Tinder’s latest report on members in Thailand and around the globe reveals eight dating trends for the decade ahead.
More than half of all Tinder members are Gen Z (18- to 25-year-old young adults) and the pandemic triggered a turning point in their dating behaviour, states the “Future of Dating is Fluid” report.
Social engagement on Tinder was up during the pandemic, with 19 per cent more messages sent per day in February 2021, compared to a year earlier, and conversations lasting 32 per cent longer. Meanwhile, nearly half of Tinder had a video chat with a match during the pandemic. Engagement and activity grew throughout the year with 11 per cent more swipes and 42 per cent more matches per Tinder member, said the report.
It concluded that Gen Z is breaking traditional dating behaviour and taboos.
“Dating is no longer about the familiar chronology or of slow courtship, instead it’s become fluid in terms of expectations (let’s see where it goes), emotions (honest and authentic) and experiences (more activities than icebreakers, digital dating is here to stay).”
Tinder’s 8 top trends for the future of dating:
1. Daters will be more honest and authentic
The pandemic helped many people put things in perspective. It led Tinder members to be more truthful and vulnerable about who they are, how they look, and what they’re going through. Mentions of ‘anxiety’ and ‘normalise’ in bios grew during the pandemic (‘anxiety’ grew 31 per cent; ‘normalise’ grew more than 15 times).
2. Boundaries will become more transparent
The pandemic brought up more discussions of personal boundaries. Tinder members used their bios to make their expectations clear: use of the phrase ‘wear a mask’ went up 100 times during the pandemic, ‘boundaries’ is being used more than ever (up 19 per cent), and the term ‘consent’ rose 11 per cent. This practice will make conversations about consent more commonplace and comfortable in the future.
3. More people will want to “See where things go”
In a recent survey of Tinder members, the number of daters looking for ‘no particular type of relationship’ was up nearly 50 per cent. So rather than the pandemic driving a desire for marriage, the next generation of daters will seek more open-ended relationships.
4. Digital dates will remain part of the new normal
As in-person contact became risky, daters turned to virtual experiences for human connection. And while it may have started out of necessity, the digital date is here to stay. According to a recent Tinder survey, those who tried it see it as a low-pressure way to get a sense for someone, and 40 per cent of Gen Z Tinder members say they will continue to go on digital dates, even as date spots reopen.
5. First dates will be more about activities than icebreakers
With many bars and restaurants closed, many traditional first date venues were no longer an option. So when it came time to meet up, daters chose more creative, personal, and casual first date activities than in the past. For example, Tinder saw a 3 times increase in mentions of ‘roller skating’ in bios and requests for date activities from fort building to snowball fights pop up in bios.
6. Small touches will have a big impact
Members are using their bios to seek out affection like hand holding, cuddling, or someone to touch their hair: use of the word ‘cuddle’ grew 23 per cent, and ‘hand holding’ is up 22 per cent. After experiencing months without physical contact, daters have come to greatly appreciate the smallest moments of physical affection. So even when meet-ups become common, little physical gestures will play a more important role in people’s dating lives.
7. People will always want to date someone close by
Tinder’s geolocation, or ability to find someone nearby, was highly relevant for the pandemic moving boom. Mentions of ‘moving’ in bios were up 28 per cent in 2020. So while technology continues to enable people to live or work anywhere, they are still coming to Tinder to find someone who lives close to them.
8. A ‘summer of love’ could be coming
As of October 2020, more than 40 per cent of Tinder members under the age of 30 had not met a match in person. But according to Tinder bios, that might be changing. “Go on a date” hit an all-time high in bios in February 2021. And while people slowed down in-person dating in 2020 (54 per cent of singles shared with YPulse that “Covid 19 has significantly delayed my love life”), they are ready to start getting out more as soon as vaccines (or antibodies) are in place.
A Thai surfer, Tee, has invented Thailand’s first eco-friendly surfskate made from bottle caps.
Amid the Covid-19 crisis, surfskating is currently popular among Bangkokians as they can play it anywhere.
Tee said he was concerned about environmental problems, especially plastic waste as Thailand generated 2 million tonnes of plastic waste each year.
“Pictures of turtles and dugongs eating plastic waste are in my mind until now,” Tee said.
He explained that he had made a colourful board by melting bottle caps inside the oven at a temperature of approximately 200 degrees Celsius, pouring plastic on a plywood mould and pressing it with a metal sheet.
He added that he had found a way from the internet of recycling plastic caps, but it took about four months before he could achieve success.
“I polished the board to the least possible extent because this process would generate plastic dust which would be harmful to humans and other creatures,” Tee said.
He added that everyone could solve problems related to the environment even if it were just a small project.
“I’m just playing a small part in helping solve environmental problems,” Tee added.
We are hearing and seeing more about robots in the house helping with chores. And really it frightens me. I am glad Sri Lanka is backward in harnessing Artificial Intelligence to have robotic domestic aides.
Kazuo Ishiguro’s new book, Klara and the Sun’ his first since the Nobel Prize in Literature awarded him in 2017 “for works that uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection in the world”, is set in a near-future America, “where the social divisions of the present have only widened and liberal-humanist values appear to be in terminal retreat,” with the robot Klara- Artificial Friend – giving his/her opinions. “The book addresses itself to an urgent but neglected set of questions arising from a paradigm shift in human self-conception. If it one day becomes possible to replicate consciousness in a machine, will it still make sense to speak of an irreducible self, or will our ideas about our own exceptionalism go the way of the transistor radio?” Artificial Friend Klara is a sort of mechanical governess bought by a young teenager Josie, suffering from an obscure illness “At first, Josie’s family is unsure how to relate to Klara: She seems to them something in between an au pair and a household appliance. Ishiguro wrings plenty of pathos from these conflicting attitudes.”
Another facet of the story, as Ishiguro sees it, is the rise of ever more sophisticated technology and the widespread adoption of artificial intelligence creating a permanently jobless class, which in turn has led to mass unrest and top-down repression.
I read and quote from a very long critique titled Kazuo Ishiguro Sees What the Future Is Doing to Us by Giles Harvey writing in the New York Review of Books. He sums up his assessment of Ishiguro thus: “With his new novel, the Nobel Prize-winner reaffirms himself as our most profound observer of human fragility in the technological era.”
I was delighted with the article as I had read ‘The Remains of the Day’ (1989), saw the film, and later read ‘Never Let Me Go’ (2005) and found him to be an excellent writer in English. As you know, ‘Remains….’ is the narration of his life story by a faithful English butler, and was awarded the 1989 Booker Prize. James Stevens, the stiff and starchy butler, devotedly serves his lord and master who is a Nazi sympathizer in between the two world wars. He serves without a thought for himself and not permitting the slightest desire to interfere with his daily routines though he is attracted by another of the ‘downstairs staff.’ He realizes his folly too late when he leaves service and drives to seek Miss Sally. She is married by then.
You would think that that sort of story would not make a viewer-drawing film, but it did in the hands of director James Ivory, producer Ismail Merchant, and screen writer Ruth Prawer Jhabwalla, the very successful trio. The film was nominated for eight Academy Awards in 1994, for Best Film, Best Actor (Anthony Hopkins), Best Actress (Emma Thompson), Best Screen Play, Best Director and Best Production, among others. The cast included Hugh Grant and Christopher Reeves.
My reaction to reading “Never Let Me Go’ was strange to say the least. At the start I thought I was reading an account of a school story which would develop to include love and other happenings. Just kept getting a cold feeling as I read about Kathy, her friend Ruth and the third of a triangle of sorts – Tommy, living normal lives in Hailsham, a progressive boarding school. Then came clammy fear when I realized they were cloned human beings – named ‘donors’ and worse, were to donate
their organs to real humans who would be saved but the clones would be ‘complete’ – die in their thirties. The process of donating starts after graduation. Kathy knows what’s coming, and yet she tells her story, and seems to accept her fate, without self-pity or alarm, as though state-sanctioned organ theft were just another one of life’s minor irritations. Ishiguro exposes the defects of our current liberal order, and the selective blindness of its beneficiaries. His comments are relevant to workers who give of their service and even life while the beneficiaries are rich, powerful and of course utterly inconsiderate and unfeeling. Here I thought of our women slaving in the Middle East while the politicos especially back home benefit from their earnings. During the Covid pandemic, these stranded workers were the last to be repatriated and at their cost, after many complaints by thinking members of the public.
“Love and friendship may not survive death, but they grow stronger and deeper right up until the end” This is the moral center of the novel.
The film directed by Mark Romanek in 2010 starred Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightly and Andrew Garfield. Frankly, I would not want to see it. Donors and transplants are all too common now, but this novel, termed a dystopian tragedy. would be hard for me to watch.
