Fifty Fever

March 10, 2012

Once again, my man “Fifty” is consuming my life. Everywhere I turn it’s all things “Fifty Shades of Grey.” Well, today I feel the need to reiterate my love and devotion to this trilogy in light of the recent media attention it has so deservedly and not-so deservedly received.

You know you’ve hit “it” when The New York Times makes you front page news.


Richard Perry/The New York Times “Fifty Shades of Grey,” by E L James, at Watchung Booksellers in Montclair, N.J.

My friend, fellow lifestyle blogger, and kindred spirit, Nikki Joel, was on the Dr. Drew Show this past Wednesday evening to discuss Fifty. She totally rocked it, looked amazing, and represented all the Fifty lovers right. So proud of her! (I’ll be writing about how we met and bonded in a future post. Please take a look at her fabulous blog Lifestyle Lemonaid.)

Nikki was part of a six person panel that was split between the advocates and non-advocates. Dr. Drew’s Wednesday show came off the heels of his controversial Today Show appearance that created a viral uproar. Fifty lovers have taken exception to Dr. Drew’s stance that the Fifty trilogy is depicting violence against women and sexual enslavement.

Here’s a clip from Nikki’s appearance on Dr. Drew:

Nothing could be further from the truth, and had Dr. Drew actually read the books he might have been able to speak about them from an enlightened and educated perspective. Thank G-d for women like Dr. Logan Levkoff and Nikki Joel who were able to stand-up for all of us that have experienced “Aha” life changing moments because of the Fifty books. Dr. Logan Levkoff is a renowned sexologist, relationship expert and author who eloquently countered Dr. Drew’s initial assertions on the Today Show, and then again in her Huffington Post article, Deconstructing Fifty Shades of Grey.

Here’s The Today Show Segment:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

I’ve read, watched and listened to all the media coverage. And, there is one thing that everyone keeps missing. The Fifty books are all about pleasing the woman, Anastasia Steele. Everything that is done to her, minus one little spanking episode, is all for her pleasure. So yes, there is the erotic kink aspect, which is fucking hot, but it’s the backdrop for a rather conventional love story. Emotional unavailable man meets beautiful soulful young woman who rocks his world, and little by little he becomes not-so emotionally unavailable. The tables get turned and where he once proclaimed to be the opposite of a “hearts and flowers” man, Christian Grey becomes the ultimate romantic lover. He is changed by HER.

Now, what my fellow thirty to fifty something women are responding to, is the sexual fantasy of having a gorgeous environmentally-conscious well-dressed billionaire who is both emotionally challenging and giving, possessive, a “sexpert,” who can, yes, dominate us in the bedroom. What’s wrong with that? And, if we want to play around with a little harmless BDSM that we’ve read about in books, so what. I know Mark has been walking around very happy and very relaxed since I started reading these books back in December.

The Fifty trilogy has been a source of sexual empowerment and female bonding for many women. With this outcome, how can anyone see the negative in them?

As wives and mothers, we are in control of everything. Do I need to go through the list??? Because I will. Dr. Drew and anyone else who doesn’t understand the allure of the Fifty books, and why they have captivated so many mid-life women, listen up.

We have carpools, homework, meals, dry cleaners, different supermarkets for different food items, costco, after-school activities, social calendars to organize for everyone, birthday parties, doctors appointments, haircuts, and constant teaching of manners and all other “life” moments our children (and husbands) will need in order to make it in the world.

We’re fucking exhausted and tired of constantly being in control, of everything. It’s emotionally and physically draining. So, yes, the idea of having someone “take-over” and be commanding in the bedroom is fantastically arousing. When I came across Fifty months ago, I was like, “Yes, yes, yes…Oh G-d, yes!” You can imagine a When Harry Met Sally deli moment if you’d like.

As many of you know, I have now read much of the contemporary romance and erotica genre, and there is a common theme that runs through these books. The woman always comes first. Pun totally intended. That is what gets us hot. Okay, the riding crop, silver balls, and getting tied-up does it too. But, knowing someone else is going to take care of you, please you and tell YOU what to do, so you don’t have to think for once, is a pretty amazing turn-on. Along with the dirty talk and very talented appendages, of course.

And, honestly, we’re not reading these books for the pulitzer-prize winning writing, so can everyone lay-off already.

However, I would like to state for the record, the literary use of e-mail exchange between Christian and Ana is one of the hottest things about these books. I wish my husband would flirt and titillate me like that. I know I’m not alone in this. Some of those e-mails depict the most incredible display of mental foreplay I’ve ever seen.

