Tag Archives: Buckingham Palace

The Duchess of Cambridge’s Deadly Poppy Field

Remember the scene from The Wizard of Oz when the Wicked Witch of the West nearly succeeds in offing Dorothy with the Deadly Field of Poppies?

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Well, McQueen has managed to capture that feeling of nearly dying in your sleep in a custom dress for Kate Middleton.  She wore it at a Buckingham Palace reception honoring Olympic and Paralympic athletes.

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The print is from the 2017 Pre-Spring/Summer Collection.  Its original dress form is this:

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It also comes in a blouse.

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Sarah Burton likely realized the overdose potential of this poppy print and Kate should have just said no to it in this much fabric.  It’s so grandmotherly, it is possible the cut died of natural causes, but the toxicology report suggests foul play.  The Daily Mail article has lots of photos of the fashion crime scene.

An opium overdose at least seems like it would be a more peaceful way to go than the death-by-boredom the Cambridges are inflicting on royal-watchers.  I couldn’t even make it all the way through the Canada tour which was as exciting as looking at a neighbor’s vacation pics.  In Tom Sykes’ article What’s Wrong With William and Kate’s Tour of Canada? he discusses the global disinterest in a tour that fizzled before it even started.  Once again the Cambridge’s insisted on having their private events, shutting out a shrunken press pack for a wine tasting, a sail, and whatever else happened while I had nodded off.

As interest in the future king and queen consort wanes, the question remains, could Prince William and Kate possibly be this dull, or are they attempting to have the private lives with public figure perks they crave by boring the masses into a deep slumber?  Kate’s dress and hair so amped up with add-ons she looked like her own bobblehead doll suggest she wanted to stand out in a crowd of dark hues and normal-headed people, but maybe the Paper Doll Duchess just wants to be noticed on her own terms, when she’s packing poppies.

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Fortunately for the Olympic and Paralympic Athletes at the Buckingham  Palace, Prince Harry followed behind Kate’s poppy field, so if anyone felt themselves glazing over from Kate’s small talk about George liking swimming, fencing and hockey and Charlotte already being an accomplished equestrian at 17 months, he could Glinda them right out of permanent sleep.  Not sure why gingers seem to get stuck with revival duties for the poppy-pickled, but long live Good King Harry because this whole Synchronized Head Tilt wouldn’t even qualify the Cambridges for the Feigned Interest competition at the Royal Olympics.

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British Royal Family Wants Change Back From Their 0 Fucks

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve come to conclude that the number of fucks given by the British Royal Family is precisely 0.

0 fucks about austerity measures in the UK.  0 fucks about demonstrating their value to the country they represent.  0 fucks about proving they are more than welfare recipients living in the largest most gilded trailers on the planet.

On June 15th, the most consistent of all 0 fuck-givers, Kate Middleton bagged on one of the monarchy’s most prestigious traditions, the Order of the Garter ceremony, presumably returning to the maternity leave for which she doesn’t work enough to qualify, to enjoy nannies, housekeepers and staff taking care of her stay-at-home duties so she can lounge in luxury and emerge occasionally for the warm loving embrace of LK Bennett sales.

The same day that Kate returned to her regularly scheduled pampered seclusion, Prince William gave 0 flying fucks about spending £16,000 ($25,173 in USD) on a roundtrip helicopter ride to the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary events, shaving a mere 50 minutes off each leg of the 90 minute drive.  A frequent giver of 0 fucks, Prince William is nine months into his training with East Anglian Air Ambulance and is expected to begin his new job as pilot in the spring that’s already passed. In response to outcries from the taxed masses, a Kensington Palace spokesperson indicated, “The Duke makes very careful decisions about transport plans and always seeks to travel in the most efficient and inexpensive way possible.”  Well, that makes sense, flying by helicopter is the most efficient and inexpensive travel option available these days, that’s why cars don’t exist anymore and even my flying monkeys take a Sikorsky any time they are forced to do my bidding.

On Saturday night, the Yorks gave 0 fucks about the hundred thousand or so protesting government austerity, spending cuts, and the stripping of public services and hosted a lavish belated Disney-themed birthday bash for 200 guests in honor of March baby Princess Eugenie at the Royal Lodge in Windsor where Prince Andrew enjoys royal rent-free housing benefits.  A seemingly fuck-depleted Princess Eugenie hired seven little people to be her Snow White costume accessories.  Her father, Prince Andrew, went as Prince Charming, giving 0 fucks that many women now will never again be able to refer to their beloved as their Prince Charming without throwing up a little in their mouths.  And the usually charming Prince Harry gave 0 fucks about the party’s Disney theme by showing up as Nintendo character, Super Mario.

One fuck was given on June 19th by Prince Philip who seemed unpleasantly surprised by the appearance of his ex-daughter-in-law, Sarah Ferguson at Ascot, but by virtue of the fuck being given by the unapologetic Duke of Edinburgh who gives no fucks on principal, it immediately vaporized into a noxious gas which was then blamed on the horses.

