TheDating Nerdis a shadowy figure whose whereabouts and identifying details remain unknown. What we do know is that he is really, really good at dating. Hes been on more dates than you can shake a lengthy bar tab at, and hes here to help the average guy step his dating game up a notch or several.

I have been noticing a recent trend in the dating world. Why are women attracted to such unintelligent men? Do they get a sense of power out of it or is it a lark? I have a few friends who are not the sharpest tool in the shed but yet manage to get laid every night. The women, however are intelligent. I have spoken to many different women about this issue, and they think dating dumb men is really a turn-on. The women I have asked have such careers as doctors, lawyers, stock brokers, etc. My point is these women are not stupid. So what the hell is going on with this current dating trend? Please shine some light on it for me, because I refuse to dumb myself down for any person.

I get why youre confused. After all, intelligent men are inherently superior, right? Why would a woman want to date some dumb jock when she could date a guy who quotes Proust and understands the motion of molecules? Wouldnt she miss the scintillating debates? Wouldnt she get frustrated that she couldnt talk about her dissertation?

Well, not necessarily. See, theres a shaky assumption at the heart of your question, which is that smart men are inherently superior. And this is incorrect, for two reasons.

First reason: Women dont need men to provide intellectual stimulation. They can get that on their own. Look around you. If you hadnt noticed, women are now lawyers, doctors, marketing sharks, insurance executives, and captains, so to speak, of industry. Many, many smart women are occupying demanding roles in the information economy. Increasingly, women spend long workdays absorbing avalanches of data and issuing complicated recommendations.

And nobody well, almost nobody wants to keep their brain turned on all the time. If youre a smart woman with a high-powered job, its perfectly reasonable that youd want to hook up with an intellectually relaxing dude-bro, rather than an intellectually demanding guy like you.

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If this seems implausible, thats only because it runs counter to some of the most hoary old relationship stereotypes. Yknow, like the one about the 1950s husband figure who does a complicated job and comes home to a simple, loving wife. Or the one about the private equity fund genius who dates a slew of European models. Dating someone whos felicitous but a bit dim is not a new trend. It just seems more novel when the gender roles are switched up.

And if this doesnt seem fair, well reader, look inside yourself for a second. Arent you attracted to the girl you met at the gym who isnt necessarily exceptional at trigonometry, but probably looks great on a dance floor, or, more to the point, a bedroom floor? Dont you find a certain kind of giggly, un-snobby femininity attractive? Dont lie to me, now. All nerds nurse crushes on cheerleaders. It doesnt seem right to judge women for having similar attractions.

The second, more important reason is this:Alot of smart guys really suck with women.As we all know, intelligence doesnt necessarily translate to emotional skills. Especially because a lot of intellectual dudes didnt necessarily get a positive social experience growing up. Many dorky, sweet men are just unpracticed in terms ofhow to flirt, or date. And then there are straight-up terrible smart dudes: condescending pseudo-intellectuals and bitter PhDs.

Surely, youve heard of the term mansplaining. Yknow, the thing where men pepper their co-ed conversations with explanations of extremely basic phenomena, as if the women they were talking to had never left their houses. Whatever you think of the word itself whether or not you think it unfairly categorizes the male gender it is a very real phenomenon. Lots of women are tired of having men lecture at them about whatever.

And usually I dont think it comes from a bad place. Men want to impress women. Were under the impression that knowledge itself is impressive. And it is often said to be aquality women want in men. So we get the unhelpful impulse to brandish it at random. Also, a main genre of dude conversation is the hours-long exchange of minutiae and trivia. Its not like mansplainers think, Well, its time to be sexist now… and then launch into their thing.

But those good (or at least benign) intentions dont change a thing. Mansplaining is still, at best, tiring. Every woman I know well is fed up with being on the receiving end of male rambling. Theyve all practiced the pained but polite facial expression required when some software engineer goes on a monologue about how Radioheads last few albums were unappreciated. And maybe youve never done such a thing, ever. Maybe it isnt you. But you cant blame women for being wary of self-styled intellectuals.

After all, compare that to your friendly gym-rat type of guy. Hes chill, easygoing, and doesnt feel the need to speak in paragraphs about his existential crises. If he has a philosophy, its probably along the lines of stay hungry, or be nice to people. Also, he was probably popular in high school, and is thus comfortable in conversation, self-assured, fond of making compliments, and pretty good in bed. His reflex isnt to tell women all about seismology. He just says dumb sh*t to get a laugh. And it works.

Everything Ive said so far has been a condemnation of smart dudes. Even if you agree with me, I still havent given you any usable advice. But now I will do that. You might not like it, though.My advice is this: Learn from the dumb dudes.

By that I dont mean suppress your intellect, or act stupid. What I mean is, change up your game a little. Upon meeting a lovely woman, is your first instinct to say something profound about a giant novel you just read? Well, maybe dont do that. Instead, ask her some questions about herself. Say something silly. Keep it light. Dont make the interaction laborious.

Rather than being worried about displaying your intelligence, try hard to find a common connection with the woman youre talking to. Look for shared interests, or opinions, or just something you can both laugh about. Be warm and genuine first, and verbose later. And, crucially, on youronline datingprofile, dont write six paragraphs about all the smart stuff you think because youre so smart. Thats just tedious. (I have done the same thing in the past, for what its worth.)

Also? Those dudes of mediocre brainpower who are landing all those chicks probably have good style, and theyre probably in good shape. All the grey matter in the world wont make up for a horrific outfit, a ridiculous haircut, or being in hideous physical shape. Get that stuff locked down. Its as important as anything intellectual. Maybe much more.

Theres a larger lesson here. When you see women being interested in men who arent like you, dont just scratch your head, and assume that they should want what youve got instead. Instead of judging, observe. Youre being given important information about womens needs. A man of your intellect should know how valuable that is.

Think you could use some dating help, too? Email the Dating Nerd .

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