Finding Freedom just came in but I need to sleep. We'll see what happens. Sleep and curiosity will battle for a while.
I have a second wind at the moment. I'm reading at a moderate pace since I'm taking a couple notes. This is the kindle version btw.
Coming up for air just to acknowledge that I finally figured out the date count thing that had been bothering me. On that first date Markus and Misha were there (kind of as a safety hatches) so the next night was their first SOLO date. Makes a lot more sense now.
On some future date you know who is going to catch lots of jokes from me about this sunscreen line. 🤣
Why was my heart beating fast as if I don't know how this part of the story ends?? There may not have been a Sussex Squad. 🙌🏿
Harry was in LA when they were dating. He should have just stayed and skipped the part in between. 😂
Andrew and everything around him sucks in so many ways!!
A keeper I tell ya!
Preview for whenever I'm done: I hate the chapter one Meghan's life in before she met Harry. However, the book gets better. This excerpt on tabloid narratives around Doria is excellent. They did her so dirty.
This makes sense. This sounds like the way a human being would react. I have no idea why people have to make him sound irrational.
The paragraph that killed all of the RF and UKs hopes and dreams. Note he was saying that at the beginning, much less now. 😂🥰
It was Harry pressing forward with the statement in 2016 and their approach. Of course we knew this but the printed confirmation is important to debunk narratives.

Ok that's it for now.
Harry is on his tour of the Caribbean and Meghan has to face the hounds alone. They FaceTime everyday. The real purpose of this tweet is to say that I love Barbados! Everything about him meeting RiRi and taking the HIV test was perfect. Oh and I love Barbados!
If the pro is blindsided what did people expect from her?

As I said before, now that we're into the meat of the book, Meghan's concerns come off as a lot more human. I felt during the Hollywood part she didn't sound like a person but rather just a mover and a shaker.
I love this camaraderie between Meghan and Sophie Trudeau. Women supporting women. White women: see how this can work?
One of my early critiques of this book is that it takes us over 100 pages to get here. Meghan probably really starts been humanized 75 pages in. For a good part before then the book itself has fed into classist stereotypes and made Meghan appear calculating. I'll know at the
end but one wonders whether it will be too late to reverse the initial impression in the book. I may revise this later but if the book can't resist certain narratives does this say something about a bias that the authors have or perhaps one that society shares?
And for the ridiculous people: yes, the racial attacks hurt. That's not self pitying that's a natural reaction to abuse and injustice.
So much bellyaching and their side is front and center. Mind you, I'm not suggesting that I buy this excuse at all. I'm just pointing out that they complain about the book as if they didn't get to contribute to it.
This entire structure is such a mess from an organizational management perspective. I think consultants and scholars would have a field day. You know my thoughts are just burn it all down.
The book for a good portion and the world frame this as if she was somehow privileged to be deigned worthy of his attention. In the midst of the book we're finally getting into her giving something up. It's crazy how undercover classist we are.
I thought paparazzi didn't exist in London. 🤡
How is this anything ANYONE would welcome? People are cruel.
Just wanted to mention that I love what watching! 🥰
This makes so much more sense than people magazine which had them meeting after the engagement and after Xmas. The timeline issues have been sorted out. They met January 2017. Post statement but way before the engagement.
For people who read the book this will totally humanize them as a couple. We all do this shit.
Damn paparazzi: you put this man in a state that not even Meghan could bring him out of. Give up on ever trying to make fetch happen. Never the twain shall meet between you and him.
More of herself is being lost. That part is very depressing. The fairytale of it all definitely obscured her sacrifices.
This is also a crucial paragraph that is underplayed. It needs to be stronger. It's not a "gossip blog." It's the entire tabloid media and then it feeds across the world. This is truth: they wanted so many coins that if there wasn't a story they would make it up. Perhaps this is
a blind spot for the authors as members of the press, but the economics of it all and how it impacted her life makes a huge difference. Truth, public interest, consequences, etc. did not matter as long as copy was put out by mainstream media entities in the UK NOT just blogs.
Zoom meeting.
From our side it looks like a great, happy event. From their side it's intrusive and nerve racking.
The media is evil! Another intrusion. Another change of plans. It just builds. Example after example.
Another little timeline thing. 2 different trips to Botswana. One in 2016 after they'd just met. A second one in 2017. Excerpts did not make this clear.
I just melted into my chair. I would have given him a baby too! 🤣
This has nothing to do with the Sussexes: Which one of you from Botswana is going to make this for me when I visit?
Harry had a small birthday party waiting for her when they arrived.

