Sunday, May 20, 2018

The Royal Wedding

Alas, I did not watch the Royal Wedding.

I did not get up at 4:00 AM. Well, I did, but that was to use the bathroom.

Nothing against the happy couple – I wish them a fairy tale life together – it’s just that (and I know I’m in the minority) I don’t care.

I do like the fact that it serves as a welcomed distraction. With all the insanity, evil, and havoc in the world it’s nice to spend a couple of days focusing on wedding arrangements and where Oprah will be sitting.

And it’s a shared event and there are so few of these lately besides protesting the insanity, evil, and havoc in the world.

Like I said, I'm in the minority.  We Yankees do love weddings. When Tiny Tim married Miss Vicki on THE TONIGHT SHOW it drew 45 million people. (It was second highest rated event in the ‘60s next to the moon landing.) By comparison, the Prince William/Kate Middleton nuptials attracted just 23 million.

There’s also the “American” factor. An American is marrying into the British Royal Family. And here in America, all we really care about are things that are American. If Harry was marrying a Dutch girl I don’t think there would be as many tea/viewing parties as were organized here in the colonies.

I hope the royal couple live in England because if they live here Harry is always in danger of being deported as an immigrant “animal.”

But personally, I’m not interested in the ceremony and hoopla. I’ve seen a few royal weddings in the past and the importance placed on incidental insignificant items seems way out of proportion to me. I very much like Meghan Markle, but I’d rather watch her on SUITS.

The only issue for me not participating in a shared event – will I feel left out? Will there be conversations I can’t participate in? Will I be out of the zeitgeist? Will folks be “liking” things and retweeting things I have no opinion on? So far, so good.  And I can always catch up by watching Melania's next wedding. 

I know by tomorrow our President will name O.J. Simpson as Attorney General and we’ll be off to another typical news cycle week. The wedding will be but a distant memory.  I just hope they last longer than Tiny Tim and Miss Vicki.   Eight years and over.   I think it will take Meghan longer than that to open all the blenders. 


Janet Ybarra said...

To watch the wedding live, you might have had to have awoken at o-dark-thirty, but BBC America ran their pre- and wedding coverage over and over on a loop throughout the day and evening here.

The wedding was a reminder that not everything in this world need be angry dysfunction anymore.

Oh, and Ken, Meghan Markle's credit on SUITS now reads Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, at least according to Wikipedia.

I'm curious as to effect to this woman, Meghan, who has been so involved in her own social media and blogging that she now can never go back to it, per the rules of the royal family.

James Van Hise said...

Here's something I didn't know. Even though she is marrying a prince, she is not now a princess. Only someone of royal blood can be a princess. It was the mainstream media who dubbed Diana as Princess Diana (until her divorce) and it stuck in the public eye and stayed there, even among the Brits.

tavm said...

My favorite things from that wedding were the performance of "Stand By Me" and that preacher talking constantly of love. Oh, and those women in the crowd wearing "Marry Me Harry" T-shirts!

Anonymous said...

I sincerely don't think you're in the minority when it comes to absolute disinterest in the Royal Wedding. Unless 163 million people in the US were glued to their TV sets at 4AM (and I really doubt that), I'd say the majority of people's reaction to yet another coupling of a member of the royal family was a resounding "meh". Watching obscenely rich people cavorting is pretty low on my "must see" meter; I can get enough of that with just casual viewing of the news documenting the shenanigans our current administration.

Pseudonym said...

Similarly, Meghan Markle should count herself lucky that she arrived by plane and not on the Windrush.

Anthony Hoffman said...

You’re not in the minority. Didn’t get up until 10a. Checked social media and wished I slept later. People really need social lives.

Aaron Sheckley said...

Hey, somehow my comment got posted under the "Anonymous" banner. That wasn't intentional; 'Tis I, Aaron Sheckly, who had the "meh" response to the royal nuptials.

blinky said...

Bill Maher got it right when he said it is ridiculous that in the 21st century we are calling millionaire trust fund inbreds: Your Royal Highness.

Johnny Walker said...

I ended up watching bits of it (it was on at a much more social hour here). I enjoyed it. It’s a shared moment, as Ken said, and we have previous few positive ones of those.

@James Not sure where you got your information from, but it’s 100% wrong. Diana was the Princess of Wales, and it wasn’t just something the press made up (that was “Queen of our Hearts”).

Megan Markle will be referrred as a Duchess, because Harry was made a Duke before they got married. This, believe it or not, is actually a higher title than Prince/Princess in this instance. It’s vety complicated.

She’s also technically a Princess, but nobody will call her that because her major title is Duchess.

More detail:

Janet Ybarra said...

Melania's next wedding? President Voldemort has to find the original packaging she arrived in, in order to to make a valid return first.

Tammy said...

I too love (positive) shared events - can't wait for the World Cup next month! It's a shame Americans aren't into soccer, as it really is an extraordinary feeling when the world gets together like that (much more than the Olympics, IMO).

As for the wedding, it was broadcast live on three different channels here in Israel - you'd think we were still under British rule or something (if only!). I enjoyed it until the American bishop overstayed his welcome; my husband said they should play him off like they do at the Oscars :) Question for those who watched - why did people laugh when Harry said "I will"?

