Tracking the soaring stocks and junk bonds of social media, helping you to invest carefully and speculate wisely. (By Rhodri Marsden)
when people walk so slowly in front of me #ThingsIHateAboutPeople— Sharyne Von L // (@sharyneyy) August 19, 2013
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople when they walk slowly infront of you and you can’t get past— John Sims (@JohnJSims) August 19, 2013
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople People walk too slowly— Andy (@AndyyLadd) August 19, 2013
But as you progress down the seemingly never-ending list of #ThingsIHateAboutPeople, you begin to develop your own #ThingsIHateAboutPeople, you know, like racism:
Their white skin colour #ThingsIHateAboutPeople— Ray Sengh Donovan (@AmoSenghGill) August 19, 2013
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople Their skin color. Well, thats what I hate about black people. Besides thier smell, criminal record, ect..— smh (@BroncoPeyton) August 19, 2013
Or denying the right of African Americans to use their own vernacular:
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople Saying "arks" instead of "ask"— Jon Power (@jony_boy007) August 19, 2013
Or failing to grasp the concept of centuries, millennia, eras, epochs and the general passing of time:
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople When people say "life is short"What d hell?Life is the longest damn thing any1 ever does!What can u do thats longer?— The Rainmaker™ (@TweetsToLife) August 19, 2013
Or predictably falling for a common spelling mistake when describing noisy eating:
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople eating with there mouth open.— danni (@dannismith_xo) August 19, 2013
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople is that they chew with there mouth open— D@i$y (@DSAG_100) August 19, 2013
People that chew there food with there mouths open #ThingsIHateAboutPeople— xo_emma_xo (@emz_r3) August 19, 2013
Or criticising others for spelling mistakes while making grammar mistakes:
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople when they're highly uneducated like not being able to spell properly, stupid people— al (@allybanerjeex) August 19, 2013
Or failing to think of anything more objectionable than a cereal switcheroo:
#ThingsIHateAboutPeople When they get cornflakes and Frosites mixed up😒— K.C.B #YouMadBrooo?✝ (@KeimaeCeann) August 19, 2013
And as you feel hate asexually reproducing into yet more hate, creating a self-perpetuating, ever-spinning vortex of fury, you wonder whether that will eventually end up consuming Twitter entirely – and then you realise that actually, it kind of already is, it's just that most people don't bother using the hashtag.
Then, out of the blue comes this, my favourite thing that someone hates about humanity:
Sana walang pasok thingy? Tae! Bumabaha na lahat. #ThingsIHateAboutPeople— Steph Bulanadi ✯ (@stephbulanadi_) August 19, 2013
For some reason, "sana walang pasok thingy", whatever it might mean, restores my faith in human nature by being gloriously unintelligible to me, as an English-speaking man. I will now spend the rest of the day chanting "Tae! Bumabaha na lahat." in an upbeat fashion, unless someone tells me that it means something unfathomably rude.
I'm surely not alone in my fascination with TV listings, but @tv30yearsago only has 28 followers at the current time, which might suggest that it's a niche interest, like swallowing ball bearings or goat racing. Nevertheless, whoever operates this fantastically mundane Twitter account is pressing on with his or her task with gusto, tweeting the evening's viewing from exactly 30 years ago on BBC1 and ITV. Tonight (which in 1983 was a Monday):
ITV 7.00 The Krypton Factor 7.30 Corrie 8.00 It's Your Move (comedy) 8.30 World In Action 9.00 Minder 10.00 News 10.30 Looks Familiar— TV 30 Years Ago (@tv30yearsago) August 15, 2013
ITV's schedule pivots around the little-liked US sitcom It's Your Move. The Beeb run with a crime series about a wealthy moustachioed Texas oilman, Matt Houston. I remember neither of these programmes – so much for nostalgia – but look, Kelly Monteith! Blake's Seven!
