Amal is an interesting choice for Vogue. It’s possible Anna Wintour hopes she’ll be an antidote to the Kardashian concessions she’s made over the years. My theory is that it’s filling the First Lady void. I’m not pretending that Melania Trump doesn’t exist; just that Vogue hasn’t scrambled to cover her the way it did Michelle Obama, who first appeared in March 2009 — which, in terms of her husband’s presidency, would have put Melania on the cover last March. So Vogue went looking for someone else it could put on the cover who would talk about international issues, who has a little bit of political capital, and who could do a staid and calm cover the likes of which they gave Michelle (she seriously never looked stiffer then when Vogue got ahold of her). It’s like they spun the wheel and it landed on Gravitas and then Relatively Low Production Value.

In the profile, we get a fairly detailed tour of their house in England, which is interesting from a fly-on-the-wall perspective. You can tell she either didn’t, or couldn’t, expound too much about her work, so most of the commentary comes from family and colleagues and Intern George. She does also speak about the Parkland shooting:

“I’ve seen lots of commentary where people have tried to say, ‘This isn’t about having too many guns or allowing semiautomatic and automatic weapons to be purchased too easily—surely this is about mental health, or about violence and movies,’ ” she says. “The fact is, there are violent movies all over the world, and there are mental-health issues in other countries. But this doesn’t happen in other developed countries. The difference is guns, and how widely and easily available they are.”

On a lighter note, we get a lot of anecdotes, such as:

Two years ago, she and George tried to go on a healthy-eating cleanse. “It was hard to give up the glass of wine in the evening, but even harder to give up the espresso first thing in the morning,” she recalls. “We’re like, Aren’t we supposed to be feeling amazing?” They bailed on day eleven of three weeks.

This makes me relate to them BOTH more deeply.

Some of their most cherished paintings, by contrast, are of George’s late, beloved cocker spaniel, Einstein (posed as a physics professor at a chalkboard)…

That does not, but is deeply nerdy, in a way that I appreciate. But:

Last June, Amal gave birth to twins, Ella and Alexander, and since then the house—much like the Clooneys themselves—has grown giddy with the trappings of first parenthood. “We’ve had some ‘Mamas’ and ‘Dadas,’ ” Amal says. She smiles coyly. “George was very careful to ensure that ‘Mama’ was the first word.” 

That one is crazy odd to me. I’m sure to them it’s just a harmless little nugget, but I kind of eyerolled ol’ Intern George on that one. Why take great pains for “Mama” to be the first? I know parents joke about it, but I don’t know any who genuinely take it personally or think it’s an endorsement, or an accomplishment, if their kid’s first sounds happen to line up with their label. We totally ignored it, honestly, in favor of the first time they talked about something other than us where they very clearly knew what they were saying (for Dylan, “bubble,” and for Liam, and this is true and prophetic, “Uh-oh”). Does George think somehow that women, or Amal in particular, need this so badly? Does he think it’s affirmation? Or is that sly, snarky code for, “George is actually never around and so therefore there was no threat of ‘Dada’ being their first word'”? I don’t know, and I’m sure people will eyeroll me for reading between those lines, but hey, that’s what I do. There’s always SOMETHING to be found in there.

 

[Photo: Vogue]