The Minstrel Boy said...

just saw this in this morning's esquire.

Buttermilk Sky said...

Ken, you should really check out the HBO coverage. They hired the couple who broadcast the Rose Parade, apparently so they could get the huge audience but with irony. For me the highlight was Cord Hosenbeck complaining that waiting for the wedding party to leave the church was "like waiting to use the unisex bathroom in a restaurant." Meanwhile Tish Cattigan (these names!) carried on reading irrelevant talking points from her script. It was royal-watching that only a republican could love. And you lucky Angelenos get to hear these two every year.

VP81955 said...

I wish the couple well -- they seem bright, decent people -- but as for royalty? Hey, it's easier than thinking.

Peter said...

The following is a genuine question and not me being snarky for the sake of it:

Why was Oprah Winfrey at the wedding?

I've searched online and there is no link or friendship or professional connection between her and either Meghan or Harry. This article also poses the question:

I'm not in any way implying Oprah is a narcissistic attention addict who was desperate to be seen by viewers worldwide at the wedding of two people she's never met.

Norm said...

Another great piece Ken.

However, comparing Tiny Tim's numbers to Harry's is unfair as the audience - as with so many other things - is split in a billion different directions in 2018.

What IS remarkable about Tiny Tim's 45-million is that NOBODY had a VCR in those day, as opposed to today when you can tally up all the "delayed" viewing.

The "novelty" after Diana and Kate's weddings has played itself out, which I'm sure has a lot to do with the numbers, even given the opportunity to view it at another time.

Mike Bloodworth said...

I was awake, but didn't watch. However, I didn't watch William and Kate's Royal Wedding either. My concern is for any potential offspring. Genetics, being the crapshoot it is. They could get the "best" of Harry and Meghan and be beautiful children. Or they could get the "worst" of both parents and wind up beyond homely. Maybe even scary-ugly! But, despite this, because their progeny will be rich and famous they'll probably get laid anyway.

Keith Nichols said...

Americans are still proud that our founding fathers in eschewing things British chose not to go the royalty route. But I suspect the Brits realize a healthy amount of tourist income from public interest in their royalty and its attendant pomp and traditions. Royal public ceremonies are great shows, and thousands of tourists still make their way to Buckingham Palace each week just to see the guards at the back door changing shift every day. And I think respect for the tradition and for the the royals themselves helped England hang together during WWII. The relatively little tax money sustaining the royals is well spent.

As far as watching Prince Harry's wedding, the TV coverage was a lot like horse-race coverage——hours of filler and relatively little event, although the wedding did last almost an hour.

Dr Loser said...

Duchess of Sussex?

Well, I suppose it sounds better than being the Countess of Inverness, or the Baroness of Arklow. Which would have been the fate of Lady Augusta Murray, the wife of George III's sixth son, Prince Augustus Frederick, the only previous Duke of Sussex.

Part of me wants to ask the obvious question: East Sussex, or West Sussex? But most of me does not.

Why on earth are you good people wating your time on this drivel?

E. Yarber said...

Even though Mr. Tim's marriage was one of The Tonight Show's biggest draws, Carson was personally so embarrassed by the stunt that he kept footage of it off of the innumerable clip shows the network presented in the years following. There's about ten seconds of it on the DVD collection.

VP81955 said...

If she wasn't, her picture wouldn't be on the cover of every "O" issue. She's a black, female, benevolent version of Trump.

Andrew said...

Couldn't help but think of this line from The Naked Gun (applying it to the British royalty in general):

"Protecting the Queen's safety is a task that is gladly accepted by Police Squad. No matter how silly the idea of having a queen might be to us, as Americans, we must be gracious and considerate hosts."

I personally think that Queen Elizabeth will turn out to be the mastermind of the Trump dossier conspiracy.

There's also a great meme out there online, of the famous painting of the Declaration of Independence being signed. The caption reads, "And this line here says we don't have to give a f--- about any goddam royal weddings."

On a more serious note, I've lived long enough to know that a glorious wedding does not always translate into a fulfilling and happy marriage.

Roger Owen Green said...

I don't care if people don't care. I only care if people say you SHOULDN'T care.
"Why them when there's so many other..."
By that standards, why do people care about Kardashians, LOL cats and the latest Bachelorette?

Cap'n Bob said...

My interest in the goings on of inbred Eurotrash is zilch. I went to the casino instead and racked up a $2100 jackpot on a slot machine.

As for the happy couple. I don't think Meghan understands, as Diana didn't, that she's not marrying a prince, she's marrying a job. A full-tine, your-life-isn't-your-own commitment that will drive her batty. I'm giving it seven years before she bails.

D McEwan said...

There are few things on earth I care about less than the Royal Snoozefest. Bill Maher accurately called it "An event so unimportant, even the Russians aren't fixing it." I was up at 4 am watching TV, but I was watching an English comedy, The Belles of St. Trinian's, with Alastair Sim hilarious in drag.

How many homeless people could have been housed and fed on the millions wasted on this valueless event? Hey, nest Royal to marry; do us all a favor and elope in secret.