Guys that's how you fall in love. There was no spell cast. This all rings completely true and human. These are kinds of chapters I want people to read.
Good to finally hear about some of her thoughtful gestures like cooking him that Sunday British roast lunch. She is a human being with feelings and emotions and she loves people. I felt like this was missing from the background chapter on her. She was just a networker there.
That man had an ENTIRE plan. What part of any of this sounds like trickery by a temptress?
The trope of the well-meaning friend works when your relationship has developed around them and they know the parties. Because of the special circumstances H&M developed a relationship in seclusion. His advice was general. He didn't know anything about the relationship.
There's a part of this that seems completely innocent but note all of the underlying assumptions: 1) she's viewed as a crisis to be managed, 2) these people are raising alarms but have no receipts or wrongdoing to go on, 3) they have no cultural competence.
This is a systemic problem. Even if we give everyone the benefit of the doubt and do not think of them as evil their lack of education on these matters and their assumptions and preconceived notions resulted in something very ugly and Meghan had to deal with the ugliest parts.
The palace spin around this only works if you don't read the lead up. I think the authors could have done an even better job in the set up but Willam's comments were clearly loaded. He'd listened to a bunch of gossip and advisers in his ear.
If you're going to question come with a receipt or a concrete concern. An example: (a) oh look at how she talks to our father or how she handles my kids, or (b) notice how she has expressed no interest in moving here. That's a concern! Saying take your time with "this girl" is a
euphemism for saying this type of girl. That is, someone who does not look like us, is not from our class, has not been vetted for our gossip circle, etc. That's not brotherly concern: that's your brother showing you his true face and forcing you to look at him differently.
Focusing on types vs. specifics is a dead giveaway as to what was really going on here. We'll see if the book makes that clear at some point.
I don't want to beat this into the ground because I discussed it with the excerpts, but note how stunted their relationship was. This was in their 30s! There's always a point where you tell your older siblings to fuck off. As the baby I am very familiar.
I did that shit when I was 11 our so though. My brothers did it with my sisters in their teens. It's so weird that this took so long.

I'm not saying that you and your siblings no longer get along, but there comes a time when you draw your boundaries. "You're not my parent."
I forgot the excerpt. Here it goes.
A part of loving people is letting them fly free and rocking with them when they make choices. If you're going to play concerned relative then on the other side you have to be seen as making a real effort to know and like the new person. You need credibility to talk shit.
William and Kate's love was complicated. A lot of this reads as them viewing Harry as a project. They condescended to him. That doesn't mean that there was no affection for him but if they really knew his hopes and dreams and deepest desires this couldn't have caught them off
guard. That deepest desires part is truly important. We talk to a lot of people in our lives but we let very few in on what we really want out of life. And when we do it's not every person who is really listening and taking it in. They loved him but they were not invested in him.
I think this is key. A lot of human beings rely on some "sixth sense" to determine whether people are trustworthy or not. I think this has great evolutionary importance when you're dealing with animals trying to eat you. When it comes to judging people of different backgrounds or
cultures it's actually very harmful. What you look at as some sixth sense is really just a set of assumptions and prejudices that you have built up over time. The courtier didn't know Meghan at all. He just knew he didn't like her type of person. This is partly what makes modern
society difficult. Human beings have a history of being tribal and makes sense for survival, but when it comes to embracing differences and changing the status quo tribalism and this skepticism of difference leads us to an ugly place.
This is linked to Meghan by proximity in time but on a bigger human scale they had a long delayed moment where they realized they had different worldviews and priorities.

