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The Sisterhood of the Traveling Erotic Novels
By Gretchen Gales
When 50 Shades of Grey came out in 2011, I don't recall knowing of its existence. After all, I was a 15-year-old more concerned with eating Doritos. Or anything else.
If I had to guess, jokes about it on Memebase and its sudden appearance in bookstores is how it caught my attention. When more hype about it started surfacing in 2012, I was shocked at its popularity. After all, what made this any different any other adult novel?
Now don't think I'm criticizing those who read 50 Shades. But I will never consider it more than Twilight fan fiction. And, no, I have not and will not see the movie. But I will thank E.L. James for helping to create a hilarious tradition among my friends.
It was Christmas of 2012 when it officially began. My longtime friend Sarah, our newish friend Aaron, and I were celebrating "Friends-mas" together (basically Christmas) together.
According to Sarah, Aaron was unsure of what to buy me for Christmas, and she suggested he buy me 50 Shades as a gag gift. So when I got to my gift from Aaron, I reached down into the bag and felt a twinge of excitement. It was a book!
Aaron and Sarah looked at each other and snickered. Then I realized what he had gotten me.
It had a sleek, shiny cover with a Target sticker on it. I saw that familiar silver tie and groaned.
"I get a discount...because I work there." said Aaron.
I snorted. "Yes, yes, I'm well aware of your discount. Thanks...I think."
They laughed, and like the good sport I am, I joined them.
Soon after, Sarah's brother Jack walked downstairs. Upon seeing the book, he immediately snatched it up from the table and flipped to somewhere in the middle. He glanced at it, and snorted.
"Butt plug?" he began, in a higher pitched tone. "Does it do what it says it does on the box?" He stared at the book for a moment. He put it down on the table and looked at us. "I would get the butt plug sentence, wouldn't I?" he remarked, and then promptly walked away.
Aaron's 19th birthday was coming up, and I wanted to get him back. I tried thinking of hilarious gifts. Why don't I just give the book back to him? After all, I was tired of explaining why I had it. But then I took it a step further. Recalling what Jack did with the book, I picked it up, closed my eyes, flipped through its crisp new pages, and stopped. With my eyes still closed, I pointed to a sentence and looked at where I pointed. I highlighted the sentence I read, marked it, and wrapped it.
"Gee, thanks," said Aaron after he opened it. "Really wanted this."
"It's not just ANY copy of 50 Shades of Grey," I replied. "Look on the inside cover."
He flipped it open and laughed. "So we ALL get to be stuck with the book at some point."
After that, Aaron gave it back to me for my 18th birthday, then I gave it to Sarah for Christmas.
That same Christmas, I had another rectangular package labeled with my name from Aaron. Sarah giggled. I sighed as I lifted 50 Shades Darker out of the wrapping.
"You do realize I'm just going to give this back to you, right?" I remarked. Both of them nodded.
Now two of us could have a book at the same time.
Every major holiday, birthdays, graduations, it doesn't matter. We pass both of them along to each other. Then we sign our names, the date, the occasion, and the recipients' names. We open up each book to a random spot, highlight it, and mark it before we pass it on again.
So far, 50 Shades of Grey alone has been passed around 9 times between the three of us. Typically one of us forgets about it until we open it and the chuckling continues, and will continue for years to come.
After all, I still haven't received 50 Shades Freed.
#Real #Sisterhood #EroticNovel #50ShadesOfGrey #Traditions #Friendship #Humor #GagGifts #Friendsmas #Holidays
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