William and Kate: The big fat royal wedding cash-in

Slide show: Here in England, Brits have found business opportunity in tomorrow's event, even if it's a bit ironic

By Drew Grant

Published April 28, 2011 7:01PM (EDT)

There's been much said about tomorrow's royal wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton: some of it good, some of it terrible, but most of it falling in the "Eh, who cares" category. As someone who is currently visiting the good city of London as a tourist, I can tell you that atmosphere here is primarily, "Hooray for the four-day weekend!" (Britain also takes Monday as a national holiday.)

You'd think that a royal wedding would be treated with a little more solemnity, but you'd be wrong. Everyone is trying to cash in on the occasion, from the Daily Mirror's downloadable "royal app" to ironic T-shirt shops celebrating the marriage with pictures of Kate and William mocked up as Sid and Nancy.

It doesn't matter whether you're highbrow or low-class, everyone is getting in on a little bit of the royal action. The biggest event in Britain can be summarized by what Mel Brooks' character Yogurt said in "Spaceballs": "Merchandising! Where the real money … is made!"

Drew Grant

Drew Grant is a staff writer for Salon. Follow her on Twitter at @videodrew.

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