Today, I’m starting a ‘rent a person who does nothing’ service . . . Except for very simple conversation, I’m afraid I can do nothing.
Shoji Morimoto was constantly being told that he was a ‘do-nothing’ because he lacked initiative. Dispirited and unemployed, it occurred to him that if he was so good at doing nothing, perhaps he could turn it into a business. And with one tweet, he began his business of renting himself out . . . to do nothing.
Morimoto, aka Rental Person, provides a fascinating service to the lonely and socially anxious. Sitting with a client undergoing surgery, accompanying a newly-divorced client to her favourite restaurant, visiting the site of a client’s suicide attempt are just a few of his thousands of true life adventures. He is dependable, non-judgmental and committed to remaining a stranger and the curious encounters he shares are revelatory about both Japanese society and human psychology.
In Rental Person Who Does Nothing, Morimoto chronicles his extraordinary experiences in his unique line of work and reflects on how we consider relationships, jobs and family in our search for meaningful connection and purpose in life.