Prince Albert in the Can (Literally), or Twilight of the European Aristocracy

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The Shemp in the triumvirate of recent high-profile deaths has been revealed as Prince Ranier of Monaco, inevitably described as "Europe's oldest-living monarch" and less regularly described as the widely admired ruler of a gambling-and-tax-haven whose children, especially Stephanie, helped define the concept of eurotrash over the past 25 years or so.

The new Grimaldi in charge will be Prince Albert, about as perfect an embodiment of unearned wealth and charmless aristocracy as imaginable (even having Grace Kelly as a mother couldn't quite put the bobsledding incompetent quite over the top in the brains, looks, or ambition departments). As is the case with Prince Charles of Ye Olde Englande, Albert exists almost solely to remind us of the superiority of modern liberal democracy, where an individual's position in life is more likely to rise and fall in accordance with one's talents and efforts rather than being fixed by heritage and geneaology.

The most recent revelation regarding Prince Albert's general fecklessness? In her wholly entertaining, smacked-out, I-was-a-junky memoir, A Paper Life, Tatum O'Neal reveals how Al's extended pre-coital toilette killed the mood:

As I lay on his bed, I could hear him brushing his teeth, coughing, and spitting in the sink. That did it for me. I jumped up, yanking my clothes back on, and called out some lame excuse about having forgotten my contact lenses. Then I fled into the night, running all the way back to my hotel, as if the palace guards were hot on my heels.

NEXT: Discriminating Among Discriminations

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  1. From the next to last paragraph of another article about his death:

    “In April 2002, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development listed Monaco as one of seven tax havens refusing to cooperate with a major international effort to end harmful tax practices and tax evasion.”

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7400308/?GT1=6428

    I’ll take him over out elected despots any day.

  2. Dammit, should be:

    I’ll take him over our elected despots any day.

  3. “Albert exists almost solely to remind us of the superiority of modern liberal democracy, where an individual’s position in life is more likely to rise and fall in accordance with one’s talents and efforts rather than being fixed by heritage and geneaology.”

    Do you really buy the meritocracy thing? The meritocrats in charge now are the best arguments for the hereditary principle.

  4. The sad thing is that if the Grimaldis are no longer in charge, Monaco will revert to France.

  5. I’m a little lost here. Who comprise the triumverate of recent high profile deaths? Is one to characterize Terri Shiavo and the Pope as Stooges?

    As for Tatum O’Neal, one can only hope her lovers bolt the boudoir at the high-pitched reverberations of herself in open-doored urination.

  6. I’ll take him over our elected despots any day.

    What matt said!

  7. As is the case with Prince Charles of Ye Olde Englande, Albert exists almost solely to remind us of the superiority of modern liberal democracy, where an individual’s position in life is more likely to rise and fall in accordance with one’s talents and efforts rather than being fixed by heritage and geneaology.

    *cough*George W. Bush!*cough*

  8. Did anyone notice that Frank Purdue died? I mean, the guy only built a huge poultry empire, and was a minor TV personality.

    This is a very sucky time to be a dead celebrity.

  9. MNG,

    Didn’t you see the posting on Saturday? “Heaven awaits [Mr. Purdue], or at least 72 laying hens.”

  10. Frank Perdue was honored as only Jesse Walker can. I thought he was the Third Man Nick was talking about.

  11. Do you think if Prince Charles once again reschedules his wedding yet another notable European will die?

  12. To honor my own pet peeve, and I guess as a send up to a recent death who probably isn’t in the triumvirate (Mitch Hedberg), I must say that you misused the word “literally.”

  13. I must say that you misused the word “literally.”

    Reread the Tatum O’Neal anecdote.

  14. From a young age, I always enjoyed Shemp episodes of The Three Stooges. I know that almost all Stoogephiles worship at the altar of Curly, but for some reason Shemp’s brand of schtick apppealed to me. Don’t get me wrong, Curly made me laugh, but I liked the change of pace.

    Sheesh, even when it comes to comedy shorts, I find myself in a hopeless minotity. 🙂

    Does it ever seem that, rather than real statesmen, we hust have extras shemping for them?

    Kevin

  15. “where an individual’s position in life is more likely to rise and fall in accordance with one’s talents and efforts rather than being fixed by heritage and geneaology.”

    HA!

    Libertarian meritocratic idealism is deeply at odds with human sociology. In a free market people can do anything they want with their money. People generally very much want to give their money to their kids. Voila. Unearned aristocracy. Marxism is good at ending the aristocracy schtick, but fitting that square peg into the round hole causes some friction.

  16. Marxism is good at ending the aristocracy schtick

    Now, *that’s* funny! I think I’m gonna wet myself….

  17. I keep thinking that gaius marius must have something to say about this.

  18. 72 laying hens 🙂

    We’ll have to ask Mr. Gillipse directly what the big 3 are.. ’cause who can forget Johnnie Cockring? They’re burying his sorry ass as we speak.

    BTW – Maybe in hell Johnnie can ask Nicole Simpson who the REAL killer is.

  19. What’s up with the insult to Shemp? Shemp was great in his own right.

    Now if you had compared him to Joe Besser….

  20. Nobody ever wrote a song called “The Shemp Shuffle”.

  21. Shemp didn’t shuffle. He just made that “bibibibi” sound.

  22. Shemp probably took the most physical abuse out of all of them, which is admirable. From what I understand, Joe Besser had a “no hit” clause in his contract. What was the fucking point?

  23. Really? I thought Larry took the most abuse. He’s my favorite, by the way.

    Interesting to note that Moe, Curly and Shemp were all brothers in real life (real last name: Horowitz).

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