You’re fab, Amal... but never make me cringe like that again

Rachel John­son

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - MORE -

MAYBE I’m jeal­ous. OK, of course I’m jeal­ous, but watch­ing Amal Clooney in ac­tion in a be­spoke, pastelpink Prada maxi-mini-dress at that Hol­ly­wood back-slap­per last week I felt some­thing was a lit­tle… off? She was there to sup­port her hus­band Ge­orge as he re­ceived a life­time achieve­ment award. Uber-glam wifey made a sweet speech, but as she shared her ‘few well-cho­sen words’, the back of my neck be­gan to prickle.

She loved Ge­orge, whose smile made her melt ev­ery time. ‘My love, what I have found with you,’ she told the equally be­sot­ted Tin­sel­town crowd, ‘is the great love I al­ways hoped ex­isted.’

I could live with this, even though it was OTT for my taste.

On the whole, I don’t go for pub­lic dis­plays or state­ments of af­fec­tion, and pre­fer peo­ple who grunt, ‘You’re not that bad ei­ther’ rather than be­stow moist em­braces and make sug­ary, flow­ery tributes to their love ob­jects.

Any­way, Amal said she couldn’t sleep when they were apart (again, I am more likely to warm to a woman who con­fesses of her part­ner: ‘I can’t sleep when we’re to­gether.’) Af­ter this she went in even harder, in case we hadn’t got the mes­sage that Ge­orge was not just The One, he was Prince Charm­ing and knight in shin­ing ar­mour, Christ­mas, birth­day and Easter, all at once. ‘I met Ge­orge when I was 35,’ she told the live-streamed cer­e­mony, ‘and start­ing to be­come quite re­signed to the idea that I was go­ing to be a spin­ster.’ Noooo, Amal! Not this! Please don’t tell us you were poor Cin­ders. We all know you are a pri­vate school, Ox­ford-ed­u­cated, in­ter­na­tional bar­ris­ter and ac­knowl­edged beauty and you were only 35 when you met in his Lake Como palazzo. I’ve got Levi’s older than that! Not since Ju­lia Roberts stood in front of Hugh Grant and pre­tended she was just an adorable girl ask­ing a boy to love her have I heard such mag­nif­i­cent, ma­nip­u­la­tive tosh.

I must sin­gle out for close tex­tual anal­y­sis in par­tic­u­lar her choice of the word ‘spin­ster’ – picked to sig­nal that she self-iden­ti­fied as a sin­gle pringle of ripen­ing years con­demned to be­ing on the shelf till ol’ blue eyes came along and dusted her off. It’s non­sense, of course. I wish women wouldn’t do this.

Far bet­ter to own the fact that she is one of the most beau­ti­ful, cel­e­brated, and de­servedly suc­cess­ful women of our times, who couldn’t help steal­ing the show when she ar­rived dressed as a bean­pole but­ter­cup in Stella McCart­ney cou­ture at last month’s royal wed­ding.

I wish that in­stead of spin­ning the Cin­derella myth, she told the truth: that she worked hard to make it to here. She is a phe­nom­e­nal woman: a hu­man rights lawyer who has worked with Kofi An­nan on Syria, who’s an ac­tivist for the per­se­cuted Yazidi peo­ple and who’s done more for oth­ers than ev­ery­one I know put to­gether. If any­one’s en­ti­tled to en­joy her hap­pi­ness, she is.

She’s a work­ing mother, A-list celebrity, clothes horse and model (she was pho­tographed by An­nie Lei­bovitz for the cover of US Vogue in May). It takes a lot of ef­fort and money to look that fab­u­lous and skinny

But she is so wor­ried that women will hate her that she partly has to pre­tend it’s all been a Hol­ly­wood fairy tale. An ac­ci­dent.

It’s not, Mrs Clooney. You’ve got what you want – and what we all wanted too, but don’t mind us. You go right ahead and en­joy it.

Look at this pic­ture of Kate Moss. Play­suit. No bra. Or, in­deed, skirt or proper top. It’s clear she hasn’t de­cided to break all the bor­ing rules for fortysome­thing dress­ing at once and on pur­pose. She is blithely un­aware they even ex­isted.

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