Saturday, March 12, 2005

Lady Campbell is Not A Man

The Corsair loves to read about the intrigues that emanate proximate to the international world of the super-rich, so imagine our surprise when reading our copy of The London Spectator to find this ... curious editorial correction regarding the jet-set exploits of our pal, Taki, a man who once drank The Corsair under the table -- a considerable feat, to be sure -- at Elaine's some time back:

"In his 'High Life' column in our issue of 4 December 2004 Taki wrote that the author Lady Colin Campbell had once been a man who had persuaded her former husband to marry her by passing herself off as a woman. We accept that Lady Colin Campbell is a woman and had no need to pass herself off to her former husband as something she was not. We apologize to Lady Colin Campbell for the distress and embarassment caused and have agreed to pay her damages and legal costs."

What the fuck?! How could such a mistake be made? What is to be done? So now -- of course -- we are interested. Fucking fascinated, really and truly. Who is this Lady Colin Campbell? We know Taki; he takes his reporting seriousuly; errors of this magnitude on his part are rare. According to this interview:

"Lady Colin Campbell was born in Jamaica and has an exotic heritage; her father being part Lebanese part Russian and her mother a mixture of English, Irish, French, Portuguese and Spanish. Although she came from a wealthy privileged background, life was not a bed of roses for her, she explained to me, as she was born with a challenging physical defect which was not put right until she had corrective surgery in her early twenties."

And, of this "challenging physical defect," (God, sometimes the British are so overly-linguistically polite that we cannot figure out what means what; anyway, the Independent in 1997 writes:

"LADY COLIN CAMPBELL calls her soon-to-be-published autobiography A Life Worth Living, ... She was born in 1949 with fused labia and a deformed clitoris in Jamaica, where she was registered as a boy and brought up as one, even though she was not."


"After she had an operation at 21 to correct the deformity she married an aristocrat called Lord Colin Campbell, who she says beat her up, then informed the papers that she was a transsexual. When she wanted to earn money to support her adopted children, she herself sold the royal family's secrets in two books, Diana in Private and The Royal Marriages, and latterly she has lived in slightly lonely if splendid state in a house off Sloane Square."

Okay. Breathe deeply. Back to this chatshow for some backstory (on her life pre-Lord Campbell):

"... However from adversity she blossomed and after fleeing to New York, she became a model and socialite. Georgie (as she insisted I call her) was feted by a string of glamorous admirers, including Teddy Kennedy, Alexander Onassis and the Duc de Sabran-Ponteves, until the fateful day she met her future husband, Lord Colin Campbell, younger brother of the Duke of Argyll. They became engaged on the first night, were wed within a week and divorced, extremely acrimoniously, some 14 months later; the only sad part of the story being 'that we ever met at all' Georgie firmly insisted."

Lord Campbell's take (from Anecdotage):

"The 28-year-old brother of the Duke of Argyl, Lord Colin Campbell, left his bride of nine months after a whirlwind New York courtship.

"'I proposed to her over a candle-lit table in a restaurant at 3 o'clock in the morning and with twelve pints of Guinness under my belt,' Campbell explained. 'We spent our first night together as man and wife at a hotel in Philadelphia. She became the most passionate wife that a man could hope that she might be, but alas. Our fairy-tale marriage began to disintegrate when twenty-five-year-old Georgie, my wife, confessed that she had been a boy until the age of eighteen and had undergone a sex change.'"

Suure. Whatever floats your boat, Lord Colin Campbell -- wink wink. Twelve pints is secret code language for a glass of white wine and a Viagra. We can keep a secret. Honest.

Taki is always getting himself into crazy situations with royals and billionaires. Ted Kennedy, you say? And, while we take The Spectator's word that indeed Lady Colin Campbell is actually in possession of a functioning coochie .... but, we could see how Taki might be confused, blame it on the, uhm, melodious ... er, immeasurable harmonies of her voice -- cough, cough, "baritone."

More posts here.


Anonymous said...

I'm Jamaican and actually just became familiar with the whole Lady Colin Campbell drama just recently, after my Dad came home from a visit to the UK. Here's the deal "Georgie" is a woman...her story is actually quite sad. Back in the day in JA, doctors were a little ignorant of her genital deformity (fused labia and deformed clitoris)so docs just said "lets call her a boy, since the male sex is the more advantageous one" Machismo mentality. Everybody knew about "Georgie's condition" at middle school(an all BOYS school), where she was relentlessly taunted with lovely chants of 'Pussy Bwoy' and 'Gal Bwoy'.

Yusuf Smith said...

Taki Theodoracopoulos (sp?) is a certifiable ignoramus who once wrote that most of the people who wound up dead under Pinochet were basically Marxist troublemakers. Lady Colin Campbell's sex is well-known and is easily found out by anyone who wants to know. As anonymous pointed out, she is a female who was mistaken for a male at birth due to genital malformations, and assigning such babies male gender was common in the mid 20th century in many places besides Jamaica (I once read of a similar incident in the USA, but I've forgotten the woman's name; she later married a black man in a part of the country where it could have got you killed). The fact that the Spectator printed Taki's garbage shows that it is a sloppily-edited rag and its coverage of far more serious matters (like last July's bombings in London) has been seriously unbalanced.

Himself said...

It's one thing when Americans put the word 'London' in front of the names of English nespapers like The Times, but in front of the names of magazines? Even in America, news magazines don't have the place of publication in the title.

Anonymous said...

Ah, well that explains it. Fused? Deformed? Sounds like code for male genitalia to me. Transsexual is more like it. So what? Obviously the most important sex identifier, her brain, is female.

Anonymous said...

Jan.29/12: Just saw this Lady Colin Campbell for the 1st time as I am watching Prince Charles' biography on TV. My 1st thought was, "OMG, that has to be a man!". So I googled the name and learned the story. I still think "she" is a guy.

Anonymous said...

I read about LCC's newest book which proposes that the Queen Mother was the daughter of a french cook. Naturally LCC's personal 'scandal' was mentioned in the article.
If it weren't for the size of her hands, I think I would buy into her story. She was forcibly injected with male hormones during her adolescence; I'm not a doctor but I would think that this could explain her voice. However, her hands are masculine looking, at least to my eyes.
Either way, transgendered or purposely raised as the wrong gender, I imagine her younger years were very tough. No wonder she tries to tear others down. So sad.

Esclarmonde said...

Elizabeth Bowes Lyon was the daughter of the French cook. Her mother was unable to bear more children and was quite happy that Marguerite, their French cook bore the last two children known as 'the Benjamins' from the biblical story. Elizabeth's father was fined for not registering her birth in the alloted time and her place of birth is unknown.

Unknown said...

This vile so called ''lady'' was in fact born a MALE in Jamaica of mixed blood with a PENIS - it lived as MALE until EIGHTEEN YEARS OLD When Lord Campbell discovered this he divorced the creature DECADES ago after only NINE months of marriage but it still totally inappropriately uses the ''lady'' title. Its PENIS was small and vestigial but it's parents raised and registered it as male and the Adams apple is clearly still visible under the cheap fake pearls - hence deep MANLIKE voice. Later it had rudimentary transsexual surgery and its PENIS and testicles removed. However it is obnoxious and vile and still looks angular like a MAN!

Anonymous said...