OK UK?: The Royal Wedding...

Not Prince William
Not Prince William

Paying For A Wedding...

As Kate and William are now joined in holy matrimony, a joyous occasion to be sure, I can not help but be a little concerned about the country as a whole...

Royal Weddings are England’s last great industry. As a child in England, you are regaled with tales of former glories. The Empire, for example, a proud bastion of all things repressive run by failed public school (US, private school) bureaucrats and kept in line by the army. (Also known as the working class on an adventure…)

And fables about our industrial might.

The newspapers in England still talk about captains of industry, but in reality there are only three. Sir Alan Sugar, Sir Richard Branson, and Lord Tesco (Ian MacLaurin). Once upon a time, we made stuff, lots of it, for the world to enjoy. We made ships, bridges, and cars (there were over fifty car manufacturers in their heyday), and now we make absolutely bugger all.

There was a campaign in the late sixties, early seventies, when the going-to-hell-in-a-handbasket years were at their peak, where some genius came up with a “Buy British” campaign. Many good old English pounds were spent on posters, badges, and other assorted tat. It raised an eyebrow or two when people noticed that the badges and tat had written (in very small print, mind you), “Made in Hong Kong.”

True, Hong Kong was a tiny remnant of the former empire that was still administered by the Brits, but we were in the process of giving it back to the Chinese because they have a really big, really scary army. Oh, and nearly all of our money. Then, horror of horrors, turns out they weren’t made in Hong Kong at all. The Chinese had gone 'all previous' on us, made them in China, and snuck the “Hong Kong” tag on, in a presumptive, or very foresighted, gesture.

Good one, Ministry of Stupid.

Outrage was shown, as always in Britain, by there being some very pointed questions in the House. MP’s got to shout at each other and wave papers about (dangerous, on an overfull stomach), leading to large amounts of nothing being done about it.

Things got so bad, the entire country was declared bankrupt and sold off to Germany and France. This was presented as joining the Common Market, the baby version of what is now called the European Union (which is in Europe, but absolutely not, in even the most rudimentary way, united.)

101% unemployment, rampant immigration (what were they thinking?), and never winning an Olympic anything, would cause rioting in most countries. Even so, thousands of people standing around with nothing to do started to get the attention of the UK politicians. Realizing that even the dullest Brit might figure something was up, the government pulled the proverbial ace out of its sleeve.

But, not immediately.

The first card played was the “we are fighting the metric system and keeping the pound sterling” tactic. Take that, you smelly European people! Ha! We could be proud once again of fighting for something of little or no value. (Not repeated until the next financial meltdown. Falklands anyone? Bush Wars I and II?)

Before the entire country imploded, the ace was put on the table. Charles and Diana were to wed. Unfettered joy reverberated around the empty factories and shipyards, as the country galvanized to meet the challenge of producing millions of tons of crap to commemorate the Royal nuptials.

True, most of the stuff was made in factories that had people in them, like in, say, China. But we made commemorative plates and complete fools of ourselves with gay abandon. You have to understand that every home in Britain has at least one commemorative plate on the wall, it might even be a law or something, and many have the full set. (Queen’s marriage, coronation, silver wedding, Anne’s wedding…)

The newspapers had a field day (where exactly does that term come from?) with its daily crop of Diana pictures: Diana driving, shopping, having her hair done, going to the gym, and wearing a see through skirt. (The Daily Mail headline read, I kid you not, Where’s Your Slip Young Lady? ) There was the occasional picture of Charles, but only if he was with Diana, him not being particularly photogenic and the polar opposite of sexy.

The vast army of unemployed people now had their days filled with reading news about Diana, watching the TV news about Diana, and talking about the weather. And Diana. Her ascension into media darling was immediate and meteoric. Charles (or more likely a marginally more hip flunky) then buys and shows off a spectacular engagement ring. (Yes, the very same one. Who says the Royals don’t know how to recycle…)

I felt for Diana. The future never-going-to-be-king-while-Her-Majesty-is-still-breathing, says, "Will you marry me?" What is she going to say? "Not with those ears, sonny boy." Or, "Let's wait until I’m eighteen." No, she knew the entire future of the country depended on her being newsworthy for the rest of her life.

