Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Bit Of Housekeeping

The reason there hasn't been a Fifty Shades post since last week is due to a combination of having been extremely busy at work, and the fact that Comcast broke my internet the other day and are not planning to even try to fix it until Thursday. I expect to have it up tomorrow. In the meantime, please enjoy this clip from Cartoon Planet, which plays in my head every single time Ana talks about how much she wants to touch Christian.

By the way, today I booked a trip to visit H-Town live and in person three weeks from now. While there appears to be evidence of us being funny together online, there are hundreds of anecdotes and memories indicating that we are much funnier when we are together in person. For this reason I am taking a notebook and a video camera with me, so expect hilarity to ensue.

My cousin complained in the comments the other day that all I ever talk about is this book and I never blog about my hilarious life any more. I just wanted to point out that this isn't true. It only seems that way because the Fifty Shades posts are more frequent than the posts about my screwy little world have ever been and because nothing hilarious is happening to me right now. The last interesting thing that happened was the student burlesque show which I did write about. Since then I have gone about my normal life without anything weird happening, and no one wants to read posts that go "I participated in my usual dance class and didn't fall over or poke myself in the eye, and then dropped off my laundry without any complications." Trust me, when something worth writing about happens in my life you will know about it. As it is, the most exciting thing that has happened this week is that I booked a hotel room in Hitchin that actually has a mini fridge, which means I can keep cheese in my room, and extra milk for my tea. There is never enough milk for tea in hotel rooms when I come over, which I find confusing and irritating. It's time you started living up to the stereotype, England - I need enough milk in my room to be able to drink tea ALL DAY LONG.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

50 Frowns Deeper

Last night while I was reading, I stopped mid-sentence and sent an outraged email to H-Town which was titled “FUCK THIS IN THE ASS TIMES A MILLION WITH SHAQ’S RIGHT SHOE”.

Chapter 5 opens with Anna confirming with the girl from reception what she already knows – that the woman Christian is talking to is Elena the Evil Pedo from Hell – and completely losing her shit. She storms out of the salon because she loves to make dramatic scenes and proceeds to have THE EXACT SAME CONVERSATION with Christian about what a threat this woman is to her that they have already had at least three or four times. If you took out every scene or description where the author repeats herself, the entire trilogy would be 11 pages long.

H-Town: she writes, "My scalp is trying to leave the building."
My response: "My brain is trying to leave this book."

me: followed almost immediately by "Mrs. Leonard? I thought she was divorced"
because no one divorced has ever kept their married name, ever

H-Town: ever. Amber. Ever.

me: and also they proceed to have the same conversation they have every day

H-Town: yup Sex - angry conversation - sex - angry conversation - sex - angry conversation

While they are standing there screaming at each other in public about a problem that doesn’t actually exist, Christian gets a phone call warning him of an actual problem. It seems ghost girl is still on the loose but now she’s managed to get herself a concealed weapons permit (he claims during the conversation that she got this without a background check). Christian relays this to Ana and unilaterally decides she will be staying with him until his people get a handle on the situation. Ana reacts to this by screaming at him that she wants a haircut. Christian reacts to that by picking her up off the ground like a small child throwing a temper tantrum, which in all fairness to Christian is EXACTLY WHAT SHE IS DOING.

I wanted to open my front door and throw the book outside
but was afraid it would kill the grass.
and for the 74th time in my notes, I wrote, "Ana is stupid."
Also, I just started keeping track of how many times he runs his hands through his hair
that's this book's "pants from hips" comment
four times in chapters 5 and 6

me: so he tells her about Leila going all The Shining

H-Town: hahaha

me: btw, that concealed weapons permit?
I checked
Washington State requires a background check that includes a mental health check and takes at least 30 days, sometimes up to 90
she did not get out of the hospital after a suicide attempt and go get a concealed carry permit at the fucking grocery store the next day

After carrying her over his shoulder in public, they go to Ana’s so she can pack since whatever Christian decides is the law. By the way, on hearing that Leila can now practically get a handgun from the nearest vending machine, her ONLY fear is that something might happen to Christian. Her instinct for self-preservation does not fucking exist. When they get to his place (he drove her Audi because women should never drive if a man is present) they continue having the same conversation they had an hour ago while they wait for Franco the “small, dark and gay” hairdresser to come over and cut Ana’s hair, which clearly will solve all of her problems.

me: did you enjoy the hairdresser?

H-Town: Oh my god
first off, nice slight about "I bet he's from Baltimore or something"
fake-uh Italian-uh accent-uh
also, he's gay

me: you should have known that because he's dark. ALL MEN WITH A TAN ARE GAY
why does she think he's faking an accent anyway?

H-Town: Italians aren't real
can we talk about the "I put a spell on you" part? (this is the song that is playing while she’s cooking them lunch)

me: haha yes

He could have a bottle of ketchup in there and it'd be more impressive than Ana's empty anorexic cavern of a fridge


H-Town: but then. THEN, the "I Put A Spell On You" part
when he sashays across the room towards her
I could not stop laughing
if anyone did that to me, it could be the hottest person on the planet, I would die of laughter

me: when I come see you I’m going to play that song and then duck walk across the room to you.

H-Town: and then I'll crab walk to you

Following her SUPER IMPORTANT HAIRCUT, they go back to their discussion about everything that’s wrong with him ever, which leads to her complaining about the stalking. He tells her he does “background checks” on all of his submissives and this is why he knows every goddamn thing about her – including her bank account number. Then they argue about money some more, and he brags to her about how much money he makes an hour, a figure that no one who isn’t actually paid an hourly wage would know, and certainly not a person who has more money than god.

