Like many people, I was up early the morning of July 29, 1981 to watch at least part of the royal wedding. I wasn’t much of a monarchist, but it was one of those world events I felt I should watch.
On a very cold Saturday, January 16, 1982, my friend Jessica, who was a performance artist, poet, and from England, herded her friends to Emmanuel Baptist Church in Albany to do a mock re-enactment. A number of frigid people played members of the royal family and the Spencers. Jessie played Di, I played the Archbishop of Canterbury. Many pictures were being taken and most of us had no real idea to what end.
A month or two later, at the 8th Step Coffee House, then located in the basement of the church I now attend, Jessie did a slide show of the royal wedding, complete with biting narration. It was amazingly funny! In fact, it was one of the most hilarious things I’ve ever seen in my life.
Of course, the real royals got very weird, Chuck and Di split and, 10 years ago, Diana and two others died in Paris.
Not only did I watch the funeral, I got my wife the soundtrack to the funeral – she and Diana were very close in age, and she related to her death largely on that basis.
I’m reminded, too, that Mother Teresa, a Friend of Diana, also died 10 years ago this very week. Her death was practically lost in the headlines over the royal funeral controversy so well played out in the movie The Queen, which I enjoyed last year. Teresa made headlines recently when papers that were released revealed her doubts about her faith. Yet, she did her good works anyway.
Two women, seemingly quite disparate, both of whom had enormous impact in their own way, died a decade ago, and I feel the need to note this, surprisingly to me in the case of the younger one, who I helped to mock years earlier.
Richard Jewell died Wednesday, and I was IMMEDIATELY reminded about what one of the, well, accused Duke rapists said: that in HIS obituary, he will be described as “One of the accused Duke rapists”.