Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Romance is evil *bwa ha ha ha*

We are barking up the wrong broomstick America! We don’t need to fear Harry Potter. We need to focus on who we know to be at the heart of evil in this country: Fabio.

Fabio created an unfair playing field for all men married to women who read those romance novels. (...) Fabio doesn’t do all that stuff. If all I had to do is ride in on a horse and pose for some young beautiful woman—well actually that would be cool, but come on, even Fabio would wear thin sitting on his butt watching football while the yard grass needs cutting.

I know, I know, Fabio would look just fine on a hot summer day doing yard work and all that but six months later he would be out of shape, loudly burping in front of your parents or saying: “Puel my feengur.”


I’m not sure whether the author is implying that those who think Harry Potter books promote witchcraft to kids are as equally moronic as those who say romance novels are bad for womenfolk, or his beliefs are that romance novels cause women to have unrealistic expectations about their love life? *confused*

There’s a classmate of mine who laughed when she found out I like reading romance books. She, of course, is a literary snob and an ignorant ugly twat to boot. I told this to a friend who went to say romance novels shouldn’t be looked down on (which I agreed); however, they do lead to fantasies that usually end in disappointment when faced with “real life.” Er, I’m sorry but, WTF?!?

I discovered romance novels through JM’s Something Wonderful. Even before I finish it, I knew for certain I was hooked. That was four years ago and until now, I still love reading romance. Now, during those four years, I got involved with someone very seriously. Did I expect him to be exactly like Matt Farrell? Fuck, no!

Don’t get me wrong; if he actually turned out to be a clone of Matt, I’d have probably been married by now because there’s no fucking way I’d let him go! LOL But of course, that’s also NOT the reason why it didn’t work out between us. My point is, romance novels do make us dream about love, imagine the kinds of relationships we want for ourselves, and yes, even fantasize what life would be like if we actually were the heroine in one of these stories (with better wardrobe, please). Still, I never expect the men I meet to be exactly like the “heroes” I find in the books. Like any sane woman, I have high standards, yes, but they are still realistic ones (except the owning my own castle one :/). Come on, I’ve never for once thought that these stimulating love stories with brooding alpha males is how I will live my life. (I.e. No matter how much I love reading about tortured heroes, the thought of being with one makes me shudder—we’ll probably end up killing each other!!!)

My brother loves superhero comics and I’m pretty sure he doesn’t believe that Superman will come to the rescue every time he’s in trouble. The same thing with readers of mystery novels. Should they all be paranoid expecting a serial murderer to attack them in some street? What about sci-fi fans? Do they really expect aliens to take over the Earth?

I’m not saying that stories from romance novels can’t be real; of course they can. What I mean is, I think most women are capable of distinguishing fantasy from reality, and that, a smart woman would know reality matters not if one cannot dream. I don’t expect the man I fall in love with to vanquish all my enemies, scoop me up on his horse (most probably called Pegasus or Black Thunder LOL) and carry me off to his beautiful castle. But there are times just the mere smile of the man you love can make your knees go weak and you tingle all over. I’ve had great relationships and part of it has been because of my love of romance.

Reading romance strengthens my conviction that women should be treated with passion, tenderness and respect... that my desires aren’t sinful and don’t make me unclean (that’s 20 years of Catholic school for you LOL)... that even if I’m not yet married, as long as I take care of myself, as a woman, I am entitled to sexual pleasure (I also learned some *ahem* bedroom tricks :P)... and that, sometimes, even with all the trouble life gives us, we triumph over difficulties.

I don’t know about you guys, but has reading romance been bad for me?

Not for a New York minute!

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31 comment(s):

Blogger Jolie said...

Is reading romance bad for me? Of course not! Romance novels are an escape, a culmination of dreams.

If an individual can't tell the difference between reality and fantasy (movie, books, etc) they have a big problem. LOL Same with HP books. If you think waving a wand will make you attend Hogwarts, you have problems.

Anyway, I think in real life, romance is neither the means nor the end but a by product of love. When I love someone, I will want to do things that make him happy. I want to spend time with him. I listen to him talk as he tells me his thoughts, and he listens to me in return. Stuff like that. :P

10/11/2006 01:45:00 PM  

Blogger Isabella said...

Reading romance actually is good for me because the heroines inspire me. Usually these heroines know what they want and no matter what their struggles in life are, they persevere (how do you spell this? LOL). Anyway, I never expect to find me a tall, dark, handsome young stud. LOL (If I do and he and I have chemistry then that's great!) I do want more than a gorgeous guy and like Harlot, I don't think I can tolerate a real life "alpha man" who would never compromise. Though reading about these men sure takes a lot of my time. ;)

10/11/2006 03:03:00 PM  

Blogger Vanessa said...

So I should stop reading these sexy dark-hunter books because I would totally yearn for a leather wearing vampire who will give me hot sex? Oh puhleaze!

Harlot, great article!

10/11/2006 03:45:00 PM  

Blogger Gun_Wielding_Bitch said...

Guys complain about romance novels because they don't like our demand on them to do romantic things. They think romance novels make them look bad.

