I think about my favorited tweets, those fragments from the minds of random people, strangers, and personas that I like and star and compile. And then I wonder about this strange, personal space I’ve created in my own little Internet world—a limbo of floating mental and creative bits. I am reminded of Teju Cole’s tweet about Twitter . . .
This instantaneous delivery of bits of language into the minds of hundreds or thousands of other persons. Something is beginning here.—
Teju Cole (@tejucole) March 29, 2012
. . . and think that, maybe, my collection of favorited tweets is an online vault of swirling inspirations, of 140-character crystallizations of half-formed ideas in my head, of shared sentiments at specific moments, often with people far away (and I’ll likely never meet).
It’s not quite a stagnant archive: I don’t file these tweets away and forget about them. Yet for some reason, they were not fit to retweet, or I didn’t want to retweet them. Instead, they were—and are—bits and pieces solely for me: An accumulation of tiny but agreeable and intriguing things, all of which influence or reflect me.
I “favorite” tweets, I “like” Facebook status updates, I “favorite” YouTube videos, I “heart” Tumblr posts. On Facebook, my likes are generally actions for someone else: to encourage, to share and roll around in a friend’s happiness, to acknowledge another’s struggle. On YouTube, favoriting is functional: I favorite music tracks and add them to playlists I play regularly. And on Tumblr, on which I “like” posts less frequently, I suppose it’s just another action of acknowledgement—a thumbs-up in the shape of a heart.
But on Twitter, it’s different: favoriting is less about someone else and more about me. The process is about plucking the juicy bits from others’ minds and imaginations and tossing them into a cauldron—a volatile place that mirrors my headspace at any given moment.
And although I don’t retweet or share them, they weigh more to me—and are timeless rather than timely. So I decided to sift through and share some of my favorites, and in the process I realized how I don’t rely on Twitter simply for news and information, but also for those fleeting, random moments of clarity and satisfaction and empathy.
All those words and somehow you manage to say even less than you would with whitespace.—
dreamers awake (@dreamersawake) March 30, 2012
If you don't get your way make a different path.—
Bobby Solomon (@thefoxisblack) April 19, 2012
I wonder if robots ever talk through the backs of fans and pretend they're human.—
Matt Roller (@rolldiggity) February 16, 2012
siri how can I hate jonah lehrer more than I already do?—
name (@georgelazenby) March 02, 2012
Activism won't save the world. Disco might.—
umair haque (@umairh) March 09, 2012
The strongest indicator that a civilization has reached the point of no return is the disappearance of public shame.—
Epicurean Dealmaker (@EpicureanDeal) November 25, 2011
“That’s what the world is, after all: an endless battle of contrasting memories.”—
Matt (@AmericanRoulete) December 13, 2011
I think there should be a travel blogging conference, where people can air their vast sense of entitlement, every three days.—
David Whitley (@mrdavidwhitley) April 26, 2012
don't see how privacy settings are anything but a placating distraction, like the button pedestrians can push to make a traffic light change—
Rob Horning (@marginalutility) April 27, 2012
All interpretations are valid.—
Anil Dash (@anildash) January 16, 2012
The phenomenon observed is inseparable from the observer—
Paul D. Miller (@djspooky) December 31, 2011
I wonder if Abe Froman ever made it to lunch?—
Chris Clark (@chrisclark1729) October 16, 2011
Is ham and cheese on rye making us lonely?—
Jared Keller (@jaredbkeller) April 26, 2012
No, YOU look like I've been drinking.—
The Bosha (@TheBosha) March 14, 2011
I just assembled a piece of furniture and didn't shed a single tear. This is a new experience for me.—
Shaun Usher (@LettersOfNote) April 20, 2012
Today I will be mostly destroying Ikea furniture—
London Elektricity (@LondonElek) January 11, 2012
Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination. —Oscar Wilde—
Matt Pearce (@mattdpearce) February 29, 2012
in the dark, in between songs, I saw Bjork take a sip from a sippy cup. I think it had crystals in it—
Alex Pasternack (@pasternack) February 23, 2012
Blah blah blah new Facebook features blah blah blah new strain of herpes blah blah blah.—
Mike Monteiro (@Mike_FTW) September 22, 2011
Saw Jim Cameron's Titanic on April 15th. This time around, delirious Rose on the wooden plank did indeed see the correct sky.—
Neil deGrasse Tyson (@neiltyson) April 20, 2012
Love is robbing me of words these days and it is the most welcome thief. Let us have love. The words can wait.—
Roxanne Krystalli (@rkrystalli) March 07, 2012
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Cheri Lucas Rowlands
Blogger at Writing Through the Fog. Story Wrangler at Automattic.