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How The Covid-19 Pandemic Has Changed The Way We Date | Open Bed

Using online platforms to find potential relationship matches is nothing new, however, now that we’re in the middle of a global pandemic that forces everyone to stay home and remain distant from the rest of the world, using the internet to find love has shifted into something completely different than simply swiping and messaging people you find attractive.

Valentines Day Gift

Valentine’s Day Gift Guide For All Of Your Loved Ones

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and whether you’re single or taken this year, it’s never a bad idea to celebrate love. If you’re single, the cynic in all of us can take over, causing a month-long wave of self-pity and loneliness. However, who said that Valentine’s Day is only for those in relationships? It’s a holiday built around love and as we know, there is more than one way to love. We love our parents, siblings, friends, pets, co-workers, etc. so let’s celebrate all of the love in our life, and what better way to do that than with a gift? 

This year, go beyond just chocolates and flowers; while those are classic options that will always work, it’s nice to add some unique flare to an otherwise predictable holiday in terms of gifts. 

One of the best gifts you can give a loved one is the gift of comfort. What do they do in order to unwind from their hectic lives? Amazon has a million options for comfortable clothing, pajamas, and blankets that anyone would love to get cozy in after a long day of work. Throw in some customizable heart-shaped tea bags for comfort they can ingest and you got a whole mini care package! If they’re looking for a more adult form of comfort, Amazon also offers a deal on a customizable 6-pack for your loved ones. 

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Customizable anything is always a great option that will warm the hearts of anyone. Regardless of what it is, custom elements that show you went the extra mile to make something specific for the recipient always takes a gift to the next level. Etsy is one of the best websites for custom anything. From wine labels, to guitar picks, Etsy offers hundreds of thousands of products that you can make specific to fit the needs of all your loved ones. Other examples of customizable items that make great gifts include jewelry, candles, picture frames, portraits, mugs, and more!

One of the better ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day, especially if you are maybe feeling a little lonely, is to celebrate Galentine’s Day! The coveted pre-valentines holiday that was coined by Amy Pohler’s character, Leslie Knope, in the show Parks and Recreation, is meant to celebrate all the wonderful women and friendships that one has in their life. What better way to do that with some wine. 

Wine and alcohol in general is an amazingly universal gift that anyone (who enjoys drinking legally and responsibly) will enjoy. The best part? Unless you’re a real wine-head, all of it tastes the same regardless of how much you spend, so it’s a great way to show your love for someone on a budget as well. 

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Going along with the theme of comfort and Galentine’s Day; self-care is always in season, so why not make it a little easier for your loved ones to love themselves with some basic self-care needs? Jade Rollers have become extremely trendy in terms of skin-care, and thanks to the massive demand there’s plenty of affordable options. 

When it comes to self-care gifts, don’t overthink it, what would you want for yourself? Face masks, eye masks, nail polish, trashy magazines, fancy desserts, and scented anything, all create an environment of being in the present, and appreciating yourself and those around you. 

Finally, when it comes to gifts you can give to your loved ones, think about their everyday needs. So often when we have to get a gift for someone, we think more about what they’ve been saying that they want, over what they actually need. But when we buy our loved ones something they say they’ve been meaning to get to or do for a while, it shows that we’re always listening and care about the way their lives are running. 

Gifts that cover everyday needs can be as simple as a portable phone charger, for the friend who’s phone is always dead, or a subscription to a monthly shaving razor club, for the friend who never has time to go to the store because their regular lives are so busy. Other gifts can even be as boring as car mats or a monthly planner, both of which show that you care. 

Regardless of what you decide to get for any of your loved ones, pick something else up for yourself as well. The biggest, longest, and most important relationship that we all endure is the one with ourselves, so don’t forget to take yourself out every once and a while and buy yourself some flowers, you deserve some special treatment too.

Singing

Scientists Examine Musical Similarities Across Cultures

Virtually everyone would agree that music is a fundamental part of human existence. In fact, Charles Darwin hypothesized that musical appreciation emerged in human beings before the evolution of language. However, anyone who’s been exposed to music from various cultures knows that there can be tremendous differences in how different populations relate to music, both in terms of its musical composition and the role music plays in people’s lives. That being said, a research team from multiple universities recently engaged in a wide-ranging study of music from around the world in search of similarities between the music of different cultures, and found that different cultures have more musical commonality than one might at first assume. The scientists hope to understand more fundamental qualities of the relationship between human beings and music, and explain what it is about music that speaks so strongly to the human condition.

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In their study, scientists found that certain archetypes of music, whether they be lullabies, dance music, love songs, or healing melodies, emerge in all cultures, suggesting that these different forms of music relate more to the fundamentals of human behavior than to one’s particular social environment. While it should come as no surprise that certain aspects of musical appreciation are hardwired into the human brain, it is perhaps more surprising that similar styles of music independently arise in different cultures to serve similar purposes. And not only do the same kinds of songs show up in different cultures, but these kinds of songs have certain similarities in terms of acoustic features like tone, tempo, and pitch, suggesting that musical composition itself may have deeper roots in the evolution of human beings than previously thought.

If music is to be considered a biological human trait like language, then it follows that music should have universal properties.

The researchers observed both a database of descriptions of songs throughout history as well as recordings of songs from around the world, and analyzed these pieces of music in terms of their structure and composition to determine how they relate to each other. They found that music from all cultures shares the characteristic of the organization of melodies around a hierarchical chord structure. If music is to be considered a biological human trait like language, then it follows that music should have universal properties. The research, published on Thursday, seeks to define the “musical grammar” shared between virtually all human beings.

The researchers compiled 4,709 written accounts of vocal music from 60 societies, and combined them with a wide range of musical recordings, culminating in a database they called the Natural History of Song. As the researchers were concerned with the biological and evolutionary foundations of music, they primarily focused on singing, as singing can be done by virtually anyone and does not require the use of technology like instruments. The researchers used a combination of methods to analyze this massive and varied database; they transcribed the songs with Western notation, and asked 30 expert musicologists as well as hundreds of laypeople to analyze the music and give their commentary.

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The researchers found that fundamentally, songs vary in three ways—formality, religiosity, and level of excitement. By looking at these factors, the researchers were able to predict which genre of music a particular song belongs to. As the study of music has long been compromised by biases resulting from the Western point of view, the researchers made an effort to correct for this bias, even using machine classifiers to categorize the music. However, some musicologists were critical of their approach, noting that the use of Western notation could inherently bias the researchers’ interpretation of the data, and that most of the musicologists involved in the study were of Western origin. That being said, the study likely shows that there is truth not only to the idea that music is a universal aspect of human experience, but that music contains elements which are shared between all human societies, serving an essential social role in each culture.