Men. I love ’em. I mean, I really love ’em. I love men of all shapes, sizes, ethnicities and persuasions. However, this week I’ve become extremely aware that my taste in men is really strange. Many of my feminine counterparts seem to have very definite ideas on what is sexy and I just don’t get it. After reading a post on Facebook today about “GQ’s British Men of the Year,” and with the news of Charlie Hunnam being cast as Christian Grey, I’ve been thinking a lot about what makes a man sexy. The conclusion that I’ve come to is that I’ll never be a wildly successful, billionaire romance novelist because I just don’t get the appeal of some of these heartthrobs. Then I thought, well perhaps these folks just need a little education, Southern Belle Style. So I’ve compiled a little list of my current panty sweaters. Feel free to comment and add your two cents. After all, it’s a free country.
1. Benedict Cumberbatch. If you read my blog at all, you’ll know that this is NOT a surprise at all. Folks in the U.S. have just discovered this little piece of limey goodness after his run in the new Star Trek movie, but BBC Sherlock fans have known what a smoldering sex god he was for years. He’s got a funky name and inexplicable hair, but he’s got one thing that so many of our cream cheese icons don’t: talent. I’m a former theater brat and therefore very sensitive to talent, or lack thereof. The man could believably play a cardboard box in the story of the invention of cornflakes. When he speaks, you can look in his eyes and tell that he’s thinking, figuring things out. That is, if you can notice anything but the way his purring baritone sinks its teeth into those consonants. During a “Hollywood-fu” instruction on an episode of Top Gear, he made the statement, “I like to be the dominant one.” We believe it and he doesn’t even have to wear a ridiculous leather harness or a silver, herringbone tie. He just is. And then there’s the numerous documented instances of his incredible kindness, generosity and grace. He’s just a class act and you can’t help but love him.
2. Ewan McGregor. I owe so much of the happiness in my life to Ewan. My writing career really began with Moulin Rouge fanfiction, and through that I met two of my best friends in the whole world. Which was truly miraculous, because I met them at a time in my life when I was in transition from being a college kid to a grown-assed woman and feeling exceptionally lonely. Ewan’s killer smile, boyish charm and of course that sing-songing Scottish brogue inspired me to write a story that was good enough to gain a following. That positive feedback gave me the courage to try this writing thing for real. So, thanks Mr. McGregor. He has this fearlessness and approachability that real people can relate to. He’s probably never going to make anyone’s Fashionista list, as he sometimes appears to have just grabbed whatever was in the top of the laundry bag. His body, while nothing to sneeze at, doesn’t bear the marks of 20 hours a week at the gym. He looks like he could give a really nice hug. And that, to me, is extremely sexy.
3. Christian Bale: Aaah… part of my namesake. Yes, kittens. My parents did not name me Alexandra Christian. The night I finished my first novel, Hellsong (coming soon in a new edition from Ellora’s Cave), I was trying to find a pseudonym. I was teaching 2nd grade at the time and I didn’t think that if the powers that be found out I was writing sexy books about angels and demons falling in love in my spare time that they’d be happy. I knew I wanted to use Alexandra– my father is an Alexander, but what goes with Alexandra? I looked around and happened to see my copy of The Dark Knight dvd sitting on the coffee table (I was nursing a healthy obsession with Christian Bale at the time). And it was an Aha! moment to end all Aha! moments. By the by… both Saraqael of Hellsong and Marek from the upcoming Beast of Burden were inspired by the raw power of Mr. Bale. The truth is, I’ve had a bit of a crush on him since I was ten. A baby Shakespeare nerd, my older sister had me watch Henry V. Bale was playing Robin– the kid that Henry carries, dead, off the battlefield at Agincourt (hold on… I’m tearing up). He was twelve, I was much younger and immediately in love. Then, over the course of my childhood and teenaged years I saw Newsies, Swing Kids and Velvet Goldmine (Frankenstein in drag!!) and my love only grew. Now, he’s a big, burly guy who is, by all accounts, temperamental and cranky. Being temperamental myself, I can sympathize (you’re trashing my scene!). That kind of passion can only translate to really hot sex. Sorry. I’ll need a moment.
OK… I just realized that I’ve written more on this blog post than the last chapter of my WIP. So I’d better shove off, now that I’m all hot and bothered. Ladies and gents, feel free to disagree if you like– the comment space is all paid for. But let me leave you with two final thoughts—
1. A meathead in a suit is STILL just a meathead. And 2—