Fifty Shades of Grey is not a good book. The story essentially boils down to two boring people engaged in a boring contract negotiation, punctuated by seemingly endless rounds of shower/bathtub sex and a few light spankings. It's really very, very dull stuff.
Unless, of course, you are a cleaning expert known for a no-question-is-too-gross-or-too-personal approach to her work, and are also ordered by your male (oh-so-very-male) editors to read Fifty Shades of Grey and sort out how one would go about cleaning up all the messes made therein.
Today, you should all thank Goddess that you are not a cleaning expert known for a no-question-is-too-gross-or-too-personal approach to her work. Let's get this over with.
Page Number: 60
Event: Anastasia vomits in parking lot
"Grey," he says tersely. I glance anxiously up at Christian. He's glowering at José, and he's furious. Crap. My stomach heaves, and I double over, my body no longer able to tolerate the alcohol, and I vomit spectacularly on the ground.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Barf on asphalt and jeans
How to Clean Up This Mess: The asphalt can be hosed down; depending on how bad the mess is, a disinfectant may also be used but is likely not necessary. The jeans should be examined for debris and, if there are chunks dried onto the fabric, they should be scraped away using a butter knife or spoon. The stained areas should then be treated with an enzymatic laundry stain-removing product like Zout and laundered as usual.
Page Number: 123
Event: Anastasia loses her virginity to Christian
"How are you feeling?" he asks when we are back in the room. He switches on a sidelight.
We both glance down at the bed at the same time. There's blood on the sheets—evidence of my lost virginity. I flush, embarrassed, pulled the duvet tighter around me.
"Well, that's going to give Mrs. Jones something to think about," Christian mutters as he stands in front of me.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Blood from sheets
How to Clean Up This Mess: Hydrogen peroxide is a great bloodstain-eradicator, though there are many other options, including the use of meat tenderizer or your own saliva. To use, dampen a rag or cotton ball and dab at the stain, repeating as needed until the bloodstain is no longer visible. Then launder the sheets as usual. Or just let Mrs. Jones handle it.
Page Number: 194
Event: Christian pours white wine on Ana's torso; she shifts and the wine spills
Passage (look out):
"Oh no. If you spill the wine, I will punish you, Miss Steele."
I groan and desperately fight the urge to tilt my hips, pulling on my restraint. Oh no … please.
With one finger, he pulls down my bra cups in turn, my breasts pushed up, exposed and vulnerable. Leaning down, he kisses and tugs at each of my nipples in turn with cool, cold lips. I fight my body as it tries to arch in response.
"How nice is this?" he breathes, blowing on one of my nipples.
I hear another clink of ice, and then I can feel it around my right nipple as he tugs the left one with his lips. I moan, struggling not to move. It's sweet, agonizing torture.
"If you spill the wine, I won't let you come."
"Oh … please … Christian … Sir … Please." He's driving me insane. I hear him smile.
The ice in my navel is melting. I am beyond warm—warm and chilled and wanting. Wanting him, inside me. Now.
His cool fingers trail languidly across my belly. My skin is over-sensitive, my hips flex automatically, and the now-warmer liquid from my navel seeps over my belly. Christian moves quickly, lapping it up with his tongue, kissing, biting me softly, sucking.
"Oh dear, Anastasia, you moved. What am I going to do to you?"
Mess in Need of Cleaning: White wine on sheets, possibly seeped through to mattress
How to Clean Up This Mess: Fortunately, Christian Grey had the good sense to use white wine in his sexual games as opposed to red, which makes this mess much easier to clean up. Club soda and a clean rag should be all that's needed to remove much of the white-wine staining; any remaining wine will come out in the wash. If the mattress has been soaked, apply club soda to the stain using a sponge or rag (rather than directly to the mattress, so as to avoid saturating it with water), and then press down with a clean, thick towel to absorb as much of the liquid as you can. If any white-wine odors remain, sprinkle the area with baking soda once it's dry, and then brush or vacuum up after 30 or so minutes.
Page Number: 271
Event: Post-coital chit-chat
Leaning down, he gives me a brief kiss, then stands and grabs his boxers. Oh no … he's going. I glance quickly at the time—it's only nine forty. I scoot out of bed, too, and grab my sweatpants and a cami top, then I sit back on the bed, cross-legged, watching him. I don't want him to go. What can I do?
