Part III: [Absent] Alpha Males

A recent conversation:

“You’re wrong. There are a ton of single studs in San Francisco. Take my friend Trent.”

“Who’s Trent?”

“We played lacrosse together at Yale, then he was in Private Equity, now he’s starting a mobile payments company.”

“And he’s single?”

“Had a girlfriend but they broke up when he moved to SF.”

“Why’d they break up?”

“She wanted to get married. He wanted to focus on the new company.”

“And how’s it going?”

“He’s totally crushing it. Just raised another round.”

“Must take a lot of time.”

“Oh yeah. He works like a 120 hours a week.”

“Sounds like a great guy to date.”

“Well….okay, fair. He doesn’t have a lot of time. But it won’t be like this forever.”

“Right. In five years or so he’ll be excited to date again.”

“Exactly! And he’ll be super rich.”

“And he’ll have lots of 22 year olds drooling over him.”

“Sure, but that’s not who he wants to settle down with.”

[skeptically] “Who will he want to settle down with?”

“With someone like you.”

“You’re telling me that, when he’s thirty-eight, after five years of slaving away at his company, your buddy Trent is going to forego hot young 22-year-olds having the kind of care-free fun he’s currently missing in order to settle down with my laugh lines and rapidly ticking biological clock?”

[Pause] “I guess you’ve got a point.”

There are alpha males in San Francisco, they’re just all “married to their companies” and not at all interested in dating women any time in the foreseeable future. Not that one would particularly want to date them even if they were up for it. You see, ‘doing a start-up’ is alpha male code for ‘postponing serious decisions and prolonging my college humor existence in a socially-acceptable way.’ Kudos to Alex Williams, the New York Times reporter who recently penned an article about the most eligible bachelors in Silicon Valley. His profile of Bachelor Number One begins: “At 31, Mr. Rattray still drives a 1996 Toyota Camry and shares a cramped Noe Valley apartment in San Francisco with three college buddies.”[1] I’m sure this sounds really enchanting to Mr. Williams, a married New Yorker in his mid-forties, but is it really unreasonable to want, in my late-20s, to find a man who doesn’t have to hang a sock on the door?


[1] See “Bachelorville’s Big Fish,” Alex Williams. NY Times, June 6, 2012.