Well, when it was announced that ‘Wills & Kate’ had decided to tie the knot I was beside myself. Not because I’m a fan of the Royals, not because two extremely wealthy and exceptionally privileged young people were planning a lavish wedding at the expense of the taxpayer (all this while said taxpayers are witnessing the most brutal and draconian cuts to essential services for vulnerable people as a cost-cutting excercise). No, it was much more simple than that. They had announced they were getting married on my birthday. My birthday. I pondered why it vexed me so much: Was it that they were usurping my special day in some way? Well, I thought that was a bit daft because no-one knows me. And that’s when it occurred to me that no-one knows them either. Sure, we see their smiley faces in the press from time to time but the vast majority of us have never seen them in the flesh or spoken to them.
Despite the fact that these people are strangers to us; despite them having wealth, power and privilege on a scale that is impossible for us ‘normal’ folks to imagine; despite us paying for the sodding wedding while being told the country is virtually bankrupt and that, ‘It’s a terrible shame that your Grandma has just died of hypothermia because she can’t afford to heat her house in Winter but we’re all in this together!’; despite all this people still erupted into a rapture of well-wishing . People exclaimed, ‘Oh, isn’t it lovely to have something to celebrate for a change’, as if they had to rush out and buy a new hat and make sure that someone could feed the cats while they nipped up to Westminster Abbey for the day. The streets were quickly filled with hideous bunting and the shops stuffed to the gunnels with tacky commemorative merchandise.
As I peevishly bemoaned the fact that I probably wouldn’t even get a ‘Wills & Kate’ mug for my birthday my friend Lisa suggested that I make my own. And that’s where it started. The seed was sown and I decided I would make my own commemorative mug. So, I did.