The Dark Truth Behind Sapiosexuals

A single word can reveal something terrifying.

If you’ve become addicted to online dating apps anytime in the past 12 months, you’ve seen the term Sapiosexual. The word means “attracted to intelligence”, and implies a trendy indifference to gender. If you like this word I should warn you that the following calls your sense of taste into question.

It’s natural for a new word to garner criticism from the people who wish they’d thought of it first. There’s also an unavoidable cruelty to stating any sexual preference, and the less preferred parties seldom fail to complain. “I wear heels so 6' and up pleeze”, “no fatties”, ect. Many people find these statements offensive, and will even go so far as to say that such preferences should not exist. I’ve seen the same criticism applied to sapiosexuality.

I’m compelled to speak up not because sapiosexuallity has gone unquestioned but because the critics missed the point. Sapiosexuallity isn’t objectionable as an appeal to eugenics, and I don’t think that only sleeping with smart people “trivializes the inherent value of human life”. The chilling aspect of the sapiosexual phenomenon, is that anyone using this term unironically is a complete moron.

Is the woman in this picture smart? You can’t tell be looking at her. That’s why she’s holding a book!

In the interest of fairness, rather than as cowardly attempt to cover my ass, I emphasize that stupidity is even more domain specific than intelligence. The actions of even history’s greatest geniuses reveal that the human mind drifts in and out of stupidity over the course of a day. Kurt Godel starved himself to death, and nobody is above locking their keys in their car once in a while. People who use the word sapiosexual do not necessarily have low IQs, and I don’t think they should be excluded from hi-tech jobs if they meet the relevant qualifications. Their stupidity amounts to a lack of introspection. If they knew what they were saying, they wouldn’t say it.

Please help me website I’ve never heard of! Please put a label on me and tell me what I am!

Being “attracted to intelligence” implies the ability to identify intelligence. Even if you believe that the LSAT, SAT, BUZZFEED Quizzes, and Raven’s Progressive matrices accurately measure intelligence, you have to admit that “intelligence” is harder to measure than height or facial symmetry. You can’t evaluate your date’s fluid intelligence using your personal faculties, so you can’t be directly attracted to it. All you can really say is that you desire a partner with the social status markers acquired through academic achievement. This is no more high minded than being turned on by monster truck ownership, or an expensive shoe collection.

Dear Sapiosexual: Everybody knows that people like social status markers. In my opinion, they exist primarily to indicate social status. I can entertain the argument that their primary function is to indicate competence and the fact that you find them attractive is merely secondary. Even in the latter case, “sapiosexual” is just a fancy word you’re using to disguise your understandable preoccupation with social status as a high minded disdain for superficiality. Nobody sapient will fall for that nonsense.

Truly a sentence written by someone who values intellect!

The above is sufficient to convince anybody who recognizes poorly disguised pretentiousness as an unfailing sign of stupidity. If stupidity means anything , it means an arrogant lack of introspection. Unfortunately, people who agree on this point will be scared away by my click-bait title. For the sake of my readers, I also point out that in addition to being pretentious, calling yourself a sapiosexual displays a degree of naivete unbecoming of an adult attempting to find sex on the internet.

A “sapiosexual” cannot evaluate a person’s IQ qualitatively, and can at best be attracted to derivative qualities associated with intelligence. Using the word out of pretentious cynicism is reprehensible, sincerely professing sapiosexuallity is naive. In all likelihood, some of these people are honestly confusing “intelligence” with the quality of “being interesting to talk to”. This kind of preference could be restated “I like people who are fascinating.” or “I like people who can entertain me by discussing a wide range of topics that interest me.” As reasons for choosing a partner go, conversational compatibility is laudable.

So called sapiosexuals, mar this otherwise beautiful sentiment when they conflate a person’s ability to intellectually engage them with actual intelligence.

The bad news is you’re being screwed by the person who made this pillow, the good news is they’re smarter than you.

Conversational compatibility occurs between people of comparable traits. We are fascinated by people who know slightly more than we do on the topics that interest us, or who have thought more productively than we have about the questions we like to contemplate. It’s exciting to talk to a more intelligent and experienced member of our own profession, but we as the intelligence and knowledge gap widens our ability to extract value from the conversation reaches an asymptote and then evaporates.

Only a being of infinite intellect could claim a direct appreciation for the intelligence of a conversation partner. Spinoza has convincingly argued that only one such being can exist, due to the impossibility of a mind simultaneously comprehending everything within the scope of infinite intellect and also being separate from another being. Any such being must either be within the scope of infinite intellect, or contain a logical contradiction and therefor fail to have Existence. So, if you think about it, it’s kind of arrogant to imagine being attracted to pure intellect since it implies one’s raw intelligence and knowledge are at minimum, comparable to that of the most skilled and intelligent humans.

Can’t get mad at this one because it’s clearly a joke.

If you need any further proof that seriously claiming sapiosexuality, is at best naive, and at worst pretentious, consider the response to this essay. People with around my intelligence and knowledge of the relevant topics will find it funny. People less well endowed in those departments will be confused about my exact claims, become angry, and probably fail to read this paragraph. Finally, people more skilled in reasoning an more knowledgeable about the relevant topics will find the humor overshadowed by the flaws in my reasoning, and my many empirically false claims about logic, human psychology, and social organization. The one reaction I guarantee you I will not receive will be “Sexy essay, this guy’s a solid 7!”

Talking points for people too nice to generate their own ridicule:

  1. Sapiosexuallity is nonsense, and the burden is on anyone who claims otherwise to explain why they didn’t find this essay arousing.
  2. You think you can accurately evaluate intelligence through conversation? How do explain your comical unawareness of my own intelligence? It’s deeper than an ocean boiling beneath the surface of an alien planet, and equally impenetrable to your observational faculties.
  3. Google the word sapiosexual and find an instance of it being used by a person you’d leave alone with a child for more than five minutes.
  4. Have another look at this meme of a woman licking a brain.
  5. Name three books.
  6. Okay fine, just take a look at this, if you don’t mind being lumped together with this guy then I give up:
He wants to “clarify” that it “feels weird”? They have “No knowledge of an iota”? These people “Can’t keep a conversation going”? What’s the common denominator shared by these sentences?