A while ago, I fell in love with the hilarious Mr Danny Wallace. He is a legend. And I don’t use that word lightly.
Yes Man, was an unbelievably good read, a companion, that kept me company on many different journeys; on foot, via tube, train and the bus. Every now and again you come across a book that leaves an impression on you, that will last a while and this is a book that did just that. I felt quite bereaved when I had finished it and really missed it’s optimistic presence at 8:15 in the morning and 6 in the evening.
Danny Wallace has an incredible wit and this book is crammed full of situation comedy and the beauty that is sarcasm. Meg Cabot’s Princess Diaries and Sophie Kinsella’s Confessions of a Shopaholic are the last books that caused me to splutter laughter all over a train and that was a long, long time ago indeed. Reading Yes Man is a dangerous pursuit on public methods of transport because you WILL laugh and people will probably look at you like you have three heads and assume you are mad as a hatter. If you can successfully suppress your giggles then you’ll be fine, but for those like me, you have been warned.
I acquired several strange looks on my commute to Walker Books for work experience and on the tram when I was visiting a friend in Wimbledon because of Mr Wallace. And I wasn’t merely sniggering. No. I was actually cracking up, the corners of my eyes creased, bent double in my seat laughing. Aloud. I felt like I was at school again, when you get the giggles and they breed and fester and you have to keep coughing to hide the guffaws that could billow forward at any second. It felt like that and I literally lol-ed on several embarrassing occasions.
Yes Man, is a true tale about saying yes to things. Nodding your head and getting out into the world to do and see stuff that saying no can deprive you of. It’s about meeting new, and sometimes slightly odd people that you wouldn’t normally socialize with. It’s about love and not letting distance get in the way of something that feels like home. It’s about taking pictures of big things like prawns and pineapples, randomly buying a Nissan Figaro for no apparent reason; befriending a Fez wearing hypno-dog, baffling your friends and flirting with life.
I love everything about it, I love Danny and his colloquial narrative, his friendliness, his humorous prose and unbelievable debacles. He gets himself into some absolutely ludicrous scrapes, taking yes to the ultimate extreme. This is the perfect book to read before or at the start of this new year. Because it is positive and hopeful and primarily about making the most out of life, perhaps not saying yes to going to dinner with your ex-girlfriend and her new man (Yes, Danny actually does this) but saying yes to life and going on a spontaneous trip or simply a night out with your friends.
It is so easy to say no sometimes, in fact I’d go so far as to say it is instinct. And, sometimes we should say no; for good reason. But for the most part say yes, answer in the affirmative and embrace what the world has to offer. Because yes is the key and no is the dead end.
One of my favourite moments in the novel is when Danny looses his glasses. He wakes up on his sofa, head throbbing, hanging like a hangman’s noose, blind as a bat, his glasses nowhere to be found. Here ensues an absolutely hilarious trip to the opticians to which he wears the glasses of his childhood and encounters the worlds most ridiculous sales assistant.
‘I appeared to be a grown man, in his pants, wearing the spectacles of a small boy.’ (Rest assured, he does put his trousers on before leaving his apartment!)
I wholeheartedly adore this book, it is rich and funny, full of the most outlandish events, written by a man who I’d quite like to clone and marry. Because Lizzie got there first or Greta as she is actually called. Life!
So if you enjoy comedy, adventure and a dollop of romance, than this is the book to say YES to!
I mean it.
Oh and Nick if you’re reading this, thank you for lending me Yes Man 🙂