Five Reasons Why Fifty Shades of Grey Will Never Be My Thing

01c83602e689905a6439a1c6346d42661. Set in Bellevue, Washington, the setting and its people do not inspire anything to moisten, except maybe the pre-glued lip of a manila envelope. Sorry, Fifty Shades of Grey, I’m not buying it. This homogenous community is about as sexy as plain tofu. Who could equate creative, raw and unleashed sex with this button-down, blue-shirt clad, Microsoft haven. From their obsession with The Black Keys to their singular pursuit of creating the perfect refurbishment of the Vanagon parked in their suburban garage,  the people locals refer to as Softies could never be sexy.

2. I’m not a fan of masturbation, so what’s the point? It might stem from my own sexual hangups formed as the child of an ousted Catholic mother determined to never have a pregnant daughter, I admit, this one’s all on me. I do know that my Women’s Studies class at UW didn’t help matters.

This was at a time before the class title changed to Wymyn’s Studies, which might relate to the hymen in some way I’m unaware of, but would be better titled as, “Why Men Are Scum.” We signed up for the class, my bestie and I, with two guy friends who thought it was a great way to meet chicks (or chyx?) and knock out five easy credits. Yeah, right.

From that first day in lecture hall, our guy friends came under the hostile gaze of the wymen in class throughout the hour. Every reference to ‘male priviledge’ made them sink lower in their seats. With the hour almost up, the professor announced our homework. We were to write our names in Sharpie on our dildos. If we didn’t yet own a dildo, we were to purchase one, along with said Sharpie. I didn’t even know the word, ‘dildo’ until that moment, so I was a candidate for option two – purchasing a plastic wonder wand. Problem was, it would never stir anything but confusion in me because after that class my dildo would be sporting a condom made up of man hate and wymen’s pride. That had the sure makings of icy loins.

So, no dildo, no point. Sorry, Fifty Shades.

3. Public sex = Ick. The thought of public sex makes me wildly uncomfortable. As a teen, I’d run the trail along the Columbia River after school, usually accompanied by my stepdad, Mike. One day, Mike bailed on me and I ran anyway – leaving him to watch the episode of All My Children he’d recorded on the VHS in peace. Thank you, Lord.

As I neared the entrance to the trail, I noticed a shiny sedan bouncing up and down. It was a sunny afternoon and my first thought was that a dog was locked inside the car, and was fighting to get outside to some fresh air. I approached, looked in the window and saw a chubby white butt bobbing up and down. I must’ve gasped, because the next thing I saw were two sweaty pink faces gaping back at me. I ran home and told Mike what he’d missed while watching AMC. Public sex. Ick. Sorry, Fifty Shades. I assume you don’t just contain condo sex, but public sex as well. And that makes me barf a little in my mouth.

4. My own failed attempt at PDA (public displays of affection) put me off Fifty Shades. Not sex, no. But, heavy kissing with a boy I’d been dating for some time. He was named Alfredo and was beautiful and delicious and shy. Oh God! He was shy. He’d been my friend for ages and then sometime during high school we decided to be a couple. He was the star of the basketball team, and gorgeous, and ohhhh soooo shy.

On a Sunday, God’s day, I invited Alfredo to my house under the guise of studying. Within minutes of walking in the door, I lured him down to the basement to watch football and “study.” Instead of falling all over me in the gaps between my mother’s trips to the laundry room, he read. He wrote on lined-paper. He studied.

I pinched my cheeks, pushed up my bra and licked my oh-so-willing-lips, but nothing. Alfredo studied.

Fast-forward to the summer. Alfredo came over to walk the river with me. I wore a cute swimming suit and teensie tennis skirt and we walked together, hand in hand. We spread our beach towels out on the dock and kissed. Oh, dear heavens, we kissed – physical, hot, lustful kisses. We were interrupted by someone standing above us, ahemming!

“Ahem!” said a purse-lipped old lady. She went on to explain that this was her dock. And we should take whatever this was leading up to far, far away from her respectable dock.

I can’t speak for Alfredo, but at that moment, all my lust spontaneously combusted, as did all hope for our budding relationship.

PDAs? Nope. Fifty Shade’s not for me. I’d squirm my way through the pages, in a bad way.

5.  My first, and only, exposure to porn was a fat failure. I’ll never try again, which means definitely no Fifty Shades.

It was the summer after my first year at UW. Me and my bestie traveled to Spokane to visit two of our best guy friends. It’d been revealed at the end of spring term that we’d never seen porn and they felt it was their duty to expose us to this life-changing media. (their words – not mine) Well, we didn’t care one way or the other, but it became the thing that our whole trip centered around. The boys had done research at numerous adult video shops and selected an award-winning (Yes! An Award!) video. They rented it, we ate dinner and they popped in the vid.

My bestie and I giggled our way through the opening scene. A woman’s television was broken. Oh no! She called a repair guy and he came over, tight shirt, tight pants and toolbelt. Well, while he was trying to repair the t.v., the woman unbuttoned her shirt, rubbed her boob, rubbed the other boob and then the movie faded out to nothing. We were in hysterics, laughing and rolling on the floor. THIS was the magical world we’d missed out on? Really?

On the other side of the room, sitting under a cloud of bitter, were our two guy friends. They were yelling at one another, “You just HAD to get an award-winner!” Etc. Etc. Etc.

Apparently, this was not typical porn. They were pissed that they’d completely blown their one and only chance to deflower two mostly innocent girls with the world of X-rated vids.

Porn, you and I were never meant to be. Sorry, Fifty Shades. I’ll never know if your best chapters fade out to nothing or thunder to a conclusion of  loud groans and noisy slaps.


If you’re in the mood for a more cerebral read, check out my novel – filled with friendship, mystery and psychological thrills, Four Rubbings.

Just Not the Dirty

4 thoughts on “Five Reasons Why Fifty Shades of Grey Will Never Be My Thing

  1. I made a comment, I swear I did.
    I love this post not only for your humor, but for your brutal honesty. You are very brave. (Maybe not as brave as those two guys who took Wymyn’s Studies with you.)

    1. Okay, for the record, they weren’t brave. They were looking for a class with a disproportionate amount of women to men – for dating purposes. AND one of those guys ended up dating the woman (I don’t know the singular of wymyn, sorry) who was the writer of the sex column for The Daily, the UW’s paper. We called her column after that, “Having Sex with L.T.” – because we assumed all her material was inspired by having sex with our friend, LT.

  2. Hi Jennifer,

    Great talking to you yesterday :-) Love this blog post – it’s hilarious. Have to admit I thought I was the only person left on this earth who didn’t read Fifty Shades. But yeah, having worked at MS – I agree the Softies ain’t sexy. I did, however, read “Odd Mom Out” and – regarding your point #1 – I even found that story’s treatment of our little part of Bellevue to be an over-exaggeration of it’s sexiness potential :-D So I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t try to expose myself to the cognitive dissonance torture that could have been my reading of Fifty Shades.


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