Thursday, June 5, 2008

Are You an Alpha Male or a Beta Male?

Here's a cool bit by one of my favorite (funny) novelists, Christopher Moore, from A Dirty Job. It seems that Charlie Asher, the hero of A Dirty Job, is a Beta Male.

"Beta Males have survived not by meeting and overcoming adversity, but by anticipating and avoiding it. That is, when the Alpha Males were out charging after mastodons, the Beta Males could imagine in advance that attacking what was essentially an angry, wooly bulldozer with a pointy stick might be a losing proposition, so they hung back at camp to console the grieving widows. When Alpha Males set out to conquer neighboring tribes, to count coups and take heads, Beta Males could see in advance that in the event of victory, the influx of female slaves was going to leave a surplus of mateless women cast out for younger trophy models, with nothing to do but salt down the heads and file the uncounted coups, and some would find solace in the arms of any Beta Male smart enough to survive. In the case of defeat, well, there was that widows thing again. The Beta Male is seldom the strongest or the fastest, but because he can anticipate danger, he far outnumbers his Alpha Male competition. The world is led by Alpha Males, but the machinery of the world turns on the bearings of the Beta Male."

I'm probably an alpha male -- that doesn't bode well for me.

[Hat tip to Random Musings for the quote.]

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