Lorraine and John first become involved with Mr. Pignati when they are prank calling people. Lorraine is supposed to choose a phone number randomly from the phone book, but she chooses a number based on a neighborhood address. While speaking to Mr. Pignati, she realizes how lonely Mr. Pignati is. Unfortunately, Mr. Pignati is not only lonely but trusting, so he is more than willing to donate to their fraudulent "L & J Fund." Lorraine and John make arrangements to pick up their ten dollar donation the following day.
When John and Lorraine go to his house the next day, Lorraine has second thoughts about pranking Mr. Pignati. She realizes that he lives alone in an untidy home, and she is also fearful about what he could do to them. While visiting him, Mr. Pignati shows them his collection of pig figurines and invites them to go with him to the zoo the following day.
The relationship between Mr. Pignati, John, and Lorraine develops because of their collective loneliness and isolation. By confiding in one another, they develop a support system that all of them lack. Their relationship is ultimately destroyed by John and Lorraine's betrayal of Mr. Pignati's trust because they not only throw a party in his home, but disrespect his private belongings that symbolize his life with his deceased wife.