Me: so he shows her the file on her

H-Town: oh that's right
what the FUCK

me: there is 1. no reason he would need a copy of her birth certificate at all, ever

H-Town: Maybe he's an Obama birther
he doesn't want subs from KENYA!

me: 2. no way you can get a bank account number from a background check

H-Town: Come on, Amber, we know he's magic. He probably just gazed dreamily at an ATM and it swooned and spit out all her account details.

me: I’m sure, but that's how he tells her he got it
her reaction: "I don't know if I should be angry or flattered."
but of course, she doesn't know how
oh also in this scene
"do you even know how much money I make?"

H-Town: "do you know who I am?" it's like that
I make $100,000 every hour
I use it to buy hair gel that I am constantly putting in my hair with my hands.


H-Town: Every time a bell rings, Christian makes $100,000

me: I did some math
James wasn't clear whether that was every hour of his life or every hour that he works so I did both
If he makes $100k every hour of his life, he is making $876 million a year
If you assume he is talking about a 40 hour work week, it's $208 million
So then I got on the internet

H-Town: which EL James and Ana clearly don't know how to do

me: want to know how much Rupert Murdoch made last year?

H-Town: yes I do

me: total compensation $33.3 million

H-Town: hahahaha

me: Warren Buffett's actual salary is $100k a year but including investment income, he made $48.1 million in 2006 (latest record available)

He owns hair salons! and publishing companies!

me: yes, salon owners and publishers totes make more than four times what Warren Buffett makes

Ana goes to the bedroom while Christian assembles some sort of SWAT team that is going to go looking for Leila, and she googles (WHO KNEW) schizophrenia because she feels Christian exhibits multiple personalities. Since schizophrenia and multiple personality disorder are totes the same thing as each other and rapid mood swings are the same thing as having more than one distinct personality. WAY TO BE DEROGATORY ABOUT SOME VERY SERIOUS MENTAL ILLNESSES, JAMES. THE PSYCHIATRIC COMMUNITY THANKS YOU.

Me: is "breathtaking ignorancism" in the DSM-IV?

H-Town: it should be now
Then Christian comes in and they take a lipstick tour (during the part of the argument when she was whining again about not being allowed to touch his chest, he suggests that they mark off the areas that are “safe zones” with a tube of red lipstick he apparently keeps around the house)
H-Town: I really wanted her to write "I'm a giant stalkery douchebag" on his back

me: oh I would have been drawing penises all over him. ALL OVER HIM
and then I would call him " Dickelback "

H-Town: hhahahahaa

me: (this is where a reference to Nickelback lyrics/songs would go if I knew any)

H-Town: thank god you don't know any

me: Dickelback is our new band
Our first album is Why Are You So Stupid? and the single off it is called Account Number 2950482945893

Chapter 6 starts with a tired banging scene I’m certain I’ve already read, and is followed up with her getting dressed in eveningwear finery for the charity masquerade party they are attending that evening at his parents’ place. Oh, and some ben-wa balls, which she still has yet to call by their proper name.

me: Chapter 6

H-Town: this line: "Boy, I want him."

me: I wrote that down too!
is she 11?

H-Town: once the hoo-ha parade is done then comes the dress-up scene
which is so much like an even stupider version of Pretty Woman, I wanted to ram my head through the wall

me: she must have had that movie on repeat the whole time she was writing this
she name drops a bunch of what I assume are high end designers
apparently this impresses others of our gender
but I had no idea what she was talking about

H-Town: Yeah, she could've said she was wearing a dress from Flim Flam McGee and I wouldn't have given two shits
"ooh, the new fall designs from Barb Wirefence! Amazing!"
"heels from Ben Dover! YES!"
oh, and Ana goes to the party with balls in her cootch
Don't forget that part

me: which she STILL can't name

H-Town: Yeah, it took me a second to figure out what they were because I didn't read the first book "Balls? What are they talking about (reads further) OH. OH, THOSE BALLS."

me: it was exactly like the no underwear scene, it was endless pages of her acting like no one had ever done that before
*did that yesterday*

They head for the party surrounded by The Ghostbusters extra security because of Leila. Naturally, everyone is massively rich and georgous and every woman is swooning because Christian is the richest and gorgeousest of all.

H-Town: the party scene was stupid
it was just EL James describing a party she wants to go to
oooh, masquerade masks! CHAMPAGNE! OLD PEOPLE!
ice sculptures!

me: synchronized servers!

H-Town: stupid bullshit!
she puts the whole menu into the book.
I wondered if Christian had sex with it while demanding a steak?

me: there was not one thing on that menu I would have eaten. not one

H-Town: it was just a bunch of French words shoved together

me: RIGHT?
I was honestly not sure those were actual things

H-Town: fromage e ferchette oui eiffel tower

me: this line
"Mia and Grace are already in situ..."

H-Town: STAB

me: I wrote "shut your hole"

There is an auction of various super classy rich people things I could not be less interested in, one of which is a weekend stay in Aspen, Colorado at property owned by Christian. Ana, as ever, is surprised to learn that he owns property. HE OWNS EVERYTHING IN NORTH AMERICA YOU TWAT. HE IS PROBABLY ALSO AN OLYMPIC CLASS SKIER. Out of the blue and for no reason at all, she decides to bid $24,000 on a weekend getaway she could have for free any fucking time she wants. And wins. The item. She loses at life because Christian is going to straight up murder the shit out of her for it.

H-Town: And then at the end, she bought Aspen.

me: oh my god wtf was that?

H-Town: he makes $100k/hour, it's cool
he probably farts out that much money

me: no it's not cool

H-Town: I foresee punishment INTERCOURSE coming soon

me: I know this sounds rapey, but she was asking for it
let's see, you don't want $24k, but your sociopathic boyfriend forces you to take it
do you a) quietly donate that money to a charity you believe in without mentioning it or
b) publicly give it away RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM

H-Town: for his own damn house

me: I'd be pissed too, just on principle, for her being such a fucking idiot

H-Town: and that's the end of two shit-tacular chapters.
What's been blown: Christian, a tube of red lipstick, and $24k.

me: my will to live, half an evening

H-Town: my summary: This book sucks so much that Dyson is considering filing a lawsuit.
boobs n shit, talk to you tomorrow

me: boobs to you as well

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

50 Sobs Harder

H-Town and amberance read Fifty Shades Darker so you don't have to.

