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  • Rachel Burchfield

37 little known facts for William’s 37th birthday today

In honor of Prince William turning 37 today, here’s 37 tidbits you might not know about the heir to the throne (and one of my first crushes)!

1. You think we wait a long time now to learn Royal baby names? After William was born on June 21, it took a full week to learn his name – William Arthur Philip Louis.

2. He was the first heir to the British throne to ever be born in a hospital.

3. As a youngster, Charles and Diana nicknamed their rambunctious boy “Wombat.”

4. Young William wanted to be a police officer when he grew up.

5. He is left-handed.

6. As a kid, he was his mother Diana’s most trusted confidant and, when he heard her crying behind closed doors, would pass tissues under the door to her.

7. He has a scar on his forehead from being hit by a golf club when he was eight.

8. His childhood crush was Cindy Crawford; he was floored when Diana surprised him with a lunch with her at Kensington Palace. He also loved Emma Bunton – Baby Spice from the Spice Girls – and Pamela Anderson.

9. His first official public appearance was on March 1, 1991, when he was eight.

10. At Eton College – his equivalent of high school – he studied geography, biology, and art history; he was a popular athlete, playing water polo and football (soccer to us Americans).

11. During his gap year – the year between graduating from high school and entering college that many Britons take – William went to Chile, Belize, and Africa.

12. He has a deep interest in African culture and taught himself to speak Swahili.

13. He also speaks French.

14. At the University of St. Andrews his major was originally art history, but he changed it to geography.

15. College friends called him “Steve” when they spoke of him to protect him from the press, who were always lurking, trying to get information on him.

16. A fellow coed named Kate Middleton caught his eye at St. Andrews, but he became determined to meet her after she walked in a charity fashion show wearing a see-through lace dress. Hey, he may be a prince, but William is still a dude.

This photo of a teenage William hung on my wall for YEARS. My ultimate girlhood crush.

17. He had a deep career in the military and is a trained helicopter pilot with the Royal Air Force’s Search and Rescue Force.

18. He participated in over 150 helicopter search and rescue operations.

19. His Royal Air Force comrades jokingly called him “Billy the Fish,” a pun on his name, William Wales.

20. During his training with the Royal Navy, William was part of a mission that nabbed $40 million worth of cocaine in the Caribbean.

21. He finished his military career as a Major in the British Army, a Lieutenant Commander in the Royal Navy, and a Squadron Leader in the Royal Air Force.

22. In addition to a military career, William dabbled in land management and banking before fully settling into his Royal duties.

23. You can find William playing polo sometimes, mostly to raise money for charity.

24. In polo, the use of your left hand is forbidden; a leftie, William learned how to play with his right hand out of sheer determination to participate in the sport.

25. He is a diehard fan of the football (soccer) club Aston Villa.

26. His individual estimated net worth is 29.6 million pounds ($40 million).

27. He inherited his height from both of his parents and stands at 6’2 and 3/4’’.

28. The country William has visited the most doing Royal work? New Zealand. His first visit there was at nine months old in 1983, and his last was just this past April. He’s visited there six times.

29. The night before his wedding, he got a whopping 30 minutes of sleep.

30. His favorite cake is chocolate biscuit cake, made using tea biscuits and dark chocolate and cooled in the fridge rather than baked. It was served at he and Kate’s wedding in 2011.

31. He loves to surf.

32. He is the most educated of any member of the Royal family.

33. Kate’s nickname for William is Big Willie. #awkward

34. William, along with wife Kate and their three children, live in Apartment 1a at Kensington Palace. Don’t hear the word apartment and think small, though – it is a four-story house with three kitchens, three bedroom suites, a day and night nursery, and five reception rooms.

35. The family has a cocker spaniel, Lupo, who was a gift from Kate’s brother James Middleton.

36. William broke tradition and drove he, Kate, and George home from the hospital himself. Can we all just swoon at the memory of William struggling so hard to get George’s carseat in?

37. His favorite TV shows? Homeland, Game of Thrones, and the Australian soap opera Neighbours.

Happiest of birthdays to our future king!

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