'Lunch again today!'
Matthew Boudway June 18, 2012 - 10:57pm
The editors ofn+1 on Twitter:
When Beckett wrote, in 1930, that it was every bit as illogical to expect tomorrows self to be gratified by todays experience as it was to expect your hunger to vanish at the sight of your uncle eating a sandwich, he could take it for granted that nobody expected one persons sandwich to satisfy someone else. That was then. Lots of people on Twitter do think youll enjoy the spectacle of their snacks. They tell you what theyre eating, where theyre going, what theyre consuming, never mind why you should care. Oran apparently opposite genre to the hyper-banal tweet (Lunch again today!), but identical in effectthey tweet something cryptic to the point of senselessness. This is the tweet that says, whatever its actual content, I have nothing to say but I want to say something.Possibly its the automatism, the compulsiveness, thats depressing. Because another variety of bad tweet is the one that would actually be pretty good if the tweeter hadnt taken it upon himself to shtick-ify his personality. Thus a funny person, alive to the wisdom of building your brand, calcifies into a humorist, or a clever person into a witticist. It can be very amusing, Dickensian, when a fictional avatar has a narrow, caricatured personality: the girl who says, exclusively, shit girls say, or the tween hobo or out-of-touch masculine blowhard who is always true to type. Its a lot less funny when a real person, supposedly the many-sided hero of his own life, decides to say only one sort of thing, and say it all the time.
Read the whole thing here.
About the Author
Matthew Boudway is an associate editor of Commonweal.