H-Town: I read Chapters 3 and 4 last night
and hated myself

me: I kept yelling out loud at it.

H-Town: When I put it down last night I told A-Town "This is one of the stupidest books I have ever read."
She asked me to share some examples of why it sucked
And I held up the entire book

In Chapter 3, Ana goes to work and is shocked, SHOCKED, when her boss asks her to do actual work. She has email conversations with Christian that read like junior high notes passed in class both before and after actually doing it. In the latter series she e-mails from her work account how bored she is and Christian points out that her work email is monitored, though not before sending a bunch of sexual innuendos to that same address. Ana, of course, had NO IDEA that companies monitor corporate email accounts.

H-Town:Chapter 3
the Shit Show continues
I love that when she gets in to work and her boss has work for her to do, she gives him a "horrified expression"


H-Town: Life is so hard, Ana.
And yes, you giant fucking idiot, work monitors your email.
and your internet usage
so I'm sure all her visits to IAmVeryDumb.com are noted

me: well at least we know she won't get in trouble for watching porn

says Ana.

me: That too, but I feel like her first question would be "What's porn?"

H-Town: Is it like corn?

me: if it has anything to do with food I'm not interested

After work she is invited out for drinks by Creepy Boss, and is relieved to find out other people are going too. She tells them she'll catch up with them because she needs to make herself pretty for when she meets up with Christian later. Jack asks her what she wants to drink to which she responds "a beer" as if that narrows it down AT ALL. Bartenders must fucking hate this girl. She emails Christian to tell him where they will be, which is a bar across the street called, no lie, Fifty's. I hate everything.

On her way to the bar she is waylaid by a pale and monumentally sad girl who looks a startling amount like Ana. The girl has a bandage on her wrist that everyone in the entire universe except for Ana can tell is from a recent suicide attempt. She knows Ana's name and tells her she "just wanted to look at" her before creepily disappearing into the night. Ana tells exactly no one about it. OK SURE.

H-Town: Post-crapper, we get some random Ghost Woman on the street

me: oh she's going to be a thing, I can FEEL it

H-Town: Look, if something that weird happens to me, everybody in the bar's going to hear about it
"Dude, you guys, some crazy ghost chick cornered me outside just now!"

me: Her stalker is going to have to protect her from her other stalker

H-Town: at some point they're all going to look up and find them all stalking each other at the same time
they'll all be in the bushes outside each other's houses

At the bar, Creepy Boss corners Ana and gets way too close to her while asking her uncomfortably inappropriate questions. She can't handle this or tell him to back the fuck up because all women can't stand up for themselves and need a man to take care of them. Luckily, the far more terrifying Christian has arrived to save the day like he's fucking Mighty Mouse.

me: oh by the way
"he looks edible"
i wrote next to it "He's made out of ice cream!"

H-Town: not that she would eat him
he could be made out of yogurt and she wouldn't eat him
since that's all she eats every five days

me: oh see i think the opposite. if all food was made out of Christian she'd be a giant fat ass
she worships him, it'd be like communion for her

H-Town: wait

me: DUDE


me: good, can we stop reading now?

H-Town: the line about her boss mentally assessing the fine specimen of a man in front of him
my notes: KILL

me: similarly, all the women are checking him out and she's like "DON'T LOOK AT HIM"
protip:if you want NO ONE to EVER look at your man, try dating a troll!

H-Town: I hope she pees around him to properly mark her territory.

Christian and Ana leave the bar and are picked up by Taylor, who begins driving them to Ana's place. Ana is embarrassed because he can hear them talking, even though the only thing that has been said at this point is "Hi". Meanwhile, Christian is giving her a "scorching, panty-combusting look." Jesus fuck.

me: I got so excited when she wrote "panty combusting" because I couldn't wait to make fun of it with you

H-Town: YES I wrote that down too


H-Town: maybe her panties are combusting because something dark is pooling

me: right? Does she excrete gasoline?

H-Town: Hi, I'm Ana Steele. When I'm having a particularly hot day, I make sure to wear my Depends flame-retardant underwear - both because I'm around a panty-combusting kind of guy, and because I'm a bit "retardant" myself. HA HA.
goes to hell

Christian has become enraged - again - by the behavior of Creepy Boss. I'm conflicted about it because he's right, but for all the wrong stalky, possessive reasons. He begins repeatedly threatening to have him removed from his position if he so much as looks at her wrong. Ana thinks he can't possibly do that. OH BUT HE CAN, ANA. HE CAN.

H-Town: and then we find out he BOUGHT HER COMPANY

My note was "FUCK THIS SO HARD"
"oh well, I was wanting to get into publishing anyway" (seriously, this is how he justifies this to her)
"I'm sure Kindle is just a phase"

H-Town: Well, he is into Blackberry

Ana is legit mad that he went out and bought her company, behind her back no less. But only until he smiles at her. Because if he's smiling at her, everything is right in her world so, hey, no harm, no foul, right? RIGHT? I loathe her. They get to her apartment planning to have dinner together but there is no food of any kind in the entire house. Like, at all. For fuck's sake, even I have pasta in the house and I eat candy bars for breakfast.