This week the Royal Household Annual Accounts was released.  As the rest of the nation faces austerity measures, Buckingham Palace is shielded from cuts to public spending under the terms of the Sovereign’s Grant which ensures that the amount the Queen receives can never be less than the year before.  In the past year, the Queen’s income from the Crown Estate rose from £36.1 million to more than £40 million.

Prince Charles’ expense report reveals he is paying £2.965 million (roughly $4.667 million in USD) in allowance to Princes William and Harry and Kate who combined undertook a mere 8 percent of the Royal Family’s official engagements for 2014 and will likely account for even less this year.  The lump sum allowance covers royal expenses such as staff, travel and wardrobe but doesn’t indicate what exactly the money was spent on and how much went to Kate and William who are attempting to live private lives while still reaping all the benefits of being royal.  It doesn’t make much sense for a woman who wants to be a stay-at-home mother and a helicopter pilot to have a full-time royal staff if they aren’t undertaking much in the way of royal duties.  Kate doesn’t need a royal wardrobe either to watch the royal nanny take care of her children, maybe she could auction off what she’s amassed to date for charity so at least those who accepted her as a royal patron could reap some benefit.  The Cambridges should also give up their royal protection which costs taxpayers undisclosed millions and their apartment in Kensington Palace which was renovated at taxpayer expense since regular housewives and helicopter pilots have no need for either.  It’s hardly “value for the money” if all William and Kate do is take.  Maybe if Kate and William had to live like everyone else in the UK, they might actually start giving a fuck and the UK might finally start seeing some change.

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The Hidden Expenses of Prince William’s Private Pilot Gig

In the backlash over the recent $6.8 million Kensington Palace renovations for Prince William and Kate, many are left bewildered as to how Prince William and Kate could up and move to the Anmer Hall country estate gifted to Prince William by the Queen.  Those of course are the people who haven’t been paying attention. We welcome all to the Land of the Disenchanted with open arms, we’ve been expecting you.  Please make yourselves comfortable, someone will by shortly to collect your Royal Wedding souvenir spoons and those Kate mugs you claimed were ironic but secretly loved.

Today the Royal Household Annual Accounts officially come out.  Obviously there are those who have lashed out over the cost of Kensington Palace renovations and Prince William’s and Kate’s decision to live at Anmer Hall so Prince William can play helicopter pilot, but perhaps the most interesting figures that come from this are the ones that won’t ever be listed on any report.  Prince William’s decision to postpone royal duties is going to cost taxpayers a fairly large sum of money.

In order to protect Anmer Hall, an estimated fifteen officers will need to be hired to guard the grounds around the clock, costing taxpayers an additional $2.5 million per year.  That’s what the taxpayers shelled out annually to secure the couple’s rented farmhouse in Anglesey when the couple decided they wanted the privacy of living off base.  At Kensington Palace, there is already a security team in place.

Also at Kensington Palace is the recently installed super-tricked out panic room and state-of-the-art video surveillance.  It’s likely Anmer Hall is being similarly outfitted, since it will be their primary if not their “official” residence.  The average panic room runs around $1.7 million, likely the second in line to the throne would get an above average panic room.  Perhaps a security upgrade is one of the reasons why Anmer Hall isn’t ready yet.  Security costs are paid for by the taxpayer and aren’t released apparently for the British Royal Family’s safety.  Because even though an insane nut job targeting the Royal Family can count the number of protection officers in published photos and read about the special mesh curtains designed to catch shattering glass in most major magazines around the world, knowing how much each protection officer makes an hour would somehow facilitate their heinous plans.

Anmer Hall is approximately a hundred and twenty miles away from London and a hundred and fifty-two miles away from Berkshire where Kate’s parents live.  Likely Kate will make many escapes to stay with her parents like she did when Prince William was an RAF pilot and they lived in Anglesey.  Now that she has Prince George, the cost for securing her parents’ Berkshire home for the third in line runs taxpayers in the neighborhood of $17,000 a day.

Of course, what’s distance when the Queen allocates part of the Sovereign’s Grant to lease you a helicopter instead of blowing it on needed repairs to Buckingham Palace?  A lot of that priceless artwork in danger of being destroyed by a leaky roof has been around forever, a lot of people have already seen it and there are probably some pictures of that stuff somewhere in case it gets ruined to remind people what it looked like.

In addition to the cost of the helicopter lease, there are operational costs such as fuel and oil, maintenance, a pilot if Prince William isn’t doing the chauffeuring.  But the helicopter will come in handy now that Kate will be further away from six of her seven charities.  If the seventh, East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices, drops by the house and asks her to do something, Kate can always hop in the helicopter and tell the pilot to step on it.  That kind of convenience is priceless.

If Prince William really wants his life to be private then taxpayers shouldn’t have to cover these outrageous sums.  No taxpayer-funded protection officers, travel expenses and staff.  If he really wants a “normal life”, he should be afforded the opportunity to live just like everyone else.  Maybe a glimpse into actual normal life would be enlightening to the Petulant Prince.

