Two days that sealed Meghan’s royal fate
The scene: 7.02am, a gilt-edged drawing room in Buckingham Palace. The Queen, wearing a favourite pastel chenille dressing gown that Princess Margaret gave her for Christmas in 1972, sits down at her breakfast table. She opens her tupperware container of Special K and begins to pour and picks up her copy of today's Racing Post. Suddenly, she notices the headlines in the newspapers lying underneath. Cereal goes flying!
Because one is most, MOST displeased by the antics of the newest member of her family who has flown the palace coop to indulge in a crazy rich royal weekend in New York.
Last week, the Duchess of Sussex was in the Big Apple, enjoying afternoon teas at Parisian cafe chain Laduree, quick jaunts to the Met museum, shopping at French baby brand Bonpoint and dinners at the Polo Bar, a restaurant where a quick steak will set you back $80.
Every step of this luxurious, expensive trip has been chronicled by the vast, roving horde of paparazzi who have captured her every arrival and departure.
In each shot, Meghan is positively beaming, like the cat that just ate all the macarons. (In fact, it is hard, if not impossible, to find pics of her looking this overjoyed since she officially joined The Firm back in May last year.)
But these images have accidentally revealed something fatal about the Duchess.
She does not have what it takes to be royal.
Because if she did, she would know that behaving like the super rich they actually are is the ultimate sin in the eyes of the Windsors, especially the Queen.
The hotel room where Amal Clooney and Serena Williams just hosted Meghan's Official Baby Shower is the biggest penthouse suite in the United States and costs $103,000 a night. Obviously, they have rented the space for two nights. Once there, Megs and her pals enjoyed a flower arranging class (oh, how diiiii-vinnnnne) and indulged in a private meal created by Jean Georges, one of the world's most celebrated chefs, who has an armful of Michelin stars to his name. I bet that came cheap.
After years of being on the B-list, Megs has finally earned A-list status, and she is indulging in every glorious, expensive minute of her new-found global celebrity - sod how poorly it reflects on her new family or her understanding of her role as an HRH.
Meghan's entire trip was so conspicuous and so gauche, and this whole spectacle demonstrates she doesn't understand the inherent sacrifice that lies at the heart of being a Windsor.
That is, while you can afford to live a crazy, opulent, wonderful existence of truffled finger sandwiches and ridiculous six-figure hotel suites you just can't, no matter how much you wants to. Just because you have pals who are so rich they can afford to spend $348,000 on your baby shower does not mean you should take them up on it.
The image all of that crass, excessive consumption that went on in New York is a terrible one for an institution and family fighting to prove their relevance in 21st century Brexit Britain.
The Queen et al are constantly trying to convince the public they are Just Like Us, and incidents like Meghan's Big Apple Adventure undermine so much of the goodwill and sympathy they have built up with the public.
The Windsor clan might have hundreds of millions of pounds in their personal bank accounts and own billions of dollars of diamonds and castles and vast swathes of land the size of small European countries, but they never, ever break the cardinal rule: Don't flash your cash.
The entire family is not only famously parsimonious (I wasn't joking about the Queen's enduring commitment to tupperware or penchant for wearing clothing for decades and decades), but they are also discreet.
Sure, they all regularly take holidays that cost more than you and I earn in a year, but they do so tactfully, away from prying eyes and the lenses of photographers. Meghan flew to the States on a friend's private jet, which is how much of the royal family gets about the place. The difference being, you rarely hear about it.
After nearly 18 months living in Kensington Palace and being ensconced in the bosom of royal life, the former Suits star clearly has failed to grasp the fundamental need to behave with tact and to be as humble as possible when out in public.
There have been multiple reports that Prince William voiced his reservations about Meghan's suitability to join the royal family. These last few days of her crassly flitting about New York are starting to make it look like he might have been right.
You can't join an ancient institution and get access to a tiara vault AND still gad about the place like the A-lister you clearly have hungered to be for so, so long.
Sorry luv, you can't have your Battenberg cake AND eat at Jean Georges too. You've royally messed up this time.