Twatting about on Twitter

I joined Twitter in April this year and so far have written over 2,250 tweets.  Admittedly alot of them have been replies to other people’s tweets as well as re-tweets done by me and to me, but I like to think I have contributed to the richness that is Twitter with my stupid banter and pictures.

I have a Facebook profile as well but I always felt that putting the odd comment, thought and status like remark on my Facebook page as I do on Twitter, would not only raise a few eyebrows but would get people contacting me asking me why I was putting up that shit on FB.  Especially as I know some of my friends there get irritated when their contacts advertise what they are doing along the lines of –

“I am going to cook rice for dinner tonight”

“Hoofuckingray, good for you!”

“Here’s a picture of a seagull”

“So fucking what!”

So, I looked for somewhere else to do that on and discovered Twitter. At the time I was not ready to write a proper blog, so thought this would be a good introduction to the art.

I wanted it to be an experiment and set up a profile without using my real name.  I was curious to discover if people really will follow people they don’t know based solely on the content of their tweets.  I know, I know, I was naive but I honestly was not sure how Twitter worked and had never been able to see the point of it before!

I chose LondonStanding (see below) as it is based on a bit of amusement between me and my sister when driving back from visiting family in Southend.  When you reach the Queen Elizabeth Bridge you can see London in the distance and because we love this old city, we would just nod and say to each other “still standing”.  Writing this now, I understand how stupid it sounds to outsiders, and it certainly is only a bit of emotional fluff that means nothing to anyone else but we liked it.  We still do.

So, my next job was to think about what I should put in my bio, which was originally “Living, Loving Looking at London Standing”, because I wanted to talk about things in this city of mine that make me laugh, make me smile, piss me off, highlight events etc.  I thought the bio quite clever at the time, however, I soon came to regard it as trite and rather pretentious!

One thing I did not want to do was to make my account private, I don’t judge others if they choose to do so, but I wanted to share my rubbish with the world – why should I suffer alone, eh?

My first few tweets again were an experiment as I referred to myself in the 3rd person – oh good grief, I really am an idiot, what a prat!  I would advise you not to troll through 2000 odd tweets to see the crap I wrote at the beginning.  Oh the shame, oh the shame!  And if you do, just remember that I will hunt you down and kill you if you unfollow me now.  I am very fond of my followers and don’t want to lose you!

I remember the feeling when I got my first follower, it was like winning a lottery, and I felt I had accomplished something.  On reflection, I wondered if they thought that I would be tweeting only about things to do and see in London, and as my style was evolving and changing, within a few weeks, they unfollowed me.

Apart from those I chose to follow that do let me know about things that I am interested in, I wanted to find some people who seemed to post random stuff like I wanted to do.  And over time, as I found more people like that, I looked at their style and realised that alot of them were really, really funny!  They posted videos and pictures and used words in a much cleverer way than I could.  There are two that immediately spring to mind, and I loved (and still love) their cross Twitter banter and these new people gave me ideas on how I could alter my style and allow my humour to put its head above the parapet and have a go.  I am in no way as good as them and I am not trying to copy them, but it is fun giving my madness free rein.  I still post about things I have done and places I have been to as I want to let others know about them so that they can go and find out for themselves.

I also realised that people use naughty language on Twitter and I know I can swear like a trooper, so it pleased me I was allowed to add the odd expletive on a public forum and no-one would bat an eyelid.  And if they did, they would soon unfollow me.  Ooh the freedom that gave me.  Not that I use bad language all the time on Twitter you understand, but having the freedom to choose to do so was good.

Well, that meant that I had to change my bio because the original was still rather po faced and misleading, and I was not happy with it.  So I added a little humour at the end to signify that I was not up my own arse all the time and crossed my fingers.  It seemed to work and I gained a few more followers and began to have little conversations with them now and again.

By now I was completely bored with my original bio so deleted it and started the transition to what it is now.  I wanted to incorporate my love of playing with words (again, not an expert) so over a couple of weeks, I revisited it and tweaked it until I was happy.  I might change it again but for the moment, meh, it’ll do!

P.S. since I wrote this post, I have changed my user name to Miss_Alaynius.