Monday, August 25, 2014

Thus Begins Chapter 94, or Something Like That...

I use this space for a lot of things. Sometimes it’s my silly thoughts on movies. Sometimes I just feel like writing something funky about James Franco and Nicolas Cage fighting over the soul of the world. And sometimes, I look back and try to figure out just how I got to this point in my life. 

Today marks my first day as an English Graduate Student. It’s not my first day as a graduate student. No, I did that for a while for Education, as I’ve mentioned many times before. In fact, this blog was supposed to chronicle my adventures in becoming an English Teacher, back before I realized I could get some laughs writing about movies and James Franco and Nicolas Cage fighting over the soul of he world. 

I guess this post is going to be a little more reflective than what I normally do. That being said, if you’re more into James Franco and Nicolas Cage fighting over the soul of the world type posts, I promise they won’t ALL be this reflective from here on out. But it’s what I need today. And I am the writer of Bad Shakespeare, the Blog. 

Last Saturday was an anniversary for me. It’s the anniversary of when things really started to change. Saturday marked one year since my contract was up with my previous office… which meant it’s now been one year since I put on a tie every day and went into an office and did office worker things: sitting at a computer, answering phones, and finding new and creative ways to pass the time by hiding pictures of Paula Deen in one person’s desk, or suran wrapping another person’s desk and putting up a biohazard sign over it. Good times. I’ll also have to tell you about the hand sanitizer at one point. That was one of my prouder moments.

Everything has changed so much since then. I had quit that job previously, then re-taken a position to hold me over up until I started my internship. Because of the pesky Praxis 2, which I also railed against during this time, I didn’t start it until January, but my contract was up in August, so there wasn’t much they could do. The people i worked for were already nice enough to not only hire me back, but extend my work an extra few months because they were that awesome. 

So yeah, no typical office job… I actually found another job that doing something I absolutely love part time. Also, I moved from a big house to a smaller apartment in a location I like. I decided I didn’t want to teach high school and moved on to English abruptly. Oh, and I found a pretty cool set of Supernatural Action figures, so I got that going for me too. Lil’ Cas is pretty awesome.

It’s just odd to think how much has changed. By this point I thought I’d be readying my own classroom, making lesson plans, getting tests ready, and welcoming a new crop of students. Instead, I’m putting on a swimsuit almost daily. I’m not worrying about the lawn. My ties have been sitting in a garbage bag on the bottom of my closet for the past few months because i haven’t needed them, except rare occasions where I have interviewed for the random job that looked interesting, but I apparently didn’t wow them. I’m also sitting waiting to take more Graduate Level classes, still unsure what to expect.

I’ve mentioned before that Secondary Education is more guided. Some of it is State Mandated, some of it is school mandated because it was for a Masters Degree. And with English, I can take a wide variety of classes as long as i take the two main classes. But sometimes I wonder if I’m smart enough, you know? Like maybe they made some kind of cosmic mistake letting me in. Maybe somewhere there’s a guy with a similar name to mine that got a rejection letter meant for me. It’s jut that little bit of fear that always creeps into your head once you get the reading list and you wonder if you’re going to understand all of it. 

Of course, Doc Sparky Sweets covered one of the books over at Thug Notes, so I’ll rely heavily on that for a little bit. 

I’ll get over it. It’s called an irrational fear, that being that it’s not a rational and can’t be wished away by saying “I’m smart and my name is unique enough that they couldn’t have messed it up completely.”It’s just tough for those first few days.

Some of it is all of the change in general hitting me in the face like so many fish at a Seattle Market. It’s just been a lot to process. 

Again, this is all reflection. I’m not trying to make any sense of it, just trying to process it. I’m not even sure where I’m going with all of this right now. I’m interested to see how the semester goes from this point on. Of course, I’ll keep you updated in between movie reviews and stories about James Franco and Nicolas Cage fighting for the soul of the world. 

But… let’s start my life. Chapter 94, or whatever we’re up to…

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Save Our Morgan Freeman

When I first heard about Kickstarter, I wondered how long it was before someone used it for evil. Well, not pure evil, but getting $40,000 to make a potato salad borderlines on somewhat evil. And the slow news days that followed that allowed us all to focus on the fact that some dude just got $40,000 for a mediocre potato salad is just wrong. For that much, I’d expect it to be made from the very finest potatoes, grown in a special field in Ireland that uses only ground up Leprechauns as fertilizer. Or something like that.

