What is it about royalty, especially British royalty, that causes otherwise rational Americans to get all mushy-headed and weepy, not to mention taking a decidedly unrepublican interest in the scandalous doings at the palace?
We might as well call it “King George III’s Revenge” given how much blood we shed to throw off the rule of kings and substitute the rule of law. Poor George never got over the loss of his colonies, going to his death a blind madman. I’m sure he would be comforted to know that the descendants of those rebels now sit in front of TV sets for hours, consumed with getting every last morsel of fact and fiction that can be wrung from stories about the immoral, depraved, and usually silly doings of people whose only claim to fame is that they were born to one of the richest, most dysfunctional families in England.
On April 29, one of the floppy-eared whelps birthed by the former fairy-tale couple of Charles (prince, duke, and someday king) and Diana (princess, duchess, and tragically dead) is going to tie the knot with a genuine commoner in what is promising to be the television/internet/iPhone event of the young millennium. And America is going all Lady Ga-Ga over the event.
But social media excitement pales in comparison to the bonanza coming to the royal family as a result of the sale of “official” merchandise. Someone called the “Lord Chamberlain” at the palace is responsible for licensing this stuff and by the looks of things, he’s going to be one busy lord. Here’s a blurb from a website selling “official” as well as “commemorative” wedding souvenirs and memorabilia:
The Royal Wedding William & Kate offers a wide range of commemorative Royal Wedding Memorabilia, including commemorative china, street party accessories, bottle openers, key rings, boxing gloves, jigsaws, baby items, coasters, comic books, rings, caricatures and coins. We are also authorised to sell Official Royal wedding china and official Royal Mint Coins.
But not T-shirts. I guess the Lord Chamberlain didn’t want some officially licensed article of clothing being worn by some unofficial hottie at a wet T-shirt contest during Spring Break at Daytona Beach.
Come to think of it, President Obama could use a Lord Chamberlain. According to Wikipedia, the LC is the “senior functionary of the court.” Sort of like a czar but even more useless.Where Obama is concerned, one more czar won’t matter much and every president should have a “senior functionary” anyway to help during those times when his administration becomes dysfunctionary.
Besides the online merchandise, there has been an infomercial produced that is selling out of “Royal Heirloom Rings” at $20 (plus shipping and handling) a pop. This one’s not officially licensed nor does it have much to do with the upcoming wedding. Instead, if you weren’t alive when Dumbo married Diana, you can share in that fractured fairy tale by purchasing a replica of the Princess of Wales’ engagement ring from 1981. What does your $20 (plus shipping and handling) get you?
This limited edition replica glitters with a simulated Ceylon Sapphire (3 carats) surrounded by fourteen brilliant, simulated diamonds (1.26 carats) and is layered in Sterling silver.
Who in their right mind would purchase a replica of the engagement ring of a dead, divorced, adulterous, clothes horse who achieved celebrity because she married into a cold blooded, vicious family of people who actually believe it matters more who you father was than what you’ve accomplished in life? What has possessed our countrymen that they care what these upper class twits do or say?
The English monarchy drips with tradition and as a conservative, I can understand the attraction. Edmund Burke was a passionate monarchist (although he also believed in the English constitution and the limits placed on the monarchy). But civilization has transcended nonsense such as kings, queens, lords, and ladies. We are beyond believing in hereditary abilities. These are people who used to breed their offspring like race horses, matching them based on the notion of passing on desirable characteristics. Some of the aristocracy, no doubt, continues this tradition.