When Harry Met Meghan – Epilogue

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As the world churns (yes, that’s a hopeless TV reference; get used to it!) with airplanes falling out of the sky, impeachment hearings, Putin seriously off the rails and polar bears poaching in the sun, the big news across the globe is what’s going to happen to Harry and Meghan.

Disclaimer:  I am a hopeless monarchist, and I’ve always been in Harry’s corner (even when he dressed up as a Nazi) so it’s more in sadness than anger that I lampoon this two-ring circus.

Apparently, Harry, the Englishman formerly known as a Prince and Ms. Markle (former “briefcase girl” on Deal or No Deal) don’t want to be royals anymore.  It’s just too difficult for them.  This intolerable situation has caused them to seriously reflect on their role as A-listers on the world’s media stage.  They want to “take a step back” from the drudgery of photo-ops and ribbon cuttings.  They want to find their own “financial independence.”  And they want a chance at “a normal life.”  Not to worry though: they’re not going to give up being the Duke and Duchess of Sussex (they’re currently trademarking that brand.)  They just don’t wanna waste their time on the royal responsibilities that come with the title.  In “normal life” terms, what that means is “Okay, when grandma’s dishing out the cookies, let us know, but we’re not going to hang around and help her clean the oven.”

For the last couple of years, the world has been fascinated by the Harry and Meghan Royal-ity TV series (Season 1 – The Wedding, Season 2 – Here Comes Archie) but so far in Season 3, the story arc has gone a little flat.  After all, Harry’s not the heir; he’s the spare, so there’s not a whole lot of drama there.  And Archie’s cute and all that, but a 7th in line cousin is not necessarily tabloid news.  Meanwhile, Meghan’s media presence has disappeared entirely.  Even the bitchy stuff isn’t getting much ink these days.  The truth is Harry and Meghan might impress the likes of Oprah Winfrey and George Clooney (Ya gotta ask, though, would they have showed up at the wedding of second banana TV star, Meghan Markle, if it wasn’t for Harry?) but in the rare air of royal affairs, it’s William and Kate who carry the big stick.  From here on, Harry and Meghan are going to be trotted out for Ascot, hospital openings in Sheffield, Eastern European funerals and that’s about it.  They may have decided to “take a step back” from the limelight, but the reality is it’s already getting pretty dim.

I don’t actually care if Harry and Meghan trash it all and open a bed and breakfast on Vancouver Island.  Knock yourself out.  But what the hell does ‘a normal life” look like to someone who’s negotiating with two national governments, Canada and Britain, to figure out which one is going to pay for the bodyguards?  I don’t care how you slice the Gateau des Rois, that’s not “normal.’  Here’s the deal.  Harry’s accident of royal birth and more importantly, Meghan’s accident of royal marriage have given them both a ton of advantages that they can’t ever switch off.  If they don’t understand that, they’re totally out of touch with the real world.  If they do understand it, this latest semi-royal proclamation is simply grandstanding.  Personally, I think it’s a little bit of both.

When Harry Met Meghan (FINAL)

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The Royal Wedding is over, but there’s still time to indulge in that fine old international tradition: Making Fun of the Royals.  This has been going on for centuries.  In Colonial America, the newspapers were full of cartoons about George III, and I can’t even print what the French had to say about Henry V!  So, since I’m beginning to think my invitation to the wedding didn’t get lost in the mail, and since this is going to be the last biggie royal wedding for a while (Prince George is only 4) here are a few catty remarks about the Royal Nuptials.  If you watched the solid walls of media coverage, you’ll recognize the participants; but if you didn’t, don’t worry: they’re all the usual suspects.

It was a beautiful spring day in Windsor, and most of the hats looked as if their sole purpose was to confuse the pigeon population.  Meanwhile, many of fascinators had obviously been designed to pick up Wi-Fi so that the various plus-ones could watch the FA Cup final during the ceremony. (FYI: Chelsea-1 — Man U-0)

Oprah Winfrey’s sack was a last-minute design by Stella McCartney and was securely cinched in the middle to prevent the heavy bits from shifting.

Sir Elton continued to break gay stereotypes by showing up in his one good outfit — again.

Whichever Williams sister it was, walked in as if she was looking for a fight.

