I mentioned yesterday that when the UK media were scrambling around, playing the guessing game of when Prince Charles would announce Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s engagement, after getting it wrong last Thursday and last Friday, they were, on the weekend, thinking it might be today, Tuesday, because of something to do with Theresa May’s schedule. As if the royals give a sh-t about the PM’s schedule. They would, however, give a sh-t about Princess Kate’s schedule. And Kate was out today visiting The Foundling Museum in London. If Harry had made his announcement today, it would have overshadowed her visit.
Being that this was Kate’s first public appearance since Harry and Meghan’s big news though, a reaction was expected and a reaction was arranged. Before you watch the video below, remember that royals aren’t seized upon spontaneously by the press like a celebrity at LAX. Ahead of her arrival, the press would have been told that they could ask her a question about the engagement. And she would have been briefed about being asked a question and having a reaction ready. Here it is:
Can I just say that I F-CKING LOVE this right now? As in the last two days of this? All the royal analysis and speculation and amazingness? I love it so f-cking much. And now we get this. Kate’s very formal, very royal response to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s happy news. Formal and royal also = STIFF. So she’s certainly holding up the family’s comportment standard. We do not speak in exclamation points. We do not squeal. We are measured and consistent, because that is the institution.
OK, fine. But some of them do the measured and consistent thing with a lot more personality. And still, to be fair to Kate, we always knew that this was a role she had to grow in to. It was one that she wanted, no doubt, but it’s not her total comfort zone. Also, we just saw Meghan kill it yesterday in her joint interview with Harry on the BBC – so natural, so relaxed – and by comparison, Kate’s never had that kind of ease. Go back, if you have time, and watch Will and Kate’s first joint interview after their engagement. Poor thing, she was focusing so hard on getting the accent right it almost muted her excitement about the situation.
What’s interesting to me though is that she would have had time in the car at least to prepare her answer. And her answer was pretty much the same as the statement she and William released yesterday. She also didn’t refer to Harry and Meghan by name. I’m not the expert on royal words but … are we not allowed to refer to people by name? We’re so happy for Harry. And it’s lovely to see him so happy with Meghan. Maybe that’s too familiar. Maybe we’re not supposed to sound so familiar so soon. But, seriously, she could have been talking about two remote acquaintances and not her brother-in-law and future sister-in-law. I wonder if that’s what will be expected of Meghan when she gets more immersed in the royal life. To communicate always with polite distance and reserve. Is it different though for Kate because she’s the one married to the future king? Does Meghan have less restrictions because Harry’s now the spare’s spare’s spare’s spare’s spare? Let me know your thoughts.