I’ve read somewhere that Hollywood is turning Fifty Shades of Grey into a movie and is searching for a Sydney beachside location for the filming.
Nah, relax shire people, I made the last bit up.
Imagine what the publicity for that sort of film would do. An epidemic of BDSM? Or, given the books’ popularity, is that already happening, particularly in areas where there are lots of cellars and attics crying for a makeover.
Yeah, I know, Christian Grey lives in a glass-walled penthouse. But his ‘‘playroom’’ or ‘‘red room of pain’’ is windowless and could be accommodated very nicely into any dark Victorian house. You wouldn’t want the neighbours to know.
Although everyone has read Shades of Grey — at least 31 million including myself — there is something vaguely horrifying about the thought of whips and manacles becoming part of suburban bedroom furniture. What would that do to the sport of casual sex after clubbing on Saturday night? Caution is called for.
After reading the best seller, I prefer to think of BDSM as an esoteric intellectual pursuit practised by people who have the time to read the literature. Not Shades of Grey, but books such as SM 101: A Realistic Introduction, which I assume explains what to do and why.
The very rich and civilised Christian Grey doesn’t just tie women up and get out the feather duster. He took lessons and became an expert. He knows exactly what implement does what and he requires a written contract before dishing out ‘‘pleasure’’ to his submissive of the moment.
Actually I have no idea if what Christian practises is best practice, or if there is a union for sadists and masochists, or if the author has done a lot of research herself.
I read the books because I wanted to know why everyone else was reading them — and I like a bit of trash every now and then, be it film, food or literature.
Anyone who has spent time wallowing on the sofa with an old-fashioned Mills and Boon will recognise the style in Shades of Grey, but for the endless pages of increasingly dreary sex. (Apparently Mills and Boon is about to compete with its own erotica range)
The formula: Christian Grey, an enigma with unusual sex preferances; Anastasia Steele, naive but eager to learn. They fall madly in love. As with a Mills and Boon romance, you keep reading to the end to see how they will sort out their problems and live happily ever after. It seems some women never outgrow the Cinderella story.
While it would be no surprise that the books were boosting the sex shop trade, I was most surprised to read that fans were running off to music shops.
Music creates the mood for a lot of what happens, and the author, EL James, picks out a diverse range, from Frank Sinatra, Britney Spears, Bruce Springsteen, Kings of Leon to several classical composers, one of whom is Thomas Tallis.
Since Shades of Grey, Tallis, who wrote music for Henry VIII and Elizabeth I in the 16th century, apparently has reached the top of the UK classical music charts.
If everybody was listening to Spem in Alium, I felt I needed to do so as well.
Somewhat red-faced, I explained what I wanted to a young man at my local music shop. He said they’ll be waiting for the movie soundtrack.
The man at the classical music shop knew exactly what I was talking about. I’m sure he was thinking I looked a bit old for that sort of literature.
Anyhow, I am now the owner of a double CD set of the Tallis Scholars singing Thomas Tallis but I can’t play it if someone is around.
Although it’s church music, with lots of amens and glorias, I don’t want anyone to think I’m a smutty old boiler with SM fantasies.