Hope is still alive, and it was recently delivered to me in the form of news about Rihanna. A Twitter account dedicated to all things RiRi shared a screenshot on August 12 of a trademark application filed by Rihanna’s company, Roraj Trade LLC, titled “Sorry, I’m Booked.” The application states that the trademark would cover the categories of “tableware, namely forks, knives and spoons.” Yes, you read that right, Rihanna has come to shake up the tableware industry… maybe. It’s worth noting, as Paula Forbes does in her Stained Page newsletter, that the trademark codes listed in the application cover quite a few areas other than food, including science fiction, adventure, mystery, and children’s entertainment. But as someone who puts Rihanna first, and pretty much all other things second, I’d gladly read a science fiction novel if that’s what Rihanna wants to write.
It’s not just Twitter speculation that has me feeling hopeful Rihanna might join me in the kitchen soon — though that glimmer of hope could get me through the year. A source recently told the U.S Sun that “Rihanna’s always been a fan of good food and during lockdown she worked up plans for bringing out her own book. It will include some of her favourite Caribbean recipes.” See, Rihanna has been cooking in quarantine, too! She’s just like us! I don’t picture Rihanna joining the crowds making sourdough and growing scallions in the windowsill (she’s not really like us), but I bet she’s made some excellent cod fish cakes and shepherd’s pie.
As I revel in the fact that I may soon be able to eat salad off of a plate graced by the conceptual genius of one of my favorite artists, some of Rih’s fans — who call themselves her Navy — are less than thrilled. “The way Navy keep thinking we bout to get music then she coming out with silverware,” tweeted one fan. “She’s coming to end Martha Stewart,” tweeted another, slightly less upset.
It’s become a running joke that Rihanna will go out of her way to release anything but an album. Rihanna’s last record drop came in early 2016, when she released the instantly iconic Anti. But since then, as I and millions of hungry fans waited not-so-patiently for another album, the queen has built an empire. She created an enormously popular line of beauty products, then, while us small-minded humans were still waiting for another album, launched a fashion house under the prolific fashion group LVMH (Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton). The singer-songwriter-empire-creator didn’t care that we were ravenous for more music; she was busy taking over the world.
Maybe it’s time for us to stop thinking of Rihanna as a singer. Will we get another album? I sure hope so. But if Rihanna makes forks and knives, I’ll be the first to set them at my table.