Kickstarter isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s great for exposure, if nothing else. I was quite happy when the makers of Veronica Mars decided that it was time to make a Veronica Mars movie. They were able to use it to bring the adventures of a no-longer teenage detective to the big screen. And I hope they do something like it again. It was also used to bring some completely unnecessary CGI to Zach Braff’s latest movie, which was pretty good even without the scenes of his imaginary beep-booping robot sidekick. But I digress.

(Quick note: Yes, I know we’re all supposed to hate Zach Braff despite the fact that we loved his first movie, then we hated it because it became to popular. I missed that particular memo.)

The bottom line is, Kickstarter has been used for a lot. Some of it Veronica Mars good, some of it non-Leprechaun fertilized potato bad. But the thing is, for all the movie theater seats that need to be put in, comic books that are being done, and cool inventions that may or may not be made, I feel that there’s one main area that Kickstarter is ignoring.

Mostly, preserving our Morgan Freeman.

For you see, gentle folks of Bad Shakespeare, last weeks tragic passing of Robin Williams reminded me that our national treasures are only going to last so long. The loss of Robin Williams was tragic… and he had four movies in the pipeline. That means there will still be the ability to see Mr. Williams in four more movie roles. That’s fantastic. HIs comedy will live on. But his death was a wake up call that we must do what we can to preserve our national treasures.

The problem is, we still only have one Morgan Freeman. He is a true national treasure. A national treasure worthy of being stolen by Nicolas Cage attempting to solve something. But can you imagine a world in which something important needs to be explained… but it’s not by Morgan Freeman?

Think about it. In the future, documentaries will be made, and they’ll be forced to rely on the current crop of actors. Can you imagine the history of the hover car being narrated by a Seth Rogen or a James Franco? Both wonderful actors in their own right, but are they Freeman-worthy? No.

Can you imagine further still, when we eventually start exploring the galaxy and learn about space penguins residing on some ice asteroid in the far reaches of space and we learn about the great space penguin war? Who will narrate that documentary? North West? Some other celebrity’s child with an even sillier name.

Which is where Kickstarter comes in. We need to set up a Kickstarter to raise money to get Morgan Freeman to read every word in the dictionary to save for prosperity. This way, the plight of the Martians as they struggle for freedom against their oppressors from Planet X will have a properly narrated documentary.

Now this won’t be easy. And we’ll have to invent a few new words, just in case. Remember, everyone, it was 7 short years ago that “iPhone” became an acceptable word. And I’m still not sure what an Iggy Azalea is, but we’ll have to account for things like that as well.

My proposal is simple: for $10 dollars, we’ll send you a picture of Morgan Freeman with your name on it, so you can envision him saying your name. 

For a mere $50 dollars… the price of a nice meal… we’ll send you a picture of Morgan Freeman with him having written your name on the picture. Then you’ll at least know that his name was temporarily thought about, and possibly confirmed by Morgan Freeman.

For $100 dollars, you can get a picture with his name, and a recording of Morgan Freeman saying your name.

When you reach the $500 dollar level, Morgan Freeman will record your name in the outgoing message of your voicemail. Name only. For $1000, he will record the entire thing.

At $10,000, Morgan Freeman will personally narrate something you’re doing doing the day. Something mundane. Think about how great it would be to wash the dishes, the whole time Morgan Freeman describes what you’re doing.

If you can donate $100,000, we’ll be able to hire Patrick Stewart to get into a debate with Morgan Freeman about something, just for you. Think about that argument.

Please, everyone… don’t think about yourselves. Think about your children. We have to preserve our precious resources, not just for us, but for future generations. Do you really want your child to learn about the workings of Time Travel through a documentary NOT recorded by Morgan Freeman? Think about it. That’s not a future I want to put generations through. Dig Deep.

**Please note, this isn’t real, and Bad Shakespeare has no affiliation with Patrick Stewart, Morgan Freeman, James Franco, or Seth Rogen. However, they all seem like cool guys who would be in on the joke if the people who they have hired to Google for them find this page. Don’t actually send money, unless you really, really want to. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

My Brief Experience as Aquaman

Aquaman was always had one of the sillier superpowers. you know, back before they decided to reboot him. He became king of the Ocean. Then he was able to do more than just talk to fish. Then they decided to cut off his hand and replaced it with a hook, which made sense on his character more than any other. I mean, can you imagine Superman with a hook? He had a mullet for a while, and some blue electric powers, but hook? Or Batman with a hook? He’d make it all bat shaped, and I’m not sure that it would really make a lot of sense.

