Shocking news out of Great Britain last week, as Prince Harry confessed nobody in the royal family wants to be king or queen.
My initial response was, “Blimey,” “balderdash,” “rubbish” and other assorted words Brits use to express shock and dismay.
My secondary response was, “Sign me up. I’m ready.”
Suffice it to say, Harry, the second born son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana, has about as much chance of assuming the throne as I do of winning a green jacket at Augusta National. When I last checked the royal family lineage, Harry was in line behind two adults and two toddlers. Still, in an interview with Newsweek magazine, Harry spoke of the royals’ desire to “modernize” the British monarchy and live normal lives, even though the interview was conducted in a private cottage adjoining a palace. So much for normalcy, despite the prince’s proud admission that he shops for his own meat.
Appearances may be deceiving, but being a monarch looks like a pretty sweet gig. Your living arrangements include hopping from palace to castle; you wear medals, ride around in carriages, occasionally wave, and accept gifts from little girls and heads of foreign countries.
Dealing with an intrusive press seems like a small price to pay in exchange for that job description.
It’s also a job that seems relatively free of controversy and headaches. While British Prime Minister Theresa May caroms from one crisis to the next — including the loss of her Conservative majority in Parliament and a devastating London apartment fire — Queen Elizabeth summers at Balmoral Castle. Recently, during her annual Queen’s Speech, she addressed issues confronting Britain as it prepares to leave the European union, but she did so while sitting on a throne; something I look forward to experiencing when I’m king.
That’s right, if nobody from the royal family wants the job, I’m happy to volunteer. Of course, it will require uprooting my family from our suburban Chicago homestead and jetting across the pond, but I think I can sell my kids on the idea, since none of us has ever lived in a palace.
My hat size is 10, handy information before that crown is placed upon my head. I wear a 44-long suit and have a size 36 waist, although I hope the latter will eventually be immaterial for I plan to urge Parliament to ban the wearing of kilts.
I will happily carry a sword whenever possible; my children will show me newfound respect. I will use that sword to liberally knight individuals I’ve always wanted to meet. I’ll start with Roger Waters from Pink Floyd, just so he can answer some of my questions about certain lyrics in “The Wall.” To curry favor with my children, I’ll also knight Ed Sheeran.
I’ll stay out of the Brexit kerfuffle simply because I don’t understand it. On that note, I also don’t understand polo; so, British subjects, don’t expect your new king to spend his weekends swinging a mallet from atop a galloping horse like Prince Charles does. But I’ll gladly sit in the Royal Box on Wimbledon’s Centre Court during the acclaimed tennis tournament. In between matches I’ll delight the crowd by rallying with John McEnroe and screaming, “You cannot be serious!” when he calls one of my forehands wide. I’ll award the Claret Jug at golf’s British Open, an event lacking a royal family presence. I assume it conflicts with a polo match?
I will deal with the paparazzi by wading into their ranks on my first day as king and demanding to take selfies with every photographer using my personal iPhone. This process will take hours for I will always plead, “Just one more.” Fearing a repeat of this tedium, the press will stop following me on day two of my reign.
With my privacy intact, who knows? Like Harry, I might just visit a butcher shop. I’ll pick out a few steaks and, on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, barbecue for my family. Occasionally I will wave to the crowd below.
After all, I am the king.