Society Diary: Hungry donkeys, a Chewbacca mask and emojis

19 Jul 2019 Voices

"It's a bit more than a cuddle". Drizzle the donkey found love when appearing on TV to raise awareness of the charity.

As the current state of world politics remains far too depressing to contemplate, Diary takes a break and looks at how a Chewbacca mask raised £5,000, what emojis mean to charities, and donkeys, because animal content makes the world a nicer place and we really need that right now [very much looking at you Donald Trump]. 

Chewis Capaldi

Generation Z banter machine/dreary singer Lewis Capaldi helped raise £5,000 for charity this week in a way that Diary assumes must be unique. The 22-year-old Glaswegian has had a public feud going with Noel Gallagher for over a month, after the grumpy Mancunian used Capaldi as an example of music being “f***ing w*** at the moment”.

To Gallagher’s irritation, Capaldi responded in his typical happy-go-lucky way by posting a video celebrating the former Oasis songwriter’s criticism as a “dream come true” and performing at Glastonbury wearing a t-shirt featuring Noel’s face in a love heart.

But what really wound Gallagher up was his daughter Anais saying that she wanted to be like Capaldi when she grows up. This led Gallagher to take a swipe at Capaldi, saying he looks like “f***ing Chewbacca”.

But the story has a happy ending as one again Capaldi saw the funny side and entered the stage at Scotland’s TRNSMT festival last weekend wearing a Chewbacca mask.

The mask was auctioned the next day and raised more than £5,000 in the first 12 hours for Tiny Changes charity, which was set up in May in memory of Frightened Rabbit frontman Scott Hutchison, who took his own life last year.

Capaldi is a better person than Diary, who in his situation would have pointed out that Gallagher himself now comes across in interviews as a Karl Pilkington tribute act, slagging off modern music while oblivious to the fact that he hasn’t penned a good tune since 1995. But that wouldn’t have led to money going to a good cause. Diary can only aim to be like Capaldi when it grows up.

Once more with emojis

There are so many “Days” these days, aren’t there?

Yes, and many of them help to raise awareness about serious issues or encourage positive behaviours, so stop complaining. There’s International Women’s Day, World Book Day, Cheer Up The Lonely Day, and Ed Balls Day to name just a few. All wholesome, necessary celebrations.

Diary was therefore pleased to see this week that so many charities were taking part in World Emoji Day, a day dedicated to those pictures people send in texts to convey emotions.

Diary was particularly impressed by Eddy Hogg’s attempt to translate the Charity Tax Commission’s final report into emojis:

Cynics might say that regular people, celebrities, and social-media-savvy corporations use emojis all the time anyway, so there is no real need for a World Emoji Day. But those people are wrong and probably blinded by their narrow, technophobic view of the world. Did you know there are probably some people living in Amish communities that do not even realise a sassy whale emoji exists?

Those of you not convinced need to get with the programme, as emojis are our only chance of bringing the world together. After all, there are roughly 6,500 spoken languages in the world today but just one universal emoji language.

So if this year's celebrations passed your charity by, put next year’s World Emoji Day in your calendar and make sure you join Diary in paying your respects.

Donkey love

Securing prime time national media coverage is always an exciting time for any charity, and residents at the Sidmouth Donkey Charity made the most of their cameo on BBC Breakfast this week. 

Drizzle the donkey got very involved with weather presenter Matt Taylor, distracting him from the important task of informing the nation of the weather ahead, with some, erm, affectionate nuzzling. 


“Do you know what, we’re not even going down this route,” Naga Munchetty declared, after Matt mentioned that weddings taking place at the sanctuary, opening up a whole new dimension to Drizzle's interest in him. 

Well, BBC Breakfast might not want to explore the possibilities further, but Diary certainly will…. Or maybe we won’t, as the editor is looking particularly stern. All we’ll say is that if Drizzle and Matt have found true love, then who are we to stand in the way?

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