Tag Archives: teenagers

What’s the deal with Fifty Shades of Grey?

I vaguely remember the storm around E. L. James’ Fifty Shades of Grey when it came out. I remember gathering around a copy with my friends, trying to find the rude sections, and giggling as we read it out. I remember seeing pictures of women brazenly reading it on trains for the world to see, and being fairly impressed at this unapologetic display of an erotic book on their way home from Charing Cross on a Tuesday night. I am in Great Britain, after all, and even though we are known for our prudishness, we are not one to ban stuff.
With the arrival of trailers of the second film, Fifty Shades Darker, I decided to get off my high horse, and watch it. Now, I know it was originally written as a fanfiction from Stephanie Meyers Twilight series, hence the reason why I avoided the film like the plague. Like many others, I assumed it was directed at middle aged suburban women, thrill-seeking and trembling in their cinema seats. But alas, I watched it. And like, what’s the deal with it?

The plot was very simple, very dull, and I kept waiting for something dramatic and exciting to happen. But no. It’s was just a series of meetings between Ana and Christian as they bonded (and later, bondaged… ignore that. I’ll work on the puns later). I did wonder how they were going to direct a film all about explicit sex (from what I gather, I haven’t actually read the book so lack the means to compare) but it was done very tastefully, and the sex scenes weren’t half bad.

Now, I don’t know if I’m being a feminazi here, or whether the film genuinely displayed an almost abusive relationship. Christian draws up a contract for Anastasia, in which she, as a submissive sexual partner, can’t drink alcohol, can only eating food from a specific list, and specifically says she must do anything sexual he asks for ‘without argument’, because nothing says sexy like the underlying threat of rape.

Now, if a guy tried to tell me I couldn’t drink, or I wasn’t allowed that second slice of pizza, he’d be out the door before you could say dildo.
Ana, like any self-respecting woman, doesn’t sign the contract, and eventually gets on with her life, until Christian, displaying EXTREMELY possessive, obsessive tendencies, hounds her via text, getting genuinely pissed off that she’s taking her time considering signing her soul and dignity away. Eventually, instead of giving her the breathing time that she needs, he decides to stalk her, enter her apartment without asking, and has sex with her. Talk about seduction. Already at this point warning bells are going off in my mind. lets face it, girls love a bad boy. Sometimes, it’s cute when he gets jealous. But this goes so far beyond that.
Christian goes so far beyond cute to stalker-psycho, more like Patrick Bateman than Patrick Swayze. He tears her away from her graduation with her father, tells her she cannot go to see her mother and then when she does, turns up and -oh you guessed it- drags her away from special time with her mother. The guy doesn’t have boundaries. He takes over her life completely, and its not sexy, its not cute, its borderline abusive.

But the real cruncher here, is that Christian, whilst displaying a psychotic sort of cold affection towards Ana, states there would be no romantic relationship, only a sexual one. Ana can not touch him, or sometimes look him in the eye. And whilst all the women watching this film look with goggle eyes at Jamie Dornan (Christian), they fail to acknowledge this insult. This guy is the epitome of what we now say ‘fuckboy’. He is not interested in dating her, being nice to her, getting to know her, only using her for his own pleasure. And women find this… sexy? If a boy texted one of my friends saying he wasn’t interested in her for her sunny personality, only her vagina, we’d both laugh and cast him off with all the other fuckboys. But I guess it’s different if it’s a sadistic famous millionaire (A GREAT message for young girls, by the way).

Christian gives Ana a new laptop, expensive books, and even a car (though it’s crucial to point out that without asking her, he got one of his henchmen to sell her old one. See why I have a problem with this?)So basically, it’s a sugar-daddy/ escort situation, but it’s okay because he’s hot.
The main redeeming factor is Anastasia finally leaves Christian, and it seems apparent that she is standing up for herself, not allowing him to hurt her, buy her or own her- a point that now seems redundant considering there’s a second film- but we’ll get to that later.

