Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Chapter Twenty Four

"Christian stands in a steel-barred cage. Wearing his soft, ripped jeans, his chest and feet
are mouthwateringly naked, and he’s staring at me."

Hold up. Let's go back a little bit.

"... [his] feet are mouthwateringly naked." There's a phrase I bet you didn't think you'd read today. His feet are mouthwateringly naked - not your standard, regular kind of naked, but mouthwateringly so. She must be really into this guy. This is the beginning of a dream sequence which is all kinds of embarrassing.

Ana is woken from her dream at 5.30am by Christian, who switches on the sidelight because he wants to 'chase the dawn' with her. Imagine being woken up that early to 'chase the dawn'. I think my first instinct would be something along the lines of FUCK OFF.

I woke up like dis.

Christian tells Ana to get up because they're going out. "Don’t bother to shower," he says, "We can do that later.”

No! You can not do that later! She is on her period! I believe the standard protocol at this delicate time is to shower as often as possible, especially after you've just been stewing the night away (probably naked) in your boyfriend's bed!

Ana sensibly goes to wash up in the bathroom and emerges to find Christian having breakfast. Ana's so shocked by someone eating breakfast at such an early hour, she reacts as though she's just walked in to find him nibbling on his housekeeper. Christian tries to force her to eat, which is weird in all kinds of ways, but Ana's having none of it.

After convincing him she'll eat later, he throws her a jumper and they head down to the hotel car park, where the valet hands him the keys to a soft top sports car.

“You know, sometimes it’s great being me,” says Christian. What a smug prick.

They get in his car and start listening to some opera, as you do when you're cruising along at 6am. It's from an opera adapted from a story about a 'doomed courtesan' and obviously Ana has read the book because she's such a literary expert. Then Ana gets hold of Christians iPod and the real laughs begin.

"Christian Grey’s iPod, this should be interesting. I scroll through the touch screen, and find the perfect song. I press play. I wouldn’t have figured him for a Britney fan. The club-mix, techno beat assaults us both, and Christian turns the volume down. Maybe it’s too early for this: Britney’s at her most sultry."

HahahahaHA! He's got Britney Spears on his iPod! HAHA! And apparently Toxic has a 'club-mix, techno beat'. Does E. L. James listen to any music?

This is too amazing to be true. No, it genuinely is. Much as I'd love for Christian Grey to be a closet Britney stan, he admits that he didn't put the song on his iPod - it was Layla, an ex-sub of his. It turns out that they ended because she wanted more between them - she wanted more of a relationship.

Ana pushes Christian about his previous relationships.

“Okay. In no particular order, I’ve only had long term relationships with four women,

apart from Elena.”
“Mrs. Robinson to you.” He half smiles his secret private joke smile. Elena! Holy Fuck. The evil one has a name and its all-foreign sounding.

It's all foreign-sounding?! What in blue fuck is this supposed to mean? First of all, in what world does 'Elena' sound foreign? And secondly, why does Ana perceive it to be at all relevant? I'm literally so confused by this part - are we supposed to conflate foreigners with evil?

They talk a little more about his exes. The majority of his relationships ended because the sub wanted 'more'. It doesn't specify whether the Britney playlist played any part in the matter. Maybe they found out about Christian's tendency to keep used condoms in his pocket.

They turn into an airfield because Christian wants them to go 'soaring'. Ugh, what an embarrassing phrase. 

At the airfield, Ana observes that the sky has changed colour, and is 'glowing softly behind the sporadic childlike clouds'. Nope. How can clouds be childlike? Are they shaped like actual children? I have absolutely no idea what kind of image she's trying to convey here. That's like saying 'My meal had childlike sprouts scattered all over it'.

Christian's co-pilot is called Benson. Ana starts reeling off flying details that nobody cares about. "We will be in a Blanik L-23, which is apparently better than the L-13, although this is open to debate. Benson will be flying a Piper Pawnee. He’s been flying tail draggers for about five years now. It all means nothing to me." No, me neither. Maybe shut up, then?

They take off in the Piper Pawnee. "The radio crackles into life, and Mark mentions 3,000 feet. Jeez, that sounds high." Yeah, no shit. Apparently Ana has got a degree. You'd never know from this God-awful narrative. The entire flight thing is incredibly boring and does nothing to further the plot except showcase the fact that Christian is really, obscenely rich. Even when they land the glider in a remote field, he just fucking leaves it there like his maid will fly it home for him.

They get out of the plane, smooch for a bit by the side of the plane (Christian gets an erection from one kiss because the man's clearly an addict and needs to get help) and head for breakfast somewhere. 

"I have never seen him like this, and it’s a joy to behold. I find myself walking beside him, hand in hand, with a stupid, goofy grin plastered on my face. It reminds me of when I was ten and spending the day in Disneyland with Ray." Eugh. Please tell me she didn't just liken a sexy, romantic, erection-inducing flying experience to going to Disneyworld with her dad?! I'm sensing a real undercurrent of tension between Ana and Ray. Anyone else?

