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Write down a list of characteristics your ideal man has. Now tell us: is “good at telling stories” on that list?

According to some new research published in the journal Personal Relationships, it ought to be.

The study—a collab between brains at the Department of Psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and the Department of Communication at the University of Buffalo—found that “women’s attractiveness assessments of men as a long-term date increased for good storytellers.” Meaning, the more impressive the yarn he spins, the more likely women are to find him attractive as a potential long-term partner.

Researchers asked 388 undergrads (both men and women) to rate potential partners’ level of attractiveness based on a bio they’d written. And, well, you know the results. They’re interesting, if not entirely surprising.

Wait?! What!? Women want men who can actually talk to them?! You don’t say…

Men, on the other hand, didn’t seem to care whether the woman in question was an eloquent bard or an inarticulate Barbie—even if he did recognize the difference in intellect. “Storytelling ability did not affect men’s ratings of women,” the study wrote.

Which, to look on the bright side, takes the burden of conversation off our shoulders, we suppose.

We’re all for a mate who can hold his own in conversation, but he’d better be good at listening, too.

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