Threadjack Joinee Spaca-Rory, the first Joinee Parle, or Joinee Rory for short, joined on June 14th 2006 at about mid-day. He believes that any more than an introductory paragraph written in the third person is pretentious.
The beginning of what eventually led me to Join Me was a short period several years ago during which two of my friends repeatedly encouraged me in vain to watch a BBC show called The Dave Gorman Collection. I never did get around to watching it, but I obviously absorbed enough of it through my friends that when I saw Danny Wallace's Hoax Files on Sky One a couple of years later I had some clue who he was.
In the summer of 2006 I was slacking off from writing my thesis and decided to sit in in the sun in St Stephen's Green in Dublin. There was a live jazz band playing. I bought a triple-decker sandwich from O'Brien's sandwich bar and chilled out on a bench by the duck pond reading my newly purchased Danny Wallace and the Centre of the Universe. I finished it there and then (the book, not the sandwich… Actually I finished the sandwich too).
In the next week or so I ploughed through the more substantial two of Danny's books, starting with Join Me. As I got to the end I didn't want to put it down so I ended up reading the last third of the book or so in one chunk in the middle of the night. I had a single passport photograph still in my wallet because I'd recently sent three off to apply for a driver's licence. I wrote a letter to Danny, and put in in an envelope with the photo. The letter was brief. It said that I wanted to join because I had recently learned that when presented with an opportunity, even if you don't know where you'll end up, taking it is the best course.
Little did I know that the next book I would read, Yes Man, was the gospel of this philosophy. Yes Man gave simpe words, "Say yes more," to the feeling that had inspired me to join Danny. It renewed my commitment to that kind of openness. To me Join Me isn't about random acts of kindness. It's about saying yes more. And I have done. I've said yes to flying to another country on my own to meet a bunch of strangers I met on the internet. And since then I've said yes to flying to that same country to meet those same strangers, now my friends, many times and I have every intention of continuing as long as I'm able.