TIME Family

Why Being Second Born Can Be a Royal Pain

Meet the family: It's that little one on the right you have to watch out for
Meet the family: It's that little one on the right you have to watch out for JOHN STILLWELL; AFP/Getty Images

An open letter to George's Number Two: regal or not, second-borns can get a rotten deal

Dear Pending Prince or Princess:

First of all, the other seven billion of us are just thrilled to hear the happy news that you’re on the way—in a gender yet to be announced and with a name yet to be determined. I realize you’ll have your hands full for the next several months doing things like, well, growing hands, so I don’t want to burden you with too much right now. But before long you’ll emerge into the world and meet your royal Mum and Dad—and guess what? You’ll have a royal big brother too.

I know, I know, sorry to break it to you. You were kind of hoping you’d be the first and, if it were at all possible to arrange it, the only. Well, welcome to the club, kid. From one Number Two to another, here’s a frank admission: it’s a lousy gig—except when it’s great.

Every first child will always be a family’s crown prince or princess, which is all the more relevant in your family because the whole crown thing is for real. As a rule, first-borns are more serious than later-borns; they work harder, are better students and their IQ tends to be about three points higher than that of second-borns. They are also much more inclined than later-borns to go into the family business—which, yes, in your case is kind of the whole point. You should get accustomed to hearing your brother and you referred to as “an heir and a spare,” which is a term you won’t understand at first, then you will, and will go on to loathe for the rest of your natural life.

There’s a reason all this is true—and in commoner families too, not just yours. Think of your clan not so much as just Royal Family, but as Royal Family Inc. Moms and Dads have a finite supply of hours, energy and money—though in some families (we’re not pointing fingers here) there’s a little more of the latter than in others. The point is, your parents pour all their resources into the first product to come off the assembly line (let’s call it, for example, George v. 1.0). By the time the next one rolls along (let’s call this one You v. 2.0) there’s no getting that early investment back. This is what’s known to business people as sunk costs, which you’ll learn about at Eaton and Oxford and will later get to forget about because your exchequers and ministers will see to such things. The point is, in both a family and a company, sunk costs lead the board of directors (Mum and Dad in your case) to value the first product more than the second, whether they realize it or not.

This is an arrangement that suits that first product just fine, which is why big brothers and sisters tend to play by the rules. Your job—and the job of any littler royals who may come along after you—will be to try to upset that order. It’s why later-borns tend to be more rebellious and to take more risks than first-borns. You’ll be likelier to play extreme sports than big bro George. Even if you and he play the same sports, you’ll choose a more physical position—a baseball catcher, say, instead of an outfielder. (Baseball is…never mind. Ask someone in the royal court what the soccer and polo analogy are.) In the event you ever become Ruler of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of other Realms and Territories around the world—and you’re fourth in line for the job, so don’t start getting measured for the cape yet—you’d be a more liberal, less conventional monarch than your big bro will be.

Later-borns are more inclined to be artists too, and if there is a comedian in the family, it’s likeliest to be the very last-born. This makes sense, since when you’re the smallest person in the nursery, you are in constant risk of getting clocked by someone bigger—sorry, no royal dispensation on that rule—so you learn to disarm with humor. You also may find you’re more empathic and intuitive than George, since you similarly have to know how to suss out what people are thinking in order to get your way—what scientists call a low-power strategy, rather than the big sib’s high-power one.

There are other perils that come with being a number two, not least figuring out ways to get yourself noticed, and it’s best to go about that one carefully. One day, ask your Uncle Andy about a special friend of his named Miss Stark—and if you really want to get a laugh, call her Auntie Koo. Ask Uncle Harry to show you pictures of his recent visit to a Las Vegas hotel. On second thought, don’t, but do remember that there is only a narrow window available to you for being photographed naked—you’ll get a grace period of about 12 months after you arrive. Uncle Harry exceeded that by a teensy bit.

The point is, you’ll have to figure out ways to be special, to make a difference, while staying off of TMZ and out of the tabs. The upside? Well, you know that thing about big sibs having a higher IQ? That’s because they mentor and look after the little sibs, which isn’t half bad (trust another Number Two’s word on this one too). And if more kids come along, you get to be the mentor, which is its own kind of wonderful. The downside? Then you’ll be a middle child. And I hate to tell you kid, but that gig stinks no matter who you are.

But all that comes later. For now, enjoy the quiet, brace for the noise, and travel safe.

–A Friend in the Colonies

TIME medicine

Kate Middleton Has Morning Sickness—Again

It’s déjà vu for Duchess of Cambridge. Another pregnancy, another battle with morning sickness.

Along with the good news that Kate Middleton is pregnant and expecting her second child, who would be fourth in line to the throne, Middleton also revealed that she is suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, a severe form of morning sickness that landed her in the hospital during her first pregnancy.