Now maybe I am reading to much into it. And whilst I don’t want to come off too feminist-lefty-liberal, I honestly do see some worrying displays of abuse in the film. I get the whole dominant-submissive sexual thing, but when it surpasses the bedroom, and takes over the couples life, surely that becomes a problem? If Christian wants to dominant Ana in the bedroom, and she consents, then its all fun and games. But it goes past this, to him controlling what she eats, what she drinks, her friends, when she sees her family, what car she drives, where she lives. So what do you guys think? Is it a disgusting portrayal of an abusive relationship, condoning dominance in young couples? (It’s key to remember this that some young audiences, will watch this and think this is how functional relationships work because majority of teenage audiences are young, dumb, and full of cum.)
Or is it a harmless film that plays around with sexual stereotypes? What do you guys think? Even if you haven’t watched it and have stuck this far, what reading do you get from it? I’d be fascinated to know what others think of this film, as it seems weird for me to bring it up to my friends after years of it being released (and I’m almost ashamed to admit watching it). Let me know what you guys think. Peace Out.

First Impressions

I’m pretty sure many people have heard the saying ‘first impressions count’. I was thinking about this statement today and I was wondering the truth in it.

Firstly, lets think about places. When you first enter a house, or a pub, you are overwhelmed by trying to take everything in. The first day I moved into my flat at university, I walked in with my parents. I noticed three doors, one of which was extremely heavy and used all of the strength in my toothpick like arms to open. I noticed one of my future flatmates unpacking all of her stuff and after introductions, I finally entered Room 8 of my flat. It was a small room, a blank canvas. There was a bright blue carpet and plain white walls and a pin board with nothing on it. Over time, I have hovered said carpet many times, I have pinned up pictures and maps and tickets on my pin board and decorated my room, making it personal. I have got used to the door after drunken nights out stumbling home, or outside smoking. I later realised, six months down the line, that the flat I lived in looked completely different to when I first saw it that day many months ago. Everything of course has remained the same, but instead of looking at it with inexperienced eyes of a fresher, excited to move in, I now see the place where I leave- the time I dropped my soup in the corridor, the time in the kitchen where I’ve done work. And I realised- my first impression of the flat had completely changed and adapted to what I am now used to.

The same goes for people. I have met people that I liked on first introductions, only to later find out that actually, that girl is a manipulative, backstabbing bitch, or that guy is an offensive pig. I’ve met people that for some reason, I’ve disliked, only to realise later on that they are actually very decent people, and I have become friends with them. Which brings me to another saying- don’t judge a book by it’s cover.

In life, you will meet a range of people- nice people, funny, horrible, bullying, kind, all sorts. But this takes time to find out what people are. You aren’t going to meet someone and they will introduce themselves saying “Hi, I’m Carly. I’m going to bitch about you all of the time and steal your boyfriend because your friendship means noting to me” and you aren’t going to hear the guy you don’t like saying “I’m really nice, and I’ll be here for you even thought you don’t like me” because it’s not what people do. First appearances are misleading. It takes time to know another human being. So, whenever you meet a new person, remember that you would not liked to be judged on the first few words that you say, but rather your actions over time. We’re so quick as humans to jump in straight away to conclusions but I plead, take your time. human beings and complex machines. you need to decode everyone in individual ways. And you never know, if you take the effort to truly understand and analyse someone, you can make a true friend for life.

Peace out guys.

TOP DATE IDEAS

Date Ideas

Whether you’re desperately trying to think of a first day to impress a crush, or if you just want an exciting change to spend time with your loved one, there are many different ideas out there! I’ve compiled a list of just a few things I think would be good as dates.