H-Town: and Ana goes "Am I a grown-up? Sort of?"
No, you are dumb.
You should be a grown-up, but you have the mental capacity of a tape measure.

me: so many things in this scene, I couldn't even get a handle on it
like "OH EM GEE we haven't screwed in almost forever!" (This is Christian. "I haven't fucked you in a while - a long while.")
a week
it has been EXACTLY one week

She was in bodywash withdrawal


H-Town: And of course she has no food in her apartment
"What's a fr-frij? a Fridge?"

me: I thought that was just for all the alcohol I'm constantly drinking

H-Town: I keep my computer in there.

me: and a vile of my emo, emo tears

H-Town: I also keep my snowqueen's icedragon in the freezer

They go out shopping because they need more wine and, you know, FOOD. Then they try to make dinner, but it's hopeless because they haven't fucked in A WEEK you guys. HOW COULD ANYONE BE THINKING OF FOOD AT A TIME LIKE THIS? Christian gives up and tells her to put the chicken in the fridge, which Ana thinks it the absolute sexiest thing anyone has ever said, so they go to her room for some boring sex that I would have called anti-climatic if EL James had any idea how to build tension in a scene.

H-Town: "Put the chicken in the fridge."
that's so seductive

me: my chicken/fridge note was "OOOOO THE SEXY TALK"

panties explode

me: like the Fourth of July
my only note from the actual sex was "still can't say vagina"

aaaand scene

After a mind genital numbingly boring sex scene, they go back to that whole dinner thing they abandoned earlier. They also go back to their argument about him buying the company she works for. He tells her that he will, in fact, buy ANY company she tries to work for, no matter what it is. He calls this "protecting her".  I call it "ultra stalking" though that doesn't seem nearly strong enough.

me: Chapter 4 -Stupidity Strikes Back
immediately, first words of the chapter "As sanity returns..."

H-Town: Still dumb!

me: "so if I work somewhere else, you'll just buy that company too."

H-Town: "Also, I bought the Totes Company."

me: I was thinking work for the government, he can't buy that
but he probably can

H-Town: Maybe he'll play a game where every word she says for the next five minutes, he'll go buy the related company.
I farted! BOOM, just bought Gas-X

me: I'm tired! I just bought Sealy, Tempurpedic AND Sleep number

H-Town: I took a dump! Great, I'll buy whomever published this book!

me: icedragon burn

She gives up arguing with him because this is not really something she needs to be concerned about at all, and offers him some ice cream for dessert. Ice cream is SO FUCKING SEXY though, they decide to go to her room and fuck it instead of eating it.

H-Town: During the sexy food time I wrote "This is the anti-horny."

me: I liked "Oh it's cold"

H-Town: So they do it again and she calls herself "the sorcerer's apprentice"
and I want to die. Again.

me: was she trying to entice the Harry Potter market with that shit? If so, I want some quidditch sex, like, RIGHT NOW

H-Town: hahaha
would you like...a BROOM STICK?

me: I'll bludger your quaffle
where's the snitch?

H-Town: anyway, after more boring, LITERAL vanilla sex, she finally brings up crazy ghost chick.

me: of course it's Leila.

H-Town: I wonder if she's....got him on his knees...Leila
lamest joke ever

me: because you did it wrong. it should have been
i wonder if she's...(puts on sunglasses)..got him on his knees

It's the same girl that put BritBrit on his iPod. So you can tell just from that she's CLEARLY going to be unstable. Christian knows exactly who it is as soon as she mentions it. Turns out Leila was "the situation" he had to rush home from Georgia about. It seems she saw a photo of Christian and Ana in the paper, LEFT HER HUSBAND over it, came to Christian's home and slit her wrist in front of his housekeeper. By the time he got back to town, she had checked herself out of the hospital and disappeared. She now seems to be stalking Ana. I've got twenty bucks right here that says by the end of this series she will have threatened Ana's life with a knife or a gun.

The next day, after a sex scene James mercifully implies but skips describing, they have a weird conversation about her working out with his trainer (oddly "Claude" the body building, foreign, ex-Olympic contender somehow isn't a threat, but Creepy Boss and Jose that she's never been interested in for one second are his mortal enemies), and she mentions that she needs to deposit the $24,000 check he gave her when Taylor sold her Beetle so she can buy a car. This is when he tells her that Taylor stopped by last night and dropped off her Audi. Ana loses her shit and tries to give him the check back. When he won't take it, she rips it triumphantly into tiny pieces. Once again, she had underestimated how completely fucking insane he is. His next move is to immediately get on the phone to someone at his office and demand that they deposit $24,000 directly into her bank account.

me: ok, so my favorite part is coming up
favorite = largest amount of rage

H-Town: where she tears up $24,000?
or the "I know your account #" (actual quote from Christian when she discovers this fact: "I know everything about you." HE IS TOM CRUISE CRAZY. RUN, ANA, RUN.)

me: ALL of it

H-Town: then RAGE MAKE OUT
I just tore up $24k! LET'S BANG

me: I really, REALLY wanted her to shout at him "I'M NOT YOUR WHORE"
and then he'd be like "OH YEAH?"
and then fuck her while sticking dollar bills in her ass

and then after all they they just go get a haircut
crazy stalk money thing, rage kiss, haircut time!

me: I laughed out loud that he owns a chain of salons. so hard
It makes NO SENSE
the publishing I can MAYBE see because his company deals in some vague media things, but WHY THE FUCK would he own a salon?
I'll tell you why
Because everywhere he takes Ana, he owns it, no matter what
want a beer? owns the bar
need an oil change? owns the Audi dealership
need a new stove? owns Sears
I wrote in my notes "He owns everything in Seattle. He's like Biff in Back to the Future 2"

H-Town: now there's a reference

me: and then I started yelling to the bartender "I OWN the police!"
because that's the one line I remember from that whole movie
which, he probably does own the police
that's how he finds shit out so easily

H-Town: hahaha

me: she needs to pull a Katie Holmes is what she needs to do
get a prepaid phone, a lawyer in another state, and wait for him to go to Iceland
which he's probably going to buy any minute now
"I've always wanted to get into the volcano market"
"Snow is big right now. Ima buy all of it"

H-Town: "I hear ice is melting. I wanna get the last of it...AND MELT IT ON YOUR HOO-HA."

me: and she'll be surprised that it's cold

H-Town: Ice is cold? WHAT?
panties explode

The salon Christian inexplicably owns is mega high end, natch. Everyone that works there is gorgeous, especially the stunningly beautiful woman who appears to be running the place. Shit's about to get real for Ms. Anastasia Steele, you guys.

me: so the big bombshell. did you see it coming? did she do enough foreshadowing, or did you need some more?

