Today, 20 November is the 20th anniversary of the fire at Windsor Castle. It was a sad day in 1992 when, during refurbishment work on the 900 year old castle, a spotlight was believed to have overheated and caught fire to one of the curtains by the altar.
The motion to abolish the monarchy won the vote in the end and sense won out.
Like Freud before Heimans, Annie Leibovitz with her dark photographic take, or the purpling rigamortis skin of Antony Williams' 1996 effort, this painting, like all before, fails to tell us anything meaningful about the monarch.
This is not a dig at the Queen personally. She just happened to be born into this world; she didn't do anything to be put in this position, which is exactly the point.
Poor Prince Harry. He stepped straight out of his clothes and into a furore about badly behaved royals, the strangulation of the press and the stripping of his title; and it's all because he got a little wild in Las Vegas.
The Olympics have finished, turned off the flame, shut the door on the stadium and left the building.
I worked on the advertising campaign of original Olympic application. To win the bid London had to prove that the UK Olympics would mean progress, not just in sport but for the nation. Ten years later I wonder if the billions of pounds that have been lavished on the games meant a step backwards rather than forward.
Just a few hours ago I was all ready to write a piece damning the Olympics Opening Ceremony. I had read the Guardian's guide to watching the coverage and I was suitably apprehensive. The only question was how I was going to execute the slaughter.
Why exactly are the vast majority in favour of the monarchy in this age of democracy? Has the Queen brainwashed the entire nation? Economically, there seems to be no need for a monarch.
I'm a little disappointed because I've just failed a sample paper from the Life in the UK citizenship test, even though I'm a British citizen.
Two decades on, it's hard to imagine the BBC and others operating a blanket media ban similar to the one twenty years ago. Many would argue that the Thatcher ban backfired, and actually made viewers pay more, not less, attention to McGuinness and others. Perhaps that's why it's never been tried again since.
Last Friday's solution to the latest hand shake dilemma has laid the path for Wednesday 27 June 2012 to behold to the world a monumental handshake between Martin McGuinness and the Queen. A watershed event that will unequivocally change minds and lay an indelible landmark on Northern Ireland's long and winding avenue that has been the peace process.
The Prime Minister David Cameron has revived the Medal of the Order of the British Empire for Meritorious Service... or, to the common man, the British Empire Medal. Although it has always been awarded in other Commonwealth countries, former premier John Major decided to scrap it during his tenure at Downing Street on the basis that it was helping fuel a class-riddled society.
Like many people, as a boy I was repeatedly transfixed by a Saturday morning's viewing in which my parents' TV screen seemed like a window to a bygone age. Massed regiments of foot soldiers, brass bands and regimental standards provided magical scenes.
Now that the dust has settled and the rain has stopped, let's look at the past few days that have been such a boon to the Far Eastern makers of red, blue and white cheap plastic fluttering tat. There must have been container ships full of the stuff, advancing across the high seas since the turn of the year.
Judging from the media coverage of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations you'd think that the entire British population are ardent monarchists. Critical, dissenting voices were mostly ignored and sidelined. Journalistic balance and impartiality was supplanted in favour of fawning sycophancy towards the royals.