Dark Bilious Vapors

But how could I deny that I possess these hands and this body, and withal escape being classed with persons in a state of insanity, whose brains are so disordered and clouded by dark bilious vapors....
--Rene Descartes, Meditations on First Philosophy: Meditation I

Home » Archives » April 2005 » Thought for the Day:

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04/07/2005: Thought for the Day:

Poor Prince Charles can't catch a break. He had to postpone his wedding day to accommodate a funeral 900 miles away; devotees of his deceased ex-wife are threatening to picket the nuptials; and wedding memorabilia is selling poorly--apparently, his future subjects don't want to dry their dishes on a towel bearing the likeness of his bride-to-be, Camilla Parker Bowles. His family and fellow royals won't even do him the honor of inventing decent excuses to skip the ceremony--his father refused to cancel a trip to Germany (Germany!); Sweden's crown princess is otherwise engaged opening an IKEA store in Japan—and his mother dashed his dreams of serving an organic feast at the reception.

Charles is an easy and usually deserving target. He's the squarest man in the world, a rich, underemployed old fogy who has dressed and acted like the 56-year-old he is for the last 40 years. But after a lifetime of feckless world travel, dilettantism, and endless chukkas of polo, he's finally coming good. Despite enduring years of unforgivably cruel jokes at the expense of the woman he loves, Charles is about to do something a Frenchman would never consider: He's going to marry his mistress.

If the groom in Saturday's ceremony were Charlie Windsor instead of "His Royal Highness Prince Charles Philip Arthur George, Prince of Wales, KG, KT, GCB, OM, AK, QSO, PC, ADC, Earl of Chester, Duke of Cornwall, Duke of Rothesay, Earl of Carrick, Baron of Renfrew, Lord of the Isles and Prince and Great Steward of Scotland," he would be a hero--a mensch of modern maturity. But somehow the British press doesn't see it that way.


In an age when preposterously coiffed tycoons engage in serial matrimony with ever younger and more beautiful partners, Charles is doing his bit to atone for the sins of rich, middle-aged men everywhere. He's making an honest woman of his age-appropriate partner, a woman with whom he is well-matched in looks, habits, and hobbies, whom he has known and loved for more than 30 years. Charles' mistake was to get his weddings out of order: He married his first wife second and his trophy wife first.
--June Thomas

Len on 04.07.05 @ 06:22 AM CST

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