Dear Chelsea Clinton: The next time they make their feeble jokes about you, just remember that the First Daughter always has the last laugh.

Ruth Picardie
Sunday 23 October 2011 04:27

This year has been a bummer for one member of the Clinton family, and I think we all know who it is.

Your Mom has finally shaken off her image as a dowdy feminist with thick eyebrows and sausage legs, to emerge as a blonde cover girl with perfect skin, a slimline figure and a different hairstyle every week. Fidel Castro has a crush on her; thousands of children are naming their puppies Hillary.

Your Uncle Roger, once a struggling singer with a coke problem, now has a fan club. His new band, Politics, has signed a dollars 200,000 record deal with Atlantic Records. He promotes a cable television company; he has a role in the keenly awaited movie Pumpkin Head II: Blood Wings.

Your Dad is President of the United States. The family cat, Socks, is a national hero.

And you? Thirteen is an appalling age for girls, at the best of times. Most of us are desperate to look like a cheerleader (snub nose, sleek blonde hair, pert breasts). Instead, we've got puppy fat, spots, buck teeth and braces, frizzy hair, a blobby nose. Unlike you, however, we never had to endure 12 months of media assault: beauty tips from the National Enquirer; the philosophical humdinger posed by the Weekly World News, 'Why are Democrats' daughters so ugly?'; seeing ourselves impersonated by a man in drag on Saturday Night Live.

Meanwhile, boring Secret Service guys - who don't look like Kevin Costner in No Way Out - follow you everywhere, making dating a nightmare. Mom's so busy she leaves taped messages for you on the video. And you have to endure advice like, 'Just relax and enjoy the historical perspective' (from Maureen Reagan), which is fine if you're Karl Marx but not much good to anybody else.

I'm not going to fob you off with mixed metaphors about blossoms and swans and ugly ducklings. The last thing you want to hear is that Michelle Pfeiffer finds it really tough to be beautiful; and that Sophia Loren felt herself to be ugly when she was growing up. (Though I have to say: you met Barbra Streisand at the inauguration party - can you imagine what she looked like at 13? Did she have a nose job?) I'm not even going to ask whether travelling by limo is always such a drag.

What I will say is: hold on in there, girl. Don't go grunge. Don't write a revenge biography. And don't, whatever you do, get a dollars 200 haircut: you've got fabulous hair already.

Forget about the gorgeous Gore girls, Karenna, Kristin and Sarah. For a teenager, there's nothing more embarrassing (not even a 'Leave Chelsea alone' T-shirt) than knowing your Mom wrote a book called Raising PG Kids in an X-Rated Society. And every boy worth his leather jacket knows that Tipper Gore spearheaded the campaign against 'obscene rock lyrics', whatever they are. Your supercool Dad, on the other hand, is the best known pothead in America.

Remember, also, that Dan Quayle is seriously thinking of running for president in 1996, which will divert every feeble wit in the country.

Finally, I suggest you give some thought to the question, 'Why are Saturday Night Live producers so ugly?' Were they born that way? Did they go to seed? And why do they all dream of dating teenage girls?

(Photograph omitted)

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