H-Town: remind me

me: there's a woman at the salon
an OLDER woman
and she's beautiful
I have been waiting for this moment.
all my notes said was "OH SHIT Y'ALL"

H-Town: it is ON

shit's about to go DOWN
or not
she'll probably just be polite and then break up with him for no reason and cry for five days while starving herself to death

H-Town: and listening to the iPad

Yep, it's his ex-Domme, the evil child molester, smiling warmly at her like a total bitch. Here James spins the wheel of similes and decides that the realization hits Ana "like a wrecking ball". Fuck me, I wish it had literally been a wrecking ball. I would pay money to see that moron get hit with a wrecking ball.

Friday, July 20, 2012

50 Screams Louder

H-Town and amberance read and review Fifty Shades Darker so you don’t have to.


H-Town: I started at the very very beginning of the book
Because even her BIO is poorly written
"Former TV exec, wife, and mother..."
Is she a former wife and mother?

Me: haha yes, she was a wife and mother, but she quit

H-Town: also, on the copyright page
Did you see this part?
This was earlier serialized as "Master of the Universe"
Isn’t that He-Man?
He-Man should sue



Me: oh shit, maybe that's why his name is Christian Grey!


Me: also explains why she never eats, she's obviously Skeletor

H-Town: Also, her pseudonym at that time was Snowqueen's Icedragon
Makes me want to burn a renaissance fair
It’s like she's just putting together every FAIRIE name
snowqueen fairiefacedragonslayerwench
Also, we now know her editor's name is Janine.
People of England, get to it, find every woman named Janine and scream in their faces til you find the right one.

Me: I was so happy to find that out. It will be so much easier to track her down in September

H-Town: Janine Cantedit of Craptacular Publishing, Inc.

Me: "Thanks to my editor Janine, and congratulations on passing English as a Second Language level one!"

H-Town: ok, onto the actual book, I suppose
How hilarious is it that we can find stuff to destroy and we're not even in the text yet?

In the prologue to the book, Christian is having a nightmare about his childhood. He is hiding under a table and watching while someone beats the shit out of his mother while repeatedly screaming at her that she is “one fucked up bitch.” He wakes up in a cold sweat just as the man finds him hiding under the table.

Me: right, so, the prologue

H-Town: big ol' wtf

Me: Christian is having a dream about his childhood...in first person?
Who narrates their dream to themself?

H-Town: He's troubled, Amber, he can do whatever he wants.


H-Town [redacted]
CEO of Stupid Bullshit Crap

Note: In the e-mail volleys they send back and forth, Christian’s signature is on every single one of them. Except sometimes he changes words in it to suit whatever conversation they are currently having.

H-Town: I bet it's through the power of Greyskull that he can do that.

Me: oh shit, I totally meant to start this conversation by yelling at you "YOU ARE ONE FUCKED UP BITCH!"
sorry, my bad

H-Town: haha
That's like my coffee every day
I don't drink coffee, I just have you greet me

Chapter 1 begins with Ana’s first day at her new job, then quickly cuts to Wednesday after it’s been explained that she is the most sad girl ever.

H-Town: Her boss' name is Jack Hyde.
My notes: "Come the fuck on."
I'm surprised she didn't make his middle initial L.
Jack L. Hyde

Me: It's only the first chapter, it might still happen

H-Town: my inner goddess is begging me for that to happen
So I punched her in the vagina.
And yes, I am enjoying the foreshowing
Oh no, he seems so interested in her, WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN?

Me: I’m sickly pleased that it followed my first prediction that he would be a creepy mofo

H-Town: no men in this girl's life are uncreepy

Me: never go to Seattle, apparently it is full of psychos
She is super naive though, maybe it's just her. "This dummy will be an easy mark"

H-Town: true dat
"This girl never eats, I can offer her a carrot stick and she'll do whatever."

Me: seriously. It’s Wednesday. Since Friday night she's had: one cup of yogurt

H-Town: I know!
I eat all the damn time
I'm like a hobbit
I have elevenses and twelveses and all that shit

Me: I am eating a sea salt chocolate bar RIGHT FRIGGIN NOW

H-Town: Christian should've given her an app that just yells, "EAT A FUCKING SANDWICH" every hour
I like that when she goes home, EL James makes sure we know that Ana turns on her flat-screen TV.
Who cares?
Also, she then makes a statement about how she needs some noise in the vacuum.
Hasn't she seen the movie posters for Alien?

Me: you will eventually stop noticing that kind of superfluous detail because it happens so much

H-Town: Oh, and numb and feeling pain at the same time.
Now Ana is magic. Or has some shitty novocaine
I like how she said her cycle of life thus far was "wake. work. cry. sleep."
I wrote in my notes that that is how you probably described your life while reading the first book in this series.

Me: it is, it is
Except I ate food more than once a month

H-Town: Also, line of the chapter: "His mom, the crack whore?"

Me: my source tells me she's pretty much always going to be referred to as the crack whore

H-Town: How many friggin times did she use the word "murmur" in the first chapter?
8 million, that's how many.
Speak up, dammit.

Christian sends her an e-mail at work reminding her that Jose’s gallery opening is tomorrow and offering her a ride to Portland.

Me: the premise of how they get back together is only slightly more plausible than how they met in the first place

H-Town: I was surprised it happened so quickly
I thought we'd be stuck with boring whiny chapters for a bit before she finally took him back

Me: well, there is NO depth to the character at all, so it had to be that way
Otherwise it would have been multiple chapters that just said "wake. cry. work. sleep."

H-Town: two pages of WAAAAH
Then a page of "NOW WE'RE TOGETHER! BODYWASH! 50!"

Me: I am also crazy annoyed that she STILL is surprised every time he finds her
"How did he get my work e-mail?"

H-Town: Magic, Ana. Magic
That's how the internet works
There's a snowqueen and she has an icedragon who's good at IT

On Thursday, Christian and Taylor pick her up from work so Christian can fly her to Portland in the helicopter. They also argue about food since it’s obvious she hasn’t eaten in nearly a week.

H-Town: Oh my god, I was so excited when I found the first reference to bodywash
I felt like I'd officially arrived in the world of shit that is this series of books
and I notice we both wrote "avuncular"? (The line was “He gives me a warm, avuncular smile that makes me feel safe.” DICKS. EAT THEM.)


H-Town: EL and a thesaurus, sittin in a tree
first comes infatuation
then comes conflaguration

Me: then comes me, with a butcher knife and so much rage

H-Town: hahaha
The part where they're starting up the helicopter and he's checking everything first. She thinks, "He's just so competent."
I wrote in my notes
Holy shit, he's flying a helicopter, I HOPE SO

Me: Also right there, "Desire pools dark and deadly in my groin."
You should probably get that checked out
Deadly? Like syphilis?

H-Town: nothing should really be pooling down there

Me: oh do you like how the helicopter is called Charlie Tango?

H-Town: No, I do not like it.

Me: "This needs to have a helicoptery sounding name....Spinny Blade Thing? Go Fastintor?
Oh I know, Charlie Tango"
Which I think is what Dancing With the Stars is called in Vietnam

Yeah, it's a radio call sign for the letters C and T
Let's pretend it means something else, like Cunt Taco
Oh, there is one part of the book (so far) that literally (yes!) made me laugh out loud.
A-Town came downstairs to find out what I was laughing at
I laughed for 5 minutes
"Desire explodes like the Fourth of July through my body.”


H-Town: I was almost in tears
A-Town threatened me if I woke up [the baby] with my laughing
First of all, EL, you're British.
Second of all, I just pictured a bunch of really tiny fireworkers, like sparklers.

Me: "Desire explodes like the Fourth of July through my body and I look down and realize I've blown up my fingers with a bottle rocket like a dumbass."

H-Town: Those are my notes for Chapter 1

Me: I had a few more from Jose’s art show

The centerpiece of Jose’s art show is seven enormous close up photos of Ana in various displays of candid emotion. She wasn’t warned about this at all, and Christian is absolutely enraged when he sees them.


Me: Right. How could she possibly not have known he was taking pictures of her all up in her face?

H-Town: because her eyes are so sunken
She can't see

Me: and then Christian being all NO ONE BETTER LOOK AT PHOTOS OF YOU EVER

H-Town: I hope he puts them in the dungeon so they can stare at them during sexy naughty time
or play a fun at home game called, "Pin the food on the non-eater"

In Chapter 2, they leave the art show after only half an hour at Christian’s insistence because he is furious at Ana for hugging Jose. They go to a restaurant to eat and talk about their relationship, where Christian orders the waiter around like the complete asshole he is.

Me: oh and I didn't write it down, but that kiss in the alley

H-Town: he had to put his hands on his knees, it was SO INTENSE

Me: like he just ran a marathon! (James’ description)

H-Town: I'm surprised he didn't order Taylor (god help me, I know their names) to bring an oxygen tank and have it at the ready for such passion

Me: speaking of Taylor
He picked her up at work before the helicopter ride in in Seattle, and then he shows up to drive them around in Portland?

H-Town: yeah, that is bizarre
Taylor has a magic carpet
a 70tb Mac iCarpet
I'm so upset that you didn't know that, I will now enter this phase:
wake, sleep cry, work, cry, pee, work, sleep, pee.

Me: we'll come back to Taylor
First, the dinner

H-Town: I hope the waiter spit in his food.

Me: "fuck the menu, bring me a steak and a goddamn salad"

H-Town: He probably would fuck the menu.
Well, after first passionately kissing it and becoming out of breath.

Me: he has issues with menus. His mommy was a Denny’s menu

H-Town: haha
I meant that he has to be in control.
"Hello sir, welcome to our restaurant."

Me: All problems can be solved by fucking them
So she hasn't eaten in five days, and now she's on her second glass of wine

H-Town: Something tells me Ana isn't very smart

Me: well and why isn't Mr Control ALL the Things ordering her a damn water?

H-Town: he's too busy fucking the menu and wearing bodywash

Me: so, why didn't you use your safeword?
An entire page of her thinking "Gee, I wonder if maybe this was all a misunderstanding. Maybe if I’d used my safeword, none of this would have happened." YOU THINK?


Me: and then her steak comes and she's like "oh yeah, I’m not that hungry I can only finish half of this”
If I didn't eat for five days I’d be like "fuck some steak BRING ME AN ENTIRE COW"

H-Town: I would've been gnawing on Charlie Tango

Me: he wouldn't have been able to fuck the menu, I’d have eaten it immediately

After dinner, Taylor picks them up to drive them back to Seattle. They haven’t finished talking about their relationship, so Christian asks him to listen to his iPod while he drives so he can’t hear the conversation they’re having.

Me: so back to Taylor
What kind of a jackass puts headphones in to listen to their iPod while they're driving?

H-Town: someone who wants to get into an accident

Me: and Christian’s all "no it's cool, he can't hear anything." GREAT IDEA
"I want you, and the thought of anyone else having you is like a knife twisting in my dark soul"

H-Town: then he took a myspace-angled photo and uploaded it


H-Town: *turns on Linkin Park*
Also, Christian needs to stop running his hands through his hair

Me: no. He can never ever stop. His hair is like angel pubes, it is the best hair ever

H-Town: angel pubes
vomits everywhere

They decide to get back together because of course they do. Since they already have a driver listening to music with headphones on, it doesn’t seem that unreasonable when Ana undoes her seatbelt and climbs into Christian’s lap in a moving car. He explains a little bit about his childhood, specifically that when his mother killed herself, he was alone in the house with her dead body for four days before someone came and found him there.

