The Groucho Marx phenomenon --- wouldn't want to belong to a club which would have me as a member --- is yet another area where dating and academia overlap. I'm sure it's in the social psych literature, though I've not seen it, though the endowment effect is kind-of related.
Every talk that I have ever given and every conference that I have ever spoken at are not a big deal, and their flaws seem glaring. Even journals and institutions, where you can't take for granted your continued affiliation, seem like not such a big deal, though the second it seems like you might not be able to get hired/accepted they resume being a big deal and the flaws seem less prominent. Everyone that I've ever dated is just them, feels very approachable and especially if they seem excessively interested, I notice their flaws, but as soon as the relationship appears in doubt, their flaws become less important.
It's an unfortunate way to see the world, and I wish I didn't, or at least that I understood why I did.
But at least I have the flaw in common with a very funny dead guy. Any ideas?
. . .
Once I saw a blog with the habit of keeping a list of gratitudes. Maybe that helps.
I'm going to start such a list for my university/postdoc.
1. It's not at the top of any field, but they're growing in my area and there's a lot of energy directed towards improving it, and the energy can be contagious (hopefully!)
2. (Relatedly) People are friendly.
3. I have a huge office all to myself with a somewhat entertaining view.