It’s still some months until awards season gears up but Mr S is happy to announce this year’s winner of the Steerpike ‘Slurp Prize for Sycophancy.’ In a tough field, full of the usual deferential dross, slimy pseudo-babble and glutinous grovelling, one entry has today blown away all competition to clinch the gong, with an entry so obsequious it would make Uriah Heep cringe.
Step forward José Andrés with his fawning submission to this year’s Time magazine list of the ‘World’s 100 most influential people.’ The Spanish chef has prepared an appropriately nauseating entry on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, replete with a suitably airbrushed front cover which has them staring vacuously into the distance. The pair topped the ‘Icons’ section of the list with a tribute worthy of the Soviet organ Pravda. It begins thus:
There’s a famous TV interview of Harry, the Duke of Sussex, when he was an Apache helicopter gunner a few years ago. He’s sitting close to an airfield in Afghanistan, commenting on some royal news, when there’s a bang and a group of soldiers scramble behind him. In one swift motion, he stands up, rips off his microphone and runs toward the action. That same sense of urgency drives Meghan, now the Duchess of Sussex, who has long been an active humanitarian and a powerful advocate for women and girls around the world.
This would of course be the ‘same sense of urgency’ which has driven the couple to, er, fail to produce one of their much-vaunted Archewell podcasts since 2020. Indeed Steerpike wonders what exactly Harry and Meghan have done to deserve inclusion on a list of the world’s most influential people, given that Angela Merkel, Boris Johnson or the Queen didn’t make the cut. Fortunately José is on hand to tell us why exactly the exiled royals are among the greatest embodiments of humanity alive today:
They turn compassion into boots on the ground through their Archewell Foundation. They give voice to the voiceless through media production. Hand in hand with nonprofit partners, they take risks to help communities in need—offering mental-health support to Black women and girls in the U.S., and feeding those affected by natural disasters in India and the Caribbean. In a world where everyone has an opinion about people they don’t know, the duke and duchess have compassion for the people they don’t know. They don’t just opine. They run toward the struggle.
And who would know better about ‘running towards the struggle’ then Andrés? The chef is perhaps best known for his two year long legal spat with Donald Trump, after pulling out of a planned restaurant inside the Trump International Hotel in Washington DC in July 2015. The move by Andrés followed Trump’s remarks about Mexican immigrants which led to the then presidential candidate filing a lawsuit for damages for breach of contract which Andrés then counter-sued. The pair settled in 2017, with the latter declaring ‘going forward, we are excited about the prospects of working together with the Trump Organization.’
Laywers, virtue signalling and cold hard cash? Who better to write a paean to Harry and Meghan?
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