In October 2011, Jeff Ragsdale, a down-and-out actor and stand-up comedian, posted a flyer around Lower Manhattan, asking people to call him if they wanted to talk. He thought he’d get a dozen calls; instead, he got hundreds, then thousands once pictures of the flyer went viral on the net. They came from all over the country and from as far away as Spain, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Taiwan, and Australia. Jeff spoke to as many people as he could, answering his phone all day long. Here are the conversations, texts, and voicemails of a particular moment in time—a hilarious, dark, intimate portrait of the way we live now.
Jeff, One Lonely Guy is about a man who made a sign with his cell number and posted it all over town, asking people to call or text him because he was lonely.
Interesting things happen when you pull this stunt. I've done it via Facebook, (and that's how I met my boyfriend) and girls have done it in chat rooms and they've ended up with stalkers. But Jeff's story turned out pretty amazing.
I enjoyed this book, but it was a little confusing. The texts and calls Jeff received were printed, but his responses weren't, so it was difficult to understand what was going on. There were paragraphs of his own reflection/interior monologue in italics sprinkled throughout the book, and they seemed out of place and irrelevant to the one-sided conversations.
However, I got to read snips and pieces of a lot of people's stories, and it was very inspiring.
From a reader's perspective, this book was a bit confusing. From a writer's perspective, this book is a jack-pot of story ideas. From a sociologist or psychologist's perspective, this tiny book could keep you busy and thinking about people and relationships and social structure for days.
Content/Recommendation: Adult content, ages 18+