Fifty Shades in Hospital

One of my two dads, Papa Le Bike (so, the one who taught me to ride a bike), was in hospital in April and I dashed back to the UK to see him. Despite sounding like he was on death’s door over the phone, when I turned up he was surprisingly cheerful. I spent the next two days visiting him in hospital and I noticed he had the literary classic “Fifty Shades of Grey” on his bedside table. I asked him who had given him that to read and he said a nurse had. Could this be the latest NHS way of perking patients up? He said he’d flicked through it but it didn’t grab his interest so he was leaving it for the next patient to stay in the bed he was in. He slipped it up on the little shelf behind the bed, next to the bible.


I like to imagine the next patient being a devout Christian, reaching up to the shelf to get the bible and instead grabbing Fifty Shades of Grey, opening it up for a calming dose of spirituality and morality and instead getting a hit of Christian Grey shoving lychees up Anastasia’s bottom.

The next day, at Luton airport on my way back to France, I noticed the Daily Mirror front page …


Needless to say, I didn’t send this to Papa Le Bike. In any case, he survived his stay in hospital and went home a couple of days later. Without his copy of Fifty Shades of Grey.

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