Today is a guest post by the incredibly funny Dave King of A Man Reads 50 Shades of Grey. I hope you all welcome him and check out his blog!
I am a man and I have hijacked Erika's blog for the day. We men are such utter shits, barging in and trying to take over whenever a woman shows some initiative or looks like she's going to have some success. We're so completely intolerable that I'm not surprised you love Christian Grey with all your heart.
I first heard about Christian Grey from my wife. As she has ovaries, she shut herself off from the world for a few days while she powered through the 3 books. After her self inflicted 50 Shades hibernation, she spent the next few days wandering around listlessly, trying to come to terms with the fact that I am not Christian Grey. At that time I knew nothing about Christian Grey, apart from the fact that ALL women find him charming and irresistible. I was intrigued. I wanted to know more. How dare this collection of nouns, adjectives and verbs make us regular men look bad. To find out how I could become more like Christian and to be able to talk to my wife again, I made the ultimate sacrifice for my gender. I started reading 50 Shades.
Now, I know for a fact that 100% of other men have not read 50 Shades which puts me in a rather unique position. I can step away from all of the gushing praise and gushing vaginas to offer an alternative take on the books. Before I started this post I did some research and found that there are only 7 women in the world who haven't read 50 Shades. The research was fairly extensive and only partially based upon guesswork and lies. Your Mum had read it. That's why she's been spending more time with your Dad recently. Your Grandma has read it. She bloody loved it. Your little sister? She's read it. Twice. Do you know a man who has read it? Probably not. If you do, he's probably just picked a copy up while you've been out shopping and flicked to the part which says 'boobs' and has then just stood there with a silly grin on his face. That doesn't count. I wanted to read the whole thing so that I could see for myself why lots of ladies are getting all giddy over Christian Grey.
Stepping up my research, I also took to Twitter to find out what real people are saying about Christian Grey. Here are some actual Tweets:
Oh my Gosh. 50 shades of gray is amazing so far. My expectations in men have risen fairly high now.
Why can't romantic men like Christian Grey exist
Seriously though.... Mr Christian Grey is utterly perfect.... WHY ARE PERFECT MEN EITHER FICTIONAL, TAKEN, GAY OR LIVE 73946 MILES AWAY!
Now that I have read 10 chapters, I feel that I have to stand up for the men of the world and directly address the women of the world.
YOU ARE BEING AN IDIOT. CHRISTIAN GREY IS A TOTAL BELLEND.
If you are in a relationship I have no doubt that your man is a better person than Christian. Sure, he might give you a Dutch Oven every once in a while and yes, he might miss the toilet with alarming regularity...but he loves you. Is that not enough any more?
If you are not in a relationship, it's fine to fantasise about other men. If you like, I will draw a man's face on a balloon for you. Let's be honest, it might be as good as you're going to get and balloon faced man will STILL treat you with more respect and love than Christian shows to Ana.
As you will know, there are quite a few male characters in 50 Shades. Jose is nothing more than a sex pest. Elliot will initiate a relationship by prodding his semi-on into a girls back. Paul seems potentially dangerous. Taylor could explode with anger and rip your arms off at any given moment. In EL James world ALL men are potentially sexual predators. They are incapable of forming adult relationships and have to resort to a bit of sneaky boob grabbing so that they can store the memories in the wank bank for later on.
All of the guys I've previously mentioned are hateful characters in their own way but the brunt of my wrath is set aside for the man you love, the man you want to marry...Christian Grey. We'll look at his good points and bad points then decide whether he is better than your husband/boyfriend/balloon face.
It's only fair that we start with his good points. There are some. Not many...but some.
Okay, so he has money. If you like pretty clothes then Christian is the man for you. He'll buy you clothes for every occasion, so long as that occasion involves spending time alone in a room with him. He'll also buy you food, but you can fuck off if you think you'll be getting McDonalds any more. It's strictly phallic shaped food for you from this point, so your entire diet will consist of bananas, hot dogs, cucumbers and popsicles. Just in case you do get a bit tubby he'll get you a personal trainer who will whip your ass into gear (not literally, that's Christian's job.) Regardless of what you think, he is generous.
Christian is a gifted musician. Guys, admit it. You'd love to be able to play a musical instrument. Men who are musical instantly become more attractive. Even if you flail away at the drums like you're having an epileptic fit, women will still find that alluring. Christian plays the piano which is potentially a sexy instrument to play, apart from if he wakes you up at 4am playing sad songs when you're trying to get some sleep. He also has long, spaghetti fingers which are good for playing the piano and fingerblasting Ana.
As Ana is totally frigid, she wouldn't let herself be fingerblasted by just anyone. Oh no. She's waited 22 years to give herself to a man, so the guy who she finally relents to must be pretty special...and beautiful. It's lucky that Christian has a body sculpted from stone, but then, so does Rodin's 'The Thinker.' You don't want to marry Rodin's 'The Thinker' do you?
It's important to point out that Christian does not always act like a total bellend. He does act like a gentleman on a few occasions, such as when he opens the car door for Ana or when he kisses her on the hand. Ummm...there was also that time that he kindly abducted her from the bar. I guess that's gentlemanly?
Unless I'm sadly mistaken that is the sum total of his good points. Now on to his bad points. I thought that Christian has a number of bad points, but Google disagrees with me.
