Sunday, September 13, 2015

An interview with Queen Elizabeth, in my dreams

This week, Queen Elizabeth II became England’s longest-reigning monarch, surpassing her great-great grandmother Queen Victoria, who remained unimpressed at the time of this writing. Queen Victoria reigned for 23,226 days, a record thought unbreakable in the era before dietary fiber. In honor of this milestone, I sat down with Queen Elizabeth for a casual and largely fictitious chat.

GW: Your Majesty, thank you for taking time out from being feted by admirers for breaking this monarchy-record thingy.

Queen: It's a relief, to be honest. You'd think people had never seen a lady reign her butt off before.

GW: Did you just say 'butt'?

Queen: Blame it on the champagne. I've spent the last week being feted till my feter is all feted out. Butt butt butt.

GW: (to the waiter) Bring some coffee, please.

Queen: I have reigned over Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada...

GW: Sierra Leone.

Queen: Not any more, dear.

GW: Uganda?

Queen: We lost Uganda in '63. A shame. The hats were marvelous.

GW: You've still got Tuvalu.

Queen: I AM still the queen of Tuvalu, and Papua New Guinea.

GW: You are the queen of Barbados.

Queen: Yes, and the Bahamas. I like to say they love me anywhere it's breezy. (Laughs.)

GW: (Laughs.) There is something I promised myself I would ask you if I ever met you. Does it feel funny to use money with your own picture on it?

Queen: Use money?

GW: Yes, use money. Oh. Right.

Queen: I have seen it used, of course.

GW: Of course. You have people for that.

Queen: So many people, yes. And cars. And buildings. I count them sometimes when I can't sleep.

GW: So. Sixty-three years on the throne. What are you proudest of?

Queen: I came up with the whole "keep calm and carry on" bit.

GW: No!

Queen: It was just something offhand I said to one of my corgi dogs when he was startled by a colorful ottoman. The next thing I knew, it was on buses.

GW: They are good words to live by.

Queen: Indeed. It's gotten out of hand, though. "Keep calm and smoke weed"? I mean, really. With my crown logo and everything.

GW: Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Queen: Perhaps I should receive royalties. Get it? Royalties.

GW: Ha! Nice, but don't quit your day job...Oh. Right.