Funeral For a Turtlecalls

turtlecalls don cheadleLast week I sent an email via turtlecalls about the end of turtlecalls.

I also noted my new book Flight of a Super Airplane, wherein Bruce Willis flies a giant airplane to fight a raging fire on the Moon.

My favorite response to that email came from a guy whose turtlecall never got made. A few slipped through the cracks over the 15 months I was doing it – that was inevitable.

The emailer refused to let me give him a replacement call, and instead became an avid responder to email newsletters. Over the course of a year, he would always respond within minutes, playfully calling my thriving business venture a scam.

This was his latest missive.

In your next story, Bruce Willis should light that con-turtle on fire. What is your next plan, get the kids all excited for a phone call and then never make it? what a great idea. i cant believe that rip off reptile didnt make enough money for you and him to retire. i hope your turtle becomes turtle soup.

I’ll miss these and the many other interactions I got to have with people over my time as the world’s first and only turtlecaller.

This is especially true of the people I got to call. While only 169 made it online, a final tally this morning tells me I talked to 1999 people. If you think that number is amazing, even more amazing is that there’s one more call to make.

Somehow, I ended this at exactly 2000 completed calls.

I have no idea what the dollar value is on that, but there was a higher percentage of $10 and $20 calls than you’d think. The highest anyone ever paid for a call was $200 – this was for an “instant call” to someone’s in-progress birthday party in England. I don’t think it made it online – drunk people always made for the worst turtlecalls.

In any case, turtlecalls will be back in a new format sometime this year – the character has value, but I don’t think he was being maximized in his current format, which was pointed out to me by this stud. Yes, he’s joining me in turtlecalls 2.0.

Thanks again to everyone who joined in the fun – for something that started as a 10-minute gag and I never promoted, I think it had a great run.