He is a British novelist, screenwriter and short story writer and is one of the most celebrated current ‘men of letters’. Born November 8, 1954 in Nagasaki, to a traditional three generational Japanese family, with Nagasaki developed but standing as a symbol of human destruction. To watch his favorite program, “The Lone Ranger,” Ishiguro had to go to his friend’s next door.
Ishiguro’s father, Shizuo, was an oceanographer whose work on storm surges caught the interest of the British government. In 1960, he moved his young family to Guildford to take up a short-term research job. Like Nagasaki, Guildford was a place of long-established custom. Everyone was white, and yet the new arrivals were warmly received. Ishiguro picked up the language quickly, and learned to turn his foreignness to his advantage, putting it about, for instance, that he was an expert in judo. He also started going to church, where he became the head choir boy. His family believed it was important to respect local ways, however odd they might appear. His father’s employment was extended. Growing up between two cultures, Ish, as everyone now called him, acclimatised himself effortlessly. His mother, Shizuko, schoolteacher, maintained close contact with family back home. To be Japanese was for the growing boy a private source of confidence, but he was firmly rooted in England. It was a relief, when, in the late 1960s, his parents decided to stay for good.
He was a good student and experimented in life. Before studying English and philosophy at the University of Kent, Ishiguro hitchhiked around America and held a series of jobs in England, including grouse beater for the Queen Mother at Balmoral Castle in Scotland. After graduating, he took a job in an organization in West London that helped homeless people find housing. While there, he met Lorna MacDougall, a social worker from Glasgow, whom he married in 1986. She is Ishiguro’s first and most important reader, and her comments can be unsparing. In 1979, he studied creative writing at the University of East Anglia.
In his late teens and early 20s, when he was trying to make it as a singer-songwriter, Ishiguro had shoulder-length hair and went around in torn jeans and colorful shirts. In late October 1983, young writer Ishiguro, who’d recently published his first novel, joined a quarter million people in central London to protest against thermonuclear weapons.
Ishiguro’s first novel – 1982 – when he was 27, ‘A Pale View of Hills,’ written while at the University of East Anglia, is largely set in a Japan of the mind, an imaginary counterfeit of the place and was acclaimed. The following spring, Granta magazine named him on its list of Best Young British Novelists along with Salman Rushdie, Martin Amis and Ian McEwan. He decided to quit his job and devote himself full time to writing. He named Charlotte Brontë as the novelist who influenced him most.
He is meticulous in his writing, spending years mulling over a story. Then he draws detailed blueprints for the entire novel, First, he writes very quickly without revisions. He drafts a chapter in longhand; reads it through, dividing the text into numbered sections. On a new sheet of paper he now produces a sort of map of what he has just written, summarizing in short bullet points each of the numbered sections from the draft. Working from this sheet, he then produces a flow chart, which in turn serves as the basis for a second, more painstaking and deliberate draft. When this is finished to his satisfaction he finally types it up. Then he moves on to the next chapter and the process starts again.
By his own admitting he is not obsessive about his writing. ‘Klara and the Sun’ is only his eighth novel. When he does want to, he is capable of going flat out. He produced a first draft of ‘The Remains of the Day’ in a four-week crash, writing from morning till night, stopping only for meals.
“He’s very at peace with himself,” Robert McCrum, a longtime friend and former editor, said. “There’s no darkness in him. Or if there is, I haven’t seen it.”
NOTE: a text formatting issue caused the omission of many words in one paragraph in Nan’s last week’s article; Nan apologizes to her readers for the garbled text.”
Mahidol University has skyrocketed into the world’s top 100 universities in the field of performing arts. The 2021 QS World University Rankings by Subject also showed Mahidol retains its place as Thailand’s top medical university, ranked among the top 150 in the world.
“The results show our Performing Arts ranking has entered the top 100 for the first time, thanks to our internationally recognised College of Music, said Mahidol University president, Professor Banchong Mahaisavariya.
Meanwhile, Mahidol was ranked 142nd in the world for Life Sciences & Medicine.
These results reaffirmed the incredible strengths of Mahidol University in the fields of Health Science & Medicine and Science & Technology, said university officials.
Being ranked in the top 100 for performing arts confirms the dedication and commitment to quality of teachers, students and research, said Narong Prangcharoen, Dean of Mahidol’s College of Music.