The wedding took place in Westminster Abbey and most of the rest of London, with every single person in Britain either at the wedding, or watching it on TV. This event was so incredible, ordinary people came out of their houses and ate on long tables in the streets. People who hadn’t spoken to each other since The Blitz, wearing paper hats and union jack Tshirts, eating sausage rolls, and having a right old knees-up.

Normally staid Brits were seen with their arms around each other, beer in the spare hand, singing songs from WW II (which we won by the way, just like WW I). Diana had single handedly saved us from a fate worse than death. There was a very real sense that she had taken one for the team by lying in the wedding bed with Charlie boy (you have to admire the girl's pluck), laying the foundation for a love affair between Diana and the British public that has never really ended.

She dutifully produced the heir and spare, and then found herself a playboy. Her public genuinely mourned her death, and it left Charles free to marry the only woman less attractive than him in the entire universe. Prince William, a rare man who bears that title both in the vernacular, and in real life, asks for but one thing; his mother’s engagement ring.

So another Royal wedding is announced, and I wonder, how bad the economy is right now, back on the sceptered isle? If history is our guide, poor England is well and truly buggered...

Enjoy the show!


Comments 1 comment

ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 5 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Friends,

As the "magical" day approaches, I wanted to take the opportunity to share my thoughts with my new readers since it's first publication.

Hey if TV can repeat everything...

Chris

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If you enjoy this hub, please check out my book,

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Comments 18 comments

LAintheLBC 6 years ago

If my history serves me correctly...the house of Windsor (the current royalty of England) is not the true heir to the throne. But due to technicalities the “Queen” seized power. Or something to that fact…hey it has been a while since I had to research the history. The throne is lucky to have had Diana bring back class, etiquette, ethics, philanthropy, and the respect of the British people. Let’s be real here what did the house of Windsor do for their country? Marry a lady named Diana and save face because of her actions alone? Bloody well right! I truly hope that her sons will do what should have been done many years ago…give us a reason to respect their name sake!


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 6 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Its way too complicated for mere mortals like us to figure out. They joke about people inthe deep south marrying kin - they should check out European Royal lineage!


Jane Bovary profile image

Jane Bovary 6 years ago from The Fatal Shore

I look forward to the day when quaint holograms may be made of the Royal Family, so the weddings, pomp and circumstance..et al, may be kept as a realistic visual to cheer up the Nation but that volumes of money not be extracted from the public purse to feed and keep the menagerie in the ludicrously rich style which they currently enjoy.

Not only would this be financially expedient but any unpleasant divorces, affairs and dressing up in Nazi uniforms would be eliminated.

By the way, you're looking beautifully imperial in that photo at the top Chris. You can take the boy out of England...etc


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 6 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Jane,

Like many Brits I am horribly conflicted about the Royal family. Love 'em and think they should be gone at the same time! I saw a paper once that demonstrated that Charles and Diana's wedding cost a riduculous amount of money, but brought in revenue to the UK between ten and fifteen times that amount.

I have no idea who my biological parents are, so I am allowed to hang on to the fantasy that I may be king some day. (I've got as good a shot at it as Charles!) Or at least own giant chunks of Scotland or something!

Thanks for reading,

Chris


Jane Bovary profile image

Jane Bovary 6 years ago from The Fatal Shore

Chris, I understand. We Australians have a love/hate relationship with the Royals too. We know we should be a republic but somehow just can't bear to part with them..(actually I could, but the last referendum suggested I'm in the minority).

It's telling that the main justification for their existence is their contribution to the tourism industry...wouldn't the holograms work just as well? It's not just the money though...it's the principle...that one family should hold such special privilege just by virtue of birth. Not that I lie awake worrying about it...it's for you Brits to sort out!

Besides...

I too, am probably of Royal lineage(who isn't?) My elderly relatives swear that our ancestral line goes right back to King Bruce. I hope one day to recover the family seat and restore our impoverished clan to it's rightful magnificence...so keep your eyes off Scotland. It's all mine!


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 6 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Jane,

We could vote for the holograms on a reality TV show called "Britain's Got Royals." Think of the ratings!

Chris, or Lord Chris of Hubington as I'd rather be addressed from now on...


Jane Bovary profile image

Jane Bovary 6 years ago from The Fatal Shore

Brilliant idea Lord Hubington! That would make them the *people's holigrams*.

