Fifty Shades of Beige: Irvine Drops out of the Top 20 Most Romantic Cities in America

When current Irvine council member Christina Shea was mayor of Irvine in the late 1990s and the battle against the then proposed El Toro Airport was at a fever pitch, Mayor Shea put her heart and soul into a new initiative designed to put Irvine on top.  On top of the safest cities list?  On top of most jobs per capita?  Greenest cities?  Nope.  It was an initiative to make Irvine the most romantic city in the US led by our mayor in policy derived directly from a high school homecoming committee.  And to give credit where credit is due, in 2008, Irvine ranked #4 based on criteria such as romantic books sold, romantic restaurants, places to buy high-end chocolates and such.

But for 2013, Irvine is out of the Top 10 behind such love swooned cities like Billings, Montana, Rochester, NY and Erie, PA (a city referred to by locals as “Dreary Erie, the Mistake by the Lake). This is unacceptable.

As it’s Valentine’s Day, it’s time to once again call on Council member Shea to lead Irvine back to the top 5 Romantic Cities in the US.  Perhaps she can ghost write a new book, “Fifty Shades of Beige” where a petite young woman is bound by oodles of Red Tape as she does battle with her homeowner’s association over the location of her Direct TV satellite dish.  How a night of Bunco gets out of control quickly. And a neighborhood book club doesn’t have in-depth discussions about the latest bodice-ripper by is more concerned with drinking the other book club under the table.

Or maybe she can form another city-wide task force to tackle this problem.  Meh.


  1. Shea then
    Shea now.  Same sweater?

  10 comments for “Fifty Shades of Beige: Irvine Drops out of the Top 20 Most Romantic Cities in America

  1. Junior
    February 14, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    Any source that cites Billings, MT as a “most anything” positive has to be suspect.
    Compared to Billings, Irvine is NY City or Las Vegas.

  2. Ltpar
    February 15, 2013 at 10:52 am

    Dan, if this trash is what you are reading these days, then your life is pretty boring? As I recall from the book review on Fifty Shades of Grey, it is notable for its explicitly erotic scenes featuring elements of sexual practices involving bondage/discipline, dominance/submission, and sadism/masochism (BDSM). I might add, it has been banned in several Public Libraries around the United States. If this “romantic city” crap is the best you can dredge up on Christina Shea, you had better hang it up as the Agranista mouthpiece. P.S. Just out of curiosity are you the “bondor” or the “bondee” and how is that black leather working out for you? Maybe you could share a photo with us as inquiring minds want to know?

    • NotPedrozasPRFirm
      February 17, 2013 at 8:11 pm

      Since we’re talking about Shea, shouldn’t it be 65 shades of grey and some saline plants. Botox baby. You need it.

  3. February 15, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    Pat, it’s Mommy porn. The book has launched a movie deal and “products” you can even buy at places that advertise in OC Weekly.

    You missed the joke in the headline; 50 shades of BEIGE.

    I did meet the author at book event and I have an autographed copy of the book, but I haven’t read it. I have a nice collection of signed first editions of various fiction and non-fiction titles from friends of mine who have published work.

    50 Shade of Gray spawned two sequels. You can buy the books at Target Pat.

    • Ltpar
      February 15, 2013 at 3:16 pm

      “Mommy porn” you say. Neither my mommy or the mommy of my children ever read such crap. As for myself, I prefer Tom Clancey. Sorry you didn’t share your response on the black leather, “bondor” or bondee” question. A picture would be worth a thousand words?

      • Dan Chmielewski
        February 15, 2013 at 5:25 pm

        You’re a perv Pat. Tom Clancy? Nice to know you don’t push yourself too hard in a literary sense.

      • junior
        February 18, 2013 at 8:34 pm

        No photos please.

    • Rick Nelson (not the singer)
      February 15, 2013 at 8:14 pm

      I am certain you ment “Grey” not “Gray”.

      GRAY is a scientific term.

      GREY is a color, as refered to in the book.

      This is precisely why blog content should be taken with a grain of salt, here you have an author who makes a point of “having met the author” but can’t get the title correct.


      Rick Nelson
      Princeton, NJ

      • Dan Chmielewski
        February 16, 2013 at 10:51 am

        I wrote “Beige” in the post, had a photo of the book, and did meet the author. My apologies for the incorrectly spelled word in the comment, but that hardly condemns me.

        Might I encourage you to pick up a copy of the book “Red Tape Holds Up Bridge” that has unfortunate newspaper headlines with glaring errors missed by copy editors. Jay Leno features these sort of things regularly.

      • February 17, 2013 at 9:07 am

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