by Lee Cross
We’ve all been there. It’s Tuesday morning and I’m commuting, literally standing toe to toe with 255 other people (…not a guess – I read the max.cap. sign – I’m a reader, even when I don’t want to be…) on the tram to work.
I’m reading because that’s what I do to pass the time. My reasoning simple, that while it’s perfectly acceptable for me to visualise some unsuspecting hero being forced against his will into a sweaty box of mass transit terror, it is not acceptable to the be the fellow trapped inside that box.
My only comfort comes from the fact that, as the shops haven’t opened yet there’s no mums with buggies to be wary of (…I suppose that sounds sexist but I live in Dublin… not Politically-Correct world…). Why the sight of an unsuspecting fellow quietly reading should turn a much loved infant into a screaming four-wheeled battering ram, determined to break either my concentration, or legs, I know not. But they hate me.
(I’ll go further fellow bookworms and say – they hate us all)
Then the worst happens. Page-69:
“Enough was enough, the tension had become palpable and he couldn’t take it anymore, he ripped her shirt open…with his teeth”
Umm. Excuse me? No he didn’t. I was there. On page sixty-eight I mean. There was no tension. They were in the office. The printer hadn’t even jammed once that day. There was some mention of a sweater vest because the Air Con was on.
“…at the sight of her breasts he immediately began to lose control…”
Umm… No. He. Did. Not. Seriously – I’m on the tram, shirts are not to be ripped open! Can the guy standing directly over my shoulder see my page… is it my imagination or has he started to breath more heavily? Wait… am I breathing more heavily… is my nose making that noise… can they hear what I’m thinking???
“…Instantly, he felt the unmistakeable feelings of lead forming in his pants….”
ARRRRGGGGGHHHHH!!!!! ! – “Lead”! I did not sign on for lead on my way to work.
THE BOOK IS CLOSED, but only after I have first considered a more proportional response to the crime, that of SETTING THE BOOK ON FIRE. Sadly, that sort of behaviour is frowned upon and considered to be antisocial by travellers who have not had their commute ruined by an errant sex scene.
So for the remainder of my journey I’m left to stand, with people breathing on me, impotently holding my book and feeling like a pervert because some lazy writer realised that their plot was heading down the road to nowhere and decided it needed a shot in the Va… Well.
It’s not that I’m against sex scenes in literature but they shouldn’t just un-expectantly pop up like… well, like things that pop up in unexpected fashion.