When the clock strikes midnight across the world people cheers to the New Year and kiss their loved ones. Idealy this is your signigigant other who you're deeply in love with and are thrilled to spend eternity with.
However today's dating world is an something else. Whether you are in a city or a rural countryside thanks to online dating you have access to more people than you ever did before. This can create psychological disorders. Reactance occurs when a person feels that someone or something is taking away his or her choices or limiting the range of alternatives. So since we have a variety of choices, choosing a life partner inhibits your ability to date freely thus creating a Never Never Land mentality. You never have to grow up and there is always a younger, better looking, more successful, and more compatible mate out there.
Dating today manifests itself in apps such as Tinder purely based on looks and social connections, then you have Speed Dating, Ok Cupid, Match, eHarmony, Plenty of Fish, and many many more. For the gay dudes there is Grindr, for Jews there's JDate, for married people there is Ashley Madison, and for the 50+ population there is OurTime. It seems like there is an online dating site out there for everyone. But somehow more than half of the US population is still single. These apps allow you to judge a perfectly good stranger based on their profile, pictures, height, weight, pets, income, race, religious beliefs, and ability to write. You no longer have to go to the bar or get set-up on blind dates. Its now as easy as swiping left for your sudo Prince Charming or Mrs. Right, and swipe right to never see them again. Finally premeditated breeding.
Having dated for what seems like eternity the dating pools is littered with workaholics, sex-aholics, narcissists, trust-fundees, exhibitionists, stalkers, psychopaths, hoarders, radical religionists, and druggies. I once dated a guy who had a giant free roaming tortoise in his New York City apartment. And another boyfriend ended his proposal with smoking DMT and jumping overboard from a giant ship. Luckily he's fine today, but this only goes to show you love is battlefield. Dating in particular brings out the very best and worst in people, but somehow we keep pursuing it in an attempt to create our very own happily ever after and to get that beautiful kiss at midnight.
100 Objects of Popular and Material Culture is an blog exploring the manifestations of human consumption and commodity-ization. The purpose of this experiment is to explore material and popular culture in contemporary society by using objects and concepts to prompt wider questions and reflections. So by emulating The British Museum's and Neil MacGregor's format of A History of the World in 100 Objects I plan to satirically analyze and reinterpreted 100 material culture objects over the course of 2014. Material Culture is the study of our culture's consumption of stuff; namely the manifestation of culture through material productions where people's perceptions of objects is socially and culturally dependent. With this, objects reflect conscious and unconscious beliefs on the the individuals who fabricated, purchased, or used them, and by extension the society where they live. So examining materiality, cultural truths and societal assumptions may be discovered. As anthropologist Arjun Appaduai states "in any society the individual is often caught between the cultural structure of commodity-ization and his own personal attempts to bring a value and order to the universe of things." Objects and commodities make up a much larger symbolic system consisting of want and need, socio-economic status, fashion, etc. Often times form follows function whether the commodity, market, and or consumer forever evolve around one-another. Philosopher Pierre Bourdieu's theories of capital flow full circle; where regardless if you are a minimalist or a hoarder the world is made up of things and everyone will leave their footprint on the earth. So by humorously analyzing marketed objects and concepts, hopefully this blog will provide further incite into ideas of over-consumption, a disposable society, consumerism vs. anti-consumers, planned obsolescence vs. sustainability, as well as the greater good of mankind and future generations.