As for Fabio covers, they suck. I love to read romance but I HATE the naked man, wispy women, flowery covers. They tend to be embarrassing.

P.S. Why is my c-box broken? (That sounds really dirty ;) )

10/11/2006 04:04:00 PM  

Blogger Dylan said...

Hey, my first romance novel was Something Wonderful by JM too, woo hoo! Do I think romance novels are bad? Heck no! I agree with what you said that a smart woman can distinguish fantasy from reality, romance novels for us is exactly like comics to boys or Harry Potter to teens, I don't think anything is wrong with romance novels at all...bring it on, I say...;)

10/11/2006 04:06:00 PM  

Blogger Polly King said...

Not reading romance novels because they lead to disappointment in real life is just, I'm sorry, dumb. Should we also consider not reading newspapers because surely, if there's a reading material that will give us disappointment, it's the news, right?

You can't live what you read. Even the news these days is surreal, with all the gory descriptions of crimes and murders and such. Should we confine ourselves to only read "true materials" like we should restrict ourselves to only eat lettuce or carrots? Romance, mysteries, sci-fi, etc spice up my reading, but in no way control or direct my living.

10/11/2006 04:46:00 PM  

Blogger Aggie said...

Ridiculous notion that Romance is harmful. If not for some form of romantic escape, we females would probably be really practical and eat our males after mating. Or at least bite off their heads. Romance novels have probably saved many a "real" male from being murdered as they sit, burp & watch sport on TV. LOL!

10/11/2006 05:27:00 PM  

Blogger Ladybug said...

Romance is bad only when it's not happening to me!!! LOL! Anyway, disappointments in my relationship weren't due to reading romance. And even if I stop reading romance, those disappointments or problems won't be solved. I think romance novels give us that feeling of falling in love each time a heroine falls for her hero. At least that's what I feel. That little escapism makes me feel better when I've had a bad day. It certainly helps me face reality a little better.

10/11/2006 06:44:00 PM  

Blogger Vicious Trollop said...

Well, embarrassed to say that I do want a romance fairy tale, but I don't think I'm wrong!

I have my very own Luke Costello (even better :P) so I can tell you setting high standards for your men because of romance novels work! *winl*

In any case, people that say trash like that have probably never even read a romance book in their lives. Talk to me when you have something of substance to say, if not shut the fuck up! :P

10/11/2006 07:00:00 PM  

Anonymous Ollenska said...

Romance novels usually revolve about finding "the one". But real life is more than just being in love with someone. I mean when you finally find that other human being you want to be with, will he "make everything alright"? Will all your problems magically disappear and life will be wonderful? No. I think reading romance is only bad to people who don't have a good grip on reality.

Olly

10/11/2006 07:11:00 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Though I know the difference from reality and fantasy, sometimes as I lay in bed and read all these wonderful books, I glance over at my sleeping snoring overweight hubby and think.....what is wrong with this picture! LOL....where is my hot sex and undying love damnit, but then I snap out of it and think to myself...I am in a safe, committed loving relationship with someone who adores me, someone who takes care of my 'needs' as good as he possibly can and someone who I WOULD NEVER WANT TO BE WITHOUT.....what more can I ask for........

But I wouldn't want my 13 year old reading these books because;
a. I don't think she is mature enough
b. I don't want her to think she can change a man with her love
c. Tortured heros in real life don't make good husbands
d. I don't want her to think that the first time she has sex she will have a mind blowing orgasm!

10/11/2006 07:31:00 PM  

Blogger Lorelei said...

Aren't couples in which the female reads romance have more sex than couples in which the female doesn't read romance? I mean, how many of you felt totally turned on and have had great sex after reading a love scene? At least I have! LOL. How's that bad?!

10/11/2006 07:56:00 PM  

Blogger Gun_Wielding_Bitch said...

Lorelei, I 100% agree with you. If it wasn't for hot scenes in some of my books, my man wouldn't of gotten a lot of ass that he did get. Lucky bastard. LOL.

10/11/2006 10:25:00 PM  

Blogger are you asking me to dance? said...

Fabio is the standard?? I think not. If it's anyone, I think it should be Lloyd Dobler. :-)

I read the article and can't tell if he's trying to be ironic/sarcastic and failing quite splendidly, though in the comments he says he was joking.

The only way reading romances has been bad for me is that it keeps my wallet light. And, purely from an aesthetical point of view, I wouldn't mind if Angel/Warren III from the X-Men came swooping in one day (he can bring Logan along too). *Love* the wings. But I'm sure all those X-Men have more baggage than I'd care to deal with in real life. Is this a sign of an over-active imagination? Am I blurring the lines of fantasy and reality? LOL.

b. I don't want her to think she can change a man with her love
c. Tortured heros in real life don't make good husbands
d. I don't want her to think that the first time she has sex she will have a mind blowing orgasm!


Luckily, not all romance books are like that ;-). Said the one who started reading them at 12. I had to learn about sex and relationships somewhere. I'm 21 and I still haven't had "the talk" from my parents. LOL. [Leaving aside point a. because it's none of my business and I think it's great that you set standards for your child.]

