Lifestyle & Belief

Most excellent spouse-like persons


The Queen greets her horse, Free Agent, looking most excellent.


Julian Herbert

With the recent news that Kim Jong Un has married Ri Sol Ju, Korean popstar extrodinaire, we wondered if there were other first ladies with secret talents.

Sure enough, there are shining stars aplenty in political homes around the world.  

Ri Sol-Ju, North Korea:

Yesterday, the world learned that Kim Jong Un is, in fact, off the market. His blushing bride and First Lady is Ri Sol-Ju, according to North Korean state run media.

Ri Sol-Ju is not your average first lady, and not just because she seems to have popped up over night. Or because they (might have) had a child. Two years ago.

No, Ri Sol-Ju is famous all on her own. She’s the singer of “Footsteps of a Solder”, and possibly also “Excellent Horse-Like Lady”. Jack Hamilton has reviewed her work for GlobalPost, and we have to say that this North Korean pop star certainly is catchy, talented, and sure to be as excellent a first lady as she is horse-like.

Michelle Obama, United States:

First Lady Michelle Obama can boogie. Well, actually, dougie. As part of Let’s Move!, her anti-obesity campaign, Michelle dougie-d away to Beyonce’s Move Your Body. Yes, there is video proof that this first lady knows how to move. She’s not the only member of the family who can dance—President Barack Obama has also been known to bust a move. Ellen even called him the best president at dancing so far.

Michelle has also danced in India and to the Black Eyed Peas’ Boom Boom Pow. In Des Moines, she danced The Interlude to techno. She’s even been known to make up her own moves. While celebrating the second anniversary of Let’s Move, she busted out the Platypus Walk.

If you ask nicely, we’ll pretty sure she’ll teach you how to dance them too.

Peng Liyuan, China:

Peng Liyuan is poised to be China’s first lady next year when Vice President Xi Jinping is expected to take over the presidency. Although you may not have heard of her, Liyuan is one of China’s most popular folk singers. She regularly performs on the televised New Year’s Gala in front of millions of people and is so famous that Xi Jinping avoids traveling with her in public.

Liyuan would be quite the contrast to the traditionally low-profile Chinese first ladies who are rarely seen and even more rarely heard. But at the end of the day this power couple are just regular down to earth people. Says Peng Liyuan, "In my eyes, he's just my husband. When I get home, he doesn't think of me as some famous star. In his eyes, I'm simply his wife."

Queen Rania, Jordan: 

In the age of social media, Queen Rania of Jordan is the reigning champ. With almost 1 million likes on her Facebook fan page and more than 2.2 million Twitter followers, Rania is a heavy hitter on the Internet. Heck, she even has her own YouTube channel. What’s more, she puts her clout to good use, championing the cause of global education and encouraging inter-faith and inter-cultural dialogue through her considerable online networks.

Some topics, however, are off limits even for a queen; you’ll never find her tweeting about the condition of the Gulf monarchies, that’s for sure. Despite these restrictions, it is fair to say that as far as social networking goes, Rania is second to no first lady. 

Angelica Rivera, Mexico:

Mexico just elected a new president and first lady. Enrique Peña Nieto is sometimes referred to as “El Guapo,” or the handsome one, but he’s got nothin’ on his wife. Nieto married Angelica Rivera in 2010, and although she was a great asset to his campaign, she is famous for non-political reasons. Rivera began her career in telenovelas, or soap operas, in 1989 with a role in “Dulce Desafío.”

A couple of years later Rivera found herself livin’ la vida loca while singing in a band called “Muñecos de Papel” alongside Ricky Martin. After her music career, Rivera returned to soap operas with titles like “Mariana de la Noche” and “Alcanzar una Estrella II.” Her most famous role was as “La Gaviota,” or “the seagull,” on the hit soap opera “Destilando Amor." Although she now dons pantsuits and participates in politics, Angelica Rivera is still the same tan, talented telenovela bombshell to some of her fans.

Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and Consort to Queen Elizabeth II of England:

Prince Philip, husband of and consort to Queen Elizabeth II of England, is not just a trophy husband. No, Philip has many layers and dimensions, not least of which is that of the daredevil sportsman. His sport of choice? Carriage driving! Yes, the Duke of Edinburgh is a world-class equestrian who loves nothing more than “driving a team through the British countryside.”

But scoff not! Though the sport may sound ridiculous, it is actually quite dangerous—equipment can break, horses can run amok, and drivers tend to get tousled about quite a bit. And Philip is no ninny; in fact, he’s quite the rough-and-tumble driver, incurring various bangs and bruises even as an older gentleman. Good show, old boy!