Skip to main content

The royal baby meets The Handmaid's Tale and J W Anderson's seagull

"I left my soul there, down by the sea..." Thanks Morcheeba but forget the soul - half a cod and chips more like, after being hounded off the beach by scavenging seagulls.

But despite their - more than justified - bad press, seagulls have become an unlikely style emblem thanks to the latest collaboration between top drawer designer J W Anderson and Japanese clothing brand Uniqlo.

The new clothing range is inspired by all things Brighton and features togs heavily referencing the seaside - stripy tops, bucket hats, brightly coloured waterproof jackets, alongside jumpers, t-shirts and tote bags all emblazoned with one of the nation's most pesky birds.

If the seagull has gone from shriek to chic, whatever will it be next - tank tops decorated with vultures? Talking of which, the 'vultures' were well and truly gathering outside St Mary's Hospital in London yesterday (Monday) in anticipation of the birth of Prince William and Kate Middleton's third baby.

It was announced as soon as the world woke, that William and Kate had made an early morning dash to the exclusive, and eye-wateringly pricey, Lindo Wing at the royal family's official hospital in Paddington. "She's in the early stages of labour" we were all informed at 6.10am by the press, who were braced to report all the news as it happened - a pant-by-pant account.

News outlet social media feeds became overrun by photos of past royal babies to pass the time. But fortunately we were spared those of Prince Charles in the bath by the new royal baby making a somewhat speedy appearance at 11.01am.

"It's a boy" the headlines on Twitter ran, as bets were taken on what the royal baby would be called. Cue a trillion jokes about how the baby could have been called George - seeing as it was St George's Day - if only the name hadn't been used before... We can expect that tit bit of news later.

But this reporter's thoughts are, are we really still doing this in 2018? It's all a little bit The Handmaid's Tale isn't it? Kate Middleton's body reduced to nothing more than a vessel to bring into the world the fifth in line to an archaic throne.

We are shamelessly informed of her stages of labour with little thought to the excruciating pain she is under, before expecting her to winch herself into her obligatory flesh coloured tights, have her hair blow dried and her make-up perfectly applied, over her sweat stained face, to smile for the world's press.

Admittedly we have come far since the days when the great and the good would gather around the royal bedside to witness a new heir being born but then we don't support hanging in this country nowadays either.

Perhaps we should adopt comedian Katherine Ryan's way of thinking, that rather than bemoan the constant scrutiny of Kate Middleton's births we should actually report all births as they happen, to ensure an equal playing field.

But equality has very little to do with it. As that baby takes its first gulp of air and screams out its lungs, it has no idea of its inherited privilege.

We are fighting for equality on all fronts. Equality for all genders, all races, all socio-economic backgrounds and yet, whilst babies are still not being born on an equal footing with the ability to achieve anything they want from life - through a combination of hard work, talent and ambition rather than through assumed superiority - then the pursuit of equality is as pointless as trying to eat fish and chips on a seagull-infested beach.

There is a silver lining. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has raised his head from the scandal-infested swamp and declared that should he become Prime Minister - words which tends to run alongside the whispered refrain "chance will be a fine thing" these days - all four of the UK's saint's days, George, David, Patrick and Andrew, will become public holidays. Corbyn figures that following years of austerity under the Tories we could all do with some much-needed time off.

On that basis we are going to have to do something about these seagulls.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Life on Mars, "gangster" Peppa Pig and the Loewe dinosaur trainers

So it turns out Button Moon was a lie.

This reporter is of course referring to the 1980's children's TV show, which followed Mr Spoon and his family of fellow kitchen utensils, as they day-tripped off to Button Moon in a junk model space rocket.

There the family would enjoy all manner of adventures before returning back to earth in time for tea. Mr Spoon made space travel look a sinch. It transpires space travel is not a sinch.