Me: hey, do you think the bodywash thing and the stinking four day old corpse of his mom are related?

H-Town: Hmmmm
Well, she was a crack whore
Have we mentioned that?

Me: he's like Lady Macbeth, he washes and washes but the putrid never comes off

H-Town: that simile is so far beyond EL James
Also, at this point, I think EL James has just created a big wheel of similes and she spins when she needs one.
Here are three I wrote down from Chapter 2 that were within 3 consecutive paragraphs
"anxiety Richter scale"
"shrouded in Oregon darkness" (notsomuch a simile, but awful)
"like a computer crash"
"like a huge bowl of dicks that EL James should eat."
ok, I made that last one up myself.
Oh, I forgot to say this, but when Christian said, "You told me you loved me in your sleep" I wrote in my notes
"She said that in her sleep, ass."
Man, if people held us to what we say in our sleep, this world would be a purple monkey dishwasher

Me: hahahahaha

H-Town: Also from my notes, when she says to him "You're just like an island state."
The rage, it boiled.

Me: He is a rock
He is an iiiiiiii-iiiiiiilaaaaaannnd

H-Town: lol
Bodywash Island
which is part of the Menufuck Archipelago
near StupidShitGoddessistan
on Planet Bowlofdicks

Me: the Crackwhore Atoll is just across the bay

H-Town: Crackwhore Atoll
My coworkers are staring at me now

Me: when we are done talking about this I might try to draw a map

H-Town: oh my god YES

In a completely out of character move, Christian has Taylor drop Ana off at home and doesn’t stay with her or get all rapey. Before she goes he gives her a “mysterious” package that is only a mystery to Ana. In it is all of the things he’d previous bought her, plus a new iPad. The iPad has a note attached telling her the reason for the iPad is that he’s put a playlist of songs together that will tell her how he feels - Jeff Buckley, Thomas Tallis, Snow Patrol, Nelly Furtado, and Coldplay are among his selections. She fixates on the Coldplay song while she contemplates whether or not Christian wants to have a relationship with her, even though he did nothing but tell her he did over and over again for the entire first two chapters of the book.

Me: so she gets all her stuff back...plus a new iPad
Now, is this because EL James doesn't know what a thumb drive is, or is it so we can be absolutely, positively sure that Christian has more money than god?

H-Town: hahaha
The book became an Apple advertisement for a few pages

Me: Coldplay.
You know what would have been awesome instead of that? It would have made the whole book worth it
Air Supply

H-Town: oh my god yes

Me: If she had checked out the playlist and it started with Making Love Out of Nothing at All I would have loled to death. TO DEATH

H-Town: that would've been so awesome

Me: and then some Meatloaf

H-Town: Aaand I would do anything for love...
Celine Dion
Oh man, imagine if he'd put this on there: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvGY-dUyMfU
I would've exploded like the Fourth of July

Me: "He would do anything for love? Does this mean he wants to be with me?"

H-Town: "And does it mean he'll drive a motorcycle through the wall of a huge mansion?"

Me: I think he has to. It is his destiny

H-Town: the scent of bodywash floating behind him

Me: with his angel pubes flowing in the wind

H-Town: Apple hardware crashing down around him
With Charlie Tango being flown by Taylor and a steak in the background

Me: he drives it through the wall with all the giant Ana photos

H-Town: that she would then explain
And Ana still wouldn't get it
And then Ana would say she feels like someone's been watching her lately. It'd be Jose, and he's been two inches from her face with a camera.

Me: And then Christian gets off the bike and stabs him over and over in the face screaming DON'T EVER LOOK AT HER

H-Town: He would stab him with Taylor's 70tb Apple iCarpet
and as Jose died, an app would pop open and remind Ana to eat a fucking sandwich.

Me: ......and scene

H-Town: yes
*wins multiple book awards*
it should be a graphic novel, though
all that deserves to be drawn, not IMAGINED

Me: no doubt

H-Town: Anyway, this is the crapfest I was looking for.
Expecting, really.

So to summarize, in the first two chapters of the book, Ana's boss is as creepy as everyone else, she still never eats anything and cries constantly, Christian is still a possessive stalker, and James is still very worried that we aren't convinced Christian is rich or Ana is a self-depreciating nitwit. You know, I could swear I've read this book before...

p.s. Please bear with me as I'm still working on the format for these reviews so that it will both give you the plot and illustrate that H-Town and I are BFFs because we are fucking mental. And please enjoy this map I made you of Menufuck Archipelago (sorry about my handwriting, I'm a lefty and also on three hours sleep):

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Coming soon - the reviews of Fifty Shades Darker. For real this time. The hold up was due to the post office. As some of my older readers will recall, this is not the first time I've had issues with the U.S. Postal Service. A couple of weeks ago I finally found a used copy of the book for H-Town, and since I have left you all for so long without any new swears, I went with expedited shipping to get it to her. Which I paid extra for. Expedited shipping from USPS is advertised as taking 2-6 business days. So I was not particularly amused when I got an e-mail on Sunday night from H-Town saying she still didn't have the book I'd had shipped to her a full week prior to that. I checked the shipping confirmation and found that the "expedited" package was estimate to arrive on the 19th. The book was shipping from Georgia to Baltimore - I could have WALKED to Baltimore from Georgia faster than that. Unhappily, I relayed this information to H-Town: "I did [ship the book], but apparently when I said 'expedited shipping', the post office decided that meant 'on a mule'. It's in New Jersey, and expected to get to you, not even kidding, THURSDAY. WTF." She took it in stride: "Express Mule, when you absolutely positively need it to be there at some point in the next few months or so." Luckily for everyone, USPS is just as bad at estimating things as they are at shipping them (or geography for that matter - New Jersey isn't on the way to Maryland if you're coming from Georgia) and the book finally got to her yesterday. We discussed logistics over e-mail this afternoon and have decided to schedule IM chats, although, per H-Town "It's just easier to email back and forth about the book. Until they invent some sort of "online" "chat" or something crazy futuristic like that. Eagerly awaiting the "ding!" on your next email on my 70tb supercomputer iPhone Audi." You guys are going to love her.

