Thursday, December 4, 2008

Powerless Over Twitter

I've Got a Birdie on My Back, Man

It's not that this isn't a nice place, because it is.


It's lovely, in fact.


There are gardens with roses and wisteria and comfy benches. Through the gardens run paved paths that don't hurt your feet through the terry-cloth slippers they give you when you first arrive. When I'm a little stronger, they'll let me walk along the cliff path so I can look at the ocean.


The building is lovely, too. It's a rambling, white structure with plenty of picture windows and shiny wood floors. My room is on the second story and overlooks a small, tiled fountain that burbles day and night. I have a heavenly feather bed and a private bathro
om filled with fluffy towels and crystal jars of bath salts.

Like I said: lovely, right?


Well, you can have my room because first chance I get, I'm goin' over the wall.


That's right. Why? Because I'm disconnected. Out of the loop. Off the grid. That's how I've felt ever since they...[sob]...
they made me give up my Twitter.

I've been in here a week now, so it's getting a little easier for me to talk about it...


It started so innocently. I kept hearing about this social networking site called "Twitter," so I checked it out and I was..
.intrigued.

Here were all these people, sending out tiny messages ("tweets") about what they were doing or thinking:


BennysDad
Leaving for work. Cat puked on rug again. Acted like I didn't see it. Wife is going to freak when she discovers.

Soon2BStar
May parents are total asshats! No WAY and I spending Xmas vaca away from Darryl!! Bite it, Mom & Dad!

PrincessMommyLA Since her husband got sick, "T" has dropped so much weight. It's not fair - she gets all the breaks.

Before I knew it, I had a personal profile page and was sending out little tweets of my own.

Then something magical happened: I got a follower! That's right, someone out there wanted to read my tweets - how about that? Pretty soon I had dozens - then hundreds - of followers (my "tweeps") and I was following hundreds, too.

It was like being plugged into a kaleidoscope of tiny little reality shows, each with its own star and story line...and I was invested in every one of them:


GramHugs is going to the store now. Hope she remembers to buy Depends, although how could she forget after what happened at her niece's wedding?

AngryTater is stuck making 40 cotton-ball Santas for her daughter's class. When, oh, when will she learn to stop volunteering for everything?

HoracetheSlayer is going deer hunting this weekend. Shame on you, Horace! I hope Bambi eats your face off.

Apparently, it was about this time that my turncoat family decided I was - what was the word they used? Oh, right:
obsessed.

Excuse me, but I don't see the difference between Twitter and their hobbies like golf or clog dancing or looping potholders or whatever. Sheesh, you forget the pick the kids up at school a few times and everyone has a cow and attacks your lifestyle.


So, after one particularly ugly incident during which m
y laptop was seized by the vice principal during the Middle Child's school production of "The Magnificent Seven," it was decided that I should spend some quiet time away and "reflect on my priorities."

In other words, they cut me off from my tweeps and stuck me in here on a technology time out.


Oh, sure, I've played along. I've talked to their counselors. I've sat through their intervention sessions, which cover things like this:


Signs that you may have an unhealthy relationship with Twitter:
  • You've been wearing the same dingy sweatpants for four days straight.
  • You've tweeted during your job performance review, sex and/or childbirth.
  • Your conversations consist solely of condensed, 160-character yelps.
  • You no longer answer to your given name, but you respond immediately to "BitterMomof3."
Well, that's a little judgmental, don't you think? Anyway, it doesn't matter because I'm out of here. I'm bustin' out of Twitter rehab and going back to my life...and my computer.

All those people who were so concerned (my husband, kids, former boss, mother, mailman, pastor, meter reader and prison pen pal) don't get it. They think I can't handle it, but I can.


I can stop anytime I want.


Say, is that a Blackberry you've got there? Mind if I borrow it for a moment? I just need to do one little thing - it won't take long at all.


Please? You'd really be helpin' me out.

Just one tweet,
man. Seriously.

That's all I'm askin'.

84 comments:

Always Home and Uncool said...

Twitter - the great mobile time suck. Watch your mail there, I'm sending Grey Goose and carton of smokes.

Kirsten / Mama Ginger Tree said...

So true. My husband's favorite activity is making fun of my Twitter habit.

Kim Moldofsky said...

You're hilarious. Though I might be recognizing myself just a little too much in your description of Twitter addicts.

Still, I am off to give you the ultimate compliment. I will retweet the link to the post. Then I am going to get some work done. Really.

Sidney (Sixy Mama) said...

Haven't embarked on it yet...I already don't get enough done, as evidenced by the ever-growing mound of laundry all.over.the.house.