Pete Grossman said...

On another note, Ken, if you're the show runner and/or creator of Suits, how freakin' ecstatic are you? It's a great show that had some traction and a following, but didn't get a whole lot of numbers - and now it's going to run in perpetuity! It's always going to be on somewhere and it's going to constantly be referred to, driving viewership. Talk about freakin' luck! Your take?

Pseudonym said...

Being an Australian, I see both sides of this. We regularly think about whether or not we should ditch the royal family and become a republic. But in the last 18 months or so, I (and a lot of my friends feel the same way) glanced across the Pacific, and realised that limited constitutional monarchy, especially one where your head of state lives somewhere else, has some distinct advantages.

Gary Glasscott said...

As an Englishman, I find myself in the minority locally when discussing the royals. I am a republican, but a pragmatic one in that my opinion on the lot of them can best be described as ambivalent.

What I did object to was the sheer level of stories being pumped out by the BBC. On several days in the last week, including the day of the terrible news in Texas, the first 5 or 6 stories on BBC breaking news were of the happy couple.

I guess an apparently kind and good young man marrying an apparently nice young woman is not going to cure cancer and end world peace, but it gives vast numbers of the world a wee jolt of happiness. It's not such a terrible thing, all things considered.

Mike Bloodworth said...

P.S. I forgot to include this with my original comment. I haven't seen Conan O'Brien since he went to cable. But, he used to do a bit called, "If They Mated." He took photos of celebrity couples and combined their various features to speculate as to what their children might look like. Usually to hilarious effect. I wonder if he still does the piece and if yes, did he do it with H.& M.?

Bill said...

You can't buy this. You can't write it and film it. It's worth millions.

California spend millions on advertising to get people to visit. So do many places in the world. Heritage Britain just needs to keep rolling out the pageantry.

Most Brits would keep it, and are pretty happy it's in the hands of two bright couples. Yes they get a lot of privilege and money, but you know it's big business. And many charities need the association.

To me it's harmless, and we would miss it if it was gone

Pat Reeder said...

I hold no animosity toward the royal newlyweds, who seem to be decent sorts, although the very idea of monarchy disgusts me. I thought we fought a Revolution so we wouldn't have to give a rat's ass what some inbred genetic lottery winner did. I also don't hold it against people who want to watch this for the same reasons they'd get up early to watch the Rose Parade (another thing I don't do). For some inexplicable reason, many people just get off on wedding porn.

But just from my own personal experience, every single time I've attended a wedding that was a big, expensive, elaborate production, the marriage went to hell and was over in less than five years. I've been happily married for over two decades and counting, and we got hitched in a park in front of a handful of friends. The entire ceremony, including the reception and the wedding dress, cost less than $500. When I see the over-the-top production of a royal wedding, to me, that's a sign that disaster of Biblical proportions is just over the horizon. To anyone who challenges that, I have just three words: "Charles and Diana."

VincentS said...

With you 100% on this one, Ken. Couldn't care less.

VP81955 said...

Somehow I couldn't envision Harry and Meghan sneaking off to some court in Wolverhampton to file wedding papers.

Dr Loser said...

@ D McEwan:
"How many homeless people could have been housed and fed on the millions wasted on this valueless event?"

A complicated question. Multiplying the cost of housing a homeless person by the numbers is basically a fool's game.

But then again, you're being spectacularly foolish here in the first place. A "valueless" event? It probably added hundreds of millions of dollars to the UK economy. Which are obviously not going to be used to house the homeless. But are still value, in some sort of way.

Also very mean-spirited, if I may say so.

"Dearly Beloved, We are gathered here today to celebrate ... what, this isn't going to go to my charity of choice? Sod off then. Live in sin. See if I care."

Mike Doran said...

Remember how they classified jobs on What's My Line?

The British Royal Family is salaried and deals in a service.

Their service is to be a real, live tourist attraction.
(Practically the only one that the United Kingdom really has any more.)

Meghan Markle, now the Duchess of Sussex, has traded one performing job for another - one that may not require her to learn pages of dialog, but still requires her to look her best when called upon, ready or not.

Smiling and waving all the time isn't working in the mines, by any means - but anything can become a slog, if you're not up to it.

Maybe in a few years, the Duchess of Sussex might want to star in Rural Juror II (which is almost as hard to say), but let it be for a while.

... and to all who are proclaiming their indifference to the whole Royal business - at such great length - hey, nobody said you had to watch (or read about) the bloody thing ...

Beth Thompson said...

I wasn't going to watch, didn't really care. But I was up at 4:00 a.m. anyway, so I turned to the wedding coverage to see the countryside, etc.

And then I got hooked.

It was a truly lovely, fairly scaled down event. Very tasteful. I kept waiting to be turned off enough by something to turn the channel, but it never happened. The church was beautiful, the singing was excellent, the ceremony short-ish but meaningful. The carriage ride through the town & up to the Castle was fun. Really a good morning of viewing in solidarity with all the other people having a good time at a nice event, while wearing pj's and drinking coffee. (And able to take bathroom breaks at will.)

Bryan Thomas said...

You are not alone. I couldn’t care less either.