Today is my one year anniversary on Twitter -- aptly coined a Tweetaversary, and so, I thought I would toast the momentous occasion with a celebratory blog post.
In The Beginning...
I had long eschewed the Twitterverse for years believing that it was just another online time suck; the equivalent (or so I thought) of Sam Kinison-esque noise and utter nonsense. After all, I was more than pleased with my Facebook reach of friends and family, and I didn't understand the value of Twitter; actually -- I didn't understand it at all.
It seemed like a self-masturbatory tool for celebrities like Ashton Kutcher, a shrine for the likes of the Gaga's and Biebers and the whole 140 characters mixed in with cryptic code speak and "hashtags" weren't setting off any of my internal green lights, but rather my innate fear of math.
You Put Your Left Foot In, You Put Your Left Foot Out...
Finally, after years of blind intimidation, in April of 2011 I signed up to the Twitterverse, well, kind of. I signed up and gave my email address but didn't create an actual profile nor did I step in the murky tweet waters until finally on November 28, 2011 -- I began my slow ascent towards branding myself globally.
My Moniker? The Pop Culture Rainman™, a cheeky lass who looks like Ashley Olsen meets Lily Tomlin, who rarely swears but manages to make people laugh, think, oh and is on the cutting edge of music & entertainment. A smattering of "clever clever land" bon mots; part arm chair critic, part-novice stand up, and the occasional animal activism.
Is Anybody Out There?
The first thing I noticed very quickly about Twitter is that, it's not the cozy cuddly place to mingle with your besties who tell you how hot you look in your new picture...Oh, no. For the most part, it's a jungle of impatient strangers who you have to impress with verbal origami -- or an AVI of one's cleavage. Basically like sneezing on the floor of the NY Stock exchange and getting someone to say G-d Bless You. ...And cue the Debbie Allen Fame Speech Here
It's not the baby pabulum that is finding an old friend on Facebook. On Twitter you have to WORK for it, or pay for it which I have never succumbed to. Every Twitter follow is one earned, and in that respect, it's fun because it's hard. A short tutorial on hash tags and shortening links was passed on from those kind souls who came before me, and before long I was hip to the lingo. Knowledge and patience ultimately trumped the texture of fear.
A Fruit Salad of Archetypes
Twitter boasts a cornucopia of people that generally fall under the majority of one (or more!) of these branded umbrellas:
*The Reality Stars*
*The Sports Fanatics*
*The Whores* (both male & female)
*The Sick F**ks*
*The Toilet Mouths* (See Whore/Sick F**ck's)
*The Sexual Perversionists* (a blend of the aforementioned)
*The Techies/Digital Media Juggernauts*
*The Mommy Bloggers*
Besides those standouts, the rest of the tweeters are whom I would deem as "human tofu." People who are simply Golden Retriever nice, having lived a life so beige that I'd rather clean my cats dingle berries than read another one of their yawn-a-thon tweets. And finally, there are those that call themselves Pop Culture 'Experts.' To that proclamation I immediately turn into an 87-year-old Russian woman and manically spit three times over my left shoulder.
I've met funnier than me on Twitter, I've met smarter than me on Twitter, and I've definitely met more successful than me on Twitter, but I've yet to meet anyone who has their finger on the pulse of POP CULTURE more than myself. It's such a diluted term that it's akin to calling oneself a Social Media Expert.
Trust me when I tell you I'm the real deal.
My Year of Tweeting Dangerously
I have so many memories on Twitter, but the one stand out episode was when I had my tustle with
*Eponymous. On February 11, 2012 I watched a video on Youtube whereby members of *Eponymous vowed to "remove" Israel from the Internet after a political journalist had posted it to his Twitter page. Being fiercely protective of my home land, I replied naively to said journo that I thought *Eponymous was a "terrorist outfit" thinking it was going to be a 'private' conversation between him and I. Said journo retweeted my response to his harem of over 40,000 followers and I immediately found myself in the middle of a back lash maelstrom I was not prepared for.
I was deluged with those who were for or against my comments (the latter being 'the members') and then I did the unthinkable -- I retorted to one such member "Whatever you say, Hitler." Now I should have realized that it is impossible to remove an entire 'country' from using the internet -- in retrospect it was obvious it was a threat to government et al, but I had just committed an online faux-pas called Godwin's Law. Soon my cell phone was ringing off the hook with calls from "The World Bank" wanting me to call back and obviously try and hack into my bank account, and soon my email inbox was infiltrated with porn spam by the hundreds. It was an interesting lesson in keeping my pie hole shut, and keeping the famed hacktivist group out of my online vocabulary in a Voldemort fashion -- hence the *Eponymous rhyme.
My Top Celeb Followers
I have a strict non reality star follow clause that I adhere to on Twitter, but I do follow a select few leaders in their field, and an onslaught of comedians that crack me up on the daily. People that are so funny and talented that it makes my humour seem like one big Times Roman font by comparison.
Ahhh you always remember your first.
Jann Arden, one of my favorite singers, comedians & writers, who I had the privilege to interview in my music journalism career, was one of the first notable influencers to follow me on Twitter. Second was David Wild, author and writer for Rolling Stone Magazine & the Grammy's among others. Third was Tony Robbins after writing about him post the Oprah Lifeclass Tour in Toronto, and finally rap music icon Chuck D which was a dream come true. Tell me these are not the best fantasy dinner guests?!
A Twitter Darling?
While Twitter has been a vehicle to try out my pithy aphorisms and not yet ready for prime time stand up comedy stylings, it's also allowed me to get breaking news information via first hand accounts before any of the media outlets can even get on scene. It's also introduced me to a slew of people that inspire me every day bringing me to my knees in fits of laughter and sometimes tears.
As I close up this blog, on my one year Tweetaversary I am reaching out to you dear readers to help me become a Twitter 'darling' and I promise you will not be disappointed despite my lack of cleavage and expletives!
I like to take the road less travelled...
Follow Renee Gold on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ReneeGold1