I’m not really a royalist, but have started to warm to the monarchy, following their antics of recent years. My first contact with a member of The Royal Family came when I was the sound engineer at the Victoria Rooms, Bristol, for a weekend jazz gala in aid of Save the Children with guest of honour, patron Princess Anne.
After arriving late and noticing there was a band playing, she sent a note to the mixing desk requesting that the music be abated until the royal party had left the building, as she detested jazz! Ralph Lange’s Groove Juice were playing at the time, so it could be argued that incidents of detestable jazz had not yet occurred. That said, Princess Anne is known for plain speaking and was once quoted as saying she “would rather buy a bag of oats for her horse than splash out on a new frock.” We remain friends and her lawyers still inbox me from time to time.
I hesitate to be critical of The Queen, as it is difficult for her to answer back. However, there have been so many noteworthy incidents over the years, that when thinking about the impending Jubilee celebrations, I have to first remind myself of what exactly HM has had to put up with.
For example, there were the insightful revelations (from what was supposed to be a private cellphone conversation with Camilla Parker Bowles) that Prince Charles was more interested in being turned into a women’s sanitary product than crowned King of England. Then there were all those high jinks with Prince Harry and the Nazi armbands.
Precious moments, which are quintessentially British, although at times such as these, I am reminded that The Royal Family are actually of Germanic extraction. So it is with this in mind that thoughts turn to how the nation should best celebrate The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Official suggestions include a week long crapathon of uninspiring pop music and puerile stunts to entertain the proletariat. I am at a loss as to how we can hope to match the frankly embarrassing performance of The National Anthem played from the rooftop of Buckingham Palace, by Brian May (a fine musician and all round great guy who happened to play in a band called Queen.) A connection by name only to Her Majesty The Queen, who is not at all gay.
If we must have a repeat, could we not arrange for Sir Andrew Lloyd of Webber and Sir Cliff Richard to perform in his place, whilst charges for crimes against music are read out by Mayor of London Boris Johnson?
Prince Philip could then carry out the penalty by applying the royal jackboot to the rears of the duo in the midst of a twenty-one gun salute and kick the buggers off the roof.
It has been a bit of a challenge, but I have given the matter careful consideration and finally come up with a few alternative suggestions as to how The Queen might prefer to see the Diamond Jubilee celebrations unfold:
Firstly, HM is better known for her love of horses rather than music (especially that of the lower middle classes), but her favourite instrument is known to be the bagpipes. Her attendance at Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 50th birthday concert at The Royal Albert Hall, would also seem to support this.
Any self respecting Diamond Jubilee event planner should take this into proper consideration. Perhaps there could be show jumping or a steeple chase down The Mall or an exhibition of medieval jousting with questionable knights of the realm such as freshly defrocked Fred the Shred ex Royal Bank of Scotland or the much loved Barclay’s Sir Bob of Diamond, launching unwieldy lances made of papier mâché money minted from a new bout of quantitative easing.
My personal favourite would be to see members of the Parliamentary Remuneration Committee re-enact the Charge of the Light Brigade, but using live ammunition whilst galloping down Horse Guards’ Parade to the theme of Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries. The tune could be jazzed up a bit and played on bagpipes. Whilst this was taking place, David Beckham’s new range of tartan themed underpants could be hoisted up the flagpole of Buckingham Palace.
The crowning finale would be to have a flypast by Prince Andrew and his chums in their big helicopters whilst Union Jack goody bags were thrown to the gathered crowd below. These could contain sundry items such as feminine hygiene products bearing The Royal Crescent and a packet of Werther’s Original boiled sweets.
Of course it is a year long celebration and what better way to take our minds off rising youth unemployment, renewed austerity measures and being slightly miffed at bankers’ bonuses, than with the commissioning of a new 63 million pound Royal Yacht. Perhaps it could be fitted with a big gun and later sent to the Falklands to assist Will Wales repel those land grabbing Argies. The ship’s designers could also consider including a figurehead carving of Baroness Thatcher on the ship’s prow for good measure.
Whilst we may be hurtling towards another Falklands conflict, it is also worth remembering that The Queen is also head of our glorious Commonwealth. It could be that after a year of planned Jubilee celebrations, she may feel like spending a little more time tending to her fans in Australia. Cheers mate!
Princess Anne, why the Scots love here
Brian May God Save the Queen
The official website of The Monarchy http://www.royal.gov.uk