10/12/2006 02:38:00 AM  

Blogger Lollie Rose said...

Anon, I have to agree with Dance. :) I was very young when I started reading romance, probably 14. My first romance books (Kathleen Woodiwiss novels) were given by a friend who read them because they were her escape, she had a bad home. I have a great family and still those romance books became my escape as well. Romance not only made me feel good, it gave me hope that true love can be found. My hero, whom I've been married to for 9 years now, is already losing his hair and has gained some weight but I still think he's the sexiest man alive. And lucky him, as Lorelei has mentioned, after I read a good love scene, he benefits from that too. :P Some people will always find fault with romance (or something else). But for many of us, romance makes life better.

10/12/2006 07:52:00 AM  

Blogger Petra said...

Oh boy, where to begin. My man doesn't have a castle, but he gave me a beautiful home. He might not be able to vanquish all my "enemies" but when I'm PMSing, he will buy me chocolates and he won't complain even if we go shopping for hours. I might not be like the heroines of romance novels, but I feel like one! :D

10/12/2006 07:54:00 AM  

Blogger Petra said...

Lollie, I agree. As corny as it sound, romance makes the world a better place. :P

10/12/2006 07:58:00 AM  

Blogger sitsonchair said...

YAY ROMANCE!!! without it life would be boring.......

10/12/2006 11:23:00 AM  

Blogger Harlot said...

Love the comments, you guys. :D Thanks for sharing!

10/12/2006 02:26:00 PM  

Blogger Danielle De Barbarac said...

Hmmmm, a person who can't distinguish fantasy from reality doesn't just have to stop reading romance, she requires psychiatric care.

As for teenagers reading romance, usually any misunderstanding could be solved with mother/daughter talks. Also there are Young Adult books without explicit scenes, so if your daughters are interested, there are other options more than just banning then the books. Of course that's just my opinion. :)

10/12/2006 03:07:00 PM  

Blogger Mailyn said...

Agree with everything. Fact, I posted about this a while back and I thought the same thing. Adults SHOULD know there is a difference bewteen what's real and what's not.

10/12/2006 04:35:00 PM  

Blogger Rachel said...

Harlot I agree. Besides, why would romance be bad for me? When I'm down, I usually read romance. I don't look for mysteries, sci-fi, chic lit, or any other genre, I turn to romance. There's something in these books that make me feel better.

10/12/2006 04:54:00 PM  

Blogger Vicious Trollop said...

Re: a person who can't distinguish fantasy from reality doesn't just have to stop reading romance, she requires psychiatric care.

So true! LOL LOL LOL

RE: There's something in these books that make me feel better.

Oh me too!!!!! Whenever I feel blue, I pick up a romance to read. :)

Of course HAVE NOTHING TO READ NOW! Depending on Harlot for books for a bit :/ Lord knows what she'll send, or what ways she'll find to torture me now!

10/12/2006 05:35:00 PM  

Blogger Polly King said...

RE: Oh me too!!!!! Whenever I feel blue, I pick up a romance to read. :)

Yes, romance definitely makes you feel better. :) The great love scenes help too... lol!

10/12/2006 07:28:00 PM  

Blogger Freudian Slip said...

I really do wonder what Fabio is really like? Perhaps someone will come forth some day with the "real story"?
Matt

10/13/2006 12:24:00 AM  

Blogger Harlot said...

For those who don't know who MY Matt is (above link is JUST AN AD *rolls eyes*), check him out. :D

10/13/2006 06:16:00 AM  

Blogger Serendipity said...

Harlot, someone just told me off on my blog when I admit to be a big romance reader.

Let me see if I can remember exactly what was told....oh yeah.

The commenter wants to feel and learn something when she reads, so she's staying clear off romance.

How do you like them apples!

10/13/2006 10:01:00 AM  

Blogger Serendipity said...

Romance is great for me. Believe it or not, but it's where I've picked and choose and pictured what I want in a marriage.

I appreciate the doormat heroine because I know I won't stand for it. I thoroughly appreciate that romance is not real life, but no one's going to stop me from picking one great character treats here and there.

10/13/2006 10:03:00 AM  

Blogger Harlot said...

Re: The commenter wants to feel and learn something when she reads, so she's staying clear off romance.

Serendipity, WTF??? Who said that? :@ I hope you told her off! Ignorant bloody fuck. How could you judge when you haven't even try it!!!

10/13/2006 02:39:00 PM  

Anonymous Ollenska said...

Serendipity, I'm tired of people making fun and knocking down romance. Especially when most of these "literary minds" haven't even read romance! UGH

Olly

10/13/2006 04:13:00 PM  

Blogger Jordis said...

Is romance bad? No. But maybe some girls who didn't get their happy ending feel bitter towards romance. Let's face it, there aren't many good men out there like the kind of heroes we read in the books. Or the good ones have already been taken. Sometimes the pressure of your environment (family, society, seeing friends happy with someone they love) makes it difficult. It's easier to just blame romance and those "delusional" romance readers.

10/14/2006 08:58:00 AM