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The Good Giraffe
November 14, 2012 3:31 AM   Subscribe

Armstrong Baillie is unemployed and lives in Dundee. Twice a week, funded by his busking, he dresses up as a giraffe and performs good deeds.
posted by liquidindian (21 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
As opposed to an evil giraffe?
posted by MartinWisse at 3:40 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


He's a self employed artist. He is not unemployed.
posted by humanfont at 4:02 AM on November 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


That's someone who's navigating by his onboard compass. I'd gladly be his sidekick.
posted by itstheclamsname at 4:12 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I hope he's not claiming benefits or he'll have a lot of explaining to do down the dole office
posted by criticalbill at 4:38 AM on November 14, 2012


How much can you earn before they kick you off the dole?
posted by Sticherbeast at 4:41 AM on November 14, 2012


He hitch-hikes to reach his destinations - but is only being able to be picked up by convertibles due to his long-necked suit.

Methinks someone is having their leg pulled.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 4:41 AM on November 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


He's a self employed artist. He is not unemployed.

He is self-unemployed.

Twice a week, funded by his busking, he dresses up as a giraffe and performs good deeds.

Is there enough money in busking in Dundee five days a week to keep a roof over self and family and still have money left to play the Gentle Giraffe of Generosity two days a week? Or is he living on government benefits and giving away all his busking money?
posted by pracowity at 4:47 AM on November 14, 2012


I guess this is my fault for putting the word 'unemployed' in the description. The article says he's unemployed. It doesn't say he's on benefits. It doesn't say what his girlfriend does or earns. It's just a nice story about a man who dresses up as a giraffe and does kind things.

Remember, when your immediate thought is "GRAR BENEFITS", the Daily Mail has won.
posted by liquidindian at 4:59 AM on November 14, 2012 [11 favorites]


He added: "Most of the time I get a good welcome in the suit but I remember once a Kevin Bridges lookalike tried to pull the head off in a pub, it might even have been the real Kevin Bridges as I didn't have my glasses on."


That was a very mean thing to do, Probably Fake Kevin Bridges!
posted by louche mustachio at 5:14 AM on November 14, 2012


This made me so joyous. I am happy for this fellow.
posted by PinkMoose at 5:17 AM on November 14, 2012


Kevin Bridges has a checkered past with ungulates, though.
posted by elizardbits at 5:40 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Kevin Bridges lookalikes make up about 10% of Glasgow's population.
posted by liquidindian at 5:45 AM on November 14, 2012


Dress up like a giraffe and do good deeds? Sure, why not? Even if the details of that BBC story are a bit sketchy, the world can always use a few more good-deed-doers.

The long neck on that costume does seem like it would be inconvenient at times, though. I wonder if a kitten caught in a tree might be able to crawl down Armstrong's neck to safety?
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 6:15 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


And now you know the secret origin story of... GIRAFFE-MAN!
posted by wolfdreams01 at 6:19 AM on November 14, 2012


Remember, when your immediate thought is "GRAR BENEFITS", the Daily Mail has won.

I was thinking "Woo-hoo! Benefits!" and wondering how he managed it.
posted by pracowity at 6:33 AM on November 14, 2012


wondering how he managed it

A really long brass neck.
posted by liquidindian at 6:39 AM on November 14, 2012


Is there a word for someone you know in real life making it to Mefi?? I always love hearing the stories* but I had no idea it'd get this good. I'm stoked and I can confirm that Giraffe is 100% genuinely non-profit. He is for realz. Good deeds FTW and in your face capitalism! Damn I am proud of him.

* Last time we spoke, he had been to a pet store to spend busking money on gifts for the local animal shelter. They gave him stuff for free instead. So he donated both the money and the stuff to the animal shelter.
posted by yoHighness at 7:43 AM on November 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Kevin Bridges lookalikes make up about 10% of Glasgow's population.

When I first saw him do stand-up, he said 'I'm 23...yes, this is what a young guy looks like in Glasgow.'
posted by mippy at 8:07 AM on November 14, 2012


Wow, lots of GRAR here.

I had a completely different reaction. He gave out bananas and water to runners, cleaned cages at animal shelters (not fun work and I appreciate him stepping up), cleaned up a beach, gifted new Moms in hospital with a little extra cash, and even dispensed hot coffee when the weather turned cold--all things I would love someone to do for me.

Doing all that while dressed in a cute giraffe costume just adds to the shmoopy for me.

Yay, Giraffe Man!

Even if he is on benefits, as you say, why the GRAR? Does your taxpayer money usually get put to better use? In the US, we rarely see the positive results paying our taxes has on the lives of individuals. I'd be quite content to see someone on welfare also enriching the lives of others in these small ways. But then, your taxes get you healthcare, so compared to us you're already a bit spoiled. ;)
posted by misha at 8:25 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was thinking "Woo-hoo! Benefits!" and wondering how he managed it.

Indeed -- these days, the Job Centre will nail your arse for any available opportunity. They'd regard these busking/volunteering days as days when he 'wasn't available for work', stop his benefits and consequently his housing benefit would also lapse and he'd be made homeless.

So if he has been claiming while doing this stuff, chances are, when it comes to the Job Centre's attention, he won't be doing it much longer.

(Not defending Job Centre bureaucrats here. They're the scum of the earth, in my experience. They seem to take pleasure in depriving people of benefits.)
posted by PeterMcDermott at 8:41 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Suddenly... Giraffe!
posted by homunculus at 1:17 AM on November 15, 2012


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