Having the condition during a previous pregnancy increases the chances that it will recur, which may explain Middleton’s circumstances. Consistent nausea and vomiting can lead to dehydration and deficiencies in some important nutrients, say experts, so expectant moms who can’t keep food down are treated with IV fluids. It’s generally not dangerous to the developing fetus, unless the mom-to-be doesn’t gain enough weight during pregnancy, which can lead to lower-birth weight babies. (George, her first child, was born at a healthy 8 pounds, 6 ounces.)

This time, the Duke and Duchess’ office says, she is being treated at home, which for her is Kensington Palace.

For those who might have forgotten, hyperemesis gravidarum can be caused by hormonal changes occurring during the first three months of pregnancy—specifically the steep rise in human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), which is released by the placenta as it readies to nourish the fetus.

Presence of hydatidform moles, or a growth inside the uterus, can also trigger the severe nausea and vomiting.

There’s something else that often triggers the morning sickness: twins. No word just yet from the royals on whether George will be joined by more than one sibling.

TIME uk

Prince William and Kate Are Expecting Another Baby

This will be the royal couple's second child, and betting has already begun in earnest on whether it will be a boy or a girl

It’s official: The Duchess of Cambridge is pregnant with her second child. A tweet posted Monday from the official account of the British monarchy confirmed that Kate Middleton, who married Prince William in 2011 and gave birth to their son Prince George in July 2013, is expecting another baby.

“The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Cambridge is expecting their second child,” the tweet said.

Royal officials told the Associated Press that the Duchess was being treated for severe morning sickness, and Prime Minister David Cameron said he was “delighted by the happy news.”

Since William is second in line to the British throne, this would make the upcoming addition to the royal family fourth in the order of succession.

TIME uk

Prince William’s New Job? Medevac Helicopter Pilot

RAF Search And Rescue Teams Practice Ahead Of The Royal Wedding
In this image provided by the Ministry of Defence, Prince William takes the controls of a Sea King helicopter on April 14, 2011 in Holyhead, Wales. Handout—Getty Images

Prince William will begin training this fall and start work spring 2015

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, a former chopper pilot in the Royal Air Force, is taking a job as an air ambulance helicopter pilot next spring, according to Kensington Palace.

Prince William will begin training for the new role this fall and winter before working with the East Anglian Air Ambulance in England. The Duke will fly both day and night shifts, starting as a co-pilot before he may qualify as a helicopter commander.

Better known for his marriage to Kate Middleton than for his flying abilities, the palace added that though this will be his main job, he’ll continue his domestic and overseas visits that have been so widely documented, with his wife or son in tow. Prince William will also continue working for his various charities.

Though he is entitled to a salary, the Duke will be donating his medevac income to charity. He is believed to be the first member of the Royal Family in direct succession to have an employment contract with a civilian employer. The job will draw on Prince William’s experience as a search and rescue pilot for the RAF, for which he flew over 150 operations.

 

 

TIME U.K.

Former British Tabloid Editor to Face Retrial in Hacking Case

After conviction for conspiracy

The former editor of the now-defunct British tabloid the News of the World will be re-tried for allegedly buying royal telephone numbers from police after he was already found guilty last week of conspiracy in the hacking case that has consumed the British media world.

Andy Coulson, the former editor who resigned as Prime Minister David Cameron’s communications director in 2011, is due to stand trial for conspiring to commit misconduct in a public office, BBC reports. Coulson is accused of paying police officers for royal telephone directories. Coulson was found guilty last week of conspiring to hack phones from 2000 to 2006; he was the paper’s editor from 2003 to 2007.

The jurors who convicted him of the conspiracy charge failed to reach a verdict on whether he committed misconduct by allegedly paying police officers for the phone books. Coulson is due to be sentenced later this week for the phone hacking conviction. He faces a maximum of two years in prison.

[BBC]

TIME royals

A Prince George Photo Album: See the Royal Baby Grow Up

The newest and arguably cutest — sorry, Prince Harry — member of the British royal family continues to attract attention wherever he toddles.

TIME Thailand

Thailand: Coups That Helped Shape the Land of Coups

Thailand Politics
A Thai soldier jumps off a military truck after arriving at a progovernment rally site on the outskirts of Bangkok on Tuesday, May 20, 2014. Wason Wanichakorn—AP

Thailand's army on Tuesday declared martial law in what many contend amounts to a coup d'état. But the military's latest incursion into the nation's political realm is far from an oddity, with perennial putsches instrumental to shaping what the country is today

Protesters were ordered to disperse, media censored and military vehicles positioned around key intersections in the Thai capital on Tuesday, as the country’s armed forces consolidated their grip on the nation’s reins of power. This is nothing new for the most coup-prone country in the world. Excluding this current incursion, there have been 11 putsches in Thailand and seven coup attempts since the fall of absolute monarchy in 1932.

