MAUREEN CALLAHAN: It’s the Me-Me Markle Tour! Why DIDN’T Meghan find time to mention cancer-hit Kate amid all her self-promo peacocking in Nigeria?

How’s that for a non-royal royal tour?

A whiplash 72-hour visit to Nigeria saw Harry and Meghan as if on official business — as though they were still working royals, pressing the flesh in pursuit of soft power.

I’m sorry: Wasn’t Megxit spurred, in no small part, by their desire to avoid such ceremonial drudgeries? By what the Gruesome Twosome clearly saw as the pointlessness of diplomatic photo ops, ribbon-cuttings, speeches given in drab rooms to little effect?

‘I can’t believe I’m not getting paid for this.’

That was Meghan Markle during her official 2018 royal tour of Australia, as reported by Valentine Low in his book ‘Courtiers: The Hidden Power Behind the Crown.’

‘Although she enjoyed the attention’, Low wrote, ‘Meghan failed to understand the point of all those walkabouts, shaking hands with countless strangers.’

Walkabouts are looking pretty good right about now, aren’t they?

A whiplash 72-hour visit to Nigeria saw Harry and Meghan as if on official business ¿ as though they were still working royals , pressing the flesh in pursuit of soft power.
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A whiplash 72-hour visit to Nigeria saw Harry and Meghan as if on official business — as though they were still working royals , pressing the flesh in pursuit of soft power.

'I can't believe I'm not getting paid for this.' That was Meghan Markle during her official 2018 royal tour of Australia (above), as reported by Valentine Low in his book 'Courtiers: The Hidden Power Behind the Crown.'
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‘I can’t believe I’m not getting paid for this.’ That was Meghan Markle during her official 2018 royal tour of Australia (above), as reported by Valentine Low in his book ‘Courtiers: The Hidden Power Behind the Crown.’

Capping a week in which Meghan was absent from the Met Gala — as well as a private, star-studded party thrown by her Montecito neighbor Gwyneth Paltrow (more on that in a bit) — plus Harry’s trip to promote the Invictus Games in the UK, Meghan alighted in Nigeria, her self-proclaimed ‘motherland’, to sing her own praises.

Yes: That’s exactly what one should call a foreign nation when one’s husband, a prince of the blood, has just been seemingly shunned by his father the King, and his entire family, in his actual homeland.

A country that Meghan has not stepped foot in since the Queen’s death — aside from the VIP lounge at Heathrow, where she greeted her husband en route to Africa.

But hey — Meghan’s 43 percent Nigerian, according to her self-reporting, which in her mind makes her Nigeria’s ‘people’s princess,’ I guess.

After calling Nigeria ‘my country’ — ever subtle — Meghan lavished praise upon herself under the guise of complimenting her host nation.

Of course, no individual quote was directly cited. Perhaps she’s learned from her ‘Lion King’/Mandela debacle.

Instead, we get groupthink in the ether.

Here was Meghan co-hosting a Women in Leadership event, bringing it all back to herself:

‘What has been echoed so much in the past day is, “Oh, we are so not surprised when we found out you are Nigerian.” It is a compliment to you, because what they define as a Nigerian woman is brave, resilient, courageous, beautiful.’

Just when you think Markle’s delusions of grandeur have reached peak de-lu-lu.

Day One saw Meghan and Harry speaking to students at a mental health summit.

Because when we think of emotional stability, proportionate responses, and a general healthy, optimistic outlook on life, who among us doesn’t think of the Sussexes?

After calling Nigeria 'my country' ¿ ever subtle ¿ Meghan lavished praise upon herself under the guise of complimenting her host nation.
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After calling Nigeria ‘my country’ — ever subtle — Meghan lavished praise upon herself under the guise of complimenting her host nation.

 

Meghan offered up her typical garlanded vagaries, California sprinkles that mean nothing.

‘You know, every single one of you has a story’, she told students at the Lightway Academy. ‘We all have our story.’

No kidding.

‘And there’s no shame in any single one of your stories,’ she blathered on. ‘Even on the hardest days or the darkest days, everything is a pillar of your strength by each of you being there.’

Huh? Being where, exactly?

She should team up with Kamala Harris for a Grand Word Salad Tour of 2024.

Next came a story about Harry and Meghan’s daughter Lili, who is not yet three.

‘A few weeks ago,’ Meghan told the students, ‘she looked at me and saw her reflection in my eyes. She said, “Mama, I see myself in you.”‘

Ah, the Zen of royal toddlers. Princess Lilibet knows what’s up: Affirm Mommy’s greatness at all costs. Push through that limited vocabulary to praise and pay tribute.

Now, this quick trip, undertaken for the ostensible purpose of promoting Invictus (which Harry just promoted in Britain), meant that Meghan was away from her children on Mother’s Day.

No matter.

Meghan offered up her typical garlanded vagaries, California sprinkles that mean nothing. 'You know, every single one of you has a story,' she told students at the Lightway Academy (above). 'We all have our story.'
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Meghan offered up her typical garlanded vagaries, California sprinkles that mean nothing. ‘You know, every single one of you has a story,’ she told students at the Lightway Academy (above). ‘We all have our story.’

Students wait to welcome the Sussexes to the Wuse Lightway Academy in Abuja today
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Students wait to welcome the Sussexes to the Wuse Lightway Academy in Abuja today

‘It feels appropriate,’ Meghan said, ‘that although we, of course, are missing our children, I’m missing my babies, it feels very appropriate to be in the motherland and amongst family.’