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William the Reluctant

Prince William turned 32 on Saturday.  The father, husband and second in line to the throne of England is still no closer to figuring out what he wants to be when he grows up despite the birthright he still views as a birthwrong.  Today he wants to be a helicopter pilot, perhaps tomorrow he’ll want to be a cowboy.  Prince William is a man of many interests, none of which appear to be his role as a future king.

As a child, Prince William would notoriously stomp his feet and scream, “I don’t want to be king.”  As a teenager his outbursts against his inherited role were chalked up to teenage rebellion.  He resented both the media and his protection detail, shouting at both, “Why won’t you just let me be a normal person?”  When Wills aged past the age of hormonally-explained dissent, Prince Charles attempted to instill in him a sense of duty, resorting to getting third parties like protection officers to convince the petulant prince to embrace his destiny as king.  Now thirty-two, Prince William’s defiance involves less kicking, but he still appears just as reluctant to accept his destiny, a destiny for which his own mother believed that his brother Harry was better suited.

It’s anticipated that Prince William will soon announce that he’s accepted a position as a pilot for East Anglian Air Ambulance and that he, Kate and Prince George will ditch their digs in Kensington Palace which just cost taxpayers $6.8 million to renovate in order to take up residence at Anmer Hall, a hundred and twenty miles north of London.  So much for Kensington Palace being their primary residence.  So much for assuming more royal responsibilities.  So much for a lot of things.

The helicopter pilot gig has been maybe happening since April.  The timing of the announcement coinciding with the release of the Kensington Palace renovation report makes me even more suspicious that William the Reluctant is becoming William the Destroyer, blasting as many holes in the monarchy as he can before he attempts to sink it.  Perhaps the Republican Movement simply isn’t moving fast enough for his taste so Prince William is trying to annihilate the monarchy from the inside.

Throughout his life, Prince William has approached his role as future king with contempt that’s worn many veils, but the underlying issue has always remained the same, Prince William despises being watched.  Realistically, there will always be some level of interest in Prince William either for who he will be or who he could have been.  Whether historically remembered as William the Reluctant or William the Destroyer, the only privilege Wills wasn’t born with was the option to be irrelevant.

This past year was labeled a transitional year by the Palace to explain why Prince William, now in his thirties, is still balking over becoming a full-time royal.  Perhaps like his wife, Kate, Prince William is allergic to things he doesn’t want to do.  Prince William couldn’t even make it through a ten-week agriculture course at Cambridge without taking two vacations.  The royal tour of Australia and New Zealand was laughably light on scheduled events, his calendar of official engagements has been as sparse as the hair on top of the heir’s head and now he’s taking another giant step away from the throne with this decision to play pilot.  He can’t have the perks without the responsibilities, he’s either in or he’s out.  So why is he still being considered for the job of king when he so clearly doesn’t want the only part of it that’s beneficial to the people of the UK?

There are those who believe that if Prince William removes himself from the line of succession, the British Monarchy wouldn’t survive, an opinion rumored to be shared by the Queen.  It’s also been suggested that William only presently endures his loathsome role out of deference to his grandmother.  Wait, so Wills has actually been on his best behavior?  I shudder to think what his worst behavior looks like but I imagine it involves plushy orgies, paintball tournaments in Buckingham Palace and Wills riding around on an armored tiger with his robe open and a butter knife raised above his head proclaiming, “I have the power.”

Whether he leaves or stays, it appears more and more likely that the end of the British monarchy will come at the hands of Mr. Kate Middleton.  Prince William’s decision to postpone his destiny by at least another year undermines the future of the British monarchy as taxpayers struggle to see the value in a prince who is more interested in leading a private life than becoming king.  Money from the Sovereign’s Grant that should be spent on upkeep of the palaces is instead being allocated to appease the petulant prince and his lazy wife to the outrage of many taxpayers.  The new helicopter that will be used to shuttle the Duke and Duchess of Doolittle to official engagements from Anmer Hall comes out of the Sovereign’s Grant despite Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace being in urgent need of repairs.  Priceless art and artifacts are in danger of being destroyed by leaky roofs while the whims of Prince William and Kate are being catered to.  If the Firm is unable to adequately manage itself, how effectively can it serve the people of the United Kingdom?  Should the future of the monarchy really be in the hands of someone who is so disinterested in it?  Perhaps it’s better to take their chances with a King Harry who genuinely has a sense of duty rather than a man who is woefully unprepared to be first in line to the throne and take over the Duchy of Cornwall.

I just want to say a quick thanks to gingerboy24 of Royal Gossip for posting the link to my blog.  I’ve tried to join Royal Gossip in the past to thank individuals for their support, but the forum wisely wouldn’t have me as a member.  And of course, thank you to temi for always being wonderful amazing you!

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Kate Courts More Controversy

I feel bad, Kate Middleton has created two huge shiny new controversies for me to blog about and I didn’t get her anything.  But what do you get the girl who does next to nothing?  In honor of Kate’s new ass bodyguard, perhaps I should send the Duchmess a bag of M&Ms printed with a rendering of her bare ass?  I played around on the mymms site with a rendition of the Bild image ***Bare Bum Warning*** and Kate’s exposed rear on the candy that melts in your mouth and not on your hands would look something like this:

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Of course, mymms probably has some rule against making ass candy.  Maybe her brother’s custom marshmallow company, Boomf, would do it, though.  Never hurts to ask.