I’m getting off topic here. This is about Aquaman. Or, about how I briefly tried to recapture some of my youth, and managed to show that I’m getting old.

As I’ve mentioned on this blog, I’ve undergone a bit of a year of epiphanies. Firstly, I realized what a lot of people had been telling me since day one of my experience in learning to be a teacher, which was “Hey… you probably shouldn’t be a teacher.” I wish I could have deciphered what they were saying.

Then, I suddenly realized after not holding down an office job for a year (as of this Saturday, actually) that I’m not really built for working in an office. It works for some people, and if it’s something you enjoy, then more power to you. I was never really able to translate my love of data entry into a viable career. I may one day.

So I’ve been getting by with the occasional odd job. Sadly, not of the hat throwing, kill James Bond variety (kids, ask your parents) but a little something there, and a little something there. Then I realized that I was a lifeguard for 6 years through most of High School and College, so why not try that again? It was an indoor pool, so it provides year round employment. What could possibly go wrong?

Spoiler: I’m currently writing this with a severe knee injury, waiting to talk to an orthopedic surgeon. 

Of course, with this great idea I didn’t really think about the logistics of it all. I mean, for starters, I’m a little bit older than I once was. Lifeguarding is a great job, and it’s one that can help work off the years of sitting at a desk, typing into a little glowing box while donuts and candy were readily available for my consumption. 

I didn’t really think at the time that the job is held by teenagers, and when I got the job, I’d have to be in a class with teenagers, and keep up with them physically.

Here’s where the appreciation for the powers of Aquaman. He does everything regular superheroes do, but underwater. (And occasionally one handed. But his hand got better.Don’t ask. Comic books.)

The first day of class was interesting. It’s amazing just how much I managed to retain from my days of being a Lifeguard the first time. I guess memorizing things for six years is going to stick with you a little bit. And things haven’t changed that much. Lifeguarding is pretty much that… guarding lives. And watching the water. And yelling at kids for not running. That’s a big one. Don’t run. We’ll come to get you.

I even managed to survive the dreaded water portion. Not that I thought I wouldn’t, but there’s a point when the class instructors did plan on everyone getting by on the fact that they were all teenagers, and able to swim for long periods of time without needing much of a break. It was around then that I started to feel my age. Not really old, just that a life of data entry hadn’t really moved me forward in my athletic endeavors so much as moved me backwards. A lot. 

It was the second day that gravity struck. I was helping to bring someone out of the pool using a backboard. For those of you who don’t know, a backboard is a fancy piece of equipment that hasn’t really been updated since the 1980’s because it has the advantage of being a large piece of wood with velcro on it. It’s also rather heavy because it needs to sink in the water to get under people so they can be strapped to it, or in a pinch, lifted from the water.

It was those drills that we were practicing at the time. We were lifting people out of the pool using the backboard, two at a time. 

Now, I’ve thrown in here a few times that I’m fully aware that I’m older and out of shape. But i’m fairly strong. I’m just lazy, and I need to harness that power. So I can lift a majority of these kids out of the pool myself, and I can find things like a backboard to get in the way of this. The fact that a real person was on the backboard also means tat I have to temper that strength, and say, rather than lifting them as high as I can, I have to ensure that I was lifting them at a level that if, say, the two inexperienced people holding the backboard should happen to drop them, it wouldn’t hurt.

It was during this that I attempted to lift the backboard. Now, if you remember, I pointed out earlier not to run on the pool deck. You see, the pool deck, while nice, hard, concrete, can get slippery when wet. So, if you’re crouching on the deck, trying to hold up someone on a backboard while simultaneously ensuring you don’t lift them too far while someone else is pushing that backboard from the other end, and that deck is slippery…

…sometimes you slip, cracking your knee as hard as possible, with not just your weight on it, but a backboard and a 16 year old human at the same time.

I don’t remember this, but the pop was so loud they stopped the class right then and there.

To make things even more fascinating for me, the training was being conducted at the facility in which I had been hired. Which mean that lifeguard, now putting on gloves and filling out an incident report, was going to be my new co-worker. 

