Wale Adetula: The Buffet Theory- Why you are single

Over the weekend I was having a discussion with a female friend of mine and I was trying to explain to her how I think the superficiality of the average black woman in terms of preferences when it comes to men is a big issue for the gender but one that would take a super-conscious, ‘near-divine’ effort to change. Of course she did not agree with me but before I go on, let me break down what I mean.

My use of the word ‘superficial’ in this context isn’t in any way personal. It’s something that I see as a gender-wide issue. In plain English, the average black woman processes thoughts, when it comes to the male gender as ideas.

1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 4.

(If) 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 4… Then …


Contrarily, men, don’t stop at ideas. Men constantly push the boundaries till they are presented with choices from which they can pick which best syncs with their personal preferences.

(a) 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 4.


(b) 2 + 2 = 4

(c) 1 + 3 = 4

(d) 1 + 1 + 2 = 4

 (a) or (b) or (c) or (d) = 4

Still don’t get it? Calm down. That’s where the post title comes in. I have decided to use a very relatable topic along with a common theory to further explain this.

So, you’re a good-looking chic, mid twenties, decent job, decent personality but you’ve been single for the past couple of years and you’re wondering why? (For all the ‘young women’ reading this, if you claim you’ve been single ‘by choice’ for over two years, please pick a spot on that one-way street and park. Thank you.)  Have you ever heard of the Buffet Theory? What is the Buffet theory?

When it comes to options in men, this is what is available:


(a) Buffet Table

But this is what you want:


(b) Dessert Table

You can have everything on Table (a) and possibly some of the stuff on (b) but all you want is (b).

Now, ordinarily, this wouldn’t be a bad thing. There’s nothing wrong in sticking to the ‘sweet’ or ‘good’ stuff you already know you like. Only problem is, EVERYONE LIKES THE SWEET/GOOD STUFF and this is why we hear a lot of women say stuff like ‘oh… the good ones are all taken.” Men like sweet things, heck, even health junkies like me, love a good chocolate cake and I’ll probably have me a good slice (or two) from table (b) but only after I’ve had me some of this… damn, take another look at this table:

*stomach grumbles* I really wish I could put up a larger pic so y’all can see all the good stuff on the table but….

The truth is there’s probably a bunch of stuff I’ve never ever tasted on that table. Also, I may not even like the taste of some of the stuff I choose to eat but I’m sure as hell still going to try it anyways. Women love ideas, that’s why most women can go into a relationship and only after a month, they know they won’t mind spending the rest of their lives with the man. They might say otherwise in public but deep within most women, once a guy matches those ‘superficial’ preferences that make up their idea of THEIR MAN, e.g:

27-29 + decent job + decent looks + reasonable family background + christian

BAM! Every other thing will fall in place.

This is the average woman’s chocolate cake. That familiar ‘building’ they keep going back to when they need to start all over again. On the contrary, these things only serve as a foundation for most men. Not the actual building. So she has a decent job? What exactly does she do, what did she do before now? What does she plan to do in the future? So she looks decent? What does she look like with her hair down? How does she look in corporate, casual, trad outfits?

It drives me nuts when I hear women say stuff like: “I don’t have a twitter account cuz there are only kids there”… or “I’m sorry, I can’t hang with you and your friends cuz you guys are my age mates, I need to hang out in places older guys hang.” Single men will jump at any opportunity to socialize even if it means joining Twitter or hanging out with their older sister and their married friends. Why? Because you just never know.

You might say; what is he talking about? Men aren’t this detailed. Let me remind you, I’m not talking about P-Setting or the casual stuff here. When it comes to the serious stuff like relationships, a man digs deep and if he goes ahead to get with you without doing so then you can so mark my words that he isn’t in it for the long haul.

Let me conclude this way. I’m not a big fan of the buffet theory simply because it’s easily misunderstood. It is not strictly about the physical stuff and it does not encourage women to blindly sample men. Someone once summed it up this way: Basically, being open to what a buffet has to offer doesn’t mean one has to be a glutton. Stop limiting yourself to such a narrow set of criteria just because you’re scared that you MIGHT find something you don’t like should you expand said criteria.

Yes, you might find something that sucks but you might also find something way better than you ever imagined. Don’t stop at the surface simply because you’re scared of what you’ll discover if you dig deeper.

PS: I wrote this with women in mind, but if you’re a guy and you know you’re guilty of doing all that I accused some women of doing above, well, you now know what to do.


Ok, there you have it. It’s time to hear from you. What’s your take on the superficiality theory when it comes to preferences in men? Do you agree or disagree with the Buffet Theory? Either way, use the comment box to share your opinion on the topic: why do some awesome women stay single for too long? Cheers.

Editor’s note: Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.



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Comments (3)

  1. the Toolsma, I totally agree with you. I've found myself in 2 consecutive 'going nowhere in a hurry' relationships. Ehy? Because I kept eating the same thing off the buffet table! Gonna spread my tentacles now!

  2. So Tope u like Wale's write up cos it makes u feel better about having a twitter account which people criticise you for? Ok cool. Personally I don't think having a twitter account is limited to any particular age group, provided what u tweet reflects your age, as in don't be a 40 year old man trying to get with wizkid or davido. Wale I don't know what to say about this. With matters of the heart one must not generalise. Did it occur to you that ur buffet theory applies to women the way u put it not because its the way they're built but because, thanks to their biological clocks and society they Do Not have the time to sample the stuff on the desert table, then go back to the table with the main course and continue "tasting"? And when it comes to the socialising issue u brought up, hanging out with his friends, tweeting etc. That has nothing to do with one's gender but with their personality. Are they introverted or extroverted. I would really love to go into detail about this. But as I don't like reading lengthy comments I will stop myself from writing one.

  3. I totally agree with you Wale…..I've been told I'm too old for twitter bc I'm married and older than the average mind on twitter. To them I say stick ur comments where the sun don't shine.. Brilliantly written; ticks all the right boxes too. This is one write up I wish I'd written. Well done again.

cool good eh love2 cute confused notgood numb disgusting fail