Pretty much every media outlet is running the story that Kate Middleton will now have a “female minder” to stop her bared bum from being photographed.  There are so many things wrong with this story that I’ve been curious if this is some elaborate news prank because if it’s actually true, then the Royal Advisors have been secretly replaced with Androids by the Republican movement.  I can only assume Pippa was the prototype for these Androids.

Some media outlets are calling this female minder Kate’s butt bodyguard which is terribly inelegant.  I prefer bootyguard.  The bootyguard’s job will be to keep new photos of Kate’s bare ass out of newspapers, magazines and online.  So basically this bootyguard’s function will be to cover Kate’s ass.

Already I’m picturing some slow-motion movie sequence where this poor bootyguard sees Kate’s hemline lift with a breeze, turns and sees cameras poised, there’s a POV close-up of a photographer’s finger slowly bending as it starts to press the shutter release and the bootyguard yells, “Noooooooooooooooo” as she dives in front of Kate’s bared bum to take the photographic bullet.

Stories have been quoting The Star’s source, “Kate will now be watched all the time.  We can’t afford any more embarrassing photos like this.”

Kate, known as Kate Middlebum at Marlborough College because she would moon boys to become more popular, had an identical bare bum flash at the Calgary airport right after her wedding and several other embarrassing exposures in the three years she’s been a duchess.  By hiring a bootyguard, Buckingham Palace is admitting Kate is incapable of keeping herself covered.  So either she’s so incompetent, she’s unable to crack the correlation between windy conditions and lifted hemlines and/or incapable of putting on her own underwear or she’s an exhibitionist who gets perverse pleasure in exposing herself to strangers.  Whether the cause of the issue is incompetence or exhibitionism, apparently it’s so deeply ingrained that the recourse was a bodyguard for her ass.  The hiring of the professional ass minder of course means that when Kate exposes herself next time, there will be an appropriate scapegoat to blame since the wind has repeatedly refused to surrender itself to the proper authorities.

Most of us had already gotten all the bare ass puns out of our system so what Buckingham Palace has done is refocus our attention firmly back on Kate’s bum by creating this position.  There’s a whole new wave of internet ridicule, plus the occasional cheeky response from men who wouldn’t mind watching Kate’s ass all day like this one that appeared after a Jezebel story:

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Another commenter remarked:

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The bootyguard will also reportedly be employed for private and public outings.  Most of Kate’s outings are private ones, she logged only four official events this year before the New Zealand/Australia Royal Vacation Tour marred by two separate flashing incidents and only one following her disappearance for five weeks out of the public eye.  The British media has restrictions with private photographs so really this around-the-clock butt watch seems a bit asinine.

Buckingham Palace is said to have given the response it doesn’t comment on security.  The classification of the bootyguard as security means that the position would be funded by the taxpayer, not the Royal Family.  So not only are Kate’s continuous indecent exposures the fault of what the Palace would like us to believe is a paparazzi/wind conspiracy, but now taxpayers have to pay the salary of an ass minder?  Seriously, did underwear even get batted around as an answer to the Commando Kate Dilemma?  Taxpayers also funded the nine person security team that protected the duchess when she broke an international boycott by attending her cousin’s wedding at the Dorchester, one of the properties owned by the Sultan of Brunei.

The Sultan of Brunei has recently enacted law to increase the punishment for homosexuality from ten years of imprisonment to death by stoning, amputation penalties for theft and the death penalty for adultery.  Outraged celebrities have been calling for a boycott of the luxury properties owned by the Sultan, including the Dorchester Hotel in London, The Beverly Hills Hotel (including the famed Hollywood hotspot The Polo Lounge) in Beverly Hills, The Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles, Le Meurice in Paris and Coworth Park in Ascot where Princes William and Harry played polo this weekend.  Those who are boycotting properties owned by the Sultan include Jay Leno, Ellen Degeneres, Richard Branson, Ryan Seacrest, Stephen Fry, Clive Davis, Jackie Collins, Paul McCartney, Stella McCartney, Sharon Osbourne, Anna Wintour, Vogue’s editors and numerous others, including Kate’s soul sister Kim Kardashian.

The Duchess arrived to the wedding in a blacked-out SUV which drove into an underground parking lot where she snuck through a side entrance to avoid the press, perhaps hoping she’d get away with this without media catching on, after all she’s pulled off secret ski vacations.  Her security being upped from her usual four to nine shows how aware the Royal Family was about the effect of her presence would have at a hotel in the press because of its links to human rights violations and the added security concerns of being in a venue that has sparked so much outrage.  A Daily Mail source revealed, “The wedding was a big boost for the hotel.  It shows that the royals will not let the Brunei business keep them away.”

Her attendance was seen as giving her royal support to the Sultan’s hotel.  And taxpayers paid for five additional Scotland Yard protection officers, the price of Kate courting controversy.

