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Take these royal wedding souvenirs and....

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Royal Weddings and souvenirs. They go hand in hand. It seems you can't have one without the other. I'm not referring to the Charles and Diana wedding or Edward VIII's Coronation-that-never-was commemorative. No, I'm referring to items to mark Prince William and Kate Middleton's upcoming wedding on April 29th, 2011. What? You haven't marked your calendars yet?

Buying royal wedding souvenirs is like signing a book of condolence. It's a way to feel involved in the occasion without actually being involved. And there's nothing like an official, overpriced tankard that declares to those around you: 'I intend to get up at some unholy hour to watch the wedding'. You've made a commitment that your relatives might question. But the tankard means you're serious. It is now your ticket to a good seat in front of the TV.

If you choose not to buy an official item, it's understandable. They're expensive and the selection is not as great.  Non-official items are coming out of the woodwork as William and Kate's love inspires people to celebrate it in a variety of tacky ways. Would William and Kate approve royal wedding condoms? Luckily someone else did that. You may not need Royal Wedding sick bags but your neighbor might. How about a mug with Prince Harry and Catherine Middleton instead? Indeed, there's something for everyone. To find the more creative items, you only have to look in the right place. I'll bet you thought I was kidding, right?

It's unfortunate that some collect these items in the hope that they will increase in value. In reality, it's unlikely. On a future episode of The Antiques Road Show, these tasteless relics may garner nothing more than a curiosity about the generation that bought them.

Right now we should wonder the same thing.

© Marilyn Braun 2011
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