Keeping Up with the Windsors

One cannot avoid encountering the soon-to-be-no-longer-HRH Prince Harry, his wife Meghan, and their little boy Archie. They’re inescapably everywhere, from tabloids to “serious” news outlets, even as their stated reason for withdrawing from royal duties is to avoid ubiquitous press coverage.

It makes for a pleasant change from keeping up with the Kar-trash-ians, to be sure. Better accents. Less make-up. Fewer photos to hide from the children. Harrumph.

But isn’t it fun keeping up with both families? To see who’s up and who’s down, who’s hot and who’s not? As a friend of mine, a Hollywood producer, once remarked on the world of celebrities, “It’s just high school with money.”

Yes, with a lot more money…and fame, and influence, and homes, and possibilities. It’s what our lives would be like, we think, if we had just had the foresight to arrange for different parents. Celebrities: they’re just like us! Except more: more beautiful, more sophisticated, more popular, more wealthy.

But are they more happy? More fulfilled?

The Kardashians never strike me—although I confess I don’t follow them assiduously—as pictures of serene joy. Instead, they seem to be perpetually running: desperately running, in fact, to stay in the spotlight, to remain relevant, to maintain their top status as Famous People You Should Care About.

The Sussexes are running, too, bless them, but running away. They’re running away from the world of royal privilege and responsibility, trying desperately to escape the fate of generations of Windsors who have suffered betrayal, divorce, frustration, alienation, and many other varieties of royal misery both public and private.

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