  1. The ‘Night in’. One of the most popular date ideas due to the lack of effort and planning. Invite the significant other over to eat pizza and watch films. However, go that extra mile by doing simple things such as cleaning your room. There’s nothing nicer than walking into my boyfriends bedroom to find freshly washed sheets, a hovered floor and a few candles or fairy-light just making it extra romantic.
  2. The meal and movie. I believe I have come up with the perfect solution to this very common first date. Eating a meal with someone you don’t know for a first date can be unbelievably awkward. You’re trying to enjoy your meal whilst talking or sitting in uncomfortable silence trying to think of what to say. However, if you just go to a movie, there’s not much time for talking and it doesn’t really seem like a date. However, if you combine the two, you can talk about the film during dinner if you can’t think of any other questions and use that as a basis for getting to know the other person.
  3. Drinks. Ah, alcohol. The best friend and worst enemy of dating. There is a thin line between a couple of drinks to relax you and lower your inhibitions, and being paralytic on the floor with the guy/girl embarrassed calling for help. I always find pubs an extremely social place to hang out, and sometimes it’s nice to have a bit of dutch courage. However, learn from my mistakes. I was so nervous about going back to my boyfriends house, that I ended up drinking so much that he had to carry me back to his whilst I was singing, yelling, dancing (all very badly). He then proceeded to check on me several times whilst I was bent over the toilet puking my guts up, eyes closed, blindly kicking thin air to try and get him out of the bathroom. Great.
  4. A party. Could be yours, theirs, or a friends. I’d be wary of this, because some people don’t count parties as proper dates. There’s a lot of people around and loud music and lots of drinking, but if you’re scared of being completely alone with them if it might be awkward, then this could be the date for you. You could go together or leave together for extra time with them, or just spend time with them there. It gives you a chance to meet their friends and vice versa. And, parties are the number one place where if you want to get a little ation, it’s going to happen. The hazy, smokey air filled with teenage hormones, a little bit of alcohol in your system and an empty room with just the buzz of speakers from downstairs causes a lot of smooching that may not happen if you’re sitting in a restaurant or public place. Make sure you/they are not too drunk and if it’s one of the first dates, make sure you don’t regret it if you sleep together, killing the relationship before it begins and probably getting a reputation.
  5. Shopping! ENTER WITH CAUTION. Shopping will most likely not be pleasant for guys. And, you don’t want to appear a stingy bastard but you don’t want to blow your entire savings in one day. I’d recommend a little market or somewhere like the lanes in Brighton- there’s a lot of cheap stuff. You could go in bookstores, discussing your favourites, and try secretly to buy her something she admired and produce it later. You could go to a nice coffee shop and people watch, or mess about trying on hats/scarves etc. Girls love being spoiled, and remember you don’t want to always give her cheap things, but thoughtful gifts are the best. Just make sure if you do this, she ain’t a golddigger.
  6. The ‘cooking’ date. So, maybe you don’t want to go to a restaurant? Maybe you want to stay in but still do something fun? Cooking is an extremely good way to get close to the other person. You have to work as a team to produce something delicious or hilarious. If it’s December, a gingerbread house would be lovely. The middle of summer, making cocktails and a simple dinner would suffice. Cooking gives you a chance to play around, to laugh when he’s put too much water in the mix or to smear a dusting of flour on her nose. If you’re getting to know each other it’s very relaxed and fun and if you’re a couple it’s the same, and you get extra bonding time. You could even make it a regular thing, swapping houses and recipes each time.
  7. London/Major city. Living half an hour away from London, a very fun date is to just go out and explore. You can go on a bar crawl, or go to the embankment, see all the different acts and costumes of the workers. You can go see Big ben, or the London Eyes or even go on it! London/ major cities are fun, bustling places that will create a really happy environment for the couple of you to be in. I went on a date there starting off with drinks, burritos from a little stall then sitting in the park reading to each other. It was a extremely nice day.
  8. Picnic. Something so simple yet elegant. And there’s several way to make an ordinary picnic special. Guys, listen up. Firstly, pick a day that’s not raining. Even if its cold, you can bundle up in coats, but if it’s raining, just no. It won’t be like a romantic film, it will be miserable and muddy. First, pick the place. Try and get a nice park that’s not filled with a bunch of chavs drinking lambrini and smoking weed, it really ruins the effect. Lay out a blanket so she doesn’t ruin her outfit that I’m sure she will have spent hours picking out. You get extra points if you know some of her favourite foods (easy to ask in normal conversations) because she will be so delighted you remembered. Get a selection of little sweet treats, cute sandwiches and sweets, and beverages for both of you. From little cartons of orange juice to a nice bottle of wine, picnics are perfect. You will get extra, extra, extra brownie points if you do it at sunset and have fairy lights(a recurring item that girls love) wrapped round a tree and soft, romantic music playing.
  1. The Romantic scenery. My boyfriend and I decided to go to Seaford, which is a lovely little place filled with cliffs overlooking the sea and beautiful beaches. We had quite a hike to get up there so it’s more of a couples date rather than a first date (you don’t want to see each other panting, sweating and red outside of the bedroom in natural light- it’s not pretty). As we’re both smokers, it was a little hard but let me tell you, it was worth it. Even in December, the sea was a really calming place to be with someone you love, and sitting on a cliff surrounded by nature is indescribably, really. It’s really an unforgettable date, so if it is a first date and you really want to impress her, I’d suggest something outside that looks stunning. Even a hill that has a beautiful sunset will do. Just make sure it’s not too remote for a first date or she may think you’re going to kill her.

Anyway, that’s nine ideas of different dates. Let me know your favourites, your experiences or even a few more ideas, I’m happy to hear them! Good luck dating! x

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