On a historical note, leave it to the Brits to stir up sexually charged literary controversy. It was back in 1960 when D.H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover was finally able to be published openly in the United Kingdom after Penguin Books won it’s battle against the Obscene Publications Act of 1959. Thank the Lord!

Back then, the prosecution was admonished for being “out of touch with the changing social norms.” Today, it would appear that times are changing again. And, when it comes to women and their literary prose, let’s just say, we know what we want. And, we want Fifty.

(Read my previous posts on Fifty; Read Me “Fifty” Times and Sex Crazed.)

What’s your position on Fifty?

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kim March 10, 2012 at 8:32 pm

Well said my friend!!!

2 Hilary March 13, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Love it…. Now I totally understand where the theme for your 35th birthday party came from… you were a secret Fifty lover even before you knew it existed!!!

3 Sharon March 14, 2012 at 1:55 pm

I’ve always had a wild streak! 😉

4 Beth March 15, 2012 at 9:14 pm

I’ve read lots about this series, but I have to say the thing that keeps me from reading (other than lack of time) is that the protagonist is in her early 20’s. I just get stuck there. I’m in my mid forties. I cannot relate to a character who is, in my eyes, a child. So, enlighten me, why is this so popular among middle-aged women? Is it that there is a dearth of erotic literature about women our age? Or something else?

5 Sharon March 15, 2012 at 10:05 pm

Hi Beth –
There is definitely not a lack of erotica/romance literature for women in their prime (I prefer that to middle-age). I hear what you’re saying, but the story transcends age. The main characters don’t “read” like children. And, just as the Twilight saga resonated with so many Moms, this trilogy has had the same effect. We’re all young at heart. We all want to be pursued. These stories bring us back to that time of all-consuming heart-wrenching first love, that is anything but immature. To top it all off, you have a sexy gorgeous billionaire who is possessive, jealous, a sex master and highly attentive. He’s also totally commanding and dominant in the bedroom. It’s a pretty hot fantasy. Read the books. You might also like some Bella Andre and Jill Shalvis.
Hope that helps

6 Brie April 17, 2012 at 4:53 pm

These books, as others with young women, are about bringing in the mind numbing frenzy a woman experiences with her first love. And hey, first loves happen when young, and at least for myself are incredibly intense. I don’t have to read about a woman my age, I like revisiting the mind of a woman who is experiencing love for the first time, it is nice to go back to the simpleness of it all that you lose with age and experience, and at least for myself, the cynicism. It is hard to find a single woman in her 30s that isn’t a cynic about love, life experience brings knowledge, but reading about first loves allows you to dispel that at least in fantasy.

7 Sharon May 5, 2012 at 6:10 pm

Brie –
So well said!! You only have one first and there’s nothing sweeter nor is there anything as magical. And, who doesn’t want to recapture a little bit of that magic again???


8 Beth March 15, 2012 at 11:06 pm

Yes, very interesting. Maybe worth a try. Thanks.

9 Carly Phillips April 9, 2012 at 7:35 pm

Hi. Amy Eisenberg gave me your name. 🙂

I thought I’d share my thoughts on the book with you here:

You can email me!

10 Sharon May 5, 2012 at 6:32 pm

I don’t know how I missed your comment here!!! I just read your post and posted it to my FB page and also submitted a comment.

You’re amazing! I love and I’m putting you on my blog roll.


11 Brie April 17, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Completely agree, I loved this series! I think you really hit a truism here with the turn on being the woman comes first. So many men view sex for their pleasure, and through it we women also get pleasure. The idea as a woman of sex being prioritized to get you off, and the man gets off on that, is totally hot. The handcuffs/blindfolds I think are really irrelevant to the turn on, though sexy I can’t deny, but its the obsession with bringing the woman pleasure that is the turn for most tat underlies the actual sexual acts.

12 Sharon May 5, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Just going over all my comments and seeing this now!! Sorry for my delayed response! That is my biggest thing about the genre. It’s all about the woman’s pleasure. Something I find totally erotic considering we live in a society which caters to the man’s needs first. Thank you for your insightful comment!!!
Ps- take a look at my recent post on my casting picks for Fifty

13 Susan G May 18, 2012 at 8:02 pm

If you are looking for some silver balls like used in the book they sell them on Amazon. Follow the link below and have fun 🙂

Leave a Comment