I’ll be the first to admit to loving a good fairy tale, and that (yes) princess-stories are still one of my favorite genres. . . but for crying out loud: what is the big sparkly pirouetting deal with England’s Royalty?
These days EVERYONE loves William and Kate. They’re ranking American celebrities equivalent with actual admirable talented celebrities, not to mention the de rigeur movie stars and pop stars of the day. They don’t even get relegated to the one-name combos that most celeb couples tend to score (i.e. Bennifer, Tomkat, Brangelina,etc.). Maybe that’s because “Killiam”, “Williate”, and “Wate” all sound utterly ridiculous, but it seems more likely that they are accorded greater respect than their commoner celebrity counterparts due to their royal bloodlines. However pedantic and out-dated this may be, people still want to look like them and stalk them and BE them to an unhealthy degree. Frankly, the whole thing is kind of getting out of hand.
ABC posted a video about girls who actually making a living off of looking like Princess Kate, which just boggles the mind! Seriously, watch the video, these girls are full-time Kate-posers . . . as their job! It’s almost worse than all the rampant memeology, Bieber Fever, and other tweeny crazes I can think of, because somehow people who love the Romantic Royal Duo seem to feel superior to other obsessed trenders. They are viewed as a whole different class of fan. . . a classier class. But reality seems to indicate that they actually take fandom to about the same level…
Preliminary Problem: Smarmy Royal Fans
To try to figure out what is, as some might say, “the BFD”, I went to my favorite search engine (everyone’s really) and began my exploration with a flurried series of clicks. My favorite source was a veritable king’s ransom of information. I think I could stomach it because every posting seemed to be somewhat tongue-in-cheek with a little snarky wit thrown in for seasoning! Still, even when entertaining, the things that make Royal news stories these days . . .
Discovery #1: Royals Receive Too Much
Serious Attention For
Doing Unimportant Things
In light of the fact that the day this was posted as News was the same day that six people were gunned down at a temple in Wisconson . . . well, I’m a little less than interested in Harry’s Sandwich Habits. . . or anything about him really. Although I did hear on the radio the other day that he’s recently become an aspiring Reggae DJ. . . which gave me a good chuckle. Can you just picture it? “What’re we going to do for the Queen Mum’s birthday this year? Oh, I know, we shall throw an Islander party and give Harry a chance to use his new skillz.” I know, I know. It’s not the Royals’ fault that they are the subject of attention, but I do wish the world would at the very least report on the quirky or newsworthy facets of these people!
Then there is the whole issue I have with the Royalty-can-get-away-with-anything attitude. Just because you were born into a certain family does not place you beyond the reach of politesse.
Discovery #2: Royals can be Royally Rude
The Queen’s look says it all for me. Eek. How do you not realize when in the Public Eye that you can’t really insult the elderly. I guess a few of the Royals have earned themselves a reputation. Now, granted, if I was under constant scrutiny, I’d probably get called rude and all sorts of other unflattering adjectives. But for people who cling to tradition like it’s their lifesblood . . . or their inheritance . . . well, you’d think they might have mastered the “Thought Bubble” by now. Particularly at public functions.
So, royal status gets used to justify rudeness . . . which is quite simply obnoxious. BUT, on the flip side, what’s with the pretentious posturing these people spend their time obsessing over?
Discovery #3: Royal Rules and Regulations
I just don’t understand the royal propensity for fostering a fascination with the Snooty. Check out the blogpost from the Royalist below that details the Hierarchy of the Princess Curtsey. These people need to have a hobby other than their status.
Discovery #4: Royal Riches
More Than a Little Ludicrous
When I put all of the ridiculous posturing aside and consider the source of my frustration, I think I also find it obnoxious that any people should have so much money. I know, I’m just jealous. Hey, I never said this was a purely logical dislike of Their Royalnesses. If I’m being 100% honest, I just think that anybody who could inherit 10 million pounds might irk me. I think Will and Kate’s attempts to be seen as super normal and down-to-earth (as if they were normal-income) might just be a little like rubbing it in.
Get real. Anybody whose 30th birthday tubing-session is reported upon by multiple news sources just isn’t normal. The luxury of royalty and the consequential novel treatment of everything surrounding The Royals is fairly abnormal.
