So, you love tweeting? Me too. But since we’re still in the wild wild west of Twitter, allow me to share a list of helpful suggestions for what NOT to tweet about. You’ll thank me later.
Good Mornings. Twitter is an information sharing system. Say something interesting or make a joke or share an observation. Saying things like “good morning” or “how is everyone?” is just bizarre. Let’s take your “good morning” for starters. Is it? Says who? Because if you’re talking to me I can pretty much guarantee it’s not a good morning. I’m tired, I want my coffee, and your general cheer is making me want to punch someone. “How are you?” Who are you asking? The world? We’re the same as we were this morning. And do you really want an answer? Of course you don’t. If you knew the ratio of who cares vs. who doesn’t when people ask “how are you?” you’d never answer that question again. Therefore, don’t tweet “hello” or “good morning.” You’re typing in a box: please stop pretending you’ve arrived somewhere.
OMG You hate your job so much. Of course you do. Your boss is an asshole. So is everybody’s. They’re not paying you to have a good time. Every cent you make is measured in the loss of your spirit, your soul and all things that contribute to happiness. You are not alone. But you are also not special, despite what your mother told you. Announcing that you hate your job on Twitter is the equivalent of announcing you “hate Mondays” or you “like bacon” or “your father never loved you” — wait, what? Anyway, don’t do it. There are few things as ungrateful as complaining about voluntary, gainful employment, especially in this economy. Besides it making you a cliche, you are potentially now a public cliche that your boss can see and then your next tweet will be “OMG I just got fired!”
It’s Not The Heat, It’s The Stupidity. It’s raining? Oh no! And don’t tell me: people can’t drive when it rains! Weather happens 24/7, everywhere. This is something everyone already knows. Just like we know you’re uncomfortable when it’s too hot and you’re equally uncomfortable when it’s cold. Look — unless you live in Los Angeles, there are roughly two weeks out of the year when you will actually enjoy the weather. If you plan on complaining about it for the other 50 weeks even you will hate yourself.
Family Drama. Oops. Did you just confuse your Twitter feed with daytime television? That’s what it looks like when you casually mention that your sister screwed your husband and is pregnant and won’t get a paternity test. Save it for Maury or an actual courtroom. That nonsense is just not everyone’s business. Or anyone’s business. Not even yours really. Unless your sister let you watch but that’s a different kind of post that you also want to avoid.
Every Little Thing About Your Perfect Precious Kids. “Madison just pooped her first solid POOP!!!!” Did she? Awww. Isn’t that adorable? Would you like to hear about my bowel movements? Of course not. (Because — duh — I don’t poop!) But really — I understand that when people have kids, they think their kids are the most attractive, clever, and funniest kids ever. They’re not. That’s not my assessment, that’s statistics. And your baby’s digestive tract does not belong on the information superhighway. And it also makes me not believe you when your next tweet is “I’m really getting the hang of this parenting stuff!!! :)” Are you? Because with your emoticons and overshares and multiple exclamation points you look like a lunatic. Exclamation points and ALL CAPS are a pretty decent gauge of crazy. Add that to the fact that I know your baby’s feces is the color of mustard and I want to lose my lunch. Which brings me to my next point…
Don’t Tweet What You Eat. You’re excited about your lunch. We get that… but not everyone gives a crap about your gluten allergy or the quadruple burger with a dairy farm’s worth of cheese interspersed between 17 buns you’re about to consume. Everyone eats lunch. What you eat is just not interesting. Did you steal Susan from accounting’s lunch? If you had the balls to go into the work refrigerator, steal Susan’s lunch and eat that — maybe I’m interested. (Okay, I’m totally interested.) If there is nothing unique about the way you came about this lunch… I don’t want to know. Oh, and guess what else? We already know Red Velvet cupcakes are delicious. It’s a proven fact. I love them too. But just because you loooove them and you’re single and you have cats, doesn’t mean you have to tweet about Red Velvet cupcakes. Mostly because I will be jealous, but really, still — no.
Religion, Politics and Celebrity Baby Names You’re an atheist? Good for you. We get it. You’re better than everyone else. Then why do you spend so much time badmouthing something that supposedly doesn’t exist? Christians getting mad at people who don’t believe? Well that’s just not very Christian at all. And the same goes for every other zealot. Calm down. How about we let people believe what they want to believe and worry about our own business. Ditto for politics. Half the people complaining about American politicians don’t even live in America! What are you going on about? You look ridiculous. And finally, celebrity baby names… gone are the days of John and Betty. Our celebrities have to be thinner, younger, their faces can’t move and should they procreate, they simply must have the craziest baby name possible. That’s just how it is. And if you don’t like the idea of a baby being named after a fruit or a country or a washing machine, then that’s just too damn bad.
Breakups. Breakups hurt. They hurt the heart and they hurt the ego. I know it can be tempting to make it official with an all-caps “I’M UNFOLLOWING YOU” tweet, followed by an itemized list of his most embarrassing traits. That bastard gave you an STD? That sucks. (Although, really? The laughter! The canoes! I wish I was half as happy as the people appear to be in herpes medication commercials.) But if you do have one, you probably don’t want to tell the world you are now oozing unseemly things because just typing that right now I almost hurled so please keep that to yourself. (In theory and in practice, thanks.) Breakups are personal. And the proper way to do it is obviously on Facebook so it can be announced that you are “no longer in a relationship.” Then your girlfriends can leave comments like, “Finally! You were too good for him!” And guys can leave comments like, “Break-ups suck. I’m here if you need to talk.” Which roughly translates to, “How is your vagina handling this break-up and can I see it?”
OOOOH Such a Tough Guy. The internet didn’t invent nasty chatter, (The New York Post invented it.) but the internet did perfect it, by giving millions of people the ability to nasty chat at the same time, and anonymously to boot. Opinions are like that thing that everyone’s got at least one of, but who knew so many people had so many? To that end, don’t send threats via Twitter. I know you feel tough sitting at your computer (I’m overlooking that three-gallon Slurpee that the clerk had to help you carry to your car, which apparently you’ve had the misfortune to spill all over your “ironic” t-shirt) but there is just no need to tweet your nasty commentary to someone. a) You look like a jerk. b) See “a.” Using Twitter to talk trash about other people (particularly on Twitter) is not satire; it’s cowardice. Don’t be one of those people that fights with other people on Twitter. It’s idiotic. It makes as much sense as Garfield fighting with Peanuts. And by the way, Twitter is free. You’re getting free entertainment. You didn’t like that particular joke? Here’s your money back. Oh what’s that? You didn’t pay for it? Then shut up.
Good Nights. See: Good Mornings. There. We come full circle. You’ve managed to waste a whole day on Twitter and, instead of just bowing out gracefully, you’re going to make sure everyone takes notice of the moment you decide to stop typing in a box. You’re typing in a box. You’re still not going anywhere. Don’t do that.
Now, run along and tweet your little hearts out. Just not about any of the above topics. Or, hell go ahead. I’m probably not following you anyway.
Caprice Crane: Ten Things I Hate About Your Tweets