Maybe I'll just sneak a peek, though....

Becca Watson said...

I've never been on twitter.. guess I should stay away if it's that addicting.. I'm already addicted to the blog world..

Mandy said...

I saw my Tiger Paw on your screen capture! Who-hoo!! :)

I don't Twitter enough. :) Help me!

karen.hartzell said...

Great post. I am being sucked into Twtitterworld as we speak.

Karen Hartzell, Graco
http://blog.gracobaby.com/

Grand Pooba said...

I'm a twitter virgin. And just like a virgin, I have no idea how to do it, if I can do it, and I'm always worried about 'gettin it in'.

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

My husband just took me aside to quietly and politely inform me that he thinks my new blog "thing" is starting to take away time from the kids and family. I said, "No sh*t, Sherlock, why do you think I'm doing it?!?!"

I am still in the denial phase of my addiction, with a touch of anger. They've been warned to stay out my office, I can't be held responsible for what might happen if they mess with my computer. ;)

The Hussy Housewife said...

I feel your twitter pain. My family is twitterfied about what may become of me if I join in twitter texting and twitterpics....

Beth Kephart said...

Oh my goodness. Oh my. And. Oh.

You have just saved me from a peril I didn't know I faced.

I still have my laptop.

Do you still have your face?

Linda said...

Hmmm...this is very timley. I've been thinking about joining Twitter. Might have to think about it some more. Althought I'd love to hav 638 tweeps to look in on and dispense wisedom to I'm just not sure I have that much time left in my day. Huh? wha? oh geeze those kids! they're always whining that I don't feed them! Ccrap!

Lianne said...

Facebook is worse! It's like computer crack!

Comedy Goddess said...

I have to limit myself. And then self medicate. It's not a habit so much as being needed by so many people. They look to me for guidance. It's my gift.

:0 ;0 and other I'm kidding emoticons.

Swirl Girl said...

Maybe I missed something...but where are you?

Some sort of rehab center or someting?

Blissful Babe said...

Seriously. I can go without Twittering for quite some time.

It's the blogs and the personals I have a problem with.

They love me! They *really* love me!!

I *heart* the stache on the bird, dude. That is so rad.

Eudea-Mamia said...

LOL! The bird with the mustache!

Jeez, even felons get computer time and cable.

Em - quite possibly the last person on Earth who refuses to Tweet.

Zen Ventures said...

so stinkin' right! It is so addictive, sometimes all I do is that- @ work! wish u best of luck rehabilitating urself !:)

catdelouise said...

I am in recovery too. I used to obsessively read every tweet I missed while I was away from Twitter, sometimes going 25 pages back!

Now I just go back about an hour or so.

I am on the Twitter 12 step program.

Emily @mamasick

Lynda said...

Tweet!

MuseSwings said...

I didn't investigate twitter because I'm having enough trouble trying not to look obsessed with just blogging. I walk by my officette like I'm just passing by and then sidestip in like I'm going to grab a paperclip or something and then 4 hours later I remember I was supposed to make dinner or dust or feed the dogs. You are a strong person you can get through this - I'll have my car ready on the other side of the wall as soon as it's dark. Be there. I'll bring my Blackberry.

jori-o said...

That is exactly why I haven't even ventured over to twitter....blogging is bad enough, if I started twittering, I KNOW I'd end up next door to you...um, well. I'd probably end up in the state-run institution, which isn't quite as fancy...

Divine Chaos said...

i've never even checked out twitter .. I feel so behind the times!

Rhea said...

My prison penpal just asked me to marry him. I'm thinking yes, but I need to go tweet about it first.

Kold_Kadavr_flatliner said...

<--- Ah, boo-hoo. Seriously, To whom it may concern. If the following isn’t too relevant, that’s poifectly understandable; yet, Christ the King is always relevant if thou knowest where thou goest --- Read the signs of the times (between the lines) and know God’s a concrete, coherent reality (check-out ‘Lui et moi’ by Gabriel Bossis, too)! GOD BLESSA YOUSE -Fr. Sarducci, SNL

Shannon said...

My husband doesn't "get" Twitter either... I don't tweet much, but I like it!

And I love love love how you added the 'stache to the little birdie! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Rick said...

You holding a sign by the side of the road, "Will Work a for Tweet."

I think you might like my most recent post.

eve cleveland said...

Anna....
Twitter is a gateway drug! I'm hooked on Stumble Upon now....don't let it happen to you.
Eve

Yaya said...

I used to do Twitter but it was ALWAY having 'technical difficulties'...has it gotten better in that regard?

dana wyzard said...

