...I was about 8, Britain was unashamedly racist and sexist and was about to join the European Economic Community (having joined the EU in 1970).
I’m not expecting to hear from QE2 again any time soon as my interest in royalty waned shortly after it started. But just as its ok for a young girl to think she will be a concert pianist with no need to practice or to decide she won’t be an inventor because everything has already been invented (see newspaper cutting below)
it’s also fine for that same little girl to assume that kings, queens and princes and princesses are a good idea. It’s really not something an intelligent grownup should still adhere to and I don’t. This has obviously come to an interesting juncture as the nastier elements of the media, the establishment and the royals themselves get into much more of a lather over Meghan Markle wanting to get away from those who’ve shat on her pretty much from the moment she was associated with Pr H, than they ever did over paedo-Epstein-loving Andy.
Paying rich privileged people out of the tax system – people who have eye-watering private wealth – much of it from historically dodgy sources - in a modern democracy where even people who actually do proper paid jobs are still having to go to food banks is mad.
And this is something the media and the establishment who first displayed their snobbishness and racism in MM’s direction should remember. Many people like me – sentient adults – are not royalists. Many of us softened just a little when a real human person appeared in their midst. Even if we had to justify it by looking at the whole cabal as over-paid celebrities and try and blank a little reality out.
I’ve written on this blog and in letters published in the press (god love ‘em they are still not sick of me after all these years across dozens of different publications home and abroad) about the abysmal way Meghan Markle has been treated. I would say the racism and abuse and snobbery is thinly veiled – but it wasn’t and isn't. It is blatant.
So the thing that is currently amazing and diverting me from all the real catastrophes around the world (see last post) is the utterly vitriolic way the press who mauled her are slating her for wanting out.
Since the last truly English and remarkable and even admirable (by the standards of the day) monarch got an arrow in his eye in 1066, there really have been no other English kings or queens of persistent merit. OR who have worked so hard to earn their place. And yet through the twists and turns of the nonsense of a 'hereditary' lineage thin at points and entirely swerved off that path at others, this idea of entitlement as persisted. I do not understand it any more than I understand why the very rich get out of paying taxes or the very stupid, inept and disordered get elected to high office. But the inbreds of Europe hanging on to titles and entitlement over centuries is something we all need to consider because while much has changed since 1066 I would argue that, in many ways, as much again has changed since I received my last missive from her maj in the very early 1970s.
The only thing that hasn’t changed is the bicycle referred to at the end of the piece. It was a very old, second hand bike back then and far too big for me even with the saddle right down. I still ride it today. Of the knackered old institution of the royal family and the rather wonderful, knackered old bike, only one thing was really worth keeping.
If you need some comedy to get you through January try my new comedy novel in its kindle version or treat someone you think may also need a laugh to the paperback.