Christian Grey: perfect
No results?! Nothing?? Not ONE person on the ENTIRE FUCKING INTERNET thinks that Christian has any bad points. Us regular guys don't stand a chance. Just in case you think I've not done my research, you also get 0 results for 'Christian Grey negatives' and 'Christian Grey flaws.'
How is it is that I have managed to find SO much wrong with him when the rest of the Internet can't come up with 1 flaw. For a start, he is a little bit dull. Everytime Ana describes what he's wearing, he's decked out in grey from head to toe (minus his ginger hair.) He must look like a horny boulder. Grey ties, grey suits, grey sweatpants and grey eyes. He does need a bit of colour in his wardrobe. Would a splash of pink really be too much to ask? The abundance of grey does isn't limited to his clothing. His entire personality is devoid of any charm or wit. His personality is grey. The relationship is not built on companionship or an enjoyment of times spent together, it is a series of obligations which Ana is forced into. There are long sections of the book where they don't utter a single word to each other and the only time Ana uses her mouth for an extended period is when she's noshing him off in the bath.
Speaking of being noshed off, Christian is completely in love with his own penis. He cannot get enough of it. I know that some guys have a name for their penis which is absolutely fine. However, Christian seems to take this one step further by anthropomorphising his own penis. He bloody loves it. It is the 'most cherished part of my body.' There are times when he seems to think that it is a separate entity to him. I am waiting for the chapter where Ana walks into his room to find him reading a sonnet and feeding oysters to his own erection. It is not a good sign if you're in a relationship where the guy loves his body more than yours.
It's pretty clear that he thinks Ana's body could do with a bit of work. Like a shitty car, he's drawn up an extensive list of modifications and adjustments that need to be made before she's roadworthy. These include (but are not limited to) controlling what she eats, controlling how long she sleeps, controlling what she wears, controlling how she behaves, controlling who she sees and controlling how she exercises. She has become his pet, being treated like a low-functioning dog. The most important word there is 'controlling.' Ana has no say in her life any more. She is no longer allowed to develop her own interests. There is a word that describes this sort of relationship. That word is 'abusive.' Although Christian has not yet hurt Ana physically, he will be hurting her mentally, depriving her of everything that a regular functioning adult can do. If you want a man like Christian, you are basically saying that you would be happy to be abused for a consistent sleep pattern and less flabby bingo wings.
Another important aspect of the control is the fact that Christian is a glorified stalker. It is the commonly held view that a stalker is a guy who follows you everywhere, lurking in shadows, sending you creepy gifts and managing to find out personal details. Does that description remind you of anyone? Who says that stalkers have to be a bit grubby and mysterious? What if they were the exact opposite? Christian is definitely a stalker but because he does everything with such brazen confidence, he doesn't seem like a regular stalker. However, lets look at the evidence. Within a few days of meeting Ana, he'd found out her address, sent her cryptic presents, tapped her phone and kidnapped her. It seems to be that because he's not wanking off inside a long raincoat, it is a perfectly acceptable and charming way for a man to behave. Everyone in the book realises that Christian's behaviour is borderline psychotic. Kate calls him dangerous and even Ana compares him to Bluebeard, A FICTIONAL SERIAL KILLER! Surely if you're comparing your new boyfriend a potential danger, things are not going to go well. I have never known a woman to say...'oh my new boyfriend is an absolute delight. He does remind me of Hitler in the way that he wants to start a master race, but he did buy me a handbag at the weekend, so I'll forgive him.' To summarise, Christian is worse than Hitler.
To add to Christian's list of negative points, he lacks any form of spontaneity. He is the human equivalent of the Microsoft Word Paperclip. Just like the paperclip, he is a fussy nit who is determined to teach you everything in monotonous detail and won't let you experiment for yourself. Whenever you think you're getting somewhere, he will pop up with another warning or a pre-prepared lecture. No matter how hard you try, he just won't leave you alone. He treats Ana like a massive baby who is completely incapable of rational thought, lecturing her on everything from drinking to her friends and the dangers of mixing water and electricity. Aside from that, everything he does comes with pages and pages of official documentation. Blow jobs? There's a contract for that. Sleeping patterns? There's an appendix for that. Anal fisting? Don't worry, that's been taken care of as well. Orgasm? Not without signing a disclosure.
The contract itself is a wretched document. Drawn up by Christian, it looks like it has been drawn up for Ana's benefit. One of the first points mentions that the 'fundamental purpose of this contract is to allow the Submissive to explore her sensuality...' Reading on, you soon realise that the actual motives behind the contract are for Christian to bash the shit out of Ana in any way that he sees fit. There is no way for her to end the contract, but he is allowed to dismiss her at any time, for any reason. He can also do what he wants, when he wants, how he wants and Ana has to smile and willingly accept whatever he has in mind.
Looking at these points, it is confusing to me why any woman would find Christian even remotely attractive. In the recent past, the thought of Mr Darcy's wet shirt was enough to send you over the edge. Now you want a man who will stalk you, rape you then bum your head off. I am sorry if that man doesn't exist in your life...but let's be honest, it's probably good that he doesn't.
As you can see, you don't love Christian. He's not the man you thought that he was. He's actually a bit of a cock. If you still love him despite my argument, Christian has won and the world is a worse place for it. As a peace offering from the men of the world, here's a picture that you can use to finger yourself silly. I hope you're pleased with yourself.
NOTE FROM ERIKA - Don't worry Dave, I'll make sure this post comes up when other lost souls try to figure out what's wrong with Grey.