The market, Salonica

The market, Salonica
The market, Salonica

Sunday, 15 June 2014

A Big, Fat Royal Wedding

We need some Royal news, something big to catch up with the monarchies abroad which are procreating and abdicating at reckless speed. 

How about another wedding?  You remember the last one.  The UK was a better place.  Weeks before the ceremony, the TV showed happy children lining the streets of London, waving little Union Jacks as if the wedding was already here.  Where did those pictures come from?  The children weren’t waiting for Wills and Kate.  Not that far ahead.  I hope not, anyway.  They were waving their little flags at something else.  Whatever it was, some file pictures had been cleverly employed.  It looked like a Royal Wedding.  Perhaps it was.  There has been more than one.  The BBC was misleading us again, but for once it didn’t matter.

Adults were also happy just looking at the range of children, black, white and brown.  Liberals enjoyed the ethnic mix; conservatives, the buzz of Empire.  On the real day, in the Abbey, the camera kept returning to a group of choir boys, a black one, a yellow one and a white one with glasses.  Are you wondering what will happen when their voices break?  You didn't see the men in the stall behind them, white cheeks wedged in like a row of perfect dentures. 

The roads along the route were cleaned up, too, but the wedding wasn’t good for everyone.  Anarchists were arrested and banned from central London.  They had once made jokes about Diana’s death, so it probably served them right.  But what about the squatters, living inoffensively in grand, old buildings, vast and vacant as cathedrals?  They were evicted in a single heap – emptiness is next to godliness – while the libertarians who normally defend them were distracted by the pomp.

Less enchanting than Diana’s, the wedding just reminded us of her.  In the papers, people said the bridesmaid was prettier than the bride.  They weren’t arrested.  We followed the procession on the BBC.  The commentary was so sombre it felt like burying royalty, not marrying it.  People complained.  They weren’t thrown out of London.  They watched the “Big, Fat Gypsy Wedding” on Channel 4 instead.  Channel 4 is very helpful.  It does the same at Xmas.  We get the Alternative Queen’s Message, one year a transvestite from Tooting.  

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