Wednesday 20 April 2016
A republican moment
There is one thing I share with Queen Elizabeth II: we have the same birthday. Except that I am much younger. It means that tomorrow she'll be 90 and I 39. It also means that people spoke about it all day at work today. This is maybe the only one thing I hate about England: the reverence they have for someone who was born with blood right and holds her power and wealth for no other reason than this, and her subject's subservience. But to my great surprise, when I was on lunch today, I've heard from a colleague (one I don't know much) this amazing thing: "I think the monarchy had its days." I nearly clapped, I was so happy. She was saying this, matter-of-factly, to someone who was a staunch monarchist, so I nearly clapped. I did not want to start a controversy (I am good at that when it comes to take a bite at the queen, so to speak), but when the other started saying the usual weak argument that they are a return on investment because of tourism and prestige and so on, I said: "Then put them all into formol, and you would have the same result." I admit, this was borderline seditious and certainly lèse-majesté, but this made them laugh. Well, maybe not the royalists, but that is true: if a crowned head is so sound economically, they are basically crowned scarecrows. So I think it deserves to be a new great unknown line. In any case, it was part of a republican moment and I love living republican moments, especially here.