Anywhore, while the whole "oh wait, you wanted us to actually send this book somewhere?" crap was going on, I managed to once again be a guest on the world's most brilliant podcast, Total Talk Nonsense. I called in for Episode 256 and chatted with the boys for half an hour or so about getting drunk by soaking gummy bears in alcohol and eating them, clearing up an assumption Scott made about just who it was I met at the airport in naught but a raincoat, a letter H-Town mailed to my office about boobs (which also contained an excellent drawing of several dinosaur strippers), the new Spider-Man movie, the student show from a couple weeks ago where I took all my clothes off in front of strangers, marketing and Bizzybiz, why I'd be a fucking terrible wife, my upcoming UK trip (Hey UK readers! I'm coming back over to visit my friends in Hertfordshire in September! Who's down for a tweet up? I won't even make you come to Hitchin!), NATO and the Olympics, and why you should always be VERY SPECIFIC when leaving someone a voicemail about the results of a mammogram. I show up at about the 39th minute, which I tell you because the vast majority of my new readers don't listen to the show and may not be ready or willing to sit through 40 minutes of two guys drinking and talking shit (though I do absolutely recommend it).

I will get the first two chapters of Fifty Shades Darker read tomorrow morning so that the fun can begin. For you, obviously. H-Town and I will be fucking miserable.

Friday, July 06, 2012

Better Shit To Read Than That Twilight Fanfic Fucking Nonsense

Many people have been asking me, "Amber, if we shouldn't be reading Fifty Shades of Grey to make our naughty parts tingle, what should we be reading instead?" The thing is, I can't actually answer that for you because you know a lot better than I do what you like in your word porn. I can tell you what I like, and you can go check that out, or not, as the mood strikes you but if, say, you are really digging tentacle porn this afternoon, my suggestions aren't going to be a whole lot of help to you. You might want to just google that.

Having said that, I've given a lot of thought to what sorts of things I've read that might appeal to people for reasons similar to why this book piece of shit apparently appeals to people, and I've made you guys a list. Keep in mind that most of my suggestions aren't going to be for novel length erotica. For the most part, I tend to read collections of short stories instead. This is just a personal preference. I find that on the whole, for writing of that length, either the plot suffers or the sex does. Or I just have a really short masturbatory attention span (ok, fine, it's probably this). The longest suggestion I have is the erotica classic Story Of O. It is the quintessential BDSM novel, but as such, might be a bit much for people who aren't looking for something as hard core as that, such as Christian Grey, who listed "permanent marking of the body" as a hard limit in his (never signed) contract, so probably won't be terribly down with the scene where O gets branded. An easier read for him might be He's On Top: Erotic Stories of Male Dominance and Female Submission, a collection of short D/s stories edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel. There is a companion book to that one featuring the opposite situation: She's on Top: Erotic Stories of Female Dominance and Male Submission, which I haven't read, but I suspect is just as good (or maybe better if you love reading about pegging).

If it's not BDSM you're after, and you're just looking for erotica aimed at and/or written by women, you could do worse than the Best Women's Erotica series, an annual collection of short stories edited by Violet Blue (I couldn't find the 2012 version on Amazon for some reason, but here's 2011, and here's where you can preorder 2013). And as long as we're on the subject of Violet Blue, she has also edited a series of books featuring fantasies for couples, including Taboo, which I ran to my living room to read after the first sex scene in Fifty Shades just to make sure that I still enjoy sex. I was genuinely concerned E. L. James had permanently destroyed my sex drive.

Of course there are also tons of sex blogs out there in internetland, including my own. But since I can't really link to that here as it would defeat the entire purpose of my having separated it from Bizzybiz in the first place (you are welcome to try to find it, but good luck with that - my friend Fish has been trying to find it off and on for years without much luck, and he knows me better than most people), I can instead recommend Pussy Talk, Easily Aroused, Remittance Girl, The Erotic Writer, and the incomparable Monmouth who I know in real life and who is also very good at finding delicious beer and/or snacks. I also follow mega porn star James Deen on Twitter, but his tweets aren't really that sexy and seem to be mostly related to him dressing up as a baby panda, though he does post links to his blog and photos of who he banged on camera that day.

Hopefully you'll find something on this list to interest you (or you were sucessful at your tentacle porn googling) and that it will keep you occupied until the reviews for the next book start, which I'm hoping will be next week, since my roommate, my lover AND my partner in fun Mrs. Sizemore will all be out of town and I am otherwise going to be BORED AS FUCK. And boring as fuck, unless you want to spend the week reading stories about my cat vs. the vacuum and how I can have ice cream and cookie dough for dinner since the bartender won't be here to stop me. Right, I didn't think so.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Hatiness Updateiness

Sorry about the post title - I've been watching way too much My Drunk Kitchen.

I'm working on a list of my suggestions for better choices of erotic fiction than Fifty Shades of Grey RIGHT NOW (I toyed with the idea of just writing a post that only suggested "anything else", which is funny but not particularly helpful), which I hope to have up for you this evening or tomorrow at the latest. To tide you over until then, please enjoy this marvelous video from reader Robyn, where she makes Siri read my review aloud, despite the fact that Siri can't say "motherfucker" AT ALL.

Also, thanks for the offers of e-mailing me the pdf version of the book for H-Town to read. I really would like to find an actual copy for her so she knows what part I'm complaining about when I say things like "Page 37. WTF JUST HAPPENED? PLEASE KILL ME." but you are all kinds of awesome for wanting to help out.

I have the best readers in the world.