March 3rd, 2021

Melting

The rules by which the Royal Family lives are very old rules- with no particular value except age. Chips Channon (see last post) thought it regrettable that Edward VIII who- for all his faults- was "modern" had to give way to his "boring" younger brother whose culture- if you can call it that- was the already outmoded culture of the country house set. This was over 80 years ago- and the Queen- who adored her father- has carried on in his style- and made the monarchy synonymous with huntin', shootin', fishin', horse racin' and that quaint folkloric anomaly The Highland Games- and it's all a good deal more fusty and moth-eaten now than it was in Chips's day- and why wouldn't Harry and Meghan feel stifled by it? Even William and Kate- who grit their teeth and submit to it when it's absolutely unavoidable- seem to prefer the company of her family to his.

Harry and Meghan want fame in its contemporary form. There's nothing right or wrong about this. The old style is old and the new style is new- and Oprah and James Corden are more fun to be around than the outwardly deferential courtiers with their double-barrelled names- and inevitably the new drives out the old.

Are we seeing the transformation of the British Monarchy or its demise? It could be either. Or the one leading to the other after another reign or two. When I think of Meghan and Harry and all the drama going on around them I get a mental image of a great block of ice, sitting out in the Californian sun, going drip, drip, drip.