Kate went to the Dorchester for her cousin’s wedding.  On the one hand, it’s family, but on the other hand it’s family and family understands.  My family knows I’m passionate about animal rights, education and gay rights and I stand by my convictions.  There are stores where I won’t shop and products I won’t buy if I’m uncomfortable with how the company does business or I’m bothered by how the product is manufactured.  Of all my boycotts, Barilla was the hardest.  The chairman made some anti-gay comments in September 2013 which they have since had to back-pedal on because of the consumer backlash.  It was hard to go cold-turkey on Barilla, there’s probably still grocery store security footage of me standing in front of the pasta section wailing, “Whhhyyyyyy????  Why do you have to be so closed-minded, delicious pasta makers?  Whhhyyyyyy?”  But I just couldn’t support Barilla, especially given that the few recipes I actually know how to make were taught to me by a gay friend.  The reason why people boycott products and services is because boycotting works.

As much as I disagree with Kate’s support of the hotel through her attendance, I find Prince William’s and Prince Harry’s attendance at the Audi Polo Challenge at Coworth Park even more reprehensible.  At least Kate had the courtesy to try to avoid being detected, the Princes openly engaged in the match.  At least I think sneaking in is better, honestly it’s really hard to tell anymore which is the worst of the worst, it’s like 50 Shades of Unconscionable with that family.  This isn’t the first time Wills and Kate have been linked to countries accused of heinous human rights violations, the Maldives where the couple vacationed earlier this year has been criticized for its punishing rape victims for the crime of pre-marital sex, its harsh religious restrictions and laws making homosexuality punishable by death.  In May Prince Harry also broke the ban on the Dorchester hotel by hosting the 10th anniversary of his Sentebale Charity there recently.  In March it was announced that lithographs of twenty of Prince Charles’ watercolor landscapes are earmarked to be displayed at the Dorchester Hotel as part of the revamp slated to be completed at the end of the year.  Really human rights violations don’t seem to be a big deal for the British Royal Family.

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Monsters

“Monsters are real, and ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win.” – Stephen King

If anyone out there is looking for some royal digs to call home, Bran Castle is now up for sale.  For a cool $80 million and the approval of the current owners, you can enjoy the drafty coziness of a 57 room castle with underground tunnels and secret passageways perched on a 200 foot tall rock base between Transylvania and Wallachia.

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Bran Castle and local lore about the strigoli served as inspiration for Bram Stroker’s Dracula. While tales of paranormal vampiric beings have a rich history rooted in ancient Babylonian blood-sucking ghosts, Bram Stoker’s Dracula was the first to give vampires the ability to change into bats.  The result was terrifyingly captivating, people still link Bran Castle with the undead despite the castle’s tenuous ties.

The Dracula character was inspired by Vlad the III nicknamed Vlad the Impaler posthumously because of his favorite form of torture.  Vlad the Impaler didn’t kick back with blood cocktails, he was more into perching victims high on top of stakes, torching weak and disabled guests, cooking children and feeding them to their mothers, forcing men to consume their wives breasts and of course impaling anyone who was left standing.  While Vlad was historically the worst host ever of dinner parties, he never actually owned Bran Castle which was home to Hungarian royalty.  Vlad was imprisoned at Bran Castle somewhere between one night and two months but because of its literary association, Bran Castle is a major tourist draw, getting approximately 450,000 visitors a year.  Buckingham Palace sees 50,000 visitors a year.  To be fair, Buckingham Palace is only open to tourists 2 months out of the year, but conversely is far easier to get to than remote Bran Castle.

So for your $80 million, you are getting a castle Bram Stoker read about where a historically sick puppy slept as a prisoner to which very pale people flock to wander around with struggling actors dressed as family-friendly vampires.  So basically, you get to be the proud owner your very own Goth Disney.  Unfortunately none of those 57 rooms are bathrooms, so it’s probably more desirable real estate for the undead.

From the fictional vampires of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, to the cruelly dubbed PromBat, bats are making an unseasonably strong showing in headlines.  Rihanna is being accused of having a monstrous streak cloaked beneath her Barbadian beauty, seemingly mocking one of her fans via social media not once, not twice, but three times because of her prom attire.

First the side by side with the unhappy face:

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Then the follow-up with the Wu-Tang Clan logo:

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And finally pointing out she’s just sharing the ridicule, she didn’t coin any of the cruelty:

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High school student Alexis Carter was thrilled to wear a dress just like the one Rihanna sported on a red carpet to her Hollywood-themed prom.  The teen had posted pics of herself on social media where PhotoShoppers made some modifications to the images and reposted the pics, dubbing Alexis Carter PromBat.  My heart breaks for the sixteen-year-old who was so excited to wear the fashion homage to Rihanna, then became the target of cyberbullies with Rihanna eventually Tweeting the pics.  According to the teen, “Now everyone is bashing me.”

I can’t imagine ridiculing a fan like that, especially a teen, which is why I hope something got lost in translation, Rihanna appears to be making fun of one of her own fans.  Whatever our medium, artists are driven by a compulsion to create and we hope to reach just one other fellow human being.  I am so deeply honored and humbled any of you are even reading this.  Hi, temi!  Your support means the world to me, it’s such a profound gratitude, I just can’t fathom at what point Rihanna would have lost hers.

