Sophie Heawood: If you want to get ahead, get afloat

Share
Related Topics

Summer is here! I know this, not because the sun has reached its highest altitude in the north and entered the tropic of Cancer (that was, like, months ago), not because a family from Hertfordshire have grown a sunflower so large it's about to enter the record books, and not because it's raining.

I know it's summer because the first sightings are in of a famously humdrum Brit doing something frolicsome on a yacht. Prince Andrew, in fact, making merry with a mystery brunette, off the coast of Sardinia. On a big luxurious yacht. Doing crazily raunchy stuff things like putting his arms on his chest, raising his arms into the air, momentarily touching her arms with his arms, and then taking his arms back from her arms to raise his T-shirt and do a funny with it stuck over his head. Arms! T-shirts! Heads! You go, girl!

Apparently she was the wife of another guest on board. And not his new girlfriend. But whatever – this is the thing about yachts – anything you are caught doing on one is instantly amplified in its excitingness, simply because of the location. That sleek white boat is a multiplying integer. Its shiny lounging decks function as raising agents. Its huge engine is the loudhailer of the celebrity soul. A yacht gives any celebrity encounter the kind of instant frisson that dry land could only achieve courtesy of pornographic material, the transfer of bodily fluids, and possibly a car park in Stevenage.

I mean, we all knew that Philip Green had got matey with Kate Moss, but it wasn't until they were photographed together on a yacht that greater interest in their friendship was shown. Sting, some years after his tantric sex claims, showed he still had it going on when he sucked his wife Trudie's toes while afloat. We only really knew for sure that Diana and Dodi were an item when they advertised it so flagrantly on his father's yacht. And it was the final proof that Jude and Sienna were back together when we saw pictures of them kissing at sea.

This law can also work against you – if you're a British politician who's taken to palling around with Russian billionaires, later to find yourself embroiled in an investigation conflicts of interest, it may be better that this hobnobbery didn't take place on a yacht, as Peter Mandelson and George Osborne found out. However dodgy the affair might seem, it will seem 10 times dodgier if it took place on a deck. But as the motor launch is the great PR tool of the age, you can imagine Prince Andrew's publicists being quite keen to get him on one.

Imagine the scene: his people take him to one side and say your ex-wife's been trying to flog your services to the philanthropic advancement of dubious overseas businessmen, and you've not been pictured with an attractive woman since 1993. Tell you what, it's time to get thee to a yacht. Yachts are the new San Lorenzo restaurant.

When Tom Stoppard took two lesser characters from Hamlet and gave them their own play, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, he uncovered a profound truth about the omnipotence of sailing. These two were no strangers to image-conscious princes themselves, and Guildenstern said philosophically to his companion, "You can't not be on a boat." Rosencrantz was confused, protesting that "I've frequently not been on boats!" "No no," explained Guildenstern, "what you've been is not on boats."

So, for all you big shots out there who are wondering about this summer's place to be, wonder no more. Mere mortals can't not be on a boat. Celebrities can't not be on a yacht.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Manager (App development, SAP, interfacing)

£50000 - £60000 Per Annum + excellent company benefits: Clearwater People Solu...

Systems Developer Technical Lead

£65000 - £70000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based i...

Energy Engineer

£25000 - £30000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Job Title: Energy En...

Techincal Accountant-Insurance-Bank-£550/day

£475 - £550 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Senior Technical Accountant-Insuran...

Day In a Page

A selection of 'Pro-Choice' badges are displayed on the coat of a demonstrator during a march from the Garden of Remembrance to the Dail (Irish Parliament) in Dublin, Ireland  

Ireland's refusal to provide a safe abortion to a suicidal rape victim is a national shame

Peadar O‘Grady
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment