Let’s begin the new year with the lofty goal of finding something we can all agree on. OK, I’ll go first. Somebody needs to tell Harry and Meghan that if they don’t want to be in the awful limelight maybe they should stop making tell-all documentaries for fun and profit.
Do I think the royal family snubbed Meghan? Maybe. They’re not exactly known for warmth and big, sloppy hugs. But, dang, y’all, she’s 41years old. Make like Elsa and let it gooooooo.
Do I think the royal family is racist? I hope not. I tend to think it’s less about that than the obvious fact that Meghan is, as the kids say, a lot. She marries into THE ROYAL FAMILY and then appears blindsided by all the attention. Girl. The paparazzi killed your mother-in-law. Connect the dots.
Maybe Meghan thought she knew how to handle fame. After all, seven seasons on USA’s “Suits” should’ve given her some idea of what it’s like to be famous, although not on the same scale of course. Meghan was the kind of actress who would cheerfully sign an autograph for a fan while she was standing at the hot bar at the Sherman Oaks Whole Foods. Or so I like to imagine. Meghan strikes me as the kind of actress you would see in something and ask your partner, “Where do we know her from?” and neither of you would quite be able to place her. (“No, that’s not it. Wait. Nah, that’s not it…”) But this royalty business is next level fame after skipping over, like, another 50 levels. Remember: hot bar.
I know the “fame pyramid” pretty well because I fall squarely in the middle of “adoring fan” if you consider the bottom is showing up at the mall to see a favorite soap star and the top is selling Adele’s chewed gum on Ebay.
Try to hang here. I’m explaining the genesis of crazy.
Harry’s just as bad. Kvetching about being stalked loses a tad of authenticity when you know he has signed a $100 million deal with Netflix to exploit his fame and family til the cows (or sheep) come home.
Truth is, if Harry had been serious about wanting to lead a normal life in California, he’d be pecking Megs on the cheek before heading out the door with a Thermos full of coffee, spending the early morning hours hovering over the 405 in a helicopter giving hourly traffic updates.
As they say, the “optics” of rich people whining are never good. It’s the old “please respect our privacy” like Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez…who had a darling chapel wedding but followed it up with a stupendously massive affair with a few hundred of their nearest and dearest then pouted over the paps showing up. Or the ubiquitous fame-seeking politician caught being naughty who imperiously demands your respect for his family’s privacy. Shoulda thought about your fam first.
In the documentary, Harry makes quite a kerfuffle over his brother, William, the Earl of Fancypants yelling at him a time or two. Oh, for pity’s sake. Are you even brothers if one of you hasn’t yelled at the other or genially dislocated your shoulder a time or two while roughhousing? Toughen up, Viscount Buttercup.
To be honest, which I just hate, I’ve only watched excerpts of the Netflix documentary because I have been preoccupied with studying the geo-political impact of the nuclear fusion reaction that achieved a net energy gain for the first time. Kidding! What I meant to say is I’ve been hungover.
At the end of the day, I wish Harry and Meghan a delightful life together, truly I do. Just, perhaps, one with the volume turned to mute.
Celia Rivenbark is a NYT-bestselling author and columnist. Write her at [email protected].