Thursday, 31 May 2012

Long Live Our Noble Queen

Some people seem to be getting awfully excited about the Diamond Jubilee this weekend. One house down my street is festooned with so much union jack bunting; it looks like Geri Halliwell has moved in, done her washing, and pegged out all her undercrackers to dry in the late May sunshine.

I’m far less enthused at the prospect of a whole weekend of watching a befuddled old lady in a bejewelled hat smiling and waving at a multitude of people in awe of the fortuitous accident of her birth and her tax-funded longevity.

Apparently however I’m a grumpy old git who wants to deprive the nation of day of fond celebrations and awkward street parties with people that we generally avoid making eye contact with in order to save ourselves from a banal conversation about the unseasonable weather.

Nevertheless, I do have fond memories of the Silver Jubilee. I recall spending the day running around the grounds of Clowance Estate (That’s Clowance not Clarence), with all the other children in my village, pausing only briefly to be presented with a Silver Jubilee mug and a hefty saffron bun. At the time I thought all children were presented with a mug and an unfeasibility large saffron bun, but I was later to learn to my dismay, that the poor non-Cornish children probably missed out on the fruity yellow tuck.

The nearest I got to seeing any royalty at the Silver Jubilee was a brief encounter with Gus Honeybun in a large marquee erected in the grounds. Those not growing up in the South West of England during the 1970’s may be unfamiliar with Gus Honeybun’s massive body of work in children’s birthday entertainment, and their childhood memories will be forever and irrevocably void as a consequence.

However, as none of these memories actually involve any members of the royal family (apart from Liz’s beaming face on my mug), I see no particular reason to include them in my plans for this weekend either.

Although I have no particular desire to celebrate the fact that one particular old lady hasn’t died yet, I have nonetheless seen one very plausible argument in support of her Majesty trotted out by many of my sceptical, science loving and godless comrades. I refer of course to her sterling efforts in saving us from the unenlightened reign of King Charles III. No doubt in the sound knowledge that odd numbered King Charleses have set a dangerous precedence for causing the disestablishment of the Monarchy.

If there’s one thing the intelligentsia do respect the Queen for, it’s knowing when to STFU. A crucial royal requirement in which Charles has been desperately found wanting.

His dubious invoking of my home county to aid and abet the whoring of his over-priced cookies could perhaps have been excused were it not for his sideline in inefficacious magic potions.

His desire to be “Defender of Faith” rather than simply “Defender of The Faith” suggest that unlike Charles I, who merely saw himself as divinely ordained by a single mystic deity (as conveniently redefined by Henry VIII), Charles III seems to have a desire to be the earthly representative of all manner of supernatural beings, magical fairies and evidence-free ideologies.

Some of his charitable attempts to dilute scientifically proven medicine with outright quackery may have failed, but his unfounded belief in magic water is undiminished.

But whether or not we agree with Charles’s half-baked raving, we have to accept that his views are more polarising than an all-you-can-eat Marmite buffet.

Upon his succession could he therefore spearhead an Iranian-like national charge back to medieval thinking, or will his incessant and ill-informed meddling be the piece of proverbial dried grass that finally causes a dromedarian spinal injury?

It’s a chance many Royalists are nervous to take and would prefer instead to see the shiny hat and stick skip a generation. Perhaps a future King with such a gangling lack of charisma as Wills, who can be easily upstaged by his sister in-laws millinery, would be just the sort of insipid candidate to not raise the republican hackles and allow his over-privileged family to slip under the radar for another generation.

[Edit, If Anne, as I originally thought was the elder sibling …] My preference would have been to replace the sexist male primogeniture order of succession with an absolute primogeniture. If we have to have to persist in this outdated and outlandish pageantry in order to entertain the American tourists, then when the Queen finally conks out, I think I’d rather have the horsey woman with a lighthouse fetish than the multi delusional unenlightened quack pimp.
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