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50 Shades of… Orange

February 11, 2015

handcuffs1Just in time for the national day of love and romance, this Friday (the 13th, I might add) marks the release of the movie 50 Shades of Grey. Gauging from my Facebook newsfeed, a lot of women are either eagerly awaiting the release or proselytizing the decay and destruction it will bring.

I remember a couple of summers ago, everyone I knew was just raving about how I needed to read this book. I’m quite the avid reader, so I didn’t immediately discount the book. After all, I’ve read a few really good books that the devil her own self (Oprah) recommended and actually found one that I will claim to be one of my all time favorites.  Generally, however, I find the more hype surrounding a book, the less I will like it. Maybe I’m a weirdo. Anyway, I eventually caved and laid down the ten bucks for the paperback version that I picked up at the Krog.

I have to say, I wasn’t impressed. Matter of fact, I didn’t make it past page 87. The dialogue was cliché. The characters were flat. The story line was predictable, almost as if it were following some sort of mathematic formula. I felt like I was reading bad 70’s porn minus the actual porn, and nobody would tell me what page I needed to fast forward to find it. In between wondering why I didn’t write such crap (because I could have) and wondering when the so called “mommy porn” was going to start, I wondered what all the fucking hype was about. Now granted, I only read 87 pages, so maybe it got better, but I doubt it.

We know from all the talk of our friends, and now the movie trailer, that an older man seduces this young lady, and he’s got some kink. He’s into the S&M, likes bondage, and wants a submissive woman to engage in some mutual sexual satisfaction. It appears she’s a willing party to these escapades. It appears they are both over the age of 21. They are not forcing unwilling individuals, minors, or animals in their activities. And correct me if I’m wrong, but they aren’t doing it in the middle of the city park in front of your kids.

So why do you care? If such things are of interest to you, then I suspect you’ll go see the movie. If they aren’t, then you won’t. Life will go on either way. Society will face no more (or less) moral decay because of the release of this movie than it would just for the fact that human beings exist and some of us are a little different than others. This isn’t going to force someone who’s not inclined to such activities to engage in deviant behavior.

Let’s put it this way. Say you really like oranges. You think oranges are the only fruit for you. You are so pro-orange; you can’t understand anyone enjoying any other fruit than oranges. Maybe your religion says oranges are the only approved fruit that you can eat. Or maybe your mom was just really strict, and only let you eat oranges. Let’s face it, oranges aren’t bad. They are pretty delicious, and there are orange-flavored things aplenty. You are content with eating oranges for the rest of your life. You have no desire to try any other fruit than oranges.

Then you meet a person, let’s call her Ann. Ann is a good person. She’s a successful lady, who does community service, works hard, and pays her taxes. What’s not to love about Ann? Nothing. Except she doesn’t like oranges. Ann happens to love kiwi. Maybe you can’t understand why Ann doesn’t like oranges, because you think oranges are fabulous, but does that make Ann a bad gal? No. Is your life negatively impacted because Ann chooses to enjoy kiwi instead of oranges? No. Is Ann slopping her kiwi juice all over your lunch or forcing you to eat kiwi? No. Then leave Ann be to enjoy her kiwi in the privacy of her own kitchen.

You can still enjoy oranges. The grocery store isn’t going to quit carrying oranges because a few people like kiwis. The Krog isn’t going to make you start buying kiwis just because they are selling them. You can totally walk right by the kiwi display without ever picking one up and I bet one million dollars, you will not give a second thought to all the people who are buying the kiwi and eating them right at this very minute. I bet every one of you orange lovers has a neighbor or three who enjoys the kiwi… or even bananas.

And when you think of it, that’s the whole point of being an American. We don’t have someone telling us we can only eat oranges. And thank God, because along with another eleventy million Americans, oranges give me heartburn.

After all, you don’t see a majority of Americans insisting that everyone in the world should have heartburn because they do and heartburn is a normal thing…

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