Reviewer: John Roberts
A slightly disheveled, unassuming figure walks onto the stage, greeted by an almost full ballroom of expectant guests waiting to hear one of the greatest non-fiction writers of our generation talk about publicly shaming people. Of course this is to help promote the forthcoming paperback version of his latest book So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, but rather than read from the book, we are treated to newly written material that’s so fresh, it has only just been completed.
As expected, Ronson has a unique way of words, deep and meaningful but with a sprinkling of irony and plenty of wit, what you don’t quite realize is how much glee he takes from his more mischievous side, when he swears there is a glint in his eye, like a child who has just stolen the last cookie from the jar… he is engaging and instantly likeable.
The Internet is becoming a dangerous playground for knee-jerk reactions and social media loudmouths, so much so that sometimes our need or thirst for instant justice, fails to look at the other side of the coin, one that occasionally has worse ramifications than it might appear. Ronson explores this topic with incredible hindsight and fairness to both sides of the equation, which brings up some interesting points of view and questions that leave you wrestling for hours after the talk.
A brief Q&A follows with the audience adds some unique insights to past adventures and stories. It’s clear that Ronson has hour’s worth of materials and anecdotes, something that a 1hr fringe talk doesn’t do justice to. Perhaps Jon should consider doing a UK tour and have a full-length show to bring to his fan base.
Reviewed on 11August 2015 | Photo: Liam Ricketts