You know how sometimes there are bizarre pop cultural anecdotes from which you can draw a larger lesson? This isn't one of them. This is a story to share just because holy shit, ewww: A library copy of Fifty Shades of Grey tested positive for traces of herpes. And that's not all.
Two Belgian professors tested 10 of the most borrowed books at a public library in the city of Antwerp. Each of the books, including Fifty Shades, was given bacteriology and toxicology tests. Turns out, Belgian book lovers are a bunch of cokeheads: All 10 books tested positive for traces of cocaine.
Fifty Shades — which even your weird aunt's favorite magazine Time calls "your weird aunt's favorite mainstream erotic series" — also contained traces of the herpes virus. So did Tango, a detective novel by Belgium writer Pieter Aspe.
"Regardless, it is probably not an overreaction to call for a death to print," New York's Maggie Lange writes. Not sure if she is more offended by the herpes or the fact that Fifty Shades is one of the library's most-borrowed books.
Germ levels on the books weren't high enough to do any physical harm — "your consciousness or behavior won't change as a result of reading the tomes," said lead study author Jan Tytga. But people tested soon after reading the book could test positive for cocaine.