BBC1 6.25 Dr Who 6.50 World Of Wildlife 7.20 Matt Houston 8.10 Chinese Characters (docu) 9.00 News 9.25 Film: Incredible Journey Of Dr Meg— TV 30 Years Ago (@tv30yearsago) August 15, 2013
Freddie Starr! Mind over, er, Cancer!
BBC1 6.15 News 6.30 Blake's Seven 7.20 Film: The 3,000 Mile Chase 8.55 The Main Attraction (variety) 9.40 News 9.55 Kelly Monteith— TV 30 Years Ago (@tv30yearsago) August 13, 2013
Just Amazing! News!
BBC1 6.50 Athletics 7.45 Freddie Starr Showcase 8.30 Only Fools & Horses 9.00 News 9.25 Athletics 9.40 Mind Over Cancer— TV 30 Years Ago (@tv30yearsago) August 9, 2013
ITV 5.15 Wild Times (pt 2) 7.00 Just Amazing! 7.45 Ultra Quiz 8.30 Saturday Royal 9.30 News 9.45 Film: The Great Scout and Cathouse Thursday— TV 30 Years Ago (@tv30yearsago) August 6, 2013
(PS anyone under the age of 35 can safely disregard the vast majority of the above post.)
Flatlining: "Archaic expressions"
Forsooth! It is a slow Newsnight! By Jeremy Paxman's beard! And so on.....— RubyHeels (@DarlingIconic) August 12, 2013
Forsooth, there. There's widespread use of archaic English expressions on Twitter, expressions that would earn you a withering look if you dared to deploy them down the pub. But on Twitter, you don't see withering looks. You get away with it. And so the olde English persists, like an untreated case of the pox.
1. Methinks. By far the most common of these, methinks either crops in Shakespearian misquoting:
Methinks thou dost protest too much;)— Jenny Harradine (@JennyHarradine) August 13, 2013
Or just amid gentle musing, where "methinks" could happily be excised without altering the meaning of the original tweet.
Onesie day methinks.— KT (@Katieforry) August 13, 2013
Contemplating baby bangs...because I need a haircut, methinks. What to do? To bang or not to bang?— Nash Tysmans (@nashtysmans) August 13, 2013
Definitely gunna get the mccheese methinks— LC (@thatguyLC123) August 13, 2013
2. Verily. Verily mainly crops up in the context of quotes from the Bible or the Koran, but it sometimes drifts gently into casual tweeting. Sometimes in a curiously oblique way:
you don't want to talk but i really want to , you wanted to talk but i'm verily not in the mood to .— Aiman Zafri (@AimanZafrii) August 13, 2013
And sometimes when someone's been watching too many episodes of Black Adder on DVD:
Verily, I need to print out my language learning materials and stay away from my MacBook + Internet. #destruction— Kalisa Hagen (@kalisahagen) August 12, 2013
3. Odds Bodkins. I guess it's a convenient substitute for a rude word if your parents don't like you swearing and they regularly check your Twitter account to make sure you're not swearing in public. But it's still ridiculous.
Odds Bodkins!— Bill Buster (@ActorBuster) June 5, 2013
Crap! I mean, Odds Bodkins! I can't renew my library book online because others have reserved it. I'm only halfway through it. #endofstory— Laura M (@lamacki88) August 25, 2011
4. Gadzooks. See "Odds Bodkins", above.
Gadzooks! The train arrived EARLY :-)— Steve Lamb (@ActionLamb) August 12, 2013
Gadzooks. How does a person fall out of a baseball stadium?— Gordon S. Miller (@ElBicho_CS) August 13, 2013
5. Twixt. You see this pretty regularly because it has two fewer characters than "between", and so it becomes vaguely useful when you're trying to squeeze information into 140 characters. Still appalling, though.
Daily Mirror: TUC REVEALS numbers in temp jobs cos not enough perm jobs had rose 148% twixt 2005 &2012 to 345k— @austinflood (@austinflood) August 12, 2013
You also see it when people misspell "Twix".