NASA, alongside the European Space Agency, is planning to bring Martian rocks back to earth to see whether the planet is inhabited by aliens. However, this daring mission is not a simple matter of astronauts rocketing up to Mars, picking up a few rocks in their space buckets, and returning back to earth that same afternoon.

As it turns out, the whole venture is going to be something of a palaver on the basis we are not, as yet, able to land a rocket on another planet and then take back off again. This means bringing the rocks home will take at least thr…

Hawaiian shirts, "gammons" and the crack at the Home Office

Aloha. You find this reporter lying back on a sun lounger, pina colada in hand, to announce the latest fashion trend for men, the Hawaiian shirt.

Formally the mainstay of the 'zany dad' and Tom Selleck as Magnum PI, the Hawaiian shirt looks ready to bedeck the most trendy of backs - and fronts - across the fashion hemisphere this summer, with Prada leading the charge. The most desirable of fashion houses has launched an exclusive collection of Hawaiian shirts for Mr Porter, the male arm of Net-a-Porter.

And the feeling on the street is, Britain's most fashionable men are ready to embrace something a little more vivacious and adventurous this season. The 'fun' trend is already rolling out to the high street with All Saints stocking their own versions. Back at the high end, Stella McCartney and Burberry have designed their own bold printed shirts with 'jolly motifs'.

Just don't get too complacent over this new fashion staple and pair it with loose fitting…

The Hugh Grant Interview, appetite suppressing lollipops and the Jacquemus straw hat

"No more rom-coms for me" declares Hugh Grant. This reporter caught up with, arguably, the king of rom-com Mr Grant recently to find out more. Dim the lights, crank up the music player. Three, two, one...

"Fame, I'm gonna live forever..."

Good evening and welcome to Fame, the celebrity spotlight televisual programme, presented by none other than This Reporter. As you can see (!) we have moved to a brand new studio following last week's furore with Oasis legend Noel Gallagher.

This reporter recognises this new studio does not hold quite so much of the glamour, the pizazz, the je ne sais quoi of the former studio. Indeed it looks a little like someones disused box room, but the move was deemed necessary due to the threat of 'cataclysmic retribution'.

On with the show, and tonight's guest is a much-loved British actor, as famed for his floppy hair and endearing upper class hesitance, as his back catalogue of romantic comedic excellence. Starring in…

Rudd's resignation, Trump's visit and Kat Von D's indestructible eyeliner

You better watch out. You better not cry. Better not pout. I'm telling you why. Donald Trump is coming to town.

More about that later. First, some serious news. (This reporter puts on her most sensible of news reading glasses). The Guardian reports today (Monday) that Amber Rudd has "dramatically" resigned as home secretary after "repeatedly struggling to account for her role in the unjust treatment of Windrush generation migrants."

The documenter of our times continues: "The home secretary was forced to step down after a series of revelations in the Guardian over Windrush culminated in a leak on Friday that appeared to show she was aware of targets for removing illegal migrants from Britain.

"The pressure increased late on Sunday afternoon as the Guardian revealed that in a leaked 2017 letter to Theresa May, Rudd had told the Prime Minister of her intention to increase deportations by 10 per cent - seemingly at odds with her recent denials that she w…

This week's must-have purchase - the wedding jumpsuit

This reporter declares we have reached peak wedding obsession.

With the realisation that in a few weeks time we will no longer be able to speculate over the finite details of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's wedding, because it will be done and dusted, it appears the media is already trying to move our focus onto another potential wedding extravaganza - the nuptials of three-year-old Princess Charlotte.

The Evening Standard newspaper ran an article alluding to just that. With no sense of irony, it discussed the fact that whilst Charlotte is undeniably a Princess and fourth in line to the throne, when she marries (note the "when", not if) and has children, they will be unlikely to have titles.

The newspaper goes on to explain that there are only two ways to become a British princess. You either need to be born the daughter of a prince or you have to marry one.

But this reporter is still stuck several sentences back, struggling to come to terms with the assumption Princess…