In the words of Sheldon Cooper: “There’s an economic concept known as a positional good in which an object is only valued by the possessor because it’s not possessed by others. The term was coined in 1976 by economist Fred Hirsch to replace the more colloquial, but less precise, ‘neener-neener.’”
I only valued Mr. Neener-neener because I had a date with him when my nemesis didn’t. He wasn’t pants-droppingly hot, and his personality wasn’t much to write home about either, but I didn’t care because he was my “positional good” — my “neener-neener” boy toy.
However, I recently learned that this concept of positional good really backfires when applied to man-goods.
Just because my nemesis is chatting up a guy on my dating website, that does NOT mean that it is a good idea to add him to my shopping cart out of spite or competitive spirit. My nemesis is my nemesis precisely because we have vastly diverging points of view about everything, including preferences about our favorite flavors of man-candy.
Of course, I didn’t think about all that before I went on a date with the guy. That’s because I am an eejit.
I admit that I did it just to gauge his reaction. I wanted to make him uncomfortable and see how he reacted to awkward revelations and situations. I couldn’t help myself, I love the power trip.
But I didn’t expect Mr. Neener-neener to turn the tables on me by interrogating me about her. Her likes, her dislikes, her hobbies… I’m not sure when he decided to switch targets, but at some point in his male stream of logic, he worked it out that his current date would be willing to show him the way into someone else’s pants. Now how’s the eejit, eh?
As much as I would have liked to lord Mr. Neener-neener over my nemesis, it was not worth the humiliation of being exploited to get to someone much less awesome than me (yeah, I know, I’m vain).
So, folks, take it from someone who learned the hard way. The concept of “Neener-neener” should never determine who you date. Sure, go ahead and get that last croissant just so the bitch in line behind you can’t have it. But seriously, leave that bitch to her own devices when it comes to the guy who works behind the counter. Unless he is Clive Owen’s doppelganger, he isn’t worth it.