Solution #1: Stop pretending.
Make Royal Life Interesting
Instead of working so hard for the humble-perfection we’re-so-normal-even-though-our-clothes-cost-more-than-your-house image, I sort of wish they would act a little more like other obnoxiously rich celebrities who don’t earn their fortunes. Like Paris Hilton. Okay, maybe not really. How to put this. The Royals need to stop strategically pretending to be just-another-citizen when they are clearly living lives that are not typical. It confuses the public reaction and creates this image of perfected normalcy, depicting them as some sort of saintly order instead of just another wealthy family. I would rather The Royals capitalize on their status, if only to show that they are actually human underneath all of the polish. I mean, if you’re in the public eye, and your family has been under a microscope for generations upon generations, then, well, shoot. Rock it. Play into all the silly fanfare, but don’t take yourself too darn seriously. I know, I know. It seems like I am asking for them to be simultaneously less conspicuous and more showy. You’re probably thinking “Make up your mind, Cakey!” Let me give you an example of what I mean.
If I were Prince Charles, maybe I’d start regular Toast Auctions to benefit charities. If nothing else, I’d pay a call to 83 year old Rosemarie Smith, because if she’s been housing a piece of toast for 31 years out of misguided nostalgia . . . well, she’s earned a little attention, don’t you think?
Solution #2: Be Funny,
or at least Creative
Royalty should use their firm seat in the public eye to take as many ridiculously fun pictures as possible. Prince Charles almost got it in a recent photo with the Dalai Lama. . . but maybe he should lose the matchy-matchy dalai-lama tie?
(also, any HP nerds out there see the name of the photographer and chuckle with me?)
I would play up a few of the more ridiculous traditions as much as possible. For example, this summer there was an induction ceremony into the “Order of the Garter” . . . which has all sorts of interesting “importance”, and is (apparently) super-duper exclusive.
Perhaps capitalize on the antiquated-yet-feted tradition by de-mystifying the ridiculous society and hosting a royal lingerie-exchange?
Solution #3: Stop Taking The
Royal Self so Seriously
I know England has this reputation for being all we-don’t-hug-we’re-uber-proper-and-British, and maybe the population preoccupation with the Royal Tradition is part of their national identity, but it might be nice if the Expectation for Royal Treatment was knocked down a peg or two.
I especially like when Justin Bieber can make some less-than-glorious comments about William’s less-than-glorious hair, and the result is getting SLAMMED by British media. I mean, come on. I’m not the biggest Bieber-fan, but EVERYBODY makes fun of Bieber’s hair, don’t they? He can finally make a comment on someone else’s for a change and it’s treated as a “national affront” (according to an online article by US weekly, which, admittedly, isn’t the most reliable source…)! I mean, who knows? Maybe Bieber was just trying to offer some helpful advice on hair-regrowth medications.
(Side note: why and how would this 18 year old hair diva know about this with such detail? Have we found out the secret behind the coveted Bieber swoop? Your guess is as good as mine.)
What it all boils down to? Being born royal does not negate the simple fact that you were born merely human. Ridiculously rich, ridiculously popular, and even sometimes ridiculously bizarre, but human. Somehow The British Royal Family holds this seat of both national and international importance, a status which strikes me as outlandish when compared to the actual achievements visible in their lives.
People are doing incredible things with their lives in this world. Doctors are researching cures. Counselors are helping people deal with horrible grief and loss. Soldiers are giving sweat and blood to protect freedom. Small non-profits are seeking social justice. Foster parents are spending their days serving broken families. Teachers are tearing their hair out over how to help that one kid who is everybody’s headache. And these are just the people that I witness in my small sphere of interaction. Everyday people consistently demonstrate heroic qualities that are never noted by the public eye. When viewed in contrast to these quiet community benefactors, The Royals are mere celebrities, cleverly window-dressed and masquerading as pseudo-political philanthropists as they bask in the limelight which bathes the minutia of every part of their intentionally public daily lives.
Maybe it’s not The Royals that bother me so much as the royal treatment . . . I guess it’s clear I’m American, huh?