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select query optimization for 3 choices

i want to do a search on a table with a field called 'gender'. there
are 3 possible values for this field. the text versions would be

male
female
either

i'm trying to figure out the fastest way to get 'where gender=...'
from the table.

i know i can use ENUM ('male','female ','other')
or TINYINT and the values would be 0,1 or 2
a third option would be char(1) with a 0,1 or 2 value

the field would obviously be indexed.

which column type should i be using to optimize this query?

thanks,
cary
Jul 20 '05 #1
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