Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari
I wasn’t sure if I could handle reading this book, having been in the dating trenches for long enough to induce some of the insanity Ansari references, but I finally felt ready to take the plunge. I wasn’t surprised at anything I read, or how I felt while reading: I knew that Ansari’s observations would make me feel crazy and hopeless, while also being so relatable that I’d feel less alone and maybe a little less crazy; I also figured I’d laugh, at least a little bit.
If you haven’t used online means to meet potential partners: congratulations, and I envy you. Any of the stories from women recounted in this book could have been mine, or any other number of women’s (or men’s) who have been on the dating circuit for more than a day. If you have used an online dating app, the stories from the field that Ansari shares are almost boring, because you’ve experienced/heard them so many times before. If this is your first time encountering these stories of what it’s like to be ghosted/ghost, be stood up/catfished/humiliated/demeaned/questioned about why you’re single/etc. etc., then buckle up, because reading about what dating is like in today’s age is pretty horrifying and unbelievable (not to mention disheartening), though it is all true. Ansari shares case studies, experiments, and numbers to back up the abysmal future he paints of the dating wasteland (kidding, kidding, but it seems that humans are having a harder and harder time communicating with one another.)
I think this is a worthwhile read for both single and partnered people alike, but the experience will be very different, depending on your dating experience (and when it occurred). The way we treat people over computer/phone screens is a universal commentary, and one we would all do well to consider. If nothing else, it will, hopefully, make you laugh, as I did.