Forgive me for not being glued to the television screen in order to hang on every word spoken regarding the pregnancy of Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge. I am not now, nor have I ever been an avowed royalist. I mean no harm to the crowd across the pond, and in fact, publicly swore allegiance to the Queen when I became a Canadian citizen in 1999, which is more than natural born Newfoundlanders have ever had to admit doing. Giddiness over everything Royal is bigger than me, and my inability to get with the program should not prevent me from learning something from them and using that knowledge in a way that benefits us all. It’s my duty as a commoner.
Therefore, in the spirit of admitting when something is bigger than me, I have decided to adopt some royal behaviour regarding lineage and incorporate that process in something we all might find slightly entertaining as I endeavour to contribute my part in selling more newspapers. Knowing my readers well, I will admit up front that the use of the term “slightly” is probably an overstatement.
The timing couldn’t have been better. At the same time that the British government is engaged in changing the rules regarding those eligible to be crowned now including females, my little exercise will also not discriminate on the basis of gender. Therefore, I am proud to announce a manner in which the editor of this fine publication may consider an heir to this column in the event of my demise, removal, or any other form of relinquishing the crown that comes with this column. Lucky for me I suppose, beheading isn’t so common anymore.
Here’s what I’m thinking: Anyone who would like to vie for the title of “Clearly Stated Columnist in Waiting” may submit a written piece of suitable column length explaining why they think they should be next in line to inherit this column after, and only after, I step down, or a coup ensues, or we are invaded by France. A Quebec invasion doesn’t count, ‘cause they’re not really France. St. Pierre is, but it’s highly unlikely they would invade us before Quebec makes a run at us.
While the editor may wish to consult me on eligible submissions, the final decision is and always remains with that office, seeing as all columnists serve in that capacity by their grace. Naturally, editors do get significant support from their constituent of readers, and only the most powerful of editors would interfere with the people’s choice, a choice made known only by your numerous calls and letters of support or displeasure, as the case may be.
Having enjoyed a somewhat long but not very profitable term as one of your Crowned Columnists as a result of your continued support of my significant contribution to your newspaper well-being, I know well of what I speak. References to your continued support are an assumption made by me on the basis of a decided lack of hate mail having been received either by me or the editor. Either that, or he doesn’t share the bad stuff with me, knowing well of my fragile nature and propensity to repeat every rumour I hear via this esteemed platform.
As with the Royal Family, it would be my desire to create a lineage for Clearly Stated comprised of personalities we might all become interest in, such that a weekly review of their exploits and foibles may appear as newsworthy items in a manner that could possibly hold its own with the Royals. Who wouldn’t want to know of the Column’s third in line naked romp in Vegas, or how often the pregnant wife of the second in line puked on Tuesday, when you realize that person is one of your own; perhaps a neighbour, or a Tritonite whom you know only too well?
This process gives us the advantage of knowing that any future columnists have earned the title without the same level of years of inbreeding in the past that has plagued those other royals. I must offer this caution, however. I don’t plan on going anywhere anytime soon, and regardless of which pieces are published, I still get the revenue. Rank has its privileges. ‘Tis a heavy crown one wears. Cheerio!