I finished reading the book Fifty Shades of Grey the following day I posted my previous blog entry. Rather than going back and editing the posting, I decided to do a part II posting.
- In my previous blog entry, I also emphasized much more on Lady Grey than on Fifty Shades of Grey (partially because I didn’t finish reading the book yet at that point).
- Oh, and I also wore one of the grey dresses I said I would have worn to the interview with Christian Grey if I were Anastasia Steele to one of Suzanne Agasi’s fabulous charity fashion events in San Francisco, coincidentally:
Photographed with Suzanne Agasi (above) – I didn’t get my makeup done but my hair was curled there!
Photographed with Muse Meileena (above right) and fellow muse Lauren (above center).
The yellow accessories may be recognizable from another previous entry I wrote back a few months ago on scallop fashion.
Discussing romance with some of the young ladies at the event, I thought back to the book I just finished reading (though I haven’t read the remaining two books of the trilogy) and my own experience with romance back when I was Anastasia Steele’s age.
Given that Anastasia was a virgin when she met Christian, I do think her first time was a bit glamorized compared to what would seem to be closer to reality for most women (understandably, as the novel is supposed to be a fantasy of what we would hope it would be like).
Referring back to previous blog entry that mentioned about Lady Grey, all these women desire to please a man. Though I had a brief “aww” (as in disappointment) moment when I finished the last page of the book, I then was glad to know that Anastasia made the difficult decision to stay away from the man she fell in love with because she realized that she was not able to meet that one final need he had and neither could he meet hers. Too many times you hear about the woman who sacrifices everything for someone at the cost of not making sure her needs are not met.
I also recalled the French term “Coquette” that I came across when I was reading the book “Savoir Flair” a few months ago prior to my Paris trip.
Coquette is the French female ideal (like the Japanese term “Yamato Nadeshiko”). It’s a woman who wishes to please by her appearance, her elegance and her manners. At first glance, that definition may seem anti-feminist and perhaps offensive to feminists. But to be a coquette also means genuinely enjoy being pleased by others just as much.
I do think the novel could easily be a fantasy novel for men as well, as there were sprinkles of stereotypical characteristics that are pined after by the male species ranging from having sex with a virgin to receiving oral pleasure from a woman who has no gag reflex.
Some men may scoff at the mention of Christian Grey being a billionaire (on top of being physically attractive), but the novel clearly illustrates that true love cannot be bought with monetary wealth. Regardless of his monetary wealth, it was his actions that demonstrated he truly cared that won Anastasia over, whether it was when he chose to bend all his normal rules for her or whenever he was present when she was in need of him to be there for her.
The book initially became popular amongst the demographic of middle-aged women. Some women who are more mature than Anastasia may feel as though her reactions were frustrating to read, yelling at Anastasia internally (or externally) for not being able to see past her insecurities that the man was clearly head over heels for her. This was probably why it was a good idea to have her best friends Kate be that character, telling it to her straight up. So to those women, I remind them that this was the first time Anastasia fell in love with a man (and the first time Christian truly fell in love with another woman) and the first love in your youth tends to reveal an embarrassingly emotional mess you can be.
Though regardless of age, any passionate love can become messy when things go south. Some choose to avoid such pain and suffering by living mundane lives that they find manageable (aka the route that lacks passion as well as pain that can come with it).
It doesn’t always have to end painfully (or end at all) but the notion that a perfect fairy tale romance will someday fall into your lap or come knocking on your door without resulting in some work to either get there or follow is unrealistic. Even though Cinderella received help in getting there, she CHOSE to risk going to the ball and took the opportunity and went with it when it presented itself. If she hadn’t gone to the ball, she wouldn’t have met Prince Charming. Much like how Anastasia wouldn’t have met Christian Grey had she not made the drive out to do the interview with him.
So to all those women who are becoming desperate as Valentine’s Day approaches – Don’t be [desperate]. And to all those women who curse at romance with resentment – romance is not your enemy so be ready to welcome it with open arms all the while keeping your eyes open.