THE MOST OFF-THE-WALL THING happened this week. A female at the immensely ordinary age of 30, who has evidently had sex for some vile reason, has now fallen pregnant. Naturally, the media has gone ape in the face of such an unprecedented phenomenon. In less than a year, the British Royal Family will lay out silverware at the dining room table for its newest member. I’d like to give this unborn child some sound advice on how to be less lame in 21st-century England (i.e., the country that lies just beyond the palace gates, like a rippling time-warp into the present).
As soon as you have a set of teeth, make sure you bite your uncle Harry all the time. He’s not cool. When you can walk, make a dash for the gates and watch as the guards shudder like strawberry-flavoured liquorice dildos, torn between your safety and their sworn duty to impersonate a statue. When the time comes for you to go to school, make sure your parents send you to a real school on Planet Earth, not a gentlemen’s/ladies’ club for the disconnected elite. Remember, you live in England, and the year is 2013. Immerse yourself in today’s English culture in whatever way it manifests during your formative years. In your first speech say “innit,” “bruv,” and “what a dickhead” when referring to the Prime Minister at the time — you will undoubtedly have captured his essence accurately.
Get an Oyster Card and travel around town on the tube, or buy a secondhand bike and a toolkit. Get drunk on ouzo or White Lightning (cheap, rocket-fuel cider) at a reasonable age like 12 and rock up at the palace gates completely wasted after curfew is up. Mess with the guards’ hats on your way in. If your parents ask you to come along to a polo match (a game involving horses and super-rich people who look like horses), give them a nonchalant up-yours sign without looking up from your copy of Nineteen Eighty-Four. This is a sign I want you to use frequently in future.
When you’re 15 or 16, go to an illegal rave in a warehouse or field somewhere outside of London and be inspired/get mashed. Take this experience with you and, when the rest of the family is away for the weekend killing foxes or eating quail eggs, throw a massive free party at Buckingham Palace. It will be off the chain. Everyone will come. Hopefully when your parents get back a few days later most of the people will be gone except for a few homeless guys and their dogs and an old football.
When the summer sun warms the city, turn your speakers to project NWA out of your bedroom and into the streets. Fill a paddling pool with shower gel and hot water in the courtyard. Give the guards a quick up-yours and dice-rolling ‘wanker’ gesture for good measure. Spend the summer in and out of parks and festivals. Go to Notting Hill Carnival. Go with your mates to a shabby tattoo parlour and get inked up somewhere on your body. While you’re there, get a piercing between your legs. Leak a sex tape that reveals this new ornamentation.
In your late teens, go to anti-war demonstrations. Date someone from a different ethnic background and, if you’re that way inclined, of the same sex. Throw paint on the next Prime Minister that declares war for no apparent reason in a country far away. Leave England for a few years: go to Palestine, travel through the Middle East and Africa. Do something genuinely useful — don’t volunteer and chop some wood for people who can do it a lot better by themselves.
When you get back to the UK, do your best to sell Buckingham Palace off for charity. Adopt the next Prince/Princess/Human. Move into a flat in East London. Write poetry and paint. Get active in community issues. Shop at the local market. Wind out your days as a superhero celebrating being a person rather than an archaic posterboy/girl for inequality.
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