There are a few things which are quintessentially British: a nicely-made cup of tea, the excitement to throw on some sunglasses and have a barbeque, and the flair for complaining and sarcasm, which takes many years and much practice to refine. However, on the topic of the Royal Family, many Brits remain divided.
So why do some of us love the affectionately (but somewhat patronisingly) nicknamed “Queenie” so much?
- She is now the longest-reigning British monarch.
“[She is] a character. She has an air of authority and reflectiveness astonishing in an infant” – Winston Churchill, 1928.
In her staggering 64 years on the throne, Lizzie has pretty much seen it all. She’s seen wars begin and end, the birth of the internet, the death of many great figures and even had her own “annus horribilis” (which sounds like an infection, but actually means horrible year).
To some, the length of her reign shows an antiquated way of thinking which supports elitism, and is incompatible with democracy. But to others, she remains a stoic embodiment of hope to the public in times of crisis and brings people together in moments of celebration.
- Her strong choice of clothing.
Like Lady Gaga, Her Majesty is a complete fashionista who is evidently not afraid to show off a wardrobe full of bold colours. To you or me, her distinct look may be synonymous with that of a doting grandmother and the taste of Werther’s Originals, but to Dolce & Gabbana she was a muse whom they based an entire collection around.
- When she moonlighted as a Bond girl
What’s the point of being Queen if you can’t enjoy yourself a little, eh?
- She watches rubbish TV just like normal people.
It has been reported that the Queen is a massive fan of Downton Abbey, to the point of even nit-picking over details which are historically inaccurate. In her downtime, she also watches Dad’s Army and X Factor, although whether she votes or not is still up for debate.
- She trained as a mechanic.
Picture this: on a drive to Balmoral, the royal car gets a flat tire. Should we call the RAC? No need: Her Majesty can flip your spare, and whilst she’s at it, change the oil and top up the wiper fluid. In her youth, during WWII, she was part of the Auxiliary Territorial Service, where she learned to drive ambulances and assemble engines. And if that isn’t cool enough: in 1947, Collier’s magazine printed that one of her major joys was getting dirt under her nails and grease stains on her hands as a sign of labour to her posh friends.
- She’s married to Prince Philip.
Whilst the Queen speaks in a way that is veiled in courtesy and etiquette, Prince Philip takes it upon himself to speak his mind in the most un-PC way possible. Here are a few examples:
- The time he questioned a Scottish driving instructor how he “ke[pt]the natives off the booze long enough to pass the test.”
- When he asked Cate Blanchett to fix his DVD player.
- The time he was at a party and exclaimed: “Bugger the table plan; give me my dinner!”
- His in-depth summary of Stoke-on-Trent during a visit in 1997: “Ghastly.”
At the end of the day, whether you’d ‘Snog, Marry or Kill’ the Queen is down to you, but you cannot deny that she is one cool lady.