That’s it for me: no more significant Jubilees in my
lifetime. Nor even, I’m guessing, in the
lifetimes of our children.
Some random thoughts on the extended Jubilee weekend:
Yes, of course it was overdone – or, as we say
nowadays, OTT (for ‘over the top’ in case you’ve not been listening to your offspring).
And, the cynics might add, all rather desperately aberrational, this aggressive
patriotism – whipped up, presumably, by shadowy figures of the Royal Establishment
– and unabashed nostalgia for the imperial age that supposedly put the ‘Great’
into Great Britain.
I’m intellectually sympathetic to the argument that nothing
justified the event’s huge production expenses, or the cost of the clean-up, or
the loss of working hours (at a time when the productive economy needs help
rather than hindrance) or the disruption of normal service in everything from
transportation to television programming, to school attendance.
But only mildly sympathetic.
Frankly, I’m past the point in my life of arguing
about the respective merits of monarchism and republicanism. Anyway, I think we’ve covered that
already. Readers know by now that I’m a
wishy-washy republican – and a claret-swilling pinko, while we’re at it – that
lazily prefers an unsatisfactory status quo to the unpredictable upheaval of
The royals may be a moth-eaten symbol of inherited
privilege, and so on, but like it or not the Queen is also a remarkable
woman. And this was one helluva party.
I share the widespread complaints about the BBC’s coverage. It was rarely informative, instead pandering
to society’s now almost universally childish devotion to stunts and celebrity
worship. The occasion, if it was to mean
anything, called for the presence of skilled reporters. The Beeb was fixated rather on presenters
with ‘yoof’ appeal, many of them were familiar from their associations with
televised dancing competitions and popular music shows. Even Stephen Fry found it tedious.
And so we move on to the impending Olympics, and another
overblown jamboree of doubtful worth – except to the sponsors.
Keep those Union Jacks handy.