If you have any taste in TV shows at all you have probably seen Parks and Recreation. If you have not, please stop reading this blog and go watch all seven seasons right now. If you have then you probably know who Tom Haverford is (short Indian dude with a really high pitched voice and various business entrepreneur). Well Tom’s real name is Aziz Ansari , and besides being a pretty good comedian and actor, he wrote a book called “Modern Romance” which talks about the many factors of dating in today’s world. I’m normally not one for non-fiction factual books but this one was actually really interesting especially since Aziz added his comedic flair. What I also really enjoyed was the fact that there was informal slang used in the book rather then just stuffy facts and and a more “formal” tone. In the book he dissects topics from dating in the olden days, to online dating, to even cheating in today’s society. The biggest thing that I have learned is that with technology at our fingertips dating has somehow been easier and worse at the same time. Before people would have to rely on meeting their “soulmate” in their neighborhood or through their parents. Now people just have to download an app and can find thousands of singles looking for the same things all around them. Although this is a really awesome thing, many people have now become more superficial and often times make prenotions and jump to conclusions just by looking at someone’s profile. Another crazy thing that I learned is that Japan has the third lowest birthrate in the world, and the reason is that many Japanese people just have no interest in getting involved in a relationship. This has become such a problem that the Japanese government has started PAYING their residents to get together and procreate. But if you think that’s crazy, read the facts and it will somehow get even more mind blowing.
- “in 2013 a whopping forty-five percent of women ages 16-24 “were not interested in or despised sexual contact”
- “one-third of Japanese people under thirty had claimed to have never dated”
- “a report from the Japanese government’s cooperation warned that by 2060 the number of Japanese will have fallen from 127 million to about 87 million, of whom almost forty percent will be sixty-five or older”
- “about sixty percent of male singles in their twenties to thirties identify as a “herbivore man”. (herbivore man= Japanese slang for a man who does not want to get married or find a companion)
- All of the facts listed above were either from Aziz’s own research while in Japan or statistics published by the Japanese government.
Arguably, the best and funniest part of “Modern Romance” are the real life examples. In order to research for this book thousands of people from different cities and countries were interviewed, and only a few of the hilarious responses were put in. The idiots of the internet really got to shine, and it was almost… inspiring. Some of the men in the examples really showed me how dumb the male population can be, but also how persistent some are. One guy sent the word “Hey” eight times in a four month period with no response. You have to admit, that’s dedication. So overall “Modern Romance” was a really great factual read that never struck me as being boring or dry. In fact it was the clearly the complete opposite. Ten out of ten, highly recommend.