#RoyalRealityCheck

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by Ally

Because you’d have to be living beneath a media-proof rock in the desert to not know that the Windsor family has welcomed a new member, I thought it’d be important to offer a few thoughts on His Royal Highness Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge. As a student at St Andrews, the Scottish university where Kate and Will met that is forever plagued by their media frenzy, I am constantly berated by talk of the two of them. Now that baby makes three I might as well gird my loins for a lifetime of hearing about this kid’s developmental phases (everything from potty training with gold toilet paper to winning his first cricket game). So! To keep your head, a few tips on resisting royalty.

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Royal Benchwarmers

There was a time in my life where I was obsessed with royalty. Maybe it was something to balance out growing up in the epicenter of democracy, but whatever the reason I couldn’t get enough tiaras and incestuous bloodlines (By the way, you know that Kate and Will are eighth cousins, right? #scarytruth).  I’m still nostalgic for all the biographies I read about Princess Di, and I’d be lying if I didn’t first hear about my future college because of Prince William. But that’s all past me- and it happened before Will even proposed to his future princess. This kind of mania wears off- especially if you spend some time abroad. You might think it’s the Brits that are the true devotees- but really it’s the media that have carved out a space for Royalty Love all over the world. A bunch of my British friends honestly know less about these guys than I do- and they don’t care. Monarchy is on its way out- it’s been saved because of the money generated from tourism and ceremonies. Many of us look to Britain as having some archaic form of government, but in reality they’re way ahead of us in terms of social benefits like health care and their multi-party system. The royals are more like living artifacts now- harbingers of a past era that stand in for reasons of nostalgia.

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Kate Is Not The Girl Next Door

Alright, let me explain myself here. Kate Middleton is being made to seem like part deux of the people’s princess, except the angle now is that she’s a commoner pulled up by her prince to love and lead. NO. This is an unfair portraiture. The Middletons are an extremely wealthy clan. Their children went to all the best schools; Marlborough College, Kate’s alma mater, is a place you could swap out for Hogwarts and not know the difference. You’ve probably heard that her parents are former flight attendants- and that’s true. But they went on to found a party business worth more than 30 million. So they’re not old money per se- but I’d like an argument to combat the fact that they have the resources to buy a snowy/snotty Welsh castle and not feel all that much of an economic dent. Hell, the list of things I (or anyone else) could do with 30 million is pretty damn long. If Kate Middleton hadn’t scored the top spot on the marrying up chart, she still would have enjoyed all the accouterments of an extremely blessed life- an existence filled with dropping thousands nightly on Dom Perignon in London clubs and dashing off to Morocco for weekend getaways from which she would return and complain about the temperamental weather. Kate would have been similar to who she is now without William’s help- she’s just a little more ‘English Rose’ personified with some expensive pantsuits and graceful publicized leaps from limos.  I know I’m being stereotypical- but this is how the upper class structures break down in Britain. One thing America is better about is the fact that we are far less divided by where we geographically come from.  In Britain, just by hearing someone’s accent you can tell if they’re from a posh place or not, you can find out which kinds of schools they went to. Kate Middleton is not your typical Brit- she speaks with an extremely posh accent that only certain boarding schools and areas can give to you, and that nasal twang was there before William. I’m not saying that people with money are bad in any way- it’s just that the demographic that Kate originates from is already extremely well-off, and the media construction of her as “Middle Class Suburban Suzy” is just not accurate. As a good friend of mine says, can you imagine if Kate went to school with us in our generation at St Andrews? No, because I would never have gotten the chance to ever interact with her. She would have whisked past me on her way to write her art history dissertation on Baroque angels in a wave of primrose scented perfume with nary a glance my way.

Watch for the amount of Georges about to pop up

According to the British Embassy, thousands of new parents worldwide were waiting to choose names because they wanted to hear what the new princeling would be dubbed before, god forbid, they chose a name different to that of the royal spawn (kill me). I’d just like to point out tthe fact that George II of Britain was the most horrifically stupid king that country ever had- except perhaps for King John whose kingship was so horrendous the Magna Carta had to be drawn up (or maybe Richard the Lionhearted, who got captured ON HIS WAY BACK from the Crusades and his mother almost bankrupted the country to bail him out). History nerd aside, George is the king that screwed up the 13 Colonies for England way back when- and yes, I mean the American Colonies. Good job, Kate and Will! You just named your son after the reason for the break up of the Empire he’s set to inherit!

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Be happy for them, but don’t get carried away

All jokes aside- the royals are good fun. There’s a reason that Helen Mirren got the Oscar for her performance in the movie The Queen, a reason the Olympics were held in London last year- and that has a lot to do with the Windsors. If I’m being honest,I’ll always bear a crush somewhere in my heart for William the former Etonian. In my first week at school, my friend and I used to troll past his former dorm, Sallies, trying to spot his room with bullet proof glass. But what makes me sad about this media maelstrom is that in its all consuming spotlight, we’re forgetting about so many other important things happening in the UK and the world. Like did you know that Prime Minister David Cameron just banned internet porn? And you thought the royal babe was the real news…..

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