A bittersweet splash of sunshine

Who can not smile upon hearing, if only in your head, the words

w00t! Grillaz like totally PWN the jungle, innit x

in Stephen Fry’s voice…

A couple of days ago I discovered that Stephen Fry twitters, and a truly lovely find it was too, a little splash of sunshine that often raises a smile.

There is a tiny bittersweet element to this in that it does make me slightly envious, not of the things he gets to do but of the obvious joy he gets from doing them:

Oh my sainted pyjamas! Just spent 1 1/2 hrs SO close to a group of gorillas. Unbelievably marvellous x

I don’t recall, even as a young child, ever just giving in and relishing the simple joy of a situation or activity like that. I always have been far too self-conscious, self-aware and analytical, and indeed, aware of others’ reactions, and my brain has, over the years, refined the knack of presenting me with fully formed lists of reasons why X is not necessarily a good thing or how Y could go wrong, long before I have had a chance to simply enjoy.

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Twitter people

I like Twitter, though I do go through phases of posting and then disappear for weeks or even months on end, pretty much like my blogging history in general.

One of the joys of Twitter is the wide variety of people who use it.

When I first joined I don’t think I knew anyone who used it, so I ended up following and being followed by a few random strangers. Later I found a couple of people off my Flickr contacts and a handful of people I actually knew started using it. Add in a bunch of people I don’t know but whose blogs I read, and a few more scattered strangers and the list of people I follow is mixed to say the least.

But there are certain classes of users who automatically get blocked by me when get the “x is now following you” notification email drops in my inbox.

  1. Male and only or predominantly follows women. Sorry but you’re just creepy and will be instantly blocked.
  2. Twitters in a language other than English. Sorry, but apart from a smattering of French my language skills are limited to English and if you don’t speak it I can’t understand you and I don’t feel comfortable with that sort of one-sided arrangement.
  3. Your Twitter feed is full of links and that’s all. Sorry but you’re a spammer and I’m interested in people’s personalities not their bookmarks.
  4. You are following thousands, if not tens of thousands of people. Sorry but no, you’re obviously not interested in the social aspects of Twitter, you’re probably a spammer of some sort, and I’m not interested in you.

Other than that, well, I may not choose to follow you back but unless you are particularly offensive I won’t block you either.