A new series of charity stamps (‘kinderpostzegels’), which are sold door to door by school children raising money for poor kids in poor countries , will feature the ‘Triple AAA’, aka Princesses Amalia, Alexia and Ariane, the daughters of Prince Willem Alexander and Princess Máxima. The Triple AAA joke was said by the Prince himself once, we can’t take credit for that.
Starting 26 September, one of the 200,000 school children who sell these stamps will ring my neighbour’s door bell and sell him pics of the young blonde Dutch royals. In November, the stamps will be available for purchase at the post office.
Belgian Princess Mathilde, wife of Prince Filip, was voted most professional European princess according to a poll conducted by the Belgian TV show Royalty, although her not very good Dutch constantly reminds the Flemish that she is supposed to represent all Belgians. The English Duchess Kate, wife of Prince William, was voted most glamorous, although her sister Pippa could arguably be more glamourous, but she’s not a princess — a technicality.
Our own Argentinian-Dutch Princess Máxima was voted the most photogenic of the European princesses, but Belgian viewers had a problem with her switching emotions on and off, depending on the occasion. I’m wondering, what else is she supposed to do? Mathilde has no range whatsoever last time I saw her on television. Máxima’s Dutch is way better than Mathilde’s Dutch will ever be, while also speaking Spanish, English and more. And she smiles more.
Both Mathilde and Kate became royalty in their own country, while Máxima went from working abroad away from her native Argentina to princess in a country she probably never even considered living in. It would be nice if she dressed a bit less stuffy and more her age, but what do I know.
Robin Grasmeijer is painting Princes Máxima in a hangar at Twente Airport, and it is to be the largest painting ever made in the Netherlands.
The painting will be 10 x 15 metres in size. Grasmeijer expects to have his painting finished in the summer of 2012. He is still looking for a building to attach the painting to.
A complicating factor is that Grasmeijer has to paint from his wheelchair. Working in an ill-ventilated factory in which he had to handle polyurethane originally left him paralysed from the neck down in 1997. Later he regained 90% of his strength in his arms and hands.
I bet it was an honest mistake, but I’m sure it sounded estúpido when Prince Willem Alexander, currently on a state visit of Mexico, unknowingly bungled a Mexican proverb in a speech by using the dirty version rather than the clean one.
I’m prepared to bet you muchos pesos that the speech writer punched up Wikipedia and picked the wrong proverb.
“Camarón que se duerme se lo lleva la corriente” means “Shrimp that sleeps gets carried by the tide”. “You snooze, you lose” is a good English translation.
The speech apparently contained “Camarón que se duerme se lo lleva la chingada”, which roughly means “Shrimp that sleeps will get screwed”.
I can also picture Princess Máxima whose mother tongue is Spanish either being completely embarrassed behind the scenes or had a huge laugh at her husband and told him it was time to learn her language, considering how well she learnt his.
Stop the freakin’ presses! Our popular blond (cough) Princess Máxima was spotted in Argentina, her home country, wearing – oh horror of horrors – glasses! Normally I would not care about something this trivial, but some attitudes are just too old fashioned for words. And of course I wear glasses. The picture is here, see the horror for yourselves.
The Argentinean media had no problems publishing the photo, after all the princess is proudly waving to her fans outside some building. The Nederlandse Rijksvoorlichtingsdienst (RVD), roughly the Dutch PR and information service for the royals, were asked if the princess did in fact wear glasses ’cause we ain’t never seen her like this before! They said: no comment. Are they blind too?
The brouhaha is all because Her Highness didn’t want to be photographed with glasses on and that this was not an official visit. We all should collectively pretend we didn’t see them because wearing glasses in 2008 is simply vulgar and embarrassing.
I thought trying to pass for a natural blond was embarrassing enough.
These are my glasses here above and everybody recognises them and me now. And I love my girl Nana Mouskouri’s funky Pierre Marly glasses no matter what anyone says.
In the Top 200 list of most influential Dutch people, there are three people of ethnic origin. They are Dutch-Moroccan René Dahan, Moroccan-born Sadik Harchaoui and Princess Máxima, who is Dutch-Argentinian. All three of them are Dutch and coincidentally all three have dual citizenship as they cannot do away with their other nationality legally. That’s all fine, I plan to do the same soon.
What bugs me is that they are Dutch when it suits the press and in this case, indeed the best case, they are from a minority group. So you can play both sides when it suits you. No wonder the Dutch identity is not a constant.