In the great "these things go together" corporate tradition of LVMH, Disney has created a $4 billion "Princess" division "almost by accident" to combine the considerable assets of Belle, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White, Jasmine, and Ariel. ("Pocahontas and Mulan are usually kicked off the throne. Disney says that's because their 'qualities' are different from the others..." Right.) The story would ho-hummly end there if this were just about little-girl economies of scale, but no, as Disney exec Jim Calhoun says, "We want women to have a little bit of Princess every day." Including her specialest day!

Thus, meet Lindsey Timberman, a 29-year-old from Delaware whose Beauty and the Beast-themed wedding next year will include a "buttercup yellow wedding dress," "red roses, the movie's signature bloom," and "a pair of glass slippers (never mind that she's borrowing that idea from Cinderella's kingdom)." No other real-life Disney brides show up in Ramin Setoodeh and Jennie Yabroff's article on the matter, but don't you dare think that just points to Ms. Timberman being um, especially special. No, as we've been constantly thinking since April, this incipient Princess trend means something, dammit, so make way for the Questionable Pop Sociology Passage of the Day:

The desire for true love, especially served with a dollop of princess power, is all well and good—though considering what we know about the lives of actual princesses such as Diana and Japan's Masako, you have to wonder why any woman today aspires to royalty. The answer may rest in something far less rarefied: the quest for financial security, class mobility and, in our divorce-ridden, war-pocked world, a few moments of life lived happily ever after.

Iraq making ladies want to be mermaids? Sure, why not—hysteria's a bitch.

Disney's $4b 'Princess' Brand [Newsweek]