@questam1970 eating a twixt and watching the vampire diaries :)— ♥Melissa #Boomstars♥ (@Melissa_JayneW) August 8, 2013
I seek iambic writings to retweet
A previous Twitter Index drew attention to those who endeavour to squeeze poetry into 140 characters. But @pentametron uses cunning search ’n’ analyse technology to try and combine disparate tweets into masterpieces of iambic pentameter worthy of The Bard. Or if not The Bard, then certainly A Bard. An example:
cant find the torrent for pacific rim— Jakecob (@JacobJarabejo) August 9, 2013
A muscle head addicted to the gym— That Nåtivö Rîcañ (@lowellcarter4) August 9, 2013
I have the biggest headache holy shit.— Anthony✌ (@Anthonyyy_16) August 9, 2013
It's chasing down a dream, and living it.— Colin Aitken (@KhaosTheory18) August 9, 2013
This ingenious thingy was dreamt up by NYC resident @ranjit, and in one fell swoop he has eliminated the need for us to go on Twitter, search for 10-syllable tweets with particular stresses, group them into pairs based upon the sound of the final syllable, and post them online. We should be thankful. My attempt:
I'm like packing for a whole fucking week..— abby (@vsiakhasonee) August 9, 2013
Little Ringed Plover withvworm in its beak http://t.co/kG86qoyzFD— Tiziana D'arcangelo (@Tiziana_Roma) August 3, 2013
my mind is in a mess and it's so cold— f i o n a (@fiorocious) August 9, 2013
Where do you live, if I may be so bold? @SensationalFoxy— Tatia Petrova. (@NefariousBeaut) August 7, 2013
And let me tell you, that took BLOODY AGES.
Rising: "Feeling old"
i feel old but im only 14. um.— chelsea.. (@frenchyphan) August 6, 2013
Well I'm officially 15... I feel old.— Brittany Ann (@BrItTaNy14AnN) August 7, 2013
OMFG TOMORROW I'M OFFICIALLY 16. & TODAY I STARTED MY JUNIOR YEAR. i feel old— BirthdayBoy. (@yearwithoutrain) August 7, 2013
Ha! I'm 17 I feel old— Francesca Yepes (@xJusTxFraNx) August 7, 2013
18. Damn I feel old.— Tyler Haley (@tylerhaley47) August 8, 2013
Tyler, there, only 18 years old, but tweeting with the weary cynicism of a man of, say, 41, i.e. me. I could keep doing Twitter searches for the phrase "I feel old" and consecutive numbers, but it would probably get a bit dull, so let's skip all that and just head straight to this:
75,000. I feel old.— Glory Hunter (@VanDiablo) June 5, 2013
Twitter users do have at their disposal a more imaginative way of expressing their panic at the passing of time, however, by relating it to cultural and historical events and how long ago they occurred, e.g:
Just saw an advert for Now 85, I remember when Now 65 was my favourite cd wow I feel old— beth (@bethhdurbin) July 21, 2013
12 years longer have elapsed between Neil's version of Hole In My Shoe and the present day than between Traffic's version and Neil's version— Pete Paphides (@petepaphides) July 21, 2013
@petepaphides one I heard recently: longer gap between today and Nevermind than between the 1st moon landing and Nevermind.— Ian Taylor Images (@IanTaylorImages) July 21, 2013
Shortly after tweeting this, writer and all-round human @petepaphides came up with a related hashtag: #mortalitymaths. It failed to catch on. I was disappointed by this, and resolved to administer life support to it at some point, you know, re-animate it, kick it back to life. Hence this post. It won't work, obviously. But I love #mortalitymaths. It allows you to express your fear of death while also dispensing vaguely interesting factoids. Win-win.
Anarchy In The UK is closer to the Normandy Landings than it is to the present day #mortalitymaths— steven (@billquaintence) July 21, 2013
Incidentally, I just realised (i.e. I looked it up) that we're further away from the release of Rock Around The Clock than the release of Rock Around The Clock was to the invention of the paperclip. God I feel old.