Sadly, Alexis Carter was the victim of cyberbullying before the pics got to Rihanna, they had been taken off social media, doctored by PhotoShoppers and reposted with the PromBat hashtag.  Rihanna’s Tweets with her more than 35 million followers have made the ridicule go supernova for the teen.

Perhaps the internet has desensitized us to the idea that there are actual people with actual feelings behind the online handles and hashtags and we’re becoming drained of our own humanity.

What is cyberbullying other than another form of torture?  It’s linguistic vampirism. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, e-mails, and WordPress are just some of the ways in which technology has imbued us with the ability to harm other human beings without even having to leave the comforts of home.

There was a time when trolls were creatures of folk lore who collected tolls or were ridiculous looking dolls with brightly colored hair that were in need of a deep condition.  Now we encounter them in every online comment section, some of us are accused of being trolls if we dare offer a differing opinion.

What happened with Alexis Carter represents the worst of what social media can do.  Teenage victims of cyberbullying are twice as likely to commit suicide.  Hopefully Alexis is strong enough to withstand the public ridicule that has come from trying to honor someone she once greatly admired.  Sadly the internet brings out the worst in us sometimes and yet the monster is of our creation.  The internet can’t be stopped with a stake through the heart, fire or a silver bullet, it’s not vulnerable to garlic, crosses or wolfsbane, we have created a monster that’s virtually impossible to destroy.

The question remains, how far is too far when it comes to Freedom of Speech?  Do you think Rihanna owes Alexis Carter an apology?

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Secret Ski Vacation Rumor

A few weeks ago, I got a tip that Kate Middleton and Prince William were planning a secret ski get-away following the Australia Tour.  I dismissed it as some propaganda whispering, when I get gossip which seems unlikely even for this royal bunch, I usually assume there’s some amount of fabrication to it.  After all, would the Lazy Duo actually try to squeeze in yet another vacation given all the bad press they’ve received this year for their luxury get-aways?  That would require a sense of entitlement and impertinence at a level akin to pathological narcissism.

As public figures, Kate Middleton and Prince William are often the target of rumors, some of them true, some maliciously fabricated and others that remain more difficult to confirm or refute like the one that’s been circulating for a few years now about Kate’s alleged secret 2006 abortion when she and Prince William were dating which was rumored to be one of the contributing factors to their 2007 break-up. Unfortunately the more deceitful PR tactics are employed, the more voraciously the press will become to expose any concealed truths.

Because the UK press does not enjoy the same Freedom of Speech that the US press does, sometimes unflattering photos or tidbits of info are leaked across the pond by frustrated or disenchanted members of the media.  And sometimes people with grudges just make crap up because they’re bitter and bored.  It seems a little silly that people actually bother to fabricate gossip about the British Royal Family, that group has so much riveting dysfunction, if they ever did a reality show called The Real Housewives of Windsor, we would all be watching it.  But it happens.  And sometimes a dismissed rumor seems more credible than once believed.

Tonight, I noticed a comment on Kate Middleton: Duchess or Diva that I found fascinating.  My2Pence noted:

Prince William spotted in the private SwissAir lounge at Chicago/O’Hare on the way to Memphis. Presumably, he would only be allowed in that lounge if he had flown SwissAir into Chicago. Proof they snuck off on their skiing holiday? From what I can tell (and I could be searching their site incorrectly), SwissAir doesn’t fly from London to Chicago, but they DO fly from Zurich to Chicago.

And in a follow-up, My2Pence stated:

What surprises me is that the majority of royal reporters (and boards) seem to be ignoring it. Tanna hinted that they’d gone on holiday straight out of Australia but no one engaged with him about it. No photos of them arriving back in the UK after NZ/AU which is also odd. William flying SwissAir would seem to be proof that they went skiing straight out of Australia (with or without George) but everyone is pretending this didn’t happen?

Despite having heard the exact same rumor weeks ago about the couple going on a secret Middleton ski vacation after the New Zealand/Australia Tour and finding the report that Prince William was hanging out in the SwissAir Lounge at O’Hare on the way to the Memphis wedding odd, it still didn’t occur to me that Prince William and the Duchess of Doolittle could actually have the impudence to squeeze in yet another vacation until My2Pence made the connection.  That should pretty much settle any lingering doubts any of you might have as to whether or not I’m a natural blonde.

I imagine to the Cambridges, it’s such a bummer when protesting peasants wreck your annual ski vacation plans but did they actually try to sneak one in under the radar below the stink-eye line?  My initial reaction was no way would they attempt such an ill-advised trip, but maybe the genius of the plan was its unfathomable audacity.  Grumblings about the cost of security footed by taxpayers are being acknowledged in media articles estimating UK citizens are paying approximately $84,000 in security costs for this Memphis vacation for Princes William and Harry.  I estimated that the Maldives get-away cost taxpayers around $114,000.  Plus there’s Kate’s vacation to Mustique earlier this year and Prince William’s hunting trip to Spain.  With such intense scrutiny over the cost of the Royal Family to taxpayers, perhaps William and Kate tried to avoid even more security costs from reaching the public’s awareness and yet another vacation souring any positive press they earned during the New Zealand/Australia tour.