So what does my future hold as Aquaman, defender of the seas? I’m not sure just yet. I have another appointment for people to take a look at my knee. The swelling is down, but sadly, I still can’t put too much weight on it… thankfully just my own and not anything extra… without feeling pain. Which has been great for me trying to catch up on the newest seasons of House they just put on on Netflix, but doesn’t do much for my future as an Aquaman. 

I’ll have to keep you posted.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

So You've Managed to Survive A Viral Apocalypse

There’s been an outbreak of the Ebola Virus in Africa. As a result, volunteers from all over the world have headed over in order to help contain it. And because we are a rational society, we are touting these people as heroes, and working to help them recover if they’ve come down with the disease.

Naw, I’m just messing with you. Naturally reactionaries who are unable to do five minutes of research despite the fact that science has put a device in your pocket that can literally find you the answer to just about anything in your pocket, have decided to freak out. Yes, they’re basically saying that the brave volunteers should be left to die for fear that they might get a disease that’s not spread through the air. 

Keep in mind, I’m not saying that it shouldn’t be taken seriously. What I’m saying is that people who are sending death threats to the hospitals treating the doctors that selflessly took the time to travel to West Africa to save lives, one of whom gave up medication to help someone else, well, maybe you’re some of the worst people on earth.

But what do I know. I mostly write a comedy/movie/English Blog. What is this blog about anymore?

No, this is very serious for the people of West Africa, which doesn’t have things like a large building in Atlanta called “The Center for Disease Control” that is specifically designed for the containment and study of diseases. Like Ebola. It’s very serious for the people of West Africa, who don’t have access to the medical care that we have here in the United States. Or people willing to go over and do something about it, rather than sitting at home, watching the news, and vilifying the people that wish to help. 

In any event, as people freak out over a disease that’s so deadly it require the joint forces of Dustin Hoffman and Cuba Gooding Jr to take it down, that got me thinking… there’s a ton of literature on the subject of how to survive a viral apocalypse like the one that’s happening only in the minds of crazy people who care only for themselves. And I, being the caring blogger that I am, have decided to compile them all here for your reading enjoyment. So, make sure you print this out so you can read it while roasting that can of beans on one of the many car fires that have been set by panicking people once this Ebola apocalypse doesn’t come.

-It’s very important to take careful note of what type of viral apocalypse is upon us. Is it one of those rage virus deals that turns people into something that are zombies but not quite? Because if that’s the case you’re dealing with something completely different, and you’ll have to stock up on a completely different set of equipment. Also, hanging out with the evil military guys probably isn’t a good idea. Go find the good ones. You can tell the difference because the good ones probably have helicopters. Probably.

-Go read The Stand. I feel that’s a pretty good representation of what should happen in the event of a massive global pandemic that will kill us all. The short version is to set off a nuclear bomb in Las Vegas that may or may not be God. That should solve everything.

-Graffiti is important. But remember, you need to say something clever, not just “We’re all gonna die.” Make sure it’s funny, but ominous enough that anyone walking through your town knows that you have been hit with a virus the same as everyone else. 

-If you get infected, just admit it. It’s not a cold. It’s not allergies. You caught the evil death virus that’s ravaging the countryside. Don’t fool yourself. In the books, you’re always the first person to go. 

-Also, some of you may be clinging to your past life with the tattered remains of your old clothes. Don’t. Pants have always been useless. Now you can admit it.

-The one thing that always takes down the remnants of civilizations (except for talking apes): infighting. Remember, you’ve just survived against all odds. Does it really matter that one person wants city hall to be painted blue? That’s how the Civil War Started. I think. I don’t know history very well.

That’s not a lot, but I think it about sums up what you need to do. Since there are no zombies or fungus monsters after you (in an ideal situation, anyway) you should be ok to survive on pretty much what is left over. The plus side, you probably won't have access to WebMD, which will narrow all your symptoms down to ebola and cancer.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Nanu Nanu

“If Heaven exists, it’d be nice to know that there is laughter. That’d be a good thing. Just to hear God go ‘Two Jews walking to a bar…’” 

                                      -Robin Williams

The world is a little bit darker today. We’ve lost not just one of the greatest comedic minds that has ever come across the planet, but also one of the most creative, one of the most passionate, and one of the most committed to entertaining us. Sadly, Robin Williams is now gone. Taking his own life.

