Today is the twenty-fourth anniversary of Diana Princess of Wales’s tragic passing. For two and a half decades now, Princess Di’s fans have been botching their tributes to England’s Rose: Chesterfield’s 2017 papier-mâché tribute to Diana looked a bit like present-day Liza Minelli; the disastrous Naomi Watts-starring Diana biopic received a 7% on Rotten Tomatoes; and ASOS’s Princess Diana collection attempted to recreate her iconic style with a fast-fashion budget. It failed. How gauche.
Instead of spending money on a Rowing Blazers Diana sheep sweater, here are some suggestions for honoring the People’s Princess at home, in private, like a person of good British inbreeding:
Dump your boyfriend.
Rim your inner eyes with baby blue.
The most expensive electric aqua eyeliner retailing online at Sephora is Givenchy’s Phenom’Eyes liner in 06 Bold Blue, which is a paraben-free long-wearing liquid eyeliner with a “vinyl finish.” It has pretty bad reviews, such as this one titled “no!!!”” Apparently, it draws “like chalk” on the eyelids, but it is $40, and Diana loved the finer things.
Sprinkle Britishisms into your daily speech.
Incorporating phrases like “blimey” and “wot’s all this then” into your vocabulary can add a certain solemnity to anything from your Dunkin’ order to difficult conversations with those close to you (see #1). Forsooth!
Do a little shorts with a big shirt.
Di pioneered the reigning “fun with proportions” aesthetic of Summer 2021. One of the most expensive pairs of bike shorts I can find is this $950 pair of Balmain high-rise wool tighty tighties, which I know you’d look amazing in. Were these suggestions supposed to be about local, non-capitalist ways to commemorate Di? I don’t remember. I’m but a serf to the lords of the invisible hand, which brings me to our next activity.
Destroy a crumbling institution of your choosing.
I don’t have access to the monarchy or even to Meghan Markle, but I have a few tricks up my Virgin Atlantic sweatshirt sleeve. My personal arsenal of access to institutional power consists of twenty-eight hour a week access to my boss Bryan Goldberg’s work email address and an MFA in fiction writing from an accredited American university. Also, I own politics.substack.com as a joke, and once Walter Cronkite’s grandson picked me up from a bar in college and drove me the half mile back to my dorm because my roommate knew him. You have more power and influence than you think. Be creative. Be a black sheep.