Feminism, Gender, Romance and Dating, Sweet Hot Justice, Women's Issues

Does This Law Degree Make My Ass Look Fat?

Ed. note: The following piece was authored by The Legal Tease, of Sweet Hot Justice fame. Check out her other musings from Sweet Hot Justice here.

Quick question: You’re a single guy, let’s say in your late twenties to mid-thirties, with a decent job. Given the choice between the following two single women to date, which one do you choose?

Choice A: A real-world-hot 28-year-old receptionist on her fourth job in three years, who lives with two roommates in a fifth-floor walkup in some outer borough, aspires to someday have a job that gives her either free shoes or health insurance, and only sounds like an idiot when she speaks out loud.

Choice B: A real-world-hot 28-year-old BigLaw lawyer (I know, just go with me here) who paid off her school debt by herself in three years, lives alone in a doorman building in Manhattan, is funny and down-to-earth, and runs a small, successful side business selling artisanal cupcakes that she bakes in her spare time.

Clearly, you choose Choice A. Why? Because, if the status quo in my firm … and in my life… and in my friends’ lives… and in any bar from New York to L.A. is any indication, a law degree confers about as much romantic value to a single woman as a meth habit and a hidden penis.

Don’t believe me?

Let’s replay a quick conversation I had a couple of Thursdays ago with my friend Stein, a graphic designer in his late twenties who I’d set up with a third-year finance associate at my firm who’s so pretty and fun that I still half-suspect that she’s not actually an associate, but really an actress posing as a lawyer for some kind of (horrifyingly sad) new reality show. As soon as I asked Stein what he thought of her, he scrunched up his face in consideration.

“I mean, she’s cute,” he said, still scrunching. “Hot, even.”

“I know.”

“She was actually really funny and cool.”

“Told you.”

“It’s just that…” He cocked his head to the side and started grimacing. “It’s just that she seems… really together, you know? I just… I don’t know. I think we’re maybe in different places.”

And there it is.

Different places, indeed. See, it used to be that lady lawyers took a hit in the dating world because the J.D. badge meant that you were probably too nerdy, or “argumentative,” or just a puffy, hideous troll. But this new strain of rejection dispenses with such frivolity. This time, the hotter you are, the less appealing you become. This time, ladies, you got it wrong. Again. You’re sexy, funny and charming and worked like an animal to get into the best law schools and nab the highest paying jobs in the world’s most elite lawyer factories so you could be financially independent and could pursue a guy for love, not for his ability to support you, but… no dice. Turns out, they like you better when you’re more of a disaster. (But not to worry — according to the latest reports, if you can’t provide that full disaster experience for them, they’ll cheat on you with someone who will — so, you’re covered either way.)

Sure, a few guys — the smart, if not more Darwinian, types — realize that at its core, dating an ambitious, fun woman who can pay her bills (and theirs!) and who isn’t, say, a crack-whore, isn’t a bad thing. They realize that maybe, just maybe, one of the upsides of dating a woman who’s more successful than they are is that, at the very least, they know that the only thing she wants from them is… them.

For the rest of you guys, though, what are you so afraid of? That you won’t be able to take care of us? That you’ll be emasculated? That we’ll think you’re a loser? Tell you what, here’s when we’ll think you’re a loser: when you’re a loser. And if we’re interested in dating you, then you’re probably not a loser — at least not to us. I mean, really, is it so impossible to believe that a cute, successful woman would be interested in a cute, not-as-successful man? Are you really that insecure?

Apparently, yes. So, for you guys out there, the ones who think that a lady J.D. isn’t worth your time because she’s just too successful, too intimidating, too together, let me clue you in on a little secret on behalf of the together-est of together women lawyers everywhere — though, be warned, it may titillate and/or confuse you.

Prepare to be blown, in the brain, over at Sweet Hot Justice

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