You all know I love not just practical jokers, but jokers that think outside the box a little bit. Benjamin Franklin with this Titan Leeds incident, Andy Kaufman in just about anything he does. One of my favorite stories about Robin Williams is like this, actually, and involves Andy Kaufman. Back in “the day” as the kids no longer say, Andy Kaufman gave his performance at Carnegie Hall. He told the audience that his grandmother was there, and wanted to see him perform. Lo and behold, she showed up, on stage! After a little while, his Grandmother stood up, took off her wig… and was actually Robin Williams. 

Robin Williams is going to be remembered for a lot of things. Many of his movies helped pave my current obsession with movies in general. He had a gift. He could slip into the character of an adult (then childlike) Peter Pan in Hook. He was willing to make fun of his kid-friendly image, like in Death to Smoochy. (one of the most underrated movies of all time.) He could make you laugh like in a billion movies he touched. I’ll throw one out there: The Birdcage. (And in that, he was the straight man. So to speak. Hey, he would have LOVED that joke.) He got us all pumped up in Good Morning Vietnam. And this multi-billion dollar, award winning comedian didn’t have to set foot of American soil to do a damn thing, he still performed in USO shows, going to Iraq and performing for the troops… because he wanted to. Not because he had to. I have nothing but respect for this man.

Let’s not also forget that this man took risks with his career. At the height of his comedy, he was in the extremely dramatic World According to Garp. And while they’re running around as super spies and Batman now, a young Matt Damon and Ben Affleck only had a script and a dream when Robin Williams lent his years and elder statesmanship to Good Will Hunting. Sure, it didn’t always work. Popeye isn’t the masterpiece we wanted it to be, but TRY to imagine someone else doing that role. And Patch Adams… well, the less said about Patch Adams the better. Very decisive movie. Either you love it, or you hate it. We here at Bad Shakespeare take no official opinion on the subject of Patch Adams

There’s also Dead Poet’s Society. I feel this has become the go-to for inspirational quotes for him. I agree, it is. When I was making the changes in my life, the scene where he jumps on the desk and uses it as a chance to see the world from a different perspective as well as the “What’s your Verse” scene are some of the most inspirational moments ever put on film. They’re important. 

However, underneath all the years of wacky characters, energy that makes toddlers look lethargic, and years of laughter, there was a very tortured man. He suffered from depression, a cage so lonely, so severe, it’s difficult to fully understand what was going through his mind. I know he sought help, and I wish he sought more. That’s easy to say now, but to someone who has reached the end, someone who is so full of despair that death is the only way out… it’s difficult. I can hope that his death, like the deaths of so many of history’s greatest people, can stand out as some kind of lesson. You don’t have to go through it alone. There is help. And if you see someone who has changed, please, please, please, talk to them. 

But that was just one part of this man. While I’m glad that his death has gotten people thinking about depression and suicide in ways that they can help, I firmly believe he would have wished for us all to remember the laughter and joy he brought into our lives. Even the “bad” Robin Williams movies featured him trying in some way to capture that childlike joy that comes with every day. 

Thank you, Robin Williams, for giving us laughter. Thank you for giving us joy. I hope now, you are finally at peace. But mostly, I hope that you got one really good joke from God. 

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Read What You Want

I’m a big advocate for the world of books. I think reading is important. Extremely important. Reading opens up brand new worlds. It forces you to rely on your imagination rather than have things spoon fed to you. It can open your mind, let you look into new points of view. And all the CGI in the world is no match for your imagination when it comes down to it.

And, I’ve always defended people’s right to read. I love Young Adult Novels, so when a writer decided that Young Adult Novels were beneath her and she strung together a few sentences letting me know that I’m an idiot for reading them, I defended myself and others who I know love Young Adult Novels. Every year for banned books week, I try to raise awareness about banning books. It’s wrong. The banning of ideas is never a good idea. The Klingons knew it best: 

“Have you ever fought an idea, Picard? It has no weapon to destroy, no body to kill.”

That was our buddy Gowron, leader of the Klingons talking. (He was later killed. Turns out, he did have a body to kill.)

I can even remember way back in the “day” when a little book was burning up the reading lists. It was turning a new generation back into readers, and it was enticing old ones. And a lot of elites thought that this book shouldn’t be read, because it was for kids… FOR KIDS. Of course, it then became 8 movies and a theme park. And I would say the world is a better place learning the adventures of Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and the true hero of the book series, Ron Weasley. 

