I was a little nervous to read this, despite my love for Aziz Ansari (and I do love him — I am the biggest Parks & Rec fan and he’s the greatest on there), because while I’m (fairly) young, I’ve been married for almost 11 years and never really had to deal with dating in a modern age. I met my husband when I was in high school (we worked together) and got married a year after I graduated. I know I remember texting being around then, but it was still almost prohibitively expensive. And I didn’t have a Facebook account for a couple of more years. So while I consider myself pretty tech savvy (with the Snapchats and whatnot), I really avoided most of what’s covered in this book (online dating, texting someone to ask them out/break up, etc). But y’all have been reviewing it pretty well, so I gave it a shot and I’m glad I did. It was a great read — both the sociological aspects of it, and Ansari randomly rambling about ramen.
So in case you haven’t read any reviews of this, Modern Romance covers a research project that Ansari embarked on with NYU sociologist Eric Klinenberg. They decided to figure out what kind of impact modern technology has on romance — how does it affect how we meet people, communicate with people, live with people, etc. They interviewed thousands of people — even creating a subreddit — and performed surveys and experiments. Ansari walks the reader through the data, keeping things interesting and fun.
And it is fun. For instance, the science behind: “In a sense we are all like a Flo Rida song: The more time you spend with us, the more you see how special we are. Social scientists refer to this as the Flo Rida Theory of Acquired Likability Through Repetition.” Or the excuse he uses to post a picture of Pitbull. And the science is really cool — I loved how he compared the ways people meet decades ago compared to now. Apparently, it was near-impossible to meet anyone not within walking distance — but people were okay with it because they didn’t really know any different. It’s an interesting sociological study written by a funny, funny little man. I can’t wait to see what he can do if he ever decides to focus his writing ability on comedy….