If that isn’t a slap in the face to King Charles, who was too ‘busy’ to see his younger son, and to Prince William and Kate Middleton, who have all understandably kept a firm distance — well, what is?

Charles and Kate, of course, are fighting their own cancer battles. Yet hardly not a word of kindness from Meghan amid her in-laws’ own ‘hardest days or darkest days,’ not a nod to ‘everything’ being ‘a pillar’ of their ‘strength’.

But remember everyone, as Meghan always says: Be kind!

Back to Meghan’s reply during her Socratic exchange with Lili.

‘I thought: Yes, I do see me in you, and you see me in you,’ Meghan told the students. ‘But as I look around this room, I see myself in all of you as well.’

Vintage Markle: Me, me, me, me, me. Have I told you about me?

It calls to mind, all too painfully, her acceptance speech at the Ms. Foundation Awards last year, which I recorded as a service to humanity.

Never forget: Markle entered the ballroom through a rental car office. That’s our Duchess of Hertz.

‘Ms.’, Meghan said in her acceptance speech, ‘was formative in [my] cocooning. It piqued my curiosity, and it became the chrysalis for the woman that I would become and that I am today.’

Equally unhinged was Harry reviewing Nigerian troops, standing at attention, as if he hadn’t been stripped of his official military titles upon stepping down. As if King Charles hadn’t officially named William Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps — Harry’s old unit, and a title he would otherwise have been given — on the very day Harry spoke at St. Paul’s last week.

And for all the gripes Harry makes about needing taxpayer-funded security in the UK: These two multimillionaires benefited from government-funded security in Nigeria, despite 87 million Nigerians living below the poverty line.

Equally unhinged was Harry reviewing Nigerian troops (above, on May 10), standing at attention, as if he hadn't been stripped of his official military titles upon stepping down.
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Equally unhinged was Harry reviewing Nigerian troops (above, on May 10), standing at attention, as if he hadn’t been stripped of his official military titles upon stepping down.

'I thought: "Yes, I do see me in you, and you see me in you,"' Meghan told the students. 'But as I look around this room, I see myself in all of you as well.' Vintage Markle: Me, me, me, me, me. Have I told you about me?
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‘I thought: “Yes, I do see me in you, and you see me in you,”‘ Meghan told the students. ‘But as I look around this room, I see myself in all of you as well.’ Vintage Markle: Me, me, me, me, me. Have I told you about me?

But Harry and Meghan are icons of social justice, of equity and fairness everywhere.

It’s theater of the absurd at House Sussex, cosplaying as the royals they so otherwise seem to despise, Meghan swanning about in ill-fitting dresses that fairly sweep the floor.

Can this woman add a stylist, a tailor and maybe a speechwriter to her LinkedIn search?

If only Harry and Meghan could have played the long game. It would have been Meghan front-and-center at the most glittering events, generating tons of goodwill stepping in for sick royals. It would have been Meghan accepting, say, Tom Cruise’s outstretched hand at the next ‘Top Gun’ premiere or sitting front row at the BAFTAs, wearing the crown jewels.

Alas, it’s faux-royale-with-cheese wherever they’ll be accepted.

Compare this to an event much closer to Meghan’s home: A glamorous, invitation-only outdoor dinner thrown by Gwyneth Paltrow at her Montecito estate, celebrating a collaboration between Goop and the Italian luxury brand Loro Piana.

Per a Vogue dispatch just before the Met Gala, Gwyneth’s guest list included Oprah Winfrey and Ted Sarandos, head of Netflix.

Maybe Meghan’s invite got lost in the mail?

Think about it: Meghan’s new lifestyle brand, American Riviera Orchard, is a pale, content-less imitation of Gwyneth’s Goop.

It's theater of the absurd at House Sussex, cosplaying as the royals they so otherwise seem to despise, Meghan swanning about in ill-fitting dresses that fairly sweep the floor.
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It’s theater of the absurd at House Sussex, cosplaying as the royals they so otherwise seem to despise, Meghan swanning about in ill-fitting dresses that fairly sweep the floor.

 

 

Meghan so wants to be Gwyneth, messy buns and sun-kissed California glamour, all mixed with aphoristic, merchandisable self-help.

The kicker? Gwyneth isn’t even likable! But she’s a success nonetheless.

If only Meghan could square that circle. How frustrating that must be for her.

As for Oprah? Well, she’s kept her distance ever since Meghan leveled those ‘royal racist’ claims – the same ones Harry backtracked last year.

Netflix’s Sarandos effectively cancelled Harry and Meghan’s reality docuseries deal but has greenlit a dubious cooking show, hosted by La Markle. Awkward cocktail hour chatter, that.

And American Vogue, which has yet to give Meghan a cover, issued that glowing report from Gwyneth’s star-studded event, throwing A++++ shade all the way.

Calling Gwyneth’s dinner party ‘a note-perfect evening outdoors surrounded by lemon trees’ — ahem — the magazine noted that the meal was in ‘keeping with Montecito’s reputation as the American Riveria.’

Ha!

If Meghan sent Gwyneth one of her limited-edition jarred jams, replete with peeling stickers and bruised lemon surrounds — well, it seems, Vogue was kind enough not to mention.

As our Discount Duchess once said: ‘Be grateful for the little things.’

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