Cheers

Jane,(possibly) Queen of Scots


Lady Wordsmith profile image

Lady Wordsmith 6 years ago from Lancaster, UK

Hmm, I'd rather have our Royals than not. I love the history that they represent (both bad and good), and that's all it's really about for me. I think that's a good enough reason to keep them - we keep alsorts of things because of their historical significance don't we? You know, like old ships and derelict buildings and stuff.

And the wealth and influence of the Royal Family is a good thing - we Brits love having something to be bitter and jealous about, eh, so it might as well be that. Something we can have a right good bitch about when we've got nothing else to do.

Nah, I love them - I'm looking forward to the wedding, but I won't be buying any souvenir tat. I'd pay good money for a hologram of Wills and Kate, but definitely not a plate.

Super hub - very entertaining :)


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 6 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Lady Wordsmith,

I met the Queen, and have been two feet away from Diana and Charles, and those days stand out as memorable and special. So while I remain conflicted, I would probably come down on the side of pro-royalty. If they were not there, it would leave a massive hole in the fabric of Britain. What if it got filled with more Brittany/Lindsay/Paris etc?

The horror...


Lady Wordsmith profile image

Lady Wordsmith 6 years ago from Lancaster, UK

Ugh! Chris, that's a truly horrible thought! Thank goodness for the monarchy in that case, phew.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

Hi, did you hear about the Bishop of somewhere or other putting his over large foot in it? ha ha hee hee he said something along the lines of, 'not another royal fiasco, the marriage will last only seven years, and they had better not use the public money, they are nothing better than high class scroungers!' etc so on and so forth! I can't clap loud enough.......cheers nell


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 6 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Nell,

I heard he got in rather a great deal of hot water...

I'm fairly imune on this side of the pond, we just get the occasional news item. I'm sure its cover to cover in the tabloids back home,

Chris


attemptedhumour profile image

attemptedhumour 5 years ago from Australia

As a fellow escapee in one of our ex far flung colonies i should have little thought for our royal family, but with the historical ties to this arid land the connection rears its head on a regular basis. Most families have a slightly dysfunctional, nutty old auntie, who they still feel compelled to visit occasionally and our royals tend to fit into that category. It is very very wrong but i still inexplicably love them when really i should be herding them into the tower with a pitch fork. Cheers mate a great hub as always.


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 5 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

attemptedhumor,

Isn't it wierd how ambivalent we are about the monarchy? I should have put a survey on here to see how much of the Royal family would be tollerated. I figure past the top ten, no one would care very much at all...

Thanks for dropping by...

Chris


Amanda Severn profile image

Amanda Severn 5 years ago from UK

Hi Chris, the wedding is very nearly upon us now. Only a few weeks to go, and Kate Middleton will have transformed into a Princess. Just one nit-picky little query - didn't Charles and Di get spliced in St Paul's Cathedral, rather than Westminster Abbey? I remember going up to London and sleeping on the pavement in the Mall the night before. The streets were crowded and there were fireworks in the park. It was very memorable, and I hope that William's big day will be too. Love 'em or hate 'em, the Royals can always draw a crowd!


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 5 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Amanda,

The Atlantic ocean is proving to be a phenomenal barrier to all things wedding, which is probably a good thing, as my mum reports that it is the only thing happening in England. Well, apart from the other brother going all GQ...

I think you are right about Charles and Di getting wed at St. Paul's, if memory serves they were fixing up the abbey at the time or something, which the Daily Mail reported would bring them bad luck...

Out here in California I believe we can watch the wedding on BBC America, should be fun with commercials...

C


attemptedhumour profile image

attemptedhumour 5 years ago from Australia

Hi Chris i forgot i'd already read this until i got near the end but it was worth a second go, as is the new royal wedding. We're setting the table, (inside the house) and having a few guests over to witness our, sorry their, probable future king and queen. They're not nutty like the old royals, so i'm not sure if i'll like that or not. Our American pals will no doubt be bemused by the tolerance that the average Brit displays towards such an archaic system, but like bowler hats, tea and biscuits, fish and chips, bronze medals it's part of the fabric of centuries old cloth. With that i'm off to bed. Good night mate. This treasured hub belongs with the crown jewels.


ChrisLincoln profile image

ChrisLincoln 5 years ago from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California Author

Keith,

Not only read it, but commented too...

You now win the "faithful" reader of the month award.

I've been off my game lately - dealing with a death in the familiy - need to get back on the humor horse and ride that baby into the sunset...

C

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