Boys Will Be Toffs
Brits are on the bottle: knocking back 37 bottles of whiskey a year, 189 bottles of wine, 1,137 pints of beer whenever the opportunity presents itself, with royal role models, Princes Harry and William surely tripling those numbers - semi-annually. The princes' bar bills total thousands of pounds per evening ' effortless at '400 a bottle.
In our dreary 'just a glass of house wine for me, please' lives, that's 930 loo roles, 100 pairs of stripy woolly socks, 2000 pip-less lemons, rent for a week for a one bed flat in Notting Hill, almost 8 years of World of Interiors without subscribing.
The youthful royals could almost be (momentarily) mistaken for the (momentarily) defunct duo of Kate (Moss) and Pete (Doherty) ' sprawling, falling over and out of nightclubs, dazed and confused, stroppy, sloppy and spoiling for a fight. In the future will the Windsor Court turn out to be Celebrity Central? Velvet ropes, beefy Beefeater bouncers, the A list, the VIP room'. It is becoming ever more difficult to differentiate between the posh and the pop idol personality.
The princes are certainly determined to extend childhood way beyond their respective years of 25 and 23. Seriously, William is the future king, whether he wants the job or not. The heir and the spare are acting like truly tiresome toffs. Their favourite sans frills nightclub, Mahiki, is their home away from home ' basement away from palace - nightly, paparazzi in tow.
Evidently the high-living lads are more than willing to share their ability to drink themselves silly beyond familiar territory. Harry was photographed for all posterity swigging vodka from the bottle with the aid of aides at the Rugby World Cup final in Paris. Too wasted to hold it himself or merely emulating his 'a bit more toothpaste on the bristles if you don't mind' father? Scary thought that.
Wills and Harry howled and hooted at the sight of scantily clad provocatively dancing pom-pom girls while the princes still had their faculties and the facility to focus. They grinned proudly for photographers while setting their sights on out-and-out legless-ness. Where were all those omnipresent royal spin masters and minders? Occupied with keeping Camilla palatable to the ever increasingly disenchanted public? Futile endeavour that. Time to refocus, guys.
Hardly a royal demonstration of the British character'excluding the wink, wink, nudge, nudge that surrounds the joys of getting totally bladdered with no excuse necessary. With all the self-satisfaction of a king-in-waiting Wills slurred: 'I don't know where today has gone. I'm so confused.' Oh let me be the first to enlighten you, William. England lost.
In The Guardian, Barney Ronay uses the class divide to explain the over the top drunkenness that culminated at the end of the rugby final: 'There is a difference, of course, and it is to do with class. Like prisons and the army, English sport is an institution still grimly clinging on to the basic framework of the 19th-century class system. The two football codes separated in 1875: rugby for the amateur; soccer for the below-stairs professional. To some, at least, rugby players remain officer class. They like a jape but, above all, they have discipline. Drunken footballers, on the other hand, are a menace: wealthy working class men out of control.'
Erm'curiously, discipline does not immediately spring to mind. 'So nobody minds when our rugby players get hammered and schlep across the channel dressed like a troupe of holiday reps (no footballers' pencil-slim suits and pointy brown shoes here). Boys will be boys; or big, posh ones will anyway.' Hmmmm.
According to newly released figures, those 37 bottles of whiskey, 189 bottles of wine and 1,137 pints of beer put away are leading to more hospital admissions in England, where the problem of drinking a 'hazardous' amount of alcohol is more prevalent in affluent areas. The palaces perhaps?
Should we interpret this to imply that we
should be looking to the others in line to the throne?
Should we interpret this to imply that the rich will
expire sooner than the rest of us? Not such a bad thing.
With the newly updated Sloane Ranger Handbook
acknowledging 'they're baaaack', we can only dream. Pass
the vodka and Red Bull, Harry.
About the Author:
Maggie is from Manhattan, where she was a painter, then designer of clothing, objects, textiles, interiors while writing for various publications and her own webzine. She is permanently based in London, the city of irony, where she writes regularly to her gal pal Lulu in New York.
You can read her amusing tales about London's daily life, people, current events, politics, fashion and culture at her website www.lettersfromlondon.com.