Heaven knows how Amal Clooney manages to fit in all that ol’ humanitarian work between flitting from party to ball to royal wedding to high-profile wimmin’s conferences to couture fittings to speechifying at eminent gatherings to organising the Met Ball to film festivals to dinner with Harry and Meghan to wowing the crowds at red-carpet events, but she does.
And she does it to such an extent that she has just been made Global Citizen of the Year by the United Nations Correspondents Association (UNCA).
Yes, I know. Hard to think of a more meaningless gong bestowed upon a less deserving subject — it’s not like she needs the fame or the career boost — but that didn’t stop our girl embracing the moment with the kind of noble zeal and lightly worn suffering that makes Angelina Jolie appear like a blushing bride.
Amal Clooney and George Clooney leave the United Nations Correspondence Association dinner in New York. She has just been made the UN Global Citizen of the Year
With her Hollywood husband George on her arm, Amal attended the ceremony in New York on Wednesday (pictured).
As usual, she blazed away in one of her extravagant gowns (a £5,000 number called the Strappy Sweetheart) and Cecil B. De Mille levels of expertly applied maquillage. As the couple walked up this red carpet of global smug, their carefully burnished humility must have been visible from Mars.
Look at them! Their every good thought praised, their every charitable inclination rewarded, their very presence a kind of benediction upon us lesser folk. What is it like being them?
For thousands of ordinary people do good works out of compassion and a sense of duty alone. They don’t expect to be publicly rewarded or honoured for their efforts, which is just as well.
Amal Clooney is pictured speaking on stage on stage during the Massachusetts Conference For Women yesterday
It is they, not the Hollywood elite, who are putting in the hard yards in refugee camps and homeless shelters — or, like 18,000 quietly heroic Mail readers who have signed up to our Christmas campaign, giving up their precious time to volunteer in hospitals, just out of the goodness of their hearts.
Around the globe you will find Mr and Mrs Joe Soap comforting the downtrodden in grotty hotspots, without the prospect of relief or a five-course gala dinner with matching wines and attendant celebrities for months.
Awards such as this are not for them. They are for the likes of Amal Clooney.
Her Global Citizen gong is given to a person working on solutions to various global issues, from conflict and humanitarian disasters to climate change.
But let us be honest, what solutions has Amal ever offered? As always, she just points out the problem, then blames Donald Trump.
The UNCA highlights the work of journalists in trouble and journalists who do their jobs under fire, often literally. Although they were honoured at this ceremony, I can’t help but think any one of them would have been more deserving of this award than its glamorous recipient.
Amal’s growing list of glowing tributes is all too reminiscent of Angelina Jolie being given a rushed honorary damehood in 2014 for her philanthropic efforts by a starstruck William Hague.
Amal Clooney is pictutred in New York last year meeting with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. She represented Yazidi survivors at the meeting
Or Tom Hardy and Benedict Cumberbatch being awarded CBEs for their highly lucrative career choice of becoming actors and film stars.
However, Amal is very far from being a villainess.
Her work on behalf of refugees, Yazidi women, victims of conflict and girls in need of education is not to be underestimated.
And it’s not that the darling girl doesn’t deserve awards. She is a shoo-in for the International I Married George Clooney medal, for a start.
That brilliant career move changed her life for ever, turning a former junior lawyer into one of the world’s most famous women.
A Global Citizen, no less, one half of a dream team who are clearly on a mission to change the world.
Yet even in the depths of their goodness, everything the Clooneys do seems somehow contrived.
They seem hyper-aware of their self-appointed status as Humankind’s Envoys For Good Causes, but there is something about them that jars.
Underneath the smiles, the poise and the Strappy Sweetheart dresses, they lack the ability to be genuine; there seems always to be a tacit purpose and underlying motive in all they say and do.
If George really does plan to run for high political office in America, with the hope of he and Amal entering the White House one day, I wish they would just come clean about it.
They wouldn’t seem so weird, for a start. And they would deserve a medal — for honesty.
Get two Ritas for the price of one
Yes, Rita Ora, we’ve all been there.
Rita Ora is pictured leaving Hotel Bel-Air in Bel-Air, California
Should you wear the blue trouser suit or the patterned one? You can’t decide.
Then you have a lightbulb moment, snip them down the middle, sew the wrong halves together and Bob’s your auntie.