To bring it home imagine you're in a black family and realize your brother is MAGA. It changes things.
Time for me to call myself out. These kinds of questions seem completely different and lees cute now. Unless the question has been asked a thousand times I tend to think well just say "no comment." No big deal. However, if your entire relationship has been intrude upon the
perspective is totally different. It just feels like another moment when you have to be on the defensive. You have actual behind the scenes things to deal with but you also have to deal with the media being mad nosy.

Again, this is excellent in terms of humanizing her.
I'm back!
I don't think even she'd realized how much she'd given up. Maybe her soul had not changed but she was making so many adjustments to deal with the new rules in her life.
A recurring theme of the book is the contrast between how simple their connection and love story is vs. the complications from the outside/forces working to keep them apart. I have yet to find any issues with their internal partnership--it's the outside that's the problem.
Skipping a lot of Invictus background, as we know most of that. It's fascinating how the relationship intruded on her job. There's a routine and a totem pole and suddenly Meghan was having security, etc. I think the only thing that saved her is that everyone knew her character.
If she had been new on Suits I think it would have alienated her from co-stars and staff.

The amount of intrusions, changed plans, and modifications that M&H have to make just to do normal things is staggering. You really are inside a bubble.
I absolutely abhor this comparison to the WH press corps. I think it's a blind spot for the authors. It does not at all consider that some of these outlets are disreputable gossip farms. There needs to be more of a critical eye.
This is such an indictment on this culture without the authors having to say so. A picture of them out should not have been as big of a deal. The amount of choreography and press dying of anticipation is ridiculous. There was nothing intrinsically important about the appearance.
Both the palace and the press overthink this shit way too much. There is nothing organic about the moment. Let the damn couple enjoy the Invictus games. This is all performance.
Had to cancel dinner with the Mulroneys and Trudeau with Doria there. The amount of examples of times they had to change plans is ridiculous. You better be a person who likes to be at home together for these kinds of relationships to work.
I got a black mother in law guys (we're engaged but you don't even know yet). How you like me now????
This is some scary shit for risk averse people like me.

Someone would have to buy me out of my tenure track position for me to leave. And I don't mean severance--I mean pay me for the career options I'm losing permanently 🤣
Skipping the meeting with Betty, who sounds like she was lovely.

It's amazing how he was the only person on his side who seems to get that she's giving a lot. There's just this built in judgment throughout that whatever Meghan did was worth it to secure a bag.
I love all of the mundane details of them moving in together, etc. It gives you a feel for the isolation, change of scenery she's dealing with. That's the normal part but having to deal with the RF and their fuckery makes it all harder.
Why the need to lie? You guys don't really know each other. Keep it simple and say congratulations.
The engagement announcement seems so fake in hindsight now. It was just more choreography to deal with what the public wanted. All of it is actually work.
And this it it! The were backed into a corner. The monarchy never made a decision to open themselves up. They just made a calculation that they couldn't be seen to forbid this kind of marriage so they had to bite their tongues.
This stuff which is cute on Downtown because it was set a century ago is painful to read. I'm not even going to discuss Sandringham because it sounds absolutely awful. Too many damn rules. You have to mold yourself to fit them.
And this is why I hate false equivalence. There's attention and threats that are par for the course and then there is the kind of intense hatred and white hot attention that Meghan attracted. It was not the same.
This entire page is crazy in the way they compare Kate and Meghan. It was clearly that one was malleable than the other. The value in women is not about any intrinsic worth but to what extent they're able to follow the directions of the men in charge.
And this is why sometimes you just have to say fuck it, they're going to hate me no matter what I do, so let me have fun. I think Meghan likes to please so she really tried to fit the expectations.

I would have been like "you know I'm gonna continue to wear what I want right?"
I'm not excerpting the brooch, but I did want to give the authors props for setting the scene as how royals choose their details very deliberately, so it's very unlikely it could have been an accident.

This is played like Betty's plan to welcome Meghan was sabotaged, but
they never seem to consider that as head of the family this was her moment to put her foot down and send a message.

