Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari

October 26, 2015 Audio Books, Humor, Psychological 12

Howdy Howdy Bookworms!

Y’all know I’m a sucker for audio books and celebrity memoirs… But only funny celebrities, because the amount I don’t want to read about some celebutaunt’s spiritual awakening is STAGGERING. But. Basically anyone who was a regular on Parks & Recreation who writes a book? I will give that a whirl. (I haven’t gotten to your books yet, Ron Swanson, but I will one day. One day when I somehow stop thinking of you as Ron Swanson and remember you have an actual name. Nick Offerman. Right?) Aziz Ansari wrote a book, so I thought “I should read that with my ears because Tom Haverford’s inflection would be entertaining.” YOU WILL NEVER ESCAPE YOUR CHARACTERS! PAWNEE FOR LIFE!

modernromanceWhat was most interesting about Modern Romance was that it was NOT a memoir. It was pretty funny, but also full of social commentary and some sciencey goodness. Sounds like a winning combination, doesn’t it? Ansari and his impressively credentialed counterparts explore the ways in which dating has changed in the digital age, and the ways in which it hasn’t. Relationship dynamics have gone into hyper-drive with the advent of internet dating sites and texting. And this whole emerging adulthood thing where people don’t typically get married and start procreating right after high school graduation? Talk about a whole new world of dating opportunity. But like anything, it has its drawbacks. Now you have the stress of finding the PERFECT person. I mean, you have the WHOLE internet now and nobody will give you the side eye for saying you met online. It’s not like you’re limited by your small town anymore, but in some ways the pressure is more intense. Fascinating stuff. Really.

OF COURSE this led to a crap ton of self reflection for me, so let’s not talk about the book for a minute and talk about ME. My dating experience is extremely limited, although I’d like to take this opportunity to apologize to everyone who ever showed any interest in me, was pursued by me, or actually dated me. I have an overdeveloped fight or flight response and an underdeveloped sense of tact. Seriously, I’m SO sorry. I live in fear of the day I see my adolescent self portrayed in a book or movie. Which is ridiculous because it’s so few people. Still. I was beyond horrible at dating. BEYOND HORRIBLE. Have I mentioned that? The worst. Right here. It ended up working out in my favor though, because by the time I met the guy who’d eventually become my husband, I had virtually no old relationship baggage. I mean, it’s hard to acquire baggage when your longest relationship was 6 weeks… In other news, my husband should probably be sainted for putting up with me.

If you are feeling like an old fart because you met your spouse the old fashioned way, I think you’ll find Modern Romance fascination. And if you’re out there in the big bad dating world? Modern Romance will feel like a chat with a friend about the foibles of dating, and it might just renew your faith in the process.

Alright, Bookworms! Spill it! Those of you in committed relationships, how did you meet your person? We’ll call it science, even though it’s just me being nosy. Those of you in the dating pool: is it as terrifying as I’m imagining?

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12 Responses to “Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari”

  1. Sarah's Book Shelves

    I’ve heard this memoir is not your average celeb memoir and that it’s pretty fascinating! Maybe something I’ll try on audio. As for digital dating, my husband is always totally fascinated talking to all the younger people in his office who’re doing the NYC dating scene…they’re all on Tinder and regularly meet people that way. We’re way more boring…met at mutual friends’ wedding (well, we actually knew each other a little before that b/c we’re from the same town, but really hit it off at the wedding).

  2. Words For Worms

    There was a whole segment on Tinder- I was blown away! I remember back when we first got AOL the #1 rule was DO NOT MEET PEOPLE FROM THE INTERNET. Well. I was also 13, so anybody I’d have been meeting probably would have been a pedophile. Still. Ingrained! (Or is it engrained? Gah! Things I will never remember!)

    • Monika @ Lovely Bookshelf

      When I was in high school…before the “internet” haha 😉 we did local(ish) bulletin boards. Most had more than one phone line and you could chat with people in the area. We had meetups at the mall all.the.time. (Large group, with friends, and scoped things out first to make sure it wasn’t a creepy situation). I met my first boyfriend that way, and we ended up staying together for 6 years. So my rule has always been “if you meet people from the internet, use a lot of common sense and never go alone.” I have a lot of dear friends I met online! 🙂

      • Words For Worms

        I have never heard of anything like that but it sounds kind of cool! I too have lots of internet friends, some of whom I’ve met in person. Honestly, I feel like blog friends don’t count as internet people, I wouldn’t hesitate to meet any of them IRL. Of course, the biggest fear instilled in me via teen magazines was sexual assault, and I’m fairly certain none of my blog friends are in any way interested in me romantically.

  3. Leah @ Books Speak Volumes

    I listened to this on audio after my breakup a few months ago, and it was a kind of weirdly perfect way to get a taste of contemporary dating culture before diving into it myself. And now I’m dating a man I met on Tinder, which is surprisingly fun and not terrible.

    • Words For Worms

      It’s awesome that you met someone on Tinder! That was the one dating tool that sounded like a good idea to me. The whole business where you can’t contact the other person unless you BOTH say that it’s okay? That is genius. How many awkward encounters could be avoided if you were only approached by people you were interested in, you know? It probably would have saved me a lot of grief. I always always always ended up falling for the boys who either had girlfriends or wouldn’t have been interested in me anyway. And of course the ones who were into me typically weren’t the ones I was interested in. It all worked out in the end, thankfully, but Tinder might have been a nice thing to have around back in the day.

  4. Heather @ Capricious Reader

    I was kinda eh about this title? But then I heard Aziz on a podcast and dude? My sides started hurting from the laughing? So yeah, I’ll be listening to this one in, like, the near future?

    I listened to Furiously Happy? By Jenny Lawson? Who tends to talk like this? I can’t help it. You know how us old ladies are.

  5. Andi

    I loved every bit of this post, but it was this line that put me on the floor: “I have an overdeveloped fight or flight response and an underdeveloped sense of tact.” Yes, girl. Yes.

  6. Katie @ Doing Dewey

    Like my mom, I married the first guy I dated! Must be hereditary 🙂 This sounds far more interesting than another celebrity memoir to me! Social commentary involving technology and science is my jam.

    • Words For Worms

      I married the first guy I ever seriously dated. A handful of dates was all I ever managed prior to meeting my husband. I like to think my horrendous dating life was fated in some way… You know, in the rare moments my cynicism fades enough to believe in fate.

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