Even today, the Martial Law Act 1914 gives the army “superior power” over civilian institutions regarding maintaining public order and security. And so despite 82 years of flirting with various forms of democracy, Thailand has never really been able to keep the military in the barracks or politicians in office for very long.

Here are four coups that help explain why:

The End of Royal Rule

Coup season officially began in Thailand with the overthrow of the absolute monarchy through a bloodless revolt on June 24, 1932. Led by members of the military, civilian servants and ambitious elites, the plot put an end to seven centuries of outright royal rule.

A provisional constitution was implemented to strip the King of his political powers — commencing the country’s ongoing experimentation with constitutional monarchy and parliamentary elections. But within years, limited power was gradually restored to the King and Thailand’s deep-set feudal order was maintained.

Foundation of Nationalism

A short-lived civilian administration followed the end of Japanese occupation, but the military stepped back into Thailand’s political landscape in 1947 amid corruption scandals and the suspicious death of the country’s young King. This coup allowed for the return of wartime strongman and rabid nationalist Field Marshal Plaek Phibunsongkhram.

He is perhaps best known for providing the country, formerly known as Siam among other provinces, with its current name in a bid to promote the Thai ethnicity as central to the country’s identity. But myriad nationalistic campaigns were launched during his rule, which included the creation of the now famous national dish, Pad Thai. Phibunsongkhram’s actions most acutely demonstrate the military’s paramount role in forging a national identity from the kingdom’s diverse populace.

His hard-line conservative sensibilities would also eventually put the country firmly in the good graces of the U.S., which would later rely on Thai air bases to run bombing sorties over Indochina during the Vietnam War.

The Military’s Violent Return

Three years after a popular uprising ended decades of military rule, the army came back into power through violent intervention on Oct. 6, 1976. In one of the darkest chapters of the country’s history, right-wing paramilitary groups stormed a demonstration at the elite Thammasat University outside Bangkok, where students had been protesting the return of former military ruler Thanom Kittikachorn to Thailand.

Dozens of students were slaughtered and more than 100 injured during the grisly episode. Following the massacre, a junta again seized power.

The attack on the students was largely predicated on stamping out perceived leftist tendencies. Before the crackdown, the protesters were portrayed as anti-royalists in the press, which helped feed hysteria among the Establishment, who feared that Thailand could be the next dominion to fall to communist insurgents on the heels of America’s withdrawal from the region.

Thaksin’s End in 2006

On Sept. 19, 2006, the Thai military launched its last successful military coup to oust popularly elected Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. The billionaire former police officer was in New York City attending the U.N. General Assembly at the time. The putsch incensed the rural masses and urban working class who voted Thaksin into office and continue to hold him in high regard for populist welfare initiatives.

However, alleged venality in Thaksin’s administration and a perceived lack of respect for the beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej enraged royalists and the urban middle classes, who chafed at seeing their long-standing influence erode and put considerable pressure on the military to oust the Prime Minister.

The generals cited threats to national unity as grounds for the coup, but the move was largely seen as an effort to preserve the power of the Establishment. Indeed, the removal of Thaksin ended up driving an irreconcilable wedge into Thai society and sent the country hurtling into perpetual political crisis that analysts warn may still end in civil war.

TIME Royal Family

Prince George Goes to the Zoo and Meets a Marsupial Named After Him

George the baby, meet George the bilby

In continuation of their Australia tour, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge brought baby Prince George to Sydney’s Taronga Zoo on Sunday after attending an Easter service.

There, Prince George was introduced to another George: one of the zoo’s bilbies, a desert-dwelling marsupial which was named after the prince. The family spent some time admiring the small furry, long-eared animal together from just outside the enclosure.

When George was handed a stuffed replica of the animal George, he elicited chuckles by immediately throwing it aside.

We get it, George—we’d want the real thing too.

TIME Royal Family

Check Out Queen Elizabeth’s Fancy New Birthday Portrait

Queen Elizabeth II
This portrait of Queen Elizabeth II taken and made available on April 20, 2014, by British photographer David Bailey has been released to mark her 88th birthday on Monday April 21, 2014. The photograph was taken at Buckingham Palace in March and was commissioned on behalf of the British Government's GREAT Britain campaign. David Bailey—AP

The photographer sought to capture her 'kind eyes with a mischievous glint'

A new portrait of Queen Elizabeth II has been released in honor of her 88th birthday, which falls on Monday, April 21. And if we may be so bold, she’s looking pretty great.

British photographer David Bailey took the simple black-and-white portrait at Buckingham Palace, the BBC reports. Bailey said he’s always been a big fan of the Queen.

“She has very kind eyes with a mischievous glint,” Bailey said. “I’ve always liked strong women, and she is a very strong woman.”

Well, anyway — happy birthday, Queen Elizabeth! Most people hope to be treated like queens on their birthdays, but you already are one! Good job.

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