March 31, 2009
Posted: 08:33 AM ET
By Katty Kay of the British Broadcasting Corporation
Dear Mr. President,
We are so delighted that you and your wife will be joining us at Buckingham Palace tomorrow. We will do our best to ensure the weather is fine for your visit, but unfortunately since our forebears abandoned absolute monarchy in 1689, the climate has been rather less under our control. One hears that the globe is warming but we see little evidence of it here in drizzly London.
I understand you have been taking lessons in royal protocol at your country house in Camp David. I do hope your minions did not confuse you with talk about farms and hams. I appreciate "ma'am" comes less naturally to the American tongue than "ma'am" but we make allowances for our guests from overseas. Can you believe that ever since that film with the delightful Helen Mirren playing myself became such a success I've had a string of visitors stumbling over their greeting and actually calling me "Farm"? Which is more forgivable than your successor, Mr. President, who winked at me during my state visit to America a couple of years ago, after stumbling himself into the suggestion that I was somehow born in 1776. Farm is mildly amusing, Mr. Obama; a wink, is not.
And, while we are on the subject of films, I think a boxed set of DVDs is unnecessary, don't you? Our press got frightfully upset when you gave some American "movies" to our prime minister recently and took it as a bit of a snub. One does have to tread carefully around such national sensitivities. It is not, between ourselves, something Mr. Bush was terribly adept at, we are rather hoping for improvement, and so we’re glad to hear you refer recently to the "special relationship" between our two nations.
Filed under: President Obama
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