Totally dating for lonely people


I quizzed the crowds at my stand-up comedy shows about their own love lives.People even let me into the private world of their phones to read their romantic texts aloud onstage.But dealing with this new digital romantic world can be a lot of work.Answering messages, filtering profiles—it’s not always fun.As of this writing, 38% of Americans who describe themselves as “single and looking” have used an online-­dating site.

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He wouldn’t have walked up and said, “Oh, wait, you like the Red Sox?! ” before putting his hand in her face and turning away.The first girl, he said, was “a little too tall,” and the second girl was “a little too short.” Then he met my mom. Let’s look at how I do things, maybe with a slightly less important decision, like the time I had to pick where to eat dinner in Seattle when I was on tour last year.He quickly deduced that she was the appropriate height (finally! First I texted four friends who travel and eat out a lot and whose judgment I trust. Finally I made my selection: Il Corvo, an Italian place that sounded amazing. (It only served lunch.) At that point I had run out of time because I had a show to do, so I ended up making a peanut-butter-and-banana sandwich on the bus.Today’s generations are looking (exhaustively) for soul mates, whether we decide to hit the altar or not, and we have more opportunities than ever to find them.

The biggest changes have been brought by the $2.4 billion online-­dating industry, which has exploded in the past few years with the arrival of dozens of mobile apps.

I learned of the phenomenon of “good enough” marriage, a term social anthropologists use to describe marriages that were less about finding the perfect match than a suitable candidate whom the family approved of for the couple to embark on adulthood And along with the sociologist Eric Klinenberg, co-author of my new book, I conducted focus groups with hundreds of people across the country and around the world, grilling participants on the most intimate details of how they look for love and why they’ve had trouble finding it.



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