Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Song Lyric of the Day (Lerner and Loewe’s ‘Camelot,’ on ‘The Lusty Month of May’)

“Those dreary vows that ev'ryone takes,
Ev'ryone breaks.
Ev'ryone makes divine mistakes
The lusty month of May!”—“The Lusty Month of May,” from the musical Camelot, lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner, music by Frederick Loewe (1960)
“Vows” are usually made in June, but if this witty Lerner and Loewe song—not to mention a couple of current events—is to be believed, certain privileged people have trouble living up to them for a full 12 months. Or, in the most recent case, two septuagenarian males who were lusty indeed in their younger and middle years.
In London this weekend, the place went mad over the coronation of King Charles III. The oath he took featured three major vows: that he would “govern the Peoples of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland… according to their respective laws and customs”; that he would “cause Law and Justice, in Mercy, to be executed in all your judgements”; and, most concretely if problematically, that he would “maintain and preserve inviolably the settlement of the Church of England, and the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government thereof, as by law established in England.”
His Highness, you might recall, had a bit of a problem back when he was still Prince of Wales, when he broke his marriage vows to Princess Diana by engaging in an affair with the woman who now gets to be known as Queen Camilla.
Here in the United States, another figure who would like similar deference (and gets it, but only from his own Republican Party) had his own problems with vows. 

In a deposition made public at a civil suit now entering what may be its final phase, this fellow (let’s call him the one bestowed on him by talk-show host Stephen Colbert a year and a half ago, “Tangerine Palpatine”--or, in a pinch, the "Florida Fondler") had trouble recalling that he took up with his second wife before he was done with his first.
More seriously, he consistently violated—though never so flagrantly as on Jan. 6, 2021—his solemn oath before the American people to “preserve, protest and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
We’d better hope that, unlike Camelot—indelibly associated with America’s youngest-elected President—“Tangerine Palpatine” doesn’t get revived, now or by a new generation at some point in the future.
(The image accompanying this post shows Vanessa Redgrave performing “The Lusty Month of May” in the 1967 film adaptation of Camelot.)

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