I do not understand Twitter and you can't make me. By the way, there's a 12 step program for what you have. And once you quit, you have to stay away from anything resembling a keyboard or the alphabet.

Michelle said...

I fear the Twitter.

Petra a.k.a The Wise (*Young*) Mommy said...

What is wrong with Twittering through your childbirth?

Braja said...

What the hell is twitter anyhow... I actually have no idea...

nikkicrumpet said...

Don't be introducing me to another obsession for heck sakes. My butt has already grown to my computer chair....good thing the damn thing has wheels or I'd never make it to the fridge! Seriously funny stuff as usual. Oh and I loved the bird mustache!

La Belette Rouge said...

I was afraid of Twitter like it was heroine. You know, the softer drugs like email and blogging are like some experimenting one can come back from. My fear was well placed.

JaneyRuth said...

Obsessed. Yes! That's the word.

http://tinyurl.com/gf-s-first-day

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Do they let you have alcohol in techie rehab? Cause I believe in it works the other way around.

I cannot even keep up with the blog world. So, twitter is beng avoided.

musing said...

Meet me behind the big whale tonight and I'll hit you up.

Suzann @ Lavender and Roses said...

i have heard of twitter, but I have never been there and didn't even know what it was exactly. I have a blackberry....

Chase said...

alright. that's it.
that was the last straw.

I'm officially signed up for twitter now.
And you're now being followed. Sounds kinda creepy, don't it?


-A Friendly Drifter.
(Friendly, I swear.)

AngieSS said...

ARGH...my splendiferous reply was swept away into oblivion. I will try again.

Aww Anna, I love ya so much. I promise if they ever put you in that place again, I will sneak you some twit. Your true friends will never let you go twitterless!! Tell those "other" people in your life to stop acting so twitterpated.

I'm suddenly feeling the strong need for a hit of twit. I'll tweet ya later!

The Blue Ridge Gal said...

That's why I left Facebook after only a week... (plus it gave me a computer virus) talk about a time sucker.... blogging is bad enough.... Twittering?? Not even going to go there.

Di
The Blue Ridge Gal

Yaya said...

Is twitter for losers like me? People who sit at work bored, hitting the refresh button in their email inbox every five minutes?

essee said...

I love the term asshat and will be finding a way to throw it in conversation asap. As I know several asshats, this should not be a difficult task.

The Blonde Duck said...

The word asshat makes me giggle.

KiKi said...

When the fickityfuk are you going to go ninja and underground to get some tweetage in? The fate of the Tweetsociety rests on you. The humortweeters aren't the same without a little mojo action. What the hell, woman? ;-)

Lizzie said...

i'm lovin' the mustache on your twitter bird! :) hee hee. yeah i put twitter on the back burner just before the move. it's been almost 3 weeks since my last twit. now i wonder... do i go back? or an i handle life without it? undecided at this point.

Christa said...

Step away from the PC Lefler. Put down the crackberry.

There's load of fun to be had without using a keyboard.

Think about....soaking your tennis elbow in a nice long bath - how's about re-arranging your sock drawer (do ya'll even wear socks in CA) or that great old stand by....SEX, preferably with a partner (um, I guess your husband qualifies).

Gotta go...I think somebody on Facebook just sent me a message.

Ciao!

Jen said...

Say it ain't so, say it ain't so. they did not take away your twitter. I hope you get it back soon. We need to tweet, man.

HappyHourSue said...

Whenever I hear or see something funny and go to the leave the room my kids are all :"You're going to tweet that, aren't you" and I'm all: "I have to."

writeinthekisser.com said...

This comment has nothing to do with this post, but I had to say that I love your modified banner. Why I've never thought of a Christmas palm tree I'll never know...

writeinthekisser.com said...

This comment has nothing to do with this post, but I had to say that I love your newly modified banner. How I never thought to put up a Christmas palm tree I'll never know...

writeinthekisser.com said...

I may or may not have just commented twice in a row by accident. Forgive me, it was an accident. By accident.

Hairline Fracture said...

Ha! I only twitter when I can think of something to say--which means I am constantly thinking about what to twitter.

Trying to Stay Calm! said...

I'm new here! What a great blog :) ♥ Hugs!

Cristin said...

I signed up on Twitter but have not yet tweeted... thank you for scaring me straight.. I will stay the hell away and stick with smoking crack.

The Wife O Riley said...

I have absolutely everyone of those symptoms, but I'm not on Twitter. Must be the Opium in my Hookah.

Temple said...

Ok, to help alleviate the twitter-shakes (that sounds kind of nasty, doesn't it?) Anyway, you've got a big, shiny award over on my page...enjoy!!!

georgie said...

