April 13, 2024
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April 13, 2024
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With the British coronation happening this weekend, the question on the lips of most of us is, “What? I thought the coronation happened 8 months ago!”

To us, England is a weird, old-timey country, and their royalty has always fascinated us with its traditions we don’t understand, handed down through the generations, such as marrying first cousins and talking in hushed tones and the tendency to create drama whatever they do.

So in honor of the coronation, I’ve come up with a list of facts, using a combination of research and laziness in doing further research. That said, if there’s anything in here that crosses a line, I extend my sincerest apologies ahead of time, before we get angry letters from England, handwritten and in perfect grammar. In the Queen’s English.

It’s going to be the King’s English now, I think.

They had to wait the appropriate length of time to hold a coronation because it’s a party, and he’s in aveilus, duh. For 8 months.

Charles will be the oldest monarch to be crowned in England’s history, at 74, thanks to people living longer nowadays. I feel like unless kings start having kids in their 50s, every king going forward is probably going to start very old. Unless that’s what all of the marrying-cousins business was supposed to prevent—longevity.

Following nearly a thousand years of tradition, the service will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, a thousand-year-old man who can only move diagonally.

The coronation is called for 6th May, or, to translate for Americans, May 6th. It’s so weird that they put the day first, amirite? Anyway, the Hebrew date is going to be Iyar tes vav.

Yes, there is anointing oil involved. Don’t be silly.

The anointing oil was made hundreds of years ago in a batch designed to last several coronations. Unfortunately, someone spilled it in 1941, so they just make a new one every time now. Which is just as well, because we know what olive oil looks like after a couple of years in the pantry.

Of course there is also a coronation spoon involved. You don’t just expect them to pour the oil straight out of the container, do you? What if they pour the whole thing by accident?

The spoon is way smaller than you’d think it would be. It is literally the size of a normal spoon.

If they lose the spoon in the oil, there’s a second coronation spoon they use to fish it out.

Their majesty then goes home and takes a shower.

But not yet. From what I read, “During the ceremony, which has the code name Operation Golden Orb, the king will be anointed with the oil, and receive the orb, coronation ring, and two scepters.”

Wait, you’re calling it “Operation Golden Orb,” and he’s getting an orb? What is the point of the code name? Is no one cracking this? Also, what is he going to do with the orb?

The king has to carry the orb around to prove he’s king so he can for example get into the zoo for free. As opposed to now, when he just gets the senior citizen discount.

On the way back to the palace, Charles will travel in a 260-year-old golden carriage used in every coronation since 1831, if the party planners can fight the badger that has been living therein.

But it’s not something to look forward to. Queen Elizabeth described this coach as “horrible,” Queen Victoria complained of its distressing oscillation, and William IV said it was like “being aboard a ship tossing in a rough sea.” And he was the first one to use it.

Once Charles gets back to the palace, he and his family will go up on a balcony and wave at the crowd below, at which point he will drop the scepter.

This is why he gets two.

If it rains… Who are we kidding? It always rains.

This will be the first coronation attended by a new King’s grandchildren.

His eldest grandson, George, the second in line to the throne, is going to still wear shorts, even if it’s freezing out.

Under British law, the King is not allowed to “speak out or interfere in politics.” They don’t even vote. It is the King’s job, however, to pick the Prime Minister. But he can’t just pick anyone, though. He has to pick the person who won the election.

Every year, the king gives a speech to Parliament, but since he’s not allowed to get political, the speech is written for him by members of the Parliament. They sometimes put funny words into the speech just to hear him read them. If the king mispronounces a word, that’s how it’s pronounced from then on. This explains why the British mispronounce a lot of words, like schedule and privacy and aluminum. And that’s why it’s called “The King’s English.”

Basically, the King and Queen are mascots, like Fiveish or Mickey Mouse, except you can’t run over and hug them and take pictures with them and get them to sign stuff. Mickey Mouse doesn’t run Disney World any more than Fiveish runs Oorah. They’re mainly there for entertainment purposes, often unintentionally.

The system is such that there is no point in ever assassinating a king. He has no say in government, his decisions don’t matter, and if you kill him there will be another king immediately. And in fact, there’s a line of succession such that every man, woman, and child in England has a number that says how many people have to die at once for them to be in charge. So unless you can simultaneously assassinate everyone with a higher number than you, there’s no point. Yet there are guards outside the palace.

The only people with a motive to assassinate anyone are the people who are aware of their number. But all those people are inside the palace.

Yet there are guards outside the palace.

Mordechai Schmutter is a freelance writer and a humor columnist for Hamodia and other magazines. He has also published eight books and does stand-up comedy. You can contact him at [email protected].

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