The feisty old battleaxe made international headlines this week when she took a pot shot at the world’s most adored and celebrated couple, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
I call her a battleaxe with great affection, because if anyone fits the definition of ‘harpy’, ‘old prune’ and ‘old bat’, it’s this marvellously conflicted feminist.
I mean, she ain’t no Mother Teresa, is she.
The words ‘kind’, ‘compassionate’, ‘loving’ and ‘forgiving’ don’t spring to mind when Germaine pops into the conversation. And to her credit, she’s still popping into the conversation decades since she last said anything of real significance.
Just when we think she’s irrelevant, done, dusted and forgotten, the 79-year-old bursts out of her bolthole with the enthusiasm of an angry hornet, ambushing the unsuspecting with savage ferocity.
In a way though, I guess we should really expect it, just as we expect old Aunty Dotty to be joyfully rude and horrid to all and sundry when we wheel her out for family functions.
Unfiltered and delightfully politically incorrect, Germaine is all inclusive.
Everyone is a potential target, no-one safe from her vitriol. Women, from 18 to 80, from feminists to housewives; and men, as long as they have the XY chromosomes, are all up for grabs. She’s even gone where few others dare and taken aim at the transgender community.
Who cares if they’re celebrities, politicians, academics, royals, or someone we’ve never heard of? If they’ve annoyed Germaine, they’re in the firing line. Homing in with the precision of a ballistic missile, she shoots from the hip, cheerfully tossing in pearlers of soundbites along the way to ensure her message resonates around the world.
Her latest spray was on Australia’s 60 Minutes. You can just imagine the producers rubbing their hands in breathless anticipation as they lined up the anti-royal, anti-marriage, anti-establishment, perpetually cranky Germaine for her opinion on Meghan and the upcoming nuptials. And she didn’t disappoint.
“She’ll bolt,” she gleefully predicted. “She bolted before. I hope in a way that she’ll bolt, but maybe she’ll take Harry with her.”
Forgetting that Meghan is a financially independent, self-made woman; in fact, the kind of woman Germaine encouraged to emerge when she wrote The Female Eunuch in 1970, the outspoken Aussie also speculated about the reason Meghan is marrying her prince.
“Why would a girl born in poverty marry a man with 53 million quid? I can’t think of single reason,” she sniped.
Let’s play along with her and assume Meghan is marrying for money. Germaine has always argued that it’s a struggle for the freedom of women to ‘define their own values, order their own priorities and decide their own fate’.
Isn’t that exactly what Meghan is doing? Making her own choices? At 36, she’s been around the block a few times, and if she wants to marry a charming and funny prince who just happens to have a few quid, where’s the problem?
And by the way, it’s not as if the royal pair have nothing in common. They both come from marvellously dysfunctional families, they’re both used to fronting a camera and are both passionate about humanitarian causes. They’ve got as much chance of making it work as anyone else.
But back to Germaine. After dishing out her marital advice, she segued smoothly into fashion. In one breath she slammed the royal dressers for forcing Meghan to wear ‘’that turd of a hat’’ and in the next admitted she didn’t know whether Megan was forced, or chose, to wear it. Either way, it was a “turd of a hat”.
As expected, Germaine’s comments brewed a splendid storm on social media. Royalists, or not, women and men from all corners of the world, circled the wagons (or in this case Harry and Meghan) and howled their protests at the “hideous, ugly, venomous, bitter old hag”.
Bingo Germaine! You’ve done it again. It’s so much fun to hate her, particularly when she just doesn’t give a damn. Refreshing really, in this increasingly sanitised society.
I suspect her fiery spark will continue to flare until her dying breath. And when it dims, just like dear old Aunty Dotty, she’ll be missed.
Is Germaine Greer still relevant? Should she continue to stir the pot, or just shut up?
Image source: 60 minutes Australia YouTube