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About Amit Varma

Amit Varma is a writer based in Mumbai. He worked in journalism for over a decade, and won the Bastiat Prize for Journalism in 2007. His bestselling novel, My Friend Sancho, was published in 2009. He is best known for his blog, India Uncut. His current project is a non-fiction book about the lack of personal and economic freedoms in post-Independence India.

Bastiat Prize 2007 Winner

Recent entries

Adityanath’s rise marks the end of a 100-year-old battle

This is the second installment of The Rationalist, my column for the Times of India. There comes a moment in…

The Seen and the Unseen: Episodes 6 to 10

I just realised that I haven’t been mirroring episodes of my weekly podcast, The Seen and the Unseen, on India…

The Return of Pragati

A few days ago, the magazine Pragati relaunched under my editorship. This was the editorial I wrote to mark its…

A Top Edge (and a Brain Fade)

This is the 30th installment of Rhyme and Reason, my weekly set of limericks for the Sunday Times of India…

Embrace the Technology!

This is the 36th installment of Lighthouse, my monthly column for BLink, a supplement of the Hindu Business Line. At…

27 September, 2007

Two Barbers, and Happiness

There’s an old question I remember having heard when I was a kid: You go to a small town and realise you need a haircut. There are just two barbers in town. One of them has a lousy haircut. The other one has the coolest haircut ever. Who do you go to?

The answer, of course, is that you go to the barber with the bad haircut. As there are just two barbers in town, they obviously cut each other’s hair. So the bad-haircut dude is the better barber.

I was reminded of this today when I came across a New York Times report about a study that reveals that, in general, men are happier than women. The implications of that are obvious.

Shame on us.

Update: Falstaff writes in to point me to “[t]he ever reliable Mark Liberman on why the New York Times report you cite, like most NY Times coverage of research findings, totally misinterprets the research findings and provides implications that are totally bogus.”

And reader Arup Raha writes in to berate me for the suggestion that men are responsible for making women unhappy. Dude, I was joking. Men rock. Really.

Posted by Amit Varma in Miscellaneous | News | Small thoughts

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