“This achievement is our pride and a major step that reinforces the mission of the college to be a leading music institution in Southeast Asia,” said Narong.
The QS World University Rankings by Subject ranks the world’s top universities in 51 subjects.
The annual rankings are based on academic reputation, employer reputation, and impact of research.
The Mapo Oil Depot, located near the World Cup Park in Mapo, western Seoul, was once a level-one security facility that was off limits to the public for almost 40 years. The facility has recently been refurbished as a cultural space for citizens.
A lantern exhibition, titled “Sea of Light,” is currently running at the once abandoned oil tank, offering a cultural experience for those who are feeling exhausted amid the prolonged coronavirus pandemic.
The exhibition hall features a range of sea creatures, including a large turtle and a sea lion swimming through a school of tiny sardines. They are all lanterns made of hanji, or mulberry paper.
Going up the stairs amid a school of fish swirling around, there are more illuminated sculptures like cats and pigeons playing on the grass. A giant rainbow-colored whale, a symbol of dreams, swims high in the sky. You can also take a rest on a cute glowing tree stump.
The exhibition runs through Feb. 21 and admission is free.
More information can be found at the website parks.seoul.go.kr/template/sub/culturetank.do
Arts & CultureJan 03. 2021A photo of Luangphor Viriyang Sirintharo. The message on the board pays tribute to him with the words ‘we miss venerable Luangphor Viriyang Sirintharo’. Credit: Wat Dhammamongkol.
By Wichit Chaitrong The Nation
The passing of mindfulness meditation master Luangphor Viriyang Sirintharo in December is a great loss to thousands of his students and followers.
Buddhists pay tribute to Luangphor Viriyang Sirintharo on December 23 at Wat Dhammamongkol in Bangkok.
While the pain of being unable to meet him in person any longer is immense, he has left behind priceless treasures to enrich the minds of his followers and meditation enthusiasts.
A large number of people have paid personal tributes to the master whose title is Somdet Phra Yanawachirodom, as his body lies in repose at the Wat Dhammamongkol Temple in Bangkok, where he was lord abbot. He passed away on December 22 due to natural causes at the age of 100 years and 11 months.
The steady stream of visitors coming to pay their final respects are a testament to how much he is revered and loved by so many people.
Luangphor Viriyang devoted his life to monkhood and teaching mindfulness meditation.
Born on January 7, 1920 in Saraburi province, he entered monastic life when he was 16 years old. He was trained by the late Ajahn Mun Bhuridatta Mahathera (1870-1949), who was among the pioneers of the Thai Forest Tradition, a lineage of Theravada Buddhist monasticism. Ajahn Mun was a highly revered master of insight meditation, or Vipassana.
In early 1960, Luangphor Viriyang founded Wat Dhammamongkol and in the early 1990s, he introduced his meditation teaching in Canada and later the United States.
Laungphor Viriyang created many meditation training courses, ranging from basic to advanced ones.
I personally took three courses — a one-day and three-day course, and a six-month course for training meditation instructors.
I was impressed with the simplicity, flexibility and usefulness of the way his Willpower Institute Meditation Centres led practitioners into the mysteries of the human mind.
On my first day of practising sitting meditation at the temple, I saw a beautiful red light in front of me, like light reflecting from a red ruby.
I did not see that sparkling red light again. Meditation practitioners have long been told not to be obsessed with such mystical experiences.
Luangphor said anyone can taste happiness when his or her mind is calm while practising single-pointed meditation, a technique that involves focusing our mind on a particular spot on our body, such as the tip of the nose. Practitioners usually feel bodily sensations, deep relaxation or feel like they are levitating when they achieve calmness of mind.
However after many months of practice, the bodily sensations and the feeling of levitation may be absent. Many practitioners start to worry that their progress has been stalled, or, even worse, they are overcome by a feeling of failure.
Laungphor comes to the rescue of these practitioners by explaining with an analogy. He says the progress beyond the initial feeling of elation is similar to that of a wealthy person who is thrilled and excited when he makes his first million baht, but as he becomes richer, and makes more and more money, is no longer as excited.
“Don’t worry, and continue your practice,” he would say encouragingly.
Even experienced practitioners, who may have great days when they achieve calmness, can have bad days when they are unable to calm their monkey minds, Luangphor Viriyang would say.
As a monk, he personified humility. When someone would ask him about mindfulness meditation taught by other monks or other people, he replied that he did not criticise other monks’ teaching methods.