I did some follow-up research on Prince William’s selection of the SwissAir lounge and O’Hare seems to be the connecting city of choice for most international flights originating in Europe, so the connecting airport offers no clue as to the city of origin for Prince William’s flight, but there remain other details which make this rumor seem plausible.

  • There weren’t any released photos of the Heathrow arrival of the Royal Trio following the New Zealand/Australia Tour.  At least I didn’t see any and trust me, I looked.  Now that Buckingham Palace is counting travel time as official engagements in order to pad Lazy Katie’s numbers due to the PR backlash against UK’s Laziest Royal, arrivals and landings should be a matter of public record.  Travel arrangements can’t fall under the protection of privacy if they are being counted as official workdays.
  • No photos of Kate Middleton have been published since the Australia tour on April 25th, nothing in the press to suggest where she’s been since she boarded the flight to Sydney.  We’ve all been assuming she’s been locked away inside Kensington Palace but there’s no evidence to support that.
  • Prince William wasn’t seen since he boarded the flight to Sydney on April 25th until he was sitting in the SwissAir Lounge with his friends at O’Hare Airport en route to Memphis on Thursday May 1st enjoying some nachos and hot wings.
  • Why the SwissAir lounge and not say the British Airways lounge also located in Terminal 5 of O’Hare Airport?  Granted, when you’re a Prince, you can have your choice of lounges but it’s very possible his staff arranged the logistics of the layover directly with the airline.  Perhaps the Prince was flying SwissAir because he really was on the rumored secret Swiss ski vacation with Kate?
  • There’s already a pic of Prince William taken while onboard a flight to the Dallas Fort Worth Airport on Niraj Tanna’s Twitter page.  And yet no one snapped a single a pic or even commented on his presence until O’Hare?  Connecting at a different airport on the flight out, so is it possible now he’s actually returning to the UK?
  • Neither the Duke or Duchess of Cambridge showed up to the funeral of Mark Shand, brother to Prince Charles’ wife Camilla, on May 1st, despite a statement released by their reps that they were devastated by his death.  The Duke of Cambridge flew to Memphis on May 1st and there was no explanation offered as to why the Duchess of Cambridge could not attend.  Is it possible they weren’t even in the country at the time which is why it wasn’t feasible for the Duke to catch a later flight and still arrive in Memphis two days ahead of the wedding?

It is possible this secret ski vacation is just idle gossip that’s been idling for the last few weeks but it will be interesting to see if anything else emerges.  Could the Lazy Duo successfully pull off the same kind of secret ski getaway that Prince Harry got caught attempting when he and Cressida tried to sneak off to Kazakhstan in March?  Absolutely, Prince Harry only got busted a couple of days into his secret vacation because of a fellow skier with a camera phone, it’s possible the Duke and Duchess were more cautious, perhaps choosing a location where they would be guaranteed privacy, with trusted staff members being required to sign a Confidentiality/Non-Disclosure Agreement.

What do you guys think?

redheart

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When Dove Gray Cries

Prince William, Prince George and Kate Middleton are presently enjoying a “Rest Day”, having spent their Easter attending church service at St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Sydney and bringing Prince George to the Taronga Zoo.  Wow, church and the zoo?  On the same day?  It’s madness, I tell you.  No wonder they needed some time off today.

For Easter mass, Kate Middleton chose to celebrate the glorious Resurrection of Christ in Alexander McQueen.  Dove gray Alexander McQueen, a matronly cut in a hue that is the unofficial Spokescolor for Sadness.   This is what it sounds like when dove gray cries:

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While most of us were in Easter candy comas, Kate was in a self-induced accessories coma with a beige suede Alexander McQueen clutch, a storm gray Jane Taylor hat and cream colored LK Bennett pumps.

Who pops a neutral with another neutral?  For Easter mass, most women wear bright colors and floral patterns in celebration of the Resurrection and the blossoming of spring.  This outfit is far from celebratory, it looks like something a woman would borrow from her Mom for an assistant bank manager job interview.

Where are the Queen’s jewels?  Thus far we’ve seen the fern brooch, worn a second time I’m assuming because it was too camouflaged by the buttons of Kate’s Lonely Hearts Club Band coat.

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If anything could wake up this outfit a bit, it would be a magnificent statement piece from the Queen’s collection.  Did the Queen only trust Kate with the fern brooch given to her by the Women of Auckland in 1953?

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When Princess Diana visited Australia in 1983 she was dripping in Royal jewels.  She had so many gems with her, she was using them as headbands.

