The Higgs boson particle of love

by Daphne Reese

IClark Kent have a thing for nerdy guys.  Intelligence is the sexiest trait that a man can have.  Combine that with some Android developer skills, a white lab coat, or even just a pair of Clark Kent glasses, and I am hooked.  I’m sure I’m not alone here.  In fact, my friend Parker admitted it was not a coincidence that she got back together with an ex-boyfriend the day she saw him in his brand new Clark Kent glasses.

Last week I went on a first date with a guy who seems to be very smart. In the course of conversation, this guy somehow started talking about the Higgs boson particle, Higgs-boson particleand I was instantly enthralled.  Having never taken a physics class, I don’t quite grasp what the hell the Higgs boson is or exactly what significance it has to the theory of particle physics.  In fact, I believe the last time I heard mention of it was by my ex-boyfriend the chemical engineer.  And it was just as sexy when he described it.  I hate to be so easily impressed, but when a man starts dropping physics terms, it’s like conversational Spanish fly.

Is this a thing that guys do?  Memorize some spiel about a complex, brainy topic and use it to mesmerize unsuspecting, defenseless girls in their path?  (If so, well done, boys.  Well done.)

Sometimes it doesn’t even have to be a science term.  Parker recently confided that the moment she was finally seduced by this one guy was when he said one little magic word—“finite.”  While not strictly a genius-level word, in her defense, this man was absolutely gorgeous and in no way expected to be intelligent.  Knowing how to use big words like “finite” was just a nice add-on.

This weekend, while out at Alibi with the girls, I noticed a cute, tall guy wearing Clark Kent glasses.  Our eyes met, and he immediately walked over and introduced himself.  Within moments, we were making out.  In addition to the always-deadly Clark Kent frames, this guy had a whole list of dreamy nerd traits: he was a scientist, graduated from West Point, and writes novels in his spare time.  He was wearing a t-shirt with Chinese characters on it, causing my girlfriend to instantly dub him “Chopstick.”  When I asked Chopstick what his shirt meant, he replied that it said “dragon,” while casually mentioning the fact that he is, in fact, fluent in Mandarin.  I wouldn’t be surprised if he deliberately wears that shirt to the bars just so he can drop his Chinese language skills into conversation.  It’s no secret that girls love foreign language speakers, especially when it involves a sexy-sounding accent like French.  Mandarin may be less appreciated as a tool of seduction, but it definitely gets extra points for nerdiness.

Of course, intelligence, like beauty, is often in the eye of the beholder.  Other girls might be bored by talk of string theory, or worse, feel insulted or think that their date is trying to show off.  Have you ever been seduced by soft whisperings of E=mc2?  Share your story in the comments.

February 22, 2011. Tags: , , , , . Uncategorized.


  1. Jills replied:

    Lately I’ve been feeling like there is something oddly attractive about the unknown. I find it strangely sexy whenever my boyfriend talks about farming (which is totally foreign to me), and, for some bizarre reason, I was really turned on by Ewan McGregor playing a Catholic priest in Angels and Demons. (It doesn’t get much more unknown than that 😉

    So I’m curious, Daphne: are you attracted to nerdy guys in general, or is it just science and technology nerds specifically that catch your eye?

    • Daphne Reese replied:

      Jills – I haven’t seen Angels and Demons, but I would imagine Ewan McGregor being sexy as a Catholic priest has a lot to do with the fact he is Ewan McGregor. 😉 Still, the priest concept is intriguing.

      When it comes to nerds, I definitely have a special weakness for the Technology and Science Nerds in particular, but I gave it some thought and realized there are lots of other types of hot nerds, too. I just blogged about it here:

  2. Miovski replied:

    Oh, there’s no denying the attractiveness of a good nerd. Because let’s face it, as a wonderfully intelligent woman, there is no way I am going to date someone who doesn’t contribute something to the party. Besides Daphne…in our world of intelligentsia, is there really any other attribute worth overlooking faults for? If the man can’t keep up with my brain, he’s just going to have to go sit in the ‘use and abuse,’ corner. Now, find me a nerd with a sharp wit and brutal sense of humor, and my knees are already shaking…..And I guess if I had to define nerd by these standards, it wouldn’t have to be just science and technology. It’s all about using complex knowledge to the change the world that makes it hot. Going places no one has gone before? = sign me up, baby!

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