People all over the world have slowed their pace at least in the past week to view television images of Queen Elizabeth as she celebrates 60 years on the British throne.

No, it matters not.

Yes, the money could be used for much better purposes.

But our friends in England maintain some virtues that we Americans often shrug off. Things like talking intelligently. Dressing to the hilt when the occasion calls for it. Finding seeds of royalty in our souls. And, more than anything, walking and talking like ladies and gentlemen.

While that might not solve the problems our own country is facing, there is something reassuring about watching one of Earthís oldest nations keep its stuffy ways.

We are living in a time when mediocrity reigns. Few people read or study anything. Attention to history lags far behind obsessions --- the kind that make our society fearful of anything or anybody different.

Republicans fear balance. Democrats fear extremism. Everyone fears the government. And most men apparently fear razors.

Meanwhile, the boring English are taking the week off to watch a flotilla, sing ancient songs in historic cathedrals, listen to speeches by rigid-jawed royalty and sip wine thatís been corked since the queenís father was king.

Donít misunderstand: Ours is a better system.

America is greater. The English owe their very freedom to their Yankee allies on this side of the pond. But canít we at least see the wisdom of ... well, being wise? Canít we turn off our cell phones for a day and greet each other with nods of the head, and maybe say something enlightening?

OK, so maybe wearing a 4-pound jeweled crown is a bit much. And maintaining a stable of 150 lustrous equines for a queen who canít stand the stench of horses is rather silly.

But, oh, the majesty doth drip.

And for that, we tip our top hats to our English friends for the bob of the nub they have given us.

By jove.

ó The Montgomery County Chronicle (Caney, Kan.)