According to statisticians in the GRC Stat Lab, this is an accurate representation of the average person’s “cuteness level” throughout a lifetime. Invented participants were shown photos of subjects at various ages and asked, simply, “Cute or not cute? Rate cuteness on a scale of 1-10.” Right now, all we have is the numbers and we’re still sorting through them, trying to figure out what they mean. Note: For our purposes, “cuteness” and “attractiveness” are being lumped into the same category. Obviously, the high score at the age of 21 reflects a very different sort of cuteness than the high scores at the age of 1 or the age of 80.
Points of interest:
1. Infanthood.The chart does not reflect the huge cuteness variation in a person’s pivotal first year. The newborn baby will start at a respectable score of 60 and rise in cuteness slowly, peaking at the age of eight months (100 points!) when the baby starts smiling, cooing and making eye contact. This high level of cuteness is largely evolutionary—“a beauteous babe shall ne’er be abandoned,” as the olde saying goes. At 16 months, the baby has become a fixture in the family and may begin his inevitable decline in cuteness.
2. Age 13:Unsurprising results. It’s a fact that 13 is the least cute age a person could ever be. This is quite jarring for the cuter of the preadolescent subjects who assumed that the good times would never end, but it makes sense. The preadolescent takes on some traits of adulthood (pride, shame) while ignoring others (tact). On top of that, they’ve got those metal tooth shackles and they spend weekdays in a holding area with angry, sarcastic peers and, well, it’s best to just ignore them until they hit their teens.
3. Teens through Early Adulthood: Subject gets cuter and cuter until she gets as attractive as she will ever be. Then there is another decline, this one much slower.
4. Age 53: Subject hits a stride. She isn’t cute, but she’s done getting uglier.
5. Age 72: The cute old person effect sets in. Again, this is largely evolutionary. You’d kick grandma to the curb, but she’s cute so you keep her around as long as she makes sweet tea and cakes.
6. Age 87: Subject is not so cute anymore. Smells. Reminds you of death. Family members suspect he was never young to begin with.
Gabe’s Closing Thoughts: That is one seriously official-looking graph if I’ve ever seen one, but lets keep in mind that it’s based on averages. Some invented subjects lived to be 90 and never went under a score of 40 while others hit their peak at 20, the poor SOBs. I’d just like to congratulate all the technicians who put in some long nights in the lab to bring us this enlightening data. And for you technicians whose families fell apart during the past few exhausting months, I can only hope that your good looks carry you through the hard times.