Patrick J. Adams, Meghan Markle’s former co-star on Suits appropriately wore — a suit.

Thoughtfully, Princess Michael of Kent didn’t wear any jewelry.  (Google it!)

Victoria (Posh Spice) Beckham got confused and thought she was going to a funeral.

It’s a pretty safe bet that Pippa (Middleton) Matthews, was told to keep her scene-stealing ass in line this time.  So, rather than risk Royal censure, she came dressed as a can of Arizona Ice Tea. (You can Google this one, too.)

George and Amal Clooney spent most of the day looking utterly bewildered that nobody gave a damn whether they were there or not.

Ben Mulroney did a wonderful impression of a discount Justin Trudeau.

Harry’s ex, Cressida Bonas and Abigail Spencer (no relation to the real ones) clearly shop at the same store: Tesco.

Princess Anne went for either cultural diversity or cultural appropriation by wearing a kimono, but nobody was brave enough to call her on it.

Surprise!  Surprise!  Surprise!  Sarah Ferguson (Fergie) Duchess of York was invited, but Prince Philip made her sit in the corner.

And speaking of Prince Philip, this guy is officially the toughest old bugger in the Commonwealth!  He’s 96 years old, fresh off  hip surgery, and yet he got out of the car and marched into Windsor Chapel as if his wife owned the place.  The man is made entirely of gristle.

And finally:

That low-level whirring sound everybody heard throughout the ceremony was Edward VIII, spinning in his grave, muttering, “American divorcee, my ass!”

Disclaimer:  This is satire.  In fact, I’m actually a hopeless monarchist and I love all the trappings that go with it.  It’s the simpy/sappy media coverage I object to.

When Harry Met Meghan (II)

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Are you sick the British Royal Family, yet?  Yeah, me too, but I’m such a hopeless monarchist that I can’t help myself.  Here are a couple of things that may have just gotten lost in the ocean of wall-to-wall-to-wall -to-floor-to-ceiling Royal Wedding media coverage we’ve all been enduring.  If you haven’t heard these before, go to bed smarter than when you woke up.  If you have heard them, turn off the TV — you’re ODing on purple pageantry.

1 — Just because you marry a prince, you don’t automatically become a princess.  The Brits are very strict about this kind of thing.  For example, Diana (Harry’s mom) was Diana, Princess of Wales and her granddaughter (William’s daughter) is Princess Charlotte.  Notice the difference?  In the British Royal Family, the only way to be a real princess is to be born that way, so there’s a subtle difference in title if you merely marry into it.  Charlotte’s title comes before her name because she is a princess by birth; whereas, Diana’s title came after her name because it was only an honorific.  Meghan Markle isn’t even going to get that close.  After the wedding, she will become Her Royal Highness, Duchess of Something-or-other (probably Sussex) — not a princess, at all.  In fact, even the girl who will be queen, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge isn’t actually a princess.

2 — Meghan Markle might be marrying into one of the richest families in the world, but she’s never going to see any of that money.  In fact, by royal standards, Harry and Meghan will be living very low on the totem pole, indeed.  This was one of the chief complains that Sarah Ferguson (Fergie) had when she was married to Prince Andrew — champagne obligations on a beer budget.  It’s a popular misconception that all members of the Royal family are living large on the taxpayer’s shilling.  Not even close!  Since 2012, when Parliament abolished the Civil List, the Queen and Prince Philip are the only ones who get any government money.  All the other royals, from Prince Charles to Princess Alexandra (61st in line to the throne) may have some of their “official” expenses paid for, but generally they have to fend for themselves.  This puts Harry in a precarious position.  Since he doesn’t actually have a job, the Duchy of Cornwall (Prince Charles’ estate) picks up the tab for him — everything from paying the servants to the cost of a new tuxedo.  So essentially, if Harry wants any extra pocket money, he’s got to go ask daddy for it.  This has led to wild speculation that, given Ms. Markle’s acting career, she may actually have more walking-around money than her husband.

And finally, something silly:

3 — Everyone knows that the Queen loves corgis and her last one, Willow, died very recently.  However, most people don’t know that the Queen still has two dogs, Vulcan and Candy.  They’re dorgis, a mixed breed that came into the Royal household when one of the Queen’s corgis mated with one of her sister, Princess Margaret’s, dachshunds.