LOL...twitter-itis it is a very hard addiction to break

georgie said...

LOL...twitter-itis it is a very hard addiction to break

ladyfi said...

Haven't got onto Twitter- because my family are already complaining about my blogging habit...

Ahhhhh!

dizzblnd said...

LMAO! I refuse to go to Twitter.. I would be joining you in your little padded cell

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

did I mention that I almost did a spit-take when I read the handle "Bittermommy2three"? OMG, I am so pissed I did not come up with that.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

I know I'm "not helping" here, but if you ever need a fix, you know where I live. Those killjoys just don't get us, man!

Michele said...

Well, you can bum a tweet off me anytime.

only a movie said...

I don't think I can commit to tweeting.
Love your holiday update to the banner... :-)
And thanks for stopping by again!

horatio salt said...

When they remake One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, I'm backin' you for the Nicholson role. We're goin' over the Twitter wall tonight, you and me...

TattooedMinivanMom said...

Twunkie

Just say Julie said...

hahahaha! I've totally felt like that this week... between SITSmas and Friday feature, I've been on this computer so long there are marks on my lap from the underside of the computer.

I may need an intervention soon... thanks for visiting my blog; love finding new blogs to stalk :)

The Rambler said...

LOL.

That's how I feel about blogging. It's like a crack addict hiding in the corner....I'm at work "secretly" checking it on my computer or my Boyphone (iphone)...and feel "dirty" when someone asks what I'm doing...

Whateva...I love it and like you, I can stop if I want....Seriously? Um, you wanna borrow my Boyphone?

:)Thank you for stopping by today! Made my day...now gimme back my Boyphone...:)

tam said...

LoL! Thanks for stopping by-what a freakin fun blog you have sister! I knew God didn't really brake my mold! Seriously-hope you have a nice weekend-whats left of it!
~Tam :D
P.S. I am going to have to check that teitter thing out...on my way...

Vodka Mom said...

this is EXACTLY why i don't twitter. I have enough damn obsessions.

American in Norway said...

I don't think I can do Twitter from here without costing an arm & a leg... then again, not sure I need another addiction! Thanks for waiting in the truck so we could beat the crap out of Eva's preschool teacher! ; ) (the ol'bat needed it...)

phd in yogurtry said...

I had to stop twittering myself because it was that one.more.thing that threatened to shut down my livelihood and end my marriage. blogging is all I can (barely, not really) handle at the moment.

Blicky Kitty said...

Really? ... it's bad to Tweet during sex? Or confess your secret love for a member of a singing comedy duo? During sex? on Twitter?

I thought it was only bad if you mumble what you write as you write it in front of the person: "My idiot boss is staring at my boobs during this whole performance evaluation oops and can hear me saying this while I write." or "My kids are driving me nuts and I can't wait till they go to bed/college/jail."

I'm doing some time myself after oversharing on Facebook...

Vodka Mom said...

Every time I see your pic with that mustache on it I CRACK up. I had to come over and say that....
:-)

TC said...

Plurk it!

(www.plurk.com)

Chase said...

Okay... I haven't been hooked on the craze yet. I signed up, we're following each other's lives ever so meticulously, but I just can't get into it. Maybe I don't have enough of a "following" yet (that still sounds way too stalkerish for me)

The worst part? I still feel guilty when I don't update consistently!!

You probably need to know I'm going to get up and go to the bathroom now. Can I just tell you here, and not use Twitter?

-Chase
(now that we're twitter AND blogger contacts, I feel I should sign my comments as "-Chase" rather than the anonymous "-A Friendly Drifter" that gives you the sense that it doesn't matter that you don't know who I am or something.)

Wendy said...

And this is why I pretend I've never even heard of twitter. So far, I've been able to just say no.

Renee said...

so freakin funny. i thought twitter was like flicker for pictures.

thanks for the laughs I have to come here to add to my new laugh therapy.

Renee Khan

jennifersusan said...

so you don't have a problem with twittering while driving then? i mean it's not like someone is actually talking on their cell, they are twittering. so completely not the same.

Wendy said...

Oh man, this is what my husband does to me about my blogging and I don't even Twitter! I'm afraid to even start with Twitter because... well, YOU know.

Sarcasm is just one more service I offer. said...

I just love the word asshat.lol It's greatness! I have never used twitter before. Your blog, plus all the comments you've gotten about it definately have me curious though.lol I need to check it out. :o)

miss alaineus said...

enjoyed your blog.

re the twitter, it's like the old dare campaign-- just say no!


visit the alemanac anytime.

miss alaineus

http://abaleman666-boysaremean.blogspot.com/