I KNOW IT’S HOPELESSLY ANTHROPOMORPHIC, but I’m always intrigued when nature programs show smallish, brownish female birds being courted by big, bright males—a type of gender difference known as “sexual dichromatism.” After all, the girls, however un-vivid, still lay the eggs, and the boys want to grab as many matings as possible. Now that I am in the countryside for a while, I see this syndrome writ large in the local pheasants, whose rusty croaks I hear daily and whom I often glimpse running across the road or (rarely) taking alarmed flight from a wheat field. I make up Beatrix Potter-esque tales about industrious, ever-pecking beige pheasant wives lording it over vain, fashionable, but somewhat dim consorts in red waistcoats and white cravats. Why has human evolution reversed this handy pattern? Let men worry about closet space and the latest silhouette while we wear any old thing and get on with the Great American Novel.