Press Goes Bananas Over Royals
What’s the worst job in the world? According to CareerCast, a company that ranks such things, “newspaper reporter” is on top. In second place is “broadcaster,” which barely edged out “logger” in 2017.
Look, I know lots of reporters and most of them like their work. But I suppose if a measure of a terrible job is low wages and lots of stress, well, the researchers got it right.
And one of the worst news beats on earth would be a royal reporter on a British daily.
Think about it. For reasons children of the American Revolution may never fully comprehend, Brits are crazy for news of the monarchy. Yet most royals are uptight and tight-lipped. Worse, palace spokesmen rarely confirm or deny even the most banal stories about Queen Elizabeth II and her offspring.
Royals smile a lot and say nothing as they float about, graciously accepting bouquets and nodding politely while commoners speak, making the job of royal reporters devilishly difficult.
Beyond that, there’s rabid competition now among the London news outlets for the tiniest tidbits about Prince Harry and his fiancee, actress Meghan Markle.
(I hesitate to point this out, but the last time a member of the House of Windsor fell in love with an American divorcee, it almost toppled the monarchy. Unlikely to happen this time, as Harry’s fifth in line to the throne.)
In the days since the couple’s betrothal, the press has learned when the couple will wed, who will pay for it (the groom’s family, natch) and where Harry and Meg will live after their "I do's."
Why, the cake, of course. The most closely held secret in the realm.
On Sunday, The Daily Telegraph - a respectable British broadsheet - broke the news:
“Prince Harry and Meghan Markle want wedding cake made from banana, source claims,”
What a scoop!
While most members of the media were combing Markle’s Instagram in search of embarrassing pictures, an enterprising reporter with a contact in the royal scullery - Deep Buttercream - cracked the cake story.
The investigative piece even had what newsies call a “nut graf” - a paragraph deep in the story explaining its importance:
“This will be the first royal wedding cake made from bananas,' a source close to the couple told The Telegraph.
The newspaper then added the obligatory, “Kensington Palace said it could not comment on the specifics about the cake.”
Of course they couldn’t. Such impertinence from the hoi polloi.
No sooner had The Telegraph broken the banana story than the American media jumped in. Fox News followed with “Prince Harry and Meghan Markle want banana flavored wedding cake.”
People Magazine chimed in with “The sweet reason why Prince Harry and Meghan Markle want a banana wedding cake.” Even Vogue leapt on the banana boat: “The heartwarming reason Prince Harry and Meghan Markle may have a banana wedding cake.”
Look, Harry and Meghan are cute kids. They’re in love. But when you have to scrape the bottom of the mixing bowl for news about them, perhaps it’s time to move on to more important topics
North Korea, for instance. The congressional tax plan. Or the queen’s corgis.