You have to like Twitter. It yields access to large numbers of people that one could not otherwise reach. Through “following” and “followers”, direct messages and other commands it is a far more powerful tool than its simplistic design suggests.
However, its drawbacks are obvious. First is the brevity with which one’s message appears on someone else’s screen, if he or she is even logged in. Then there is the matter of how short that message has to be, no more than 140 characters. In my case, the intent is to provide a teaser with a link to a longer blog story.
I’m used to writing short stories. The challenge with Twitter is to write ridiculously short stories; or to write something provocative to garner attention; or something that is clever and amusing in the least amount of time and space.
Here are 10 of my recent Twitter bits or bon mots. Each of these is significantly less than 140 characters, leaving enough room to provide an accompanying blog link.
(1) In a nod to high-tech lingo, I’ve taken to calling our kids Tiny URLs (Under Regulation Length).
(2) Our dog chews and devours my writing, literally. Our cat spits my words back at me like fur balls.
(3) Disturbed people with access to guns can kill. Disturbed people without access to guns are less disturbing.
(4) I asked the florist to send a pot(ted) plant. She mis-heard me. That’s how my aunt got busted on her 80th birthday.
(5) NRA is an acronym for “Not Rational At-all.”
(6) Just had a great day with our kids. I’ll be on their cases again in half an hour, but for the moment…
(7) Here’s one way in which today’s rule-filled world has improved, fewer car-chasing dogs.
(8) Hilary and Kim Jong Il, sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g. Not.
(9) The native-Canadian name for our son Ted when he was a little boy was “Squeals Like Stuck Pig.”
(10) Our daughter’s favourite song is “Daddy Talks too Much”, sung to the tune of “Farmer in the Dell” (hi-ho-the-derry-oh).
And an extra one for good measure. Around our house, I can really stir things up when I mention this subject.
(11) My wife, Donna, hates it when I say I’m babysitting our children.