I think the book could do a better job of noting all of the points at which things could have been done to support her.

Internal discussions could have been
had to make it clear to the entire staff and family that things like this would not be tolerated anymore. But these folks have no cultural competence and thus do not know what it means to welcome a minority.

This is reckless on their part. No real support.
Skipping over Sandringham and the church as I mentioned. I think to a modern reader like myself this sounds like the absolute worst way to spend Xmas ever. There's a rule for everything!
This is BS and goes to show that even though the book is bringing out more of H&M's side it is by no means taking a critical look at the institutions. All of the assumptions of what royal's are need to be analyzed. Without doing so the only person you're really critiquing is
Meghan. The family says that it devotes themselves to service but what does that mean. How effective is that service, etc. Who cares if you're always showing up at stuff that makes no difference? There is a purity of intent that is just taken for granted for the RF here.
I think this is what saved Meghan. Even in all the changes she made, she was still a grown woman, so her views did not change. Otherwise they would have broken her.
There's a chapter on Scammy and I'm already throwing up.
Twice guys! Moral of the story: don't show up to someone's graduation if you barely know them. You think you're being nice but it will haunt you. This was somehow built in to some real sibling relationship. 🤡
This is so nefarious and evil. She knew that to classists this would be like crack. She's playing on the fact she knows the UK is classist and the UK is eating up because drama sells and is juicy. Ambition is a slur in classist circles.
Samantha could use this narrative because it is so well loved by society and the UK especially.

The narrative is so alluring that even the chapter on Meghan's background seems to suggest it too.

But this all is made possible by an unscrupulous press. Samantha is 1 person with an axe to grind. Any reputable entity would ferret that out & not have her on. You would have to verify her claims but mainstream UK outlets do not care about that.

THIS is the royal rota
Jr. and Piers found out she was the devil the moment their invitations did not arrive. She was perfectly lovely before then.

How either of them get paraded around show a completely broken/toxic media environment. They shouldn't have credibility.
Btw, all of my siblings are technically half siblings. I do not want this to be about the fact that they are half. I also have siblings who I didn't meet until I was an adult. NONE of them ever evil shit like this to me.
Props to Doria btw. USC is a great school. This must not have been easy to pull off. Adult learners are awesome! 👏🏿
We knew just about all of this but the world needs to read it. She has the absolute worst family . . . and then I remembered Harry's. Can we lock them all up in a room and throw away the key?
Parallels between him and Charles. I would love parents to weigh in here. To me the parents here lack moral courage. If one sibling is hitting the other you're not making a choice between them--you're calling out right and wrong. I don't get this.
We've debunked this many times so I won't bore you. It's not about going over every allegation one by one. It's just a general statement--(1) I don't know her (2) she's lying (3) shame on the press for airing grievance from sources with axes to grind.
Jr. demanded money from the palace because the press attention prevented him from getting work. 🤣🤡

Ok, some of this shit is so surreal that if it were fiction you would say "naw that's too far fetched."
Misogynoir. Everything about you that is bad is believable no matter how absurd.
I think this is where Meghan gets into some trouble with the left. The claim is: well you were willing to go along with the establishment, don't call us when it didn't work out.

I think the answer has to be: well is the punishment for falling in love and trying to make it work

I don't think any of us has their hands clean, but that doesn't mean we deserve to be mistreated. I endured micro aggressions at a job--none of my friends turned to me and said it was my fault for working for a traditional employer.
Btw, the hunt story was debunked of course. He went back to London to guest host the radio program. We remember this.
I know he was trying to compliment Meghan and he was on the radio, but looking back he was wrong. She was very familiar with dysfunction and his family was no better.
The protocol stuff was so infuriating. It doesn't appear like this was coming from the palace. It was just straight up nasty misogynoir press stuff.
This is a nightmare.
But let's pretend the UK is all sunshine and rainbows right. 🤦🏿‍♂️
Can this new narrative of her wanting to just slack off please die. She has always been a hard worker. But this is another problem with misogynoir: the contradicting narratives. Oh she was overworking the servants but oh she didn't want to do any work.
And this is why Tina gets so damn pissed when folks post these pictures casually. They should have never been out there!!
Guys then I must be as cold as ice because I'm exactly the same way. It's done done. But trust that it needed to be done. That's called having boundaries and protecting your mental health.