So what’s this preamble for? I’ve talked about Ron. I’ve talked about banned books. And you all know that I’ve been an advocate for reading. Even the bad stuff, even if it’s to learn why you hate it. 

Well, a few weeks ago a little trailer showed up for a movie called 50 Shades of Grey. Yes, I talked about this during banned books week, and whether it should be a banned book. (I don’t think it should be, even with the subject matter. It should be available to whomever, and if you’re worried about your kid reading it, you could try, I don’t know… parenting to your kid rather than keeping everyone from reading it.) But the trailer itself initiated talk about the book, and more specifically, should people read it. 

For the three of you who don’t know, or for those who wish to pretend not to know, 50 Shades of Grey is an erotic novel about a young college student named Anastasia Steele and a rich dude named Christian Grey, and their deepening relationship that happens to involve sex that some people like to pretend that other people don’t actually have. (kinky stuff. I’ll let you look it up.)

The release of the trailer sparked an interesting conversation amongst me and my friends. Particularly, a lot of my previous posts: It got people to read, right? People are reading for all the reasons you just mentioned. Have you actually read the book to know what people dislike about it? Or are you going off what people said and mocking them because of what the book is about.

So really, if I’m an advocate for reading, should I single out a book about a naughty relationship because it happens to be about a naughty relationship based on what the author originally wanted to see happen among several of the characters of Twilight when I have no problem saying everyone should read a book about a boy wizard who saves the world from an evil wizard.

And… they got me. If this book gets people to read, the people should read it. I’m not saying it’s everyone’s silk tie, but my friends are right… if people want to read this, and it gets them back into reading, it’s not something we should spend a lot of time mocking, as many people have. There’s really no difference people the people who decide to pick up 50 Shades of Grey, and when I decide to pick up the latest Mortal Instruments… we’re both reading something we WANT to read. Who’s to judge? It gets our imaginations going. It encourages us to think for a little bit. And it takes us to a different world we may initially not want to visit in real life. (Although if I could have magic powers and fight vampires, I’d totally do that.)

Yes, I get that it’s based on Twilight fan fiction. But who among us hasn’t, in their heads, “written” something about a book we read, or a movie we’ve seen. How many novels about Star Trek, Star Wars, or Warhammer are written a year? And they don’t take place in anywhere but the writer’s mind? All fiction is in some way, fan fiction. This one just got a boost from starting it off by using established characters. Who has really never read a novel that did that? I like superhero novels, you know how many different versions of Superman I’ve read about in the past year? One of my favorite comics is simply the tagline, “What if Batman was the Joker?” It’s not sanctioned by DC Comics, and the dude has a movie deal.  So, the fan fiction thing is pretty popular.

But… WHAT ABOUT THE SEX!?! WHAT ABOUT THE SEX!? IT’S NON-TRADITIONAL?!? Of course, if you are worried about sex and reading this on the internet, I’m afraid I have some bad news for you. Also, a lot of other books contain sex. They also contain violence. Harry Potter’s ending features a war fought primarily with school children. (A lot of people gloss over that while reading about Ron’s heroics.) But we don’t have a problem holding that up as an example of great fiction. The issue really is about how people feel about it, and the thing is that everyone needs to relax. Everyone has sex. Maybe not this kind. But it’s working for some people.

And yes, what about the children. I’m going to let you all in on a story. When I was younger, I lived in Korea. We got an American station. That’s AN American station. Just the one. There was a show on it that I wanted to watch called Married with Children, because it was a big hit with my friends back home, and all over the place. My parents didn’t want me watching it. So, they forbid me from doing it, despite my pleading. They then ensured that I was otherwise occupied (reading… going outside… etc.) while it was on. What they didn’t do was overly mock it, then request everyone ban it. My point being, is if this book really offends your moral sensibilities, don’t read it. It’s that simple. If you don’t want your kids reading it, don't allow them to read it.

Overall, 50 Shades of Grey won’t go down as one of my favorite books. I felt the relationship was a little more abusive than people like to admit, and the main character didn’t have much of a personality. It wasn’t the worst book I read. It was better than another book I read about death row inmates injected with a serum that turned them all into mind controlling vampires. (How could that have gone wrong???) But was supposedly one of the best books of the year! (The sequel undid everything the first book established. How… how do you say that’s better?) 

But at the end of the day it’s a book, and it’s getting people to read. So, rather than judging other people’s reading choices, let’s focus on what makes us happy to read. Then we’ll all be happy.