Saturday, 30 March 2013

Riding the bus like a baws

Riding the bus is never as awesome as when I've got this baby booming in my headphones. Actually, to tell the truth, everything is way more awesome when this shuffles past.

Friday, 29 March 2013

Books I found... rather disappointing. Pt.3.

Exit to Eden by Anne Rice under the pseudonym of Anne Rampling

   What’s the thing with pseudonyms if everyone knows who you are? On the other hand, to write this kind of BDSM erotica in the 80’s when you’re known for writing vampire novels you’ll need a pseudonym. Back then it might even have been a big secret as to who stood behind the name of Rampling.
   But I know what you’re thinking, Fifty Shades of Gray right? This is nothing of the sort because while Fifty Shades is nothing more than sexual violence, Exit to Eden is much of actual BDSM. “Consensual adults” are our key words here.

   The book starts out really interesting when we meet Lisa, the head dominatrix of an exclusive BDSM resort called The Club, and Elliot, a man whose interest in things that scare him has pointed him in the direction of wanting to become a sex slave at The Club. To his great joy, The Club chooses him for a contract and Lisa can’t pass on the chance to train him. There’s undeniable chemistry between the two that intensifies throughout the book and finally leads to love.
   Whereas I thought that since Lisa is the Dom and Elliot the Sub in this story, quite opposite the normative male-female relationship, the story might turn gender stereotypes on end and challenge them a bit. At first it did when Lisa had the upper hand... and the whip. On the island. And then I started to notice little things that made all the differences. As a very small but, to me, irritating example: Rice uses the words “cock” and “sex” to describe genitals. Cock is okay, but vagina/pussy isn’t? Dude! Female genitals aren’t any more hush-hush than male or any other gender’s. Further into the book as Lisa and Elliot’s feelings develop we notice how Lisa is described in continuously weaker terms and normatively feminine words. In short, she goes from fierce Dominatrix to emotional girl.
   I was disappointed.
   Of course, at the end Lisa breaks apart due to her newfound love and shows her true and weak self to the strong and manly Elliot. I’m not joking, there’s a scene where a panicking and crying Lisa locks herself up in a bathroom because of a cockroach and Elliot has to kick down the door (after having been a complete asshole to her) to get her out at all.
   After all, Exit to Eden turns out to be ruled by stereotypes. At the end Lisa herself confirms that she’s ashamed about her sexual desires and what she does at The Club – it embarrasses her to be a sexual creature with sexual desires , even more so because it’s got to do with BDSM. It’s heartbreaking for me to find a book that pose as non-normative but turns out to confirm the myth about the chaste woman and the man as driven by his sexual desires.

   In short, Exit to Eden is a nicely written book that starts off well but dives right down into a deep pothole of stereotypes and normative values. But I find a shimmer of light in my distress and that is that throughout the book you’ll never find a bad word about the BDSM lifestyle nor anything less than completely consenting adults. That comforts me.

Thursday, 28 March 2013


Every time there's a new movie or tv show about "vikings" I can't help but feel a bit embarrassed. It's mostly because there'll be hundreds of mistakes in their timeline: wrong clothes, wrong living conditions and cultural expressions, wrong religion, just wrong wrong wrong. Most of the time it'll be a veritable pick'n'mix of elements from between 900 AD to 1400 AD and it annoys me - like they couldn't be bothered to do a better job.
I'll be back with a verdict on this new show that premiered this month.

How about no? I barely got past the first episode. It was just so booooring! Not to mention that as soon as I noticed that the story's supposed to be acted out around 790 AD I thought back to what I'd seen of the show before. Hadn't I seen monks flash past in the trailer for the show? Yes I had. Christian missionaries didn't come to Scandinavia until around 829 AD. There were no monastaries until the 1100's. I called BS and I'll let others enjoy it. I won't.

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Books I found... rather disappointing. Pt.2.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë.

   I’ll give it to you straight – it’s glorified nonsense. It’s passionate to extremes and exaggerated to absurdity. Of course, I can definitely see how a reclusive stay-at-home daughter such as Emily could get bored to the point where dreaming and writing of passionate feelings and everlasting love is her only refuge. The narrative is great, mind you, it’s the characters I can’t stand. None of them invoked any kind of empathy with me and the only reason to why I read it to the end was because I just wanted to know what was so special with this book to make it an obvious choice to put on a books-you-must-read kind of list. Every single thing these characters uttered to each other was hateful and mean.
   It’s apparently a classic so inevitably someone will at some point tell you to read it and please, by all means, do! But I won’t pass on an opportunity to tell you what I thought about it.
   I wouldn't put it on a must-read-in-your-lifetime list.

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Books I found... rather disappointing. Pt.1.

Anger Management for Beginners by Giles Coren.

   I have reached the conclusion that Giles Coren is an asshat. Granted, he’s a quite handsome and eloquent asshat but an asshat nonetheless.
   As I’ve finished his book Anger Management for Beginners I’ve learnt all those things about Mr. Coren that I really didn’t want to know after enjoying Supersizers as much as I did. Aside from what I already did know - that he’s a columnist for The Times, a food critic and general misanthrope - I’ve gotten to know plenty of other things that just can’t be unlearnt and doesn’t really speak to his benefit.
   Anger Management for Beginners is the kind of books that could vent your anger for you. If you wake up one day and feel terribly angry because you absolutely loathe airports, there’s a chapter about that which you can read (chapter 2: Travel), have a laugh and hopefully not murder someone when you get to said airport. I can gladly admit that I giggled like a mad person when reading some of the book (for example chapter 5: The Boat Race is a hoot) but regretfully those few chapters or parts of chapters can’t weigh up to the ones I found truly offensive and sometimes even going against the general public good - like the chapter where Coren explains that a real man doesn’t wear a cycling helmet but would rather die or the chapters in which he explains that he hates fat people to the point where he’s certain that the statement “fat and happy” just can’t be and feels that anorexia is better by far.
   Coren’s hate is inexhaustible and seemingly unstoppable and it’s applicable to most things, but to me it just seems like he’s infinitely bitter, in acute need of some self-distance and a calming cup of tea. Also, he should maybe keep to being a food critic and only that. I still love Supersizers.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Going crazy for more Sherlock

Dear Sherlockians, our wait is coming to an end. The production of season three of BBC's Sherlock is finally coming to a start with the read-throughs and Benedict Cumberbatch is growing his Sherlock hair back.