IMPORTANT THINKINGS

by sofiya alexandra

Posts tagged horses

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Why I Love Twitter, Reason #1

I’ve been meaning to do a series of entries talking about Twitter and the wonderful, interesting, or weird things that have happened to me because of it. Twitter has really helped my comedy and weirdly, my life, and I hope to chronicle my coolest experiences here in this series. My hope is it will make it more appealing to try for people who haven’t, and also help me remember and appreciate how cool and unexpected life and art can be. And yes, I think Twitter is incredibly conducive to art, fuck off.

A lot of people hate Twitter for a myriad reasons: “I don’t care what random thing you’re doing with your day,” “I hate watching people have private conversations over a public medium,” or my favorite, “I don’t get it.” Personally, although I am always curious about new things, I’m rarely an early adopter of technology. It took me years to consider the butter churn, and frankly, I still don’t completely trust it. I’m just cautious about new things that take my time, energy, and/or money. I’m usually second wave, or later, depending on how intimidated I am by the technology. Pasteurization, for example, gives me the creeps plain and simple. Like I always say, no milk lumps? it’s goin’ in the dumps! It’s not a great saying, but it really works. 

I’ve only been on Twitter for about 2 years, I think, and I was a real hater before I joined. After much grumbling I finally joined “for me,” to practice writing jokes in a particular format, to see if it would spark ideas for jokes to do on stage, and to keep me from killing myself when I was unemployed. For a long time I tweeted into a vacuum, to 20 followers who were often spambots or people who never use their Twitter accounts. I had no idea how to engage other people and felt their jokes were infinitely more clever than anything I could come up with. I didn’t get a direct message for a year or more. It was so lonely sometimes I would cry cyber tears and my circuits would rust right up. The loneliness was well-deserved though, since my early jokes were awkward and jammed into the 140 character format the way I jam clothes into my drawers - desperately, with a dash of resignation. But you know what? I got better. I made myself laugh after a while. What started as a forced exercise for a standup comic who was trying to keep her mind limber while not on stage turned into an activity I looked forward to every day. Me, who procrastinates to keep from procrastinating. Me, who has played with my kittens and checked Facebook and Twitter about 5,000 times and made tea and googled “bitters” in the last 5 minutes. This was a major win.

Twitter turned out to be something very different from what I imagined it to be. For one, I never use my Twitter jokes on stage. My standup has been evolving in a theatrical direction, longer bits that involve a lot of character work (really excited to use “character work” here! especially after “butter churn” and “pasteurization”! you guys are so goddamn lucky). My Twitter has become increasingly shorter, more absurd, weirder. I notice that the recurring themes are things I’m truly concerned about - the portrayal of women in our culture, the psychology of advertising, our political system, how much I love catchy rap despite its very obvious misogyny, my awe/hate of horses, parent/kid relationships, and most importantly, BUTTS. It feels really really good to be that honest in an area of your life when so much of life is trapping our fears and anxieties under words and activities so we all feel like we’re not lonely terrified loonies. OR THIS IS JUST ME YOU GUYS YOU’RE ALL DOING GREAT.

The point is, Twitter is a place you can fly your freak flag proudly, and that’s probably the number one reason I would recommend it. 

Filed under comedy stand-up Twitter Butts horses women loneliness butter churn pasteurization social media