Friday, April 29, 2011

Royal wedding coverage: Americans watched and sighed

I'm quoted extensively in this post royal wedding article in the Christian Science Monitor. They really make me sound smarter than I am!!! God Save the Queen!
Royal wedding coverage: Americans watched and sighed

Royal wedding coverage: Americans watched and sighed
Americans who watched the royal wedding coverage say they appreciated the elegance and traditions of the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, now Duchess of Cambridge.
Britain's Prince William and and his wife Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, travel to Buckingham Palace in a 1902 State Landau carriage after the royal wedding at Westminster Abbey, London, Friday.
Peter Jordan / AP
By Gloria Goodale, Staff writer / April 29, 2011
Los Angeles
William and Kate are wed. Half a world away, Americans from Washington to Los Angeles roused themselves to watch the hour-long ceremony broadcast live and in HD from Westminster Abbey. While denizens of the former colony sometimes carp about oppressive British traditions, those who breakfasted on the event showed a genuine sense of appreciation for the restrained elegance that ran through the moment.
“It was really beautiful,” says Nathalie DeWulf Miller, a naturalized US citizen born in France. She turned on the TV while her husband slept in their Southern California home. “I knew Kate would have long sleeves because every royal wedding dress has had them,” says Ms. Miller, “but it was so elegant and modern.” The choice of gown was decidedly not what Diana and Fergie chose, she adds, “not over the top at all.”
On the other coast, third-generation ex-Marine Robert Westover fired up his wide-screen, high-definition TV to enjoy what he calls a celebration of the best parts of royal traditions. “It encapsulated a thousand years of British history from William the Conqueror – who was crowned in the Abbey – all the way through Chaucer and Milton,” says the Washington, D.C., resident. “I am not a monarchist or even a royalist,” he says, but “this is the country that gave the world the Magna Carta, laying out the rights of man for the whole civilized western world.” Respect is due this heritage, he says, “even if I firmly believe in electing all my own leaders.”
Being of British descent, Mr. Westover says, it’s the least courtesy he can accord his mother country. Besides, he says, as a former Marine, respect is a professional courtesy. “When British Marines set fire to Washington in 1812,” he says with a laugh, “the one building they did not torch was the Marine commandant’s home.”
Watching from her Detroit-area home, author and social scientist Terri Orbuch says she was impressed with the lack of ostentation. “No big-name celebrity performers or modern vows written by the bride and groom,” she says, although she does concede that walking out of a church to see a crimson-lined carriage drawn by white horses “may just be every little girl’s wedding dream.”
She says she was struck by the obvious connection between William and Kate. “Their body language – small looks and glances between them – spoke volumes about how united they feel in this union,” says the author of "Five Simple Steps to Take Your Marriage from Good to Great."
While the Bible verses and traditional passages from church officials suffused the ceremony with a traditional hue, the relationship at the heart of the wedding is completely modern, “a paring of equals,” she says, very unlike the distant, somewhat tense relationship on display in the Prince Charles and Diana nuptials.
She hopes that watchers will absorb the importance of a calm and mature bond at the heart of the wedding. Nonetheless, she adds, a more likely take-away will be yet another upgrade for any self-respecting modern wedding: “No doubt, we will see some brides demanding their very own horse-drawn carriage complete with footmen,” she adds with a rueful laugh.

Royal wedding: Women see romance, men see history. Both like the story.

I'm quoted in the CS Monitor about the royal wedding...please don't tell Lord Westover!
Royal wedding: Women see romance, men see history. Both like the story.

Royal wedding: Women see romance, men see history. Both like the story.
Royal wedding pageantry around William and Kate's big day is here, and men and women are focusing on different aspects. But the appeal of the basic story line means both will be watching.
· Royal wedding: A flag showing a picture of Britain's Prince William and his fiancee Kate Middleton flutters in the wind. Men and Women in the US are both interested in the royal wedding, but their reasons are very different. Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters
By Gloria Goodale, Staff writer / April 28, 2011
Los Angeles
Will and Kate’s big day is almost here. But while Americans of all ages and professions have beenfeasting regularly and deeply on this banquet of public pageantry, one thing has become quite clear – men and women are sipping from decidedly different cups.
Women have a slight edge when it comes to celebrating the event. According to, a “social decision engine” that tracks the activities of some 100 million users across social media such as Facebook and Twitter, women make up some 57 percent of those planning social events to watch the wedding broadcast.
For the men who are tuning in, their interest is more geared to the externals – historical details and symbolism – says Thomas Smith, an Atlanta-based public relations professional.
“I’ve been following the coverage in print and online,” he says, adding, “I’m very intrigued by the pageantry and processions and preparations.” Adds Robert Westover, a 40-something ex-Marine from Washington, D.C. “I’m very keen on the symbolism of who sits where and the remarkable history of the buildings and all the ceremonies.”
Head/heart split
There are powerful evolutionary and social reasons for this head/heart split between men and women, says Patrick Markey, director of Villanova University’s Interpersonal Research Laboratory.
Social learning reinforces the message. “Think about what we expose daughters to,” he says, adding every day “we read them a fairy tale about a prince or they hear a Disney story about Prince Charming or watch a movie about Cinderella.” These two combine for a very powerful influence both conscious and not, he says.
However, that said, many women are relieved to know that this time around Prince Charming isn’t looking for an aristocratic, pretty virgin 13 years his junior, says Stephanie Coontz, professor of history and family studies at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., via email.
Rather, he is looking for an equally educated, same-age mate that he's known for 8 years, she says. “I am seeing more interest from these women this time around – they find it reassuring that the heir to the throne picked a real-life person with a mind of her own rather than a cartoon fairy-tale princess,” she adds.
Women from coast to coast are gathering in groups of girlfriends and multiple generations. From quiltmaker Roberta Levin, who watched Diana and Charles wed thirty years ago and wants to see her son come full circle, to public relations professional Elizabeth Anderson, who will watch surrounded by a bevy of female relatives, from her daughter to her mother and a slew of in-laws and nieces.
In the end, though, the story draws in both men and women, says Beth Amorosi, president of Ammo Communications.