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There were magical moments where Princess Diana looked breathtaking and regal, something the Duchess of Doolittle hasn’t been able to emulate despite all of her Single White Female attempts of trying to cash in on her late mother-in-law’s iconic status without the effort of earned adoration.  This tour is far more casual, it’s really more Royal Vacation on the taxpayer’s dime than a Royal Tour.  For all its hype, the success of this tour has been resting on the shoulders of a Lazy Duo, a show that’s not drawing the same kind of crowds.  In a National Post article written by Gordon Rayner of The Telegraph, it was noted:

So far the crowds that have turned out to see them in Sydney have been underwhelming; only 3,000 were there to see them arrive at the Opera House, compared with a crowd of 200,000 that turned out to see Charles and Diana in Melbourne in 1983.

It seems the world is far less interested in seeing carefully staged glimpses of the Royal Vacation than was anticipated.  The designer who made the pale yellow floral dress Kate wore to Taronga Zoo asked to not be named.

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Fascinating since we’ve been assured by the Buckingham Palace Press Office, the Kate Effect is so strong, it can sell out a single item in minutes and make a designer’s career.  Maybe the designer knew Kate intended to pair the dress with these shoes which look like they smell of feet sweat, fake tanner, patchouli and wasted youth:

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The zoo engagement was arranged so Prince George could meet the bilby renamed in his honor.  As always, Prince George nailed his Blue Steel pose.  And in the presence of carrot-weilding royals, the animals struck curious poses:

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Meanwhile, Prince William and Lazy Katie who appear happy to use Prince George for photo ops to suit their PR needs are objecting to some paparazzi photos taken of Kate and Prince George on the grounds of Government House at Yarralumla in Canberra.  The deal Buckingham Palace has with the press is they don’t take these private moment photos of them and in return, the Palace leaks some information about the Royal Family so they can sell their papers and magazines.  The paparazzi photos have already been seen on several Australian news channels despite the photos being taken without the permission of the Duke or Duchess.  Right or wrong on the part of the paparazzi, it definitely shows Australia has no intention of playing by Prince William’s rules, the whole ‘Doing It His Way’ as one article laughingly proclaimed, confusing the Royal’s insolence with independence.

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Lazy Katie Works… On Her Tan

Well, Kate Middleton is off for another week-long sun-filled get-away, this time with husband, Prince William.  The couple, dubbed “UK’s Laziest Royals” earlier this year by the press (how funny would a Coat of Arms be for that title, maybe something with a Coppertone bottle and some High Street shopping bags) arrived in Maldives at 9:40am Thursday.

It’s been a whole month since Lazy Katie has had a proper vacation and the poor girl must be utterly exhausted from her three whole engagements this year.  After the National Portrait Gallery appearance discussed in the previous post “Worth the Wait?”, she opened an Art Room at the Northolt High School where she played with her hair a lot and tilted her head, probably contemplating some great sociological issue like whether or not she should get bangs (she totally should).

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She did the obligatory photo with children picture, even though the children didn’t appear to be particularly riveted.

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Then on February 17th, she bravely nodded her head a lot during some celebrity small talk at the Queen’s Buckingham Palace Dramatic Arts reception.  Let’s just dispense with the formalities and give Kate the Nobel Peace Prize right now.

With Lazy Katie’s tan from her Mustique vacation still not faded, this so-called romantic get-away with Prince William is odd timing.  They just had a couple’s night out over the weekend at Louise Aubrey-Fletcher’s birthday party at Bunga Bunga.  That looked super-romantic, the way Kate was trying to figure out what was going on while Prince William was half-way to the car.

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Don’t worry, she caught up to him while he was getting in the car and didn’t have to call Pippa for a ride home.

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This Maldives vacation is also strange considering William is supposed to be presently taking a ten-week agriculture course at Cambridge.  I’m sure someone within Prince Charles’ press office is shaking a Magic 8 Ball to come up with a perfectly valid explanation why Prince William doesn’t have any classes this week.

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Now, I know it can be stressful when the care of your child is being transferred from the old nanny to the new nanny, there could be all of those tedious questions, like what are those prosthetic stomaches doing in the linen closet.  But come on, how much longer before eye-rolling provoked by these vacation announcements starts doing some serious ocular damage?  Seriously, I’ve been getting these weird spasms around my left eye, I’m afraid I’m going to wind up needing an eye patch and one of those big white plastic cones dogs have to wear after surgery.

The Lazy Duo can manage to squeeze in a week’s worth of frolicking in the ocean but they insult the Maori King by refusing to grant him more than 90 minutes in their upcoming tour of Australia and New Zealand?  King Tuheitia has said no thanks to the quickie and has refused to meet with them.  They’ve also ticked off another Maori leader by opting not to include historically significant Waitangi on the tour.  Perhaps they felt it was just too ripe for Waity in Waitangi headlines.  There’s already a strong movement within New Zealand to cut ties with the British Crown and Australia is peeved New Zealand might beat them to the punch of full independence.  This seventeen day royal tour, which has three scheduled “Rest Days”, has received a lot of press for Kate’s anticipated longer hemlines and borrowed jewels but thus far it looks like Prince William and Kate have packed a little too lightly when it comes to good will.

Three days of work this year and fourteen days spent frolicking in the surf.  How does this girl not realize she has the potential to bring global attention to important issues and could do so much good?  Does she just not care?

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