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Alpha Males

In the previous thread about Paul Graham's article, the alpha male was brought up. My question is, what is an alpha male? What's the cientific definition? How do you differentiate an alpha male from a beta max or VHS one? (sorry about the bad joke).

RP
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

The concept os 'alpha males' comes from Anthropology.

It is the top ranking male - the confident male that gets to do all of the mating.

http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?AlphaMale

Ged Byrne
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

I saw once this docu about cheetas where some mother had several siblings. Two of them were shy and the others more dominant/exploring types.

Well the dominant/exploring types would go out of the shelter while mother was hunting to explore the enverioment. But one day there were a group of hyanas that killed them and only the shy one was left.

Conclusion being alpha isn't everything. Sticking your head out means also that are more lickley to lose it.

blaZ
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Don't be a leader.  Don't be a follower.  Why can't we try some independent rational thought?  There's too many damn hero managers, and way too many wusses who let the great uneducated managers push them around.  Have we not evolved beyond our chimpanzee cousins?  Alpha male indeed.

anon
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Don't be a leader.  Don't be a follower.  Why can't we try some independent rational thought?

From the books Red and Green Mars that I read those people would be beta males.

blaZ
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

The whole thing about alpha males vs. otherwise is because pop-psychology (a.k.a. self-help books) is built around convincing you that whatever state you are currently in is wrong.

Just about the same way that the job of the savy upper manager is to tell people to do the exact opposite of the pendulum swing.  (outsourcing vs. doing it all inhouse, valued employees vs. cost centers, large systems vs. small systems, etc).

Flamebait Sr.
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

It's about the girls -- you can get all you want when you're the alpha chimp.  I was completely ignored in the clubs, then I joined a band and all I did was stand in the corner on stage playing bass and girls literally surrounded me on breaks (apparently standing on an elevated platform in a crowd of people makes you an 'alpha').

Then I quit the band and once again I was just another loser in the clubs, and still am.

Beta Chimp
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

But I thought the early bird got the worm and all that?

The Early Cat
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

And the second mouse gets the cheese.


"Don't be a leader."

I disagree. If you're not the lead (sled) dog, the view never changes...


I'll quit now. (Just one cliche shy of a hat trick.)

Rob VH
Tuesday, May 25, 2004

> not the lead (sled) dog, the view never changes ...

ROFLMAO

Mr. E. Lurker
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

You forget that pulling the sled is optional in the first place.

Eric Debois
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Beta chimp,

You bring up a very important and previously unexplored point.  With regards to the Paul Graham essay, no one else has mentioned the garanteed way to relieve one's nerd condition is to get into a band (no, not the school band).  I did the same thing in my early twenties and got a wife out of it.  And, like you, I am now back to being a cipher.  The band stint definitely served its main purpose though -- getting chicks was primary, playing really guitar really really badly was secondary.

The cool thing -- listen up nerds and parents of nerds -- is that the band doesn't even have to be good.  Even a lousy band will get you access to the tier C and tier B chicks.

OffMyMeds
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Er that's supposed to be, "playing guitar really really badly..."  Got an extra, "really" in the wrong place.

OffMyMeds
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

"You forget that pulling the sled is optional in the first place."

Yeah, I guess maybe some fraction of society can choose not to pull the sled. But I think somebody's got to do it, otherwise we'd all starve eventually.

Holy shite, I sound like Ayn Rand or something...

Rob VH
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

OK, if the sled is the country I would agree.

I was thinking more along the lines of being an independent contractor or something. It basicly the only mode of working that doesnt drive me nuts.

Eric Debois
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

>> "Yeah, I guess maybe some fraction of society can choose not to pull the sled. But I think somebody's got to do it, otherwise we'd all starve eventually.

Holy shite, I sound like Ayn Rand or something..."

Ummm...  In what farking way do you sound like Ayn Rand?  If you asked me, I'd say  you sound like Carrot Top.

anon
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

When I wrote that, I was thinking of the plot of 'Atlas Shrugged' where the productive members of society decide to stop carrying the rest, and everything goes to crap.

Rob VH
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

That came off way too nice.

Bite me, jerk.

Rob VH
Wednesday, May 26, 2004

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