Real World. And in that Real World…we’re gonna’ need jobs.
Working in a “professional environment” is socially oppressive. Let’s say you’re in an office of a few hundred. That office breaks down into departments and divisions until you’re left with ten to twenty people you see every day. For high school kids who are reading this, think of it like this: imagine if your day was one class that lasted all day where it was always the same teacher, same other kids, and you really only worked closely with half of them to accomplish class goals. That’s the best way I can describe most office life.
So, Class Hot now becomes Work Hot, but your pool has changed. Now you get to say, “The Hottest in HR,” and “The Hottest in Accounting,” instead of, “The Hottest in Fifth Period.” You’ll start changing your route to/from the break room to get to walk through the Sales Division just like you used to make sure to walk past certain lockers after lunch in high school. But even the girl who’s the Hottest in the Whole Damned Office can’t compete with…
Just like the girl at the other school was hot, so is the waiter who just served you lunch. But, to the waitress who works with him…he’s just “Work Hot.” She met a guy at a bar last night who’s actually hot, and he’s also the hottest at his workplace, but not the hottest in the building. And the chick who just walked past you in the mall parking lot was eye-melting hot.
It’s all very complicated. The more starved we get for selection, the more we value the newest item on the market. And it continues forever, for everything – sexual attractiveness is only one thing we judge, socially. We might not look around a room and wonder who the biggest dork is, now that we’re 30…but we might ask which is the most/least financially stable or who’s made the best/worst life decisions, from our point-of-view. It never really seems to end.
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