"Back in the car, as we head back along I-95 towards Savannah, my phone alarm goes

off. Oh yes… my pill.
“What’s that?” Christian asks, curious, glancing at me.
I fumble in my purse for the packet.
“Alarm for my pill,” I mutter as my cheeks flush.
His lips quirk up.
“Good, well done. I hate condoms.”"

ARGH. For the love of GOD, ladies - don't let your man hating condoms be the only reason you go on the pill. Do it because you want control over your reproductive system, do it because you want to reign in your hormones, but don't, whatever you do, go on the pill just because your man doesn't feel like wrapping it up. That's the kind of comment you'd expect from a 17-year-old kid, not some supposedly mature businessman with years of experience. I really do hate this book.

(Also - really, really sick of being constantly reminded about periods, condoms, contraception, pregnancy and the like. This is not erotica - it's just some woman's stream-of-consciousness fantasy that hasn't been structured or planned beforehand. She's just writing it up as it comes to her. It's shite.)

They go for pancakes at IHOP. Christian says that he already knows what he wants, and Ana responds with, "I want what you want." Really? Are we trying to make pancakes sexy now? The waitress comes over to take the order and, just like every woman in the book, the country, the world, she's transfixed by Christian. He orders their meal and she squeaks and scurries off, because apparently, all women confronted by a good-looking man turn to mush in an instant.

They start to negotiate the terms of the contract in more detail. Ana wants to sleep in bed with Christian. She wants to be treated more as an equal than a sub, but then Ana offers to pay for the pancakes and Christian says it makes him feel 'emasculated'. Was this written in 2010 or 1910? In what world are men still emasculated by a woman buying a meal for them? 

Christian drives Ana back to her mum's house - he doesn't ask the address, he already knows it. CREEPY. 

He kisses her goodbye and says he'll see her later - he's coming round for dinner, remember? Ana's mum is stressing out about entertaining a multi-zillionaire in her house, but it wouldn't actually surprise me too much if Christian brought his own personal chef in tow. She needn't panic.

Ana emails Christian, who tells her that she was talking her in sleep and it was very interesting. I bet you a thousand quid it's not at all interesting.

Later, as Ana is out browsing for food to cook for Christian, she gets a call about the job interview she went for, with another obscenely rich, arrogant guy who can't seem to get enough of her. She got the job! Yay! But as she gets off the phone, she notices a missed call from Christian. She calls him back and discovers he has to go back to Seattle for something urgently. Ana freaks out and thinks it must be something to do with Mrs Robinson, it just must. She wishes she could have been a fly on the wall - perhaps landing on her wine glass and choking Elena to death. I wish I could be a fly, because don't those things have like a fifteen minute lifespan? It'd save me from this damn novel.

Ana and her family have a barbecue that night, and Ana just emails Christian throughout. Like, when does this girl ever do anything that isn't related to Christian? Does she ever read? Catch up on current events? Paint her toenails? Watch TV? Talk to her family?

Ana begs Christian to tell her what she said in her sleep. He says no, because he'd prefer her to say it in consciousness first. Ana growls at him and Christians says he possesses a cat of his own for growlers. Wink wink. Ana's all like, he has a cat? I've never seen one in his apartment... oh Ana.

Orgasm count: None! Hallelujah! A chapter devoted to character development! Kind of...

Number of mouthwateringly naked feet: 2


  1. This is the FUNNIEST thing I have ever read on the whole '50 Shades' fiasco. Please, please, PLEASE publish this in a book even if you have to run a Kickstarter to do the first print run. (We can show you how to do this)

    Heck, even sprinkle in some Yiddish and you can call your book "50 Shades of Oy Vey."

    You are WAY smarter than James. You deserve to be compensated for it.

  2. Oh drat, someone beat me to a "50 Shades of Oy Vey" book. Still, please consider publishing this!

  3. Was Benson really called the "co-pilot?" That would make absolutely no sense whatsoever. Please check this again, as he would be the "tow pilot" in the Pawnee that would 'tow' the glider up to 3000 feet (not really that high as airplanes go) and release the glider to soar on its own. So the Pawnee (the airplane with the engine) is attached via a rope to the glider. The tow airplane pulls the glider up to altitude, then releases it. The glider has no motor whatsoever and cannot take off on its own. Once airborne, the glider can find 'thermals' and gain altitude by finding updrafts. But one has to know where to look for them. So the proper term would be Benson is the 'tow' pilot, not 'co-pilot' as the latter infers that there is someone sitting next to Christian in the cockpit, which would be difficult to do if Ana is in that seat.

  4. Given that E L James can't even figure out how to haves her characters dispose of a used condom, I'm not at all surprised she didn't get technical details of flying a glider correct lol