The Queen is 90 today.
Maybe it’s because a) I’m not an ardent royal watcher or b) Noodles’ choice of YouTube videos results in a media blackout of news, but it’s all just a little underwhelming.
As a nation shouldn’t we all be walking around wearing Union Flag party hats and bow ties? I’ve only seen one person doing so on the streets today.
Either I’ve missed the memo or, most people aren’t all that bothered.
The official portraits are nice, ditto the stamps. Nothing says ‘Happy Birthday, Grandma’ as a line-up of a family who have to wait for each other to die to fulfil the role they’ve been raised to do.
Maybe we’d be more excited if we’d all got a day off, but no. (I suppose the Queen herself hasn’t had a day off either, so maybe it’s fair enough.) We will have the televisual ‘pleasure’ of being able to watch Ant & Dec host a night of all the usual celebrity suspects (ah, look, Katherine Jenkins, there’s a surprise – not!)…in May. It’s only three years since the last celebratory concert, but I suspect ITV could just splice footage from that together in a different order and no one would notice.
It seems a bit lacklustre from the royal celebrations committee. I’m sure the Queen’s not upset about the lack of river pageant this time, but couldn’t they have shaken it up a bit?
We all loved it when she pretended to parachute into the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony. Maybe she should undertake 90 extreme sport challenges to celebrate each year alive, which could then be broadcast on ITV as a reality series. Or even better, they could have got the whole royal family to take part with an extreme-sport elimination each week! ITV2 could run a behind-the-scenes ‘live reaction’ and we’d end up with a survival-of-the-fittest monarchy. Everyone’s a winner, unless you’re a losing royal.
And perhaps when you hit 90 and you’re the longest serving monarch it’d just be nice to keep it low key. William and Kate are doing a good job of being a ‘normal’ (if very wealthy and privileged) family. (Their home at Anmer isn’t far away from us and you can’t move for people who’ve got a they’re-so-normal story. Which is lovely, really, especially when it involves Prince George having a toddler strop.) Maybe being unbothered by a rich woman, with unlimited top-of-the-range private medical care making it to 90 is the way to go.
Perhaps we should have just given Her Majesty a day off from smiling and waving?
All the same, Happy Birthday, Ma’am.