Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Aziz Ansari's "Modern Romance"

Whether you are a single 20 something or a parent of a tween, teen, or single 20 something you need to treat 'yo self to Aziz Ansari's book Modern Romance. As a married mother of 3, I decided to read this book simply because I love Ansari's comedy and thought it would be a fun read-or in my case listen. The audio book was read by Aziz Ansari himself, which I loved. I never thought I would actually learn anything relevant to my life from this book. 

The audio version is tailored to the listener and  Ansari hilariously lets the listeners know how lazy they are for not actually reading the book themselves. He also states that the audio version lacks the graphs, pictures and charts from the romance studies talked about in the book. So yes, you get all of the humor and sarcasm listening to Ansari read to you via audio book, but you also don't get the full experience of pictures and graphs to accompany the read. The choice is yours.

As stated before, I am the mother of 3 boys. My oldest is a teenager, and I am sure dating is just around the corner. I never realized until listening how relevant everything in this book would be to a mother raising sons who will be dating in these modern times. Let's just say that the dating years seem like yesterday to me and I had no idea so much had changed since the late 90s/early 00s. 

This isn't just Ansari's humor on dating in the modern age. This non-fiction book is filled with research based on numerous stidies, surveys and group experiments and discussions. Ansari took writing this book seriously teaming up with a leading sociologist who both "took to the streets" talking to normal, everyday people to get the scoop on dating past versus present. 

Interviewing both elderly, happily married couples, and their single offspring, you really get the entire image of dating through the decades and how much it has changed. Things that are acceptable now (such as breaking up via text message) seems so wrong on all levels even to me (a mid 30 something woman). This really opened my eyes to what to expect and what the social norms are for when my children start dating.

Today's generation are so connected online that physical social interaction is "stale". The younger generation is unsure how to make small talk, or in some instances, prefer not to. It was so strange hearing young subjects explain how they are basically clueless about to how to interact on a date. It was shocking to hear Ansari basically tell readers/listeners the basics of appropriate communication! Basic common sense skills seemed to be lacking in many young research subjects. It made me realize the things I need to be teaching my sons. Things I thought were common sense may in fact need to be taught to my young men.

Most of the book is focused on modern romance- why is it so hard to find a quality mate in times when everyone is literally at our fingertips? What are the differences singles look for in a mate now as compared to older times? Have expectations regarding the future-love-of-our-lives been set so high we make it impossible for anyone to fit the bill? Have the social norms made it so there are more happily single people in the world who never want to get married? These questions and more all are answered by current research and Ansari's personal, humorous adventures in dating.

Some of the book seemed repetitive, but it was overall great information. It takes a brief look at dating and marriage facts from around the world which I found very interesting. I also enjoyed hearing stories from older generations about how they met their spouse. Most met within a radius of just a few blocks from where they grew up, married within a year, had children, and are still married to this day. Such a drastic contrast from dating and marriages nowadays.

If you are currently single, a parent, or just interested in how things have changed in the romance department throughout the years, I highly recommend this book. It's informative and humorous which is the prefect combination. A 4 star read for me!

Happy Reading!

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