He was also secular and never had a negative attitude towards other religions. He is one of the pioneers among Thai monks in introducing meditation practice in Canada. A few people in Canada joined the first course, but the numbers jumped sharply when local media reported that an old lady who could not walk before attending the meditation, could stand and walk again.
He was also one of the pioneering Thai monks who introduced mindfulness meditation practices to the masses.
“In the past, I taught it to monks, but when they leave monkhood the knowledge of meditation practices imparted to them is also gone. So, I decided to create a course for the lay person,” he told his disciples, while recounting his experience as a teacher.
Starting from the margins of society, mindfulness meditation now has become a mainstream practice worldwide. Luangphor Viriyang is one of the pioneers in making extraordinary efforts and devoting his life to make it happen and it has benefited huge numbers of people.
Although the beloved monk has left his physical body, he will remain a master through his insightful teachings.
Warin Lab Contemporary is opening its first exhibition “Overflow – From Trash to Art” at its newly renovated art space in a 100-year-old residence-turned-art-space in the culturally rich area of Charoenkrung Road Soi 36, it announced in a press release.
With its focus on the environment in 2021, the exhibition reflects on waste accumulation while introducing the idea of continual use of the same resources.
Based on the notion of a circular economy, Overflow points out that the same product can be used longer through recycling, upcycling, repairing and refurbishment in order to create a closed-loop system by minimising the use of new resources.
Artist Wishulada Panthanuvong has created a site-specific installation made primarily from consumer waste. The entire exhibition room from wall to floor is covered with water bottle plastic caps, aluminium drink cans, wrappers of snacks and household products and various types of aluminium and plastic waste.
“The artist places grandiose articles, all of which are made of waste materials, such as a functional sofa, table, ceiling lamps and hanging sculptures inside the space with the intention that viewers can have a pleasant time in this invented living room,” the press statement said.
“Overflow – From Trash to Art creates a paradoxical condition where people can have a pleasant time in a room filled with trash.
From the outset, the installation provokes the feeling of inundation from the mountains of waste we collectively create on a daily basis. On a more profound level, it instigates a regenerative approach to repurpose waste materials instead of abandoning them,” it said.
As part of the exhibition, Warin Lab Contemporary is engaging with the local community around Charoenkrung Soi 36 and Wat Muang Kae to separate, collect and hand in their garbage as art materials. The art space also involves the community’s assistance in creating five ceiling lamps from the collected materials. Once the lamps are turned upside down, they will become usable colour-coded garbage bins for the community’s waste management initiative.
Apart from community’s involvement, Warin Lab Contemporary is also soliciting trash donations from corporations, which encourage their employees to separate, collect and contribute reusable garbage from their office and home to the art installation. Corporations which have donated trash for the exhibition include Bangkok Glass, Central Pattana, Chevron (Thailand), Makao Restaurant, Siam Cement, Siam Commercial Bank, Michelin ROH and Omise.
Wishulada has also received trash donated from the public through her online outreach.
Overflow – From Trash to Art will be open to the public from January 23 to March 21, 2021.
The exhibition will also offer an educational workshop on February 6, run by Wishulada, to create a functional item from upcycling daily waste.
In addition, an artist’s talk with TV presenter-cum-activist Wannasingh Prasertkul will take place on February 20. Those interested can visit Warin Lab’s Instagram account or Facebook page to get more information and book a seat for the workshop and the talk.
By The NationBangkok film and theatre fans are being treated to a rare double bill of Japanese classics next week, courtesy of the Japan Foundation.
“Renjishi” and “Rakuda” starring the legendary kabuki actor Nakamura Kanzaburo will be screened at Iconsiam as part of an evening of classical Japanese drama.
With gorgeous costumes, stunning makeup, and powerful dramas, kabuki is appreciated as the ultimate theatrical artform in Japan. Live productions are now being filmed with the highest resolution cameras for screening in cinemas on state-of-the-art 4K digital projection systems with 6-channel surround sound.
The kabuki evening begins at 7pm with a live performance on the koto, a traditional Japanese string instrument. The double bill of “Renjishi” and “Rakuda” will be screened from 7.30pm.
Entry is free via registration at https://bit.ly/3a0Uj0D but tickets must be collected at Icon Cineconic from 6pm-6.50pm on the day of the performance.
The event takes place at Icon Cineconic on the 6th floor of Iconsiam on Wednesday, December 23.