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April 16, 2024

The comedic relief that Twitter can provide

By JENNIFER DIAMOND | November 2, 2012

You know what’s funny and on the internet? You know what else is? Twitter! For a long time, I avoided the Twitter rage that has swept up college students and weird adults. I didn’t like the idea of posting about my every thought and action. I’m not that exciting! I do a lot of boring things like cut my fingernails and eat cheesy popcorn. No one wants to read about that. But recently, I discovered a new, brilliant use for Twitter that finally got me on board and got me to register for my very own account. So what is this trend? I WILL TELL YOU:

Comedy! (Were you expecting a different reason? If you were, let me just say, “Come on! This is a comedy blog, dummy! Get your act together!”)

Yes, bundles of individuals in the comedy world have embraced the 140 character format and come together under the flag of the weird-looking blue bird to swap jokes and gain a following in a world that often ignores the people who actually write the comedy we consume. The highly restrictive size of a tweet lends itself beautifully to the comedic mind as it makes each joke accessible and easily digested. Exposure can happen like wildfire: with a few clicks, a joke can be “retweeted” across the Internet and shared with thousands of followers.

Before writing this post, I attempted to come up with a list of my favorite comedians on Twitter – ones with whom you may not already be familiar. It was very hard. Tons of comedians have jumped on the Twitter bandwagon and many of them are surprisingly brilliant. But I finally narrowed it down. Here’s a list of my top three current favorites, and some of their best tweets:

• Michael Ian Black (@michaelianblack) – you may know him from movies like Wet Hot American Summer or his sketch group, Stella. Some of my favorite tweets of his are:

- On my fantasy baseball team, third base is made out of pancakes.

- Just sitting around naked except for my horse mask waiting for everybody to start doing Chat Roulette again.

• Matt Roller (@rolldiggity) – he’s a comedian from LA. He writes for McSweeney’s. What a cool dude! Some of my favorite tweets of his are:

- 1. Hide babies all over house. 2. If a kid asks, “Where do babies come from?” laugh, “Where DON’T they come from!” and open every cabinet.

- Hate when I’m buying a giant pack of toilet paper at the grocery store, and the cashier knows it’s for me because I’m ACTIVELY pooping.

• Gavin Speiller (@gavinspeiller) – he’s an improvisor with Death By Roo Roo at Upright Citizen Brigade in New York City. Some of my favorite tweets of his are:

- Here’s a question for all THE LAAADIES! What were some of the primary causes for The Spanish-American War?

- “I gotta call my boy mom.”- Vin Diesel saying he needs to call his father.

Those guys are all great! And there are so, so many more hilarious people just waiting for you to follow them on Twitter (it was very hard to cut Paula Pell (@perlapell), Raphael Bob-Waksberg (@RaphaelBW), and John Mulaney (@mulaney) from this list – you should check ‘em out too).

I know that some critics have argued that Twitter is bad for comedy because it gives rise to laziness and encourages comedians to produce huge amounts of mostly mediocre material, as opposed to a small, concentrated amount of very good material. To these fault-finders, I just want to say that yes, most of Twitter is kind of silly and there are a lot of bad jokes floating around in it. But that dynamic exists everywhere that comedy does. Just find some comedians you really like, and unfollow the ones who post dumb stuff every thirty seconds. Simple. There are so many great, often struggling comedians out there worth paying attention to. It’s sad how little recognition the writers of your favorite sitcoms and comedic movies get. I didn’t even know the names of many of the writers of shows like 30 Rock, SNL, and Parks and Rec until I began following them on Twitter. So, thank you weird looking blue bird for connecting me to these comedic geniuses that I’ve overlooked in the past. Also, I’m sorry for calling you weird- looking.

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