"When's your period due?" He interrupts my thoughts.
"I hate wearing these things," he grumbles. He hold up the condom, then puts it on the floor and slips on his jeans.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Used condom on floor
How to Clean Up This Mess: Put used condoms in the wastepaper basket, for crying out loud.
Page Number: 366
Event: Christian introduces Ana to Ben Wa balls
He spanks me twice more, and then he pulls at the small threads attached to the balls and jerks them out of me suddenly. I almost climax—the feeling is out of the world.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Dirty Ben Wa balls
How to Clean Up This Mess: Ben Wa balls, like most sex toys, should be cleaned after every use with a mild soap and hot water. Metal Ben Wa balls may be boiled, or washed in the top rack of a dishwasher. Rubber, silicone, glass, or plastic Ben Wa balls should be washed by hand.
Page Number: 371
Event: Sex on desk
"Well, sleep seems to agree with you," he murmurs. "I suggest you go and have your shower, or shall I lay you across my desk now?"
"I choose the desk," I whisper recklessly as desire sweeps like adrenaline through my system, waking everything in its path.
He stares bewildered down at me for a millisecond.
"You've really got a taste for this, haven't you, Miss Steele? You're becoming insatiable," he murmurs.
"I've only got a taste for you," I whisper.
His eyes widen and darken while his hands knead my naked backside.
"Damn right, only me," he growls, and suddenly, with one fluid movement, he clears all the plans and papers off his desk so that they scatter on the floor, sweeps me up in his arms, and lays me down across the short end of his desk so that my head is almost off the edge.
"You want it, you got it, baby," he mutters, producing a foil packet from his pants pocket while he unzips his pants.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Papers and plans, scattered everywhere!
How to Clean Up This Mess: Pick them up. This isn't exactly rocket science.
Page Number: 438
Event: Christian and Ana take their umpteenth bath together (seriously, guys, these two take so many goddamned baths and showers together)
Clasping the bath ledge, I move up and then down slowly, opening my eyes to gaze at him. He's watching me, his mouth open, his breathing halted, stilted—his tongue between his teeth. He looks so … hot. We're wet and slippery and moving against each other. I learn down and kiss him. He closes his eyes. Tentatively, I bring my hands up to his head and run my fingers through his hair, not taking my lips from his mouth. This is allowed, He likes this. I like this. And we move together. I tug his hair, tipping his head back and deepening the kiss, riding him—faster, picking up the rhythm. I moan against his mouth. He starts to lift me faster, faster … holding my hips. Kissing me back. We are wet mouths and tongues, tangled hair, and moving hips. All sensation … all consuming again. I am close … I am starting to recognize this delicious tightening … quickening. And the water … it's swirling around us, our own whirlpool, a stirring vortex as our movements become more frantic … sloshing everywhere, mirroring what's happening inside me … and I just don't care.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Bathwater on floor
How to Clean Up This Mess: Use a string or sponge mop to sop the water on the floor, wringing the mop frequently to ensure it is at its most absorbent. Then, go over the floor with a dry towel to ensure the surface is fully dry and safe for walking. Slick, wet floors are a safety hazard that can lead to a slip-and-fall accident.
Page Number: 169
Event: Contract review
15.12 The Dominant will ensure that all equipment used for the purposes of training and discipline shall be maintained in a clean, hygienic and safe state at all times.
Mess in Need of Cleaning: Assorted instruments of sexual torture. Materials may include leather, rubber, feathers and metal.
How to Clean Up This Mess: Leather may be maintained between uses by wiping down with a baby wipe; for deeper cleaning, saddle soap and a soft cloth should be used. Rubber and metal may be cleaned using a mild soap and hot water. Feathers may be cleaned using baby shampoo.
Jolie Kerr is the author of the book My Boyfriend Barfed in My Handbag … And Other Things You Can't Ask Martha (Plume); more of her cleaning-obsessed natterings can be found on Twitter, Kinja, and Tumblr.
Image by Jim Cooke.
Adequate Man is Deadspin's new self-improvement blog, dedicated to making you just good enough at everything. Suggestions for future topics are welcome below.