What have CNN, BBC2, Sky News, BBC1, ITV News and BBC news all got in common? They’re all covering the Queen’s visit to Ireland live…and spookily, they’re all using the same camera.
I’m OK with the Royal Family on the whole, but this seems a bit much to me. My wife, however, got the the motivation behind all this coverage very quickly.
“They’re all hoping she’ll be blown up,” she said.
And she’s right on the money. But even if no bomb goes off, it’s a tricky day for the Monarch. The IRA killed her Uncle Dicky, and a former security officer told me some years back that the Queen “Isn’t keen on the Irish”.
I can vouch for this view: Elizabeth II isn’t always entirely discreet on the subject. During the early 1980s, she and Phil the Greek visited the US, and while in Boston went to a performance by its Symphony Orchestra – one of the finest in the world. Shortly afterwards I sold an agency in which I was a partner to HHCC, of whom the Head ‘C’ was a bloke called Jack Connors: very Irish Boston, and his agency was known locally as ‘the marketing Micks’.
Jack told me that, when Boston IRA sympathisers made it unsafe for the Royals to leave, he found himself a few feet away from our Queen, and, not knowing a great deal about protocol, sidled up to her and said, “Your Majesty, on behalf of the people of Boston, may I apologise for this unwelcome display?”
The Queen smiled and replied, “Oh that’s alright – I’ve come to expect it. Bloody Irish.”
Jack told me, “It was the best chance I ever had of getting onto the front page of Time magazine, but I didn’t have the balls to belt her”.
Anyway, it’s all forgotten now. We’re all friends again. Even if the revolution was only 94 years ago.
Related: Tying the Knot