Fifty Shades of Bad Lines

So, I really did mean to write a post on Friday.  Instead, I had my pupils dilated at the eye doctor’s office followed by the Day from Hell.  I was all proud of myself for getting my chores done before lunch so my daughter and I could go pick out new glasses.  It was a good thing I did, since the rest of my afternoon was filled with one stupid frustration after another.  Anyway, I’m making up for it by snarking about Fifty Shades.  That always makes me feel better.

I’m tired of rehashing the plot of these novels week after week by saying, “Christian is abusive, Ana shows signs that she’s a victim of domestic violence, and they are two of the most self-absorbed people on the planet.”  So I’m going to list my least favorite phrases in this chapter and offer commentary.  All grammatical errors are the author’s.

I allow myself a moment to examine his godlike profile…

Um. Ok.

“Happy now? He’s [Taylor, Christian’s driver] listening to his iPod. Puccini. Forget he’s here. I do.”

So, basically, he treats his employees like crap.  Got it.

My inner goddess is down on bended knee with her hands clasped in supplication begging me.

Gah! It’s the Return of the Inner Goddess!  There needs to be a Fifty Shades drinking game for every time “Laters, baby,” “oh, my,” inner goddess, and subconscious make an appearance.  Wait–there probably already is.  I want in.

My anxiety has shot up several magnitudes on the Richter scale.

So anxiety and orgasms are both earth-shaking.  I’ll keep that in mind.

Those photos the boy [José, emphasis mine] took…

There’s so much wrong with this.  Should we start with the racism or the infantilization?

My subconscious nods with satisfaction.

Drink!

If that isn’t a declaration of love, I don’t know what is.

Christian has just listed things he likes about her and has said he wants her, but he never said he loves her.  A declaration of love is usually, oh, I don’t know, maybe saying “I love you”?

“Christian, why do you think you have a dark soul?…you’re a good man…you’re generous, you’re kind, and you’ve never lied to me.”

Is that all it takes to be a “good man”?  Giving people things and/or money and not lying?  Huh.  I’d have thought “not stalking people” and “not abusing people” might make the list.

“Then, after I left, it dawned on me that the physical pain you inflicted was not as bad as the pain of losing you.”

Said many an abused partner.

“Sometimes you’re so closed off…like an island state.”

Uh, what?  I think that’s a good description of “isolated,” not for shutting people out.

“You intimidate me. That’s why I keep quiet.”

How again are people missing the abuse here?

“And you’re prepared to do all this for me. I’m the one who is undeserving, and I’m just sorry I can’t do all those things for you.”

This is how it works, people.  She shouldn’t have to put up with his shit, but he somehow manages to turn it around, make it look like he’s being noble, and suddenly she’s saying she’s “undeserving” of having him NOT FUCKING ABUSE HER.  No, I didn’t read it wrong.

“…I am not going to touch you again, not until you beg me to…so that you’ll start communicating with me.”

Nice manipulation there.

He…pulls out a large gift-wrapped box.

So, he had this whole thing planned out, despite the fact that they had broken up.  Because it’s not at all creepy for your ex to buy you expensive gifts in order to bribe you.

“Laters, baby.”

Ugh.  I completely hate this phrase.  Hate.  Drink!

Holy shit…an iPad.

Because the rest of the gifts aren’t good enough?  And why is she more shocked by the iPad than the other things?  Also, why does she have a Blackberry if all her other stuff is Apple products?  Inquiring minds want to know.

Holy cow.  I have a Christian Grey mix-tape in the guise of a high-end iPad.

Is there even such a thing as a “high-end” iPad?  I’ve been checking out iPads in order to make a purchase later this year.  They’re basically all the same, other than size and memory.  I’m not sure that’s the term I’d use to describe the difference.  Also, “mix-tape”?  Seriously?  Do people even use that term anymore?

…he’s put a great deal of thought into this gift.

She describes how he’s built the model plane she gave him when she left, photographed it, and made it into the background on her iPad.  So, actually, this quote is true.  I would actually find the gesture very romantic and sweet.  That is, if Christian weren’t such a stalker who did all this after she had broken up with him.

…my inner goddess curls up hugging herself on her chaise lounge…

Drink!

With a swipe of my finger, the icons shift, and several new ones appear…

How much is E. L. James being paid to be free advertising for Apple?

Words–whatever that is

I found exactly one app called “Words,” and it’s a word search puzzle game.  Maybe she means Words with Friends, but how she doesn’t know that one is beyond me.  I don’t even play it and I know what it is.  For someone working in publishing, Ana is kind of a Luddite.

She starts to sing, and her voice is a silken scarf wrapping around me, enveloping me.

The over-the-top metaphors are wearisome.  Maybe we need a drinking game for those, too.

If this isn’t an apology, what is it?

She’s listening to the music on the iPad.  Somehow, the whole thing seems sort of like the way very young people interact when they’re dating.  Teenagers and people in movies make music mixes and think that suffices for an apology.  Adults actually, you know, apologize.

My subconscious nods at me, trying to hide her pity.

First of all, what?  Ana, it’s your own damn subconscious–it can’t “hide it’s pity” from you because it is you.  Second, drink!

I’m glad you like it.  I bought one for myself. [email to Ana about the iPad]

Yeah, okay, that totally sounds like the way some guys interact.  “I love this new gadget!  I bought one for you too, honey!”  It made me laugh.  Also, my husband would never do that, but I’ll bet he smirks inside every time he gets a new thing, lets me check it out, and I say, “Hey this is awesome.  I want one too!”

His response made me smile, still so bossy, still so Christian.

Yep. Bossy reply to the woman who just said she loves you.  Good going, dude.  (Ana ended her email with “I love you,” which Christian did not say back to her.)

I drift slowly into sleep, marveling at how the world has righted itself in one evening…

That’s certainly not what I got out of this chapter.

Up next week: Chapter 3.  Dun, dun dun!  Laters, baby. (Drink!)

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