Singer Rita has a stylist, but I suspect he or she is locked in a cellar somewhere, rattling the bars, begging her not to ‘customise’ any more outfits.
Too late! Recently Rita wore a giant pompom to a nightclub, a pink feathered dress to an awards ceremony and an outfit inspired by Beetlejuice to pop down the shops and frighten the kids.
I can’t name one of her hits, but I know every stitch of her crazy wardrobe.
Our girl, who was born in Kosovo but grew up in West London, is always dressed as if she is going somewhere important and divine, even when she is not.
There are worse ways to live your life.
Sorry Frosty, you don’t fool us
CHRISTMAS Quiz: Who am I? (part two):
Once upon a time, I was a jolly, happy soul who made the children laugh and play. Yeah, I used to smoke and have a laugh, too. Listen, I’ve lived. I’ve been walking in the air, riding in the midnight blue, even if I am quick to disappear when things start hotting up.
But where have those carefree days gone, eh?
Today I’m accused of being intrinsically racist. According to some, I should be ashamed of my white privilege.
Yet without wishing to sound too Tommy Robinson about it, I owe every fibre of my body to being born white.
And if I turn yellow at the edges, it doesn’t mean I’m scared. It means the dogs have got to me. Again.
I can’t do anything right. Some complain about my fossil-fuel eyes, others say my nose is an affront to vegans. Worst of all, I can’t even be a man; I have to be a ‘person’. Not even gender fluid, but gender neutral.
I am made of snowflakes but ironically, snowflakes are going to be the death of me.
Answer: A Being of Snow, formerly known as a Snowman.
Dame Joan Collins switches on the Shepherd Market Christmas Lights in London last night
Who would have thought that glamour puss Joan Collins was once a tomboy with her own gender-fluid moment?
At 15, she decided she did not want to be a woman, swapped lingerie for her father’s corduroy slacks and shirts, and began going to watch Arsenal.
Much the same happened to me at a similar age, when I took to wearing my brother’s jumpers, playing football with the boys (always in goal, bah) and attending Dundee United matches.
If we’d been youngsters today, with the right (wrong) kind of parents, Joan and I might have been straight down to the gender clinic, being reassigned very different roles for life.
Meanwhile, soprano Lesley Garrett says it’s time girls were admitted to boys’ choirs such as King’s College, Cambridge, because their voices are just as pure as boys.
Once we used to complain that little girls and boys grew up too quickly. Now they are not even allowed to do that in the comfort of their own gender — or with their choir mates.
The thought of old soldiers being hounded by the Police Service of Northern Ireland re-examining every Army killing during the Troubles continues to be repellent.
This week, a 77-year-old veteran who is being prosecuted over the death of a man suffered a heart attack.
Dennis Hutchings said the stress of the case contributed to his condition. Soldiers such as Mr Hutchings served our country during a time of civic unrest, acting under orders in stressful situations.
It seems intolerable that, in the twilight of their lives, they are being put under pressure like this. Especially as all former terrorists have walked free, and now live without fear of censure or punishment.
Fiona Shaw is one of those stately galleon actresses, best known for her stage appearances rather than her television work, but this year has changed all that.
In the hit drama Killing Eve, she played inscrutable MI6 boss Carolyn Martens, a Cold War legend who had ‘saved the world at least three times’.
Now she has popped up in the three-part period drama Mrs Wilson (BBC1), playing another MI6 boss, Coleman, with more than a passing resemblance to the first.
Coleman is a sphinxy spymistress who favours tweeds; a hard-edged keeper of secrets who gives nothing away.
‘Go home!’ is the limit of her compassion and advice to the wife of a missing officer.
It feels like Shaw is an MI6 Doctor Who, regenerating between series and time zones. She’s irresistible, so no complaints from me.
Especially since Mrs Wilson is dark and delicious drama; a vortex of family secrets set in the 1940s, when the chaos of war meant that people could, and did, reinvent themselves. It is based on the true story of star Ruth Wilson’s grandmother.
Keeley Hawes also stars, alongside Iain Glen holding his own as the bigamous Mr Wilson, his soufflé face collapsed in embarrassed folds of regret at all times.
‘Go home,’ Coleman would perhaps shout at him, but he doesn’t know where that is any more.