But the dirty narratives spun this into a negative.
But like with Samantha it takes two to tango. You need to have an irresponsible and classist press and a society willing to buy into these kinds of narratives for this to sell.
Ummmm so why wasn't the palace more supportive? And I don't mean just releasing statements. There should have been structural supports set up to handle these things. If I know that on day 12 your friend is going to sell you out I"m going to include it in the curriculum and have
counselors on hand to help you. I would have also set up some kind of victim centered way of dealing with this. What did we learn from Diana? How do we implement those lessons to both prevent the issues and support her when there are things we can't shield her from.
This was an entire job. When I as a black man walk in somewhere I expect to be safe. If you know that your white students always give their black instructors lower marks on evaluations then it's your job to do something about it policy wise.
This is just a heads up. Thanks, but what are you doing to help?? This is a multi-billion dollar institution and you're asking your employees to put up with this.
I'm not religious, but I just wanted to throw a shout out to all of the Squad prayer warriors who have faithfully been praying along with Meghan for years.
Meghan gets baptized (and I love Justin Welby btw).

I'll leave this excerpt without further comment.
A lot of celebrity names are dropped. Some readers will enjoy that.
You know the racists hate that the black woman got this kind of treatment. They think that because of privileges like this you should have your personal life trampled upon and be subjected to abuse daily.
How did Harry know that treating Doria like a Queen was the way to my heart. Chile, I may have to refrain from joking on him for an entire week.
I'm serious 😂
The can talk shit about you O, but your record is way too long for me to turn my back on you. She's complicated like a lot of people, but she's also one of the few that could really help Doria out in a situation like this.
I don't know if the book plans to go there, but I think there needs to be a lot more discussion about this market. It's almost accepted that these outlets pay people to give biased stories. It's very questionable journalistically for GMB and others to do this. You pay for lies.
It's like a man who is lost and will not ask for directions. It's always fascinating to see what human traits will be our downfall. For Thomas I don't think it was only the pride but his ego. He didn't care nearly enough about the abuse and the intrusions that he was receiving.
He denied all help and support with that. He pretended he was fine, he wouldn't return calls or take advice, etc. The only thing Thomas cared about (and this is like the traitor before the betrayal) was his public image. He wanted to look good. Think about that.
I don't know if any of you used to read Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories, but they were really simple and had a moral. That's what this reads like. You can picture Samantha as the devil friend here luring him toward evil. Have mercy.
What I have never been able to hear properly articulated is what the policy is as to when they speak out and when they try to shut things down, etc. When do we cross the line into beyond the pale for the palace? I mention this because part of the problem of why Meghan ends up
being abused is that when you have people making these kinds of judgment calls it matters whether they have any cultural competency. For some reason the palace knew that a Botox story was really harmful to Kate but seem to have not figured out a monkey one on Archie was.
At best the palace approach is recklessly racist and at worst its intentionally so because there are way too many institutional blindspots.
Now that he's taken his thirty pieces of silver in the book he's officially the sperm donor and I'm skipping that part.
Btw the sperm donor is the one thing I don't blame the palace for. I honestly think they were trying to help but he refused help MANY times.
This needs to be discussed in a lot more detail. Meghan is just one of the worst examples. But the UK tabloid abuse is systemic. There's almost a glee in the tone of how they harass some of these people until they crack.
If she had made his wife cry in the lead up to the wedding and there was all of this consternation why would he be feeling sorry for her? That's why these lies make no sense.
It's sad that Black Brits lost this, but we'll gladly take her!!
I'm skipping a lot of wedding details. I will say that having watched some Suits now I feel a bit more connected to the cast as I read about the wedding guests.
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