GateHouse — I’ve been on Twitter for a few weeks now, and I’m liking it pretty well except that Rainn Wilson WILL NOT LEAVE ME ALONE.
Rainn Wilson of course plays Dwight on “The Office,” and he exists as @rainnwilson in Twitterland and is one of a growing number of celebrity Twitterers, which is a word that you can say a thousand times while still never sounding like a grownup. Twitter, of course, is the Web service on which you post updates of 140 characters or less that has been christened the MOST IMPORTANT WEB SERVICE EVER, so you might as well delete your stupid loser Facebook or Digg or whatever, to say nothing of you consumer-mall juiceboxes still on MySpace, if that’s even still on.
The point of Twitter is to celebrate and rejoice in the short attention span, so, hypothetically, if you’ve been born with relentless ADD tendencies and can’t get your mind focused on so much as writing a lousy humor column without your itchy right hand drifting, literally outside your control, over to the IM window, or God forbid the unholy hellbutton that lets you log in to Facebook, it will probably kill you in days.
In the past weeks I’ve been “following” the following: Shaquille O’Neal, “Weird Al” Yankovic, MC Hammer, Ted Leo and a few others. Sure, it’s cool and sort of astonishing, the means by which technology has crumbled the walls that used to exist between the famous and unfamous (and infamous). And occasionally you come across funny stuff on these pages, which is why I do it. Well, that and also like all celebrity followers I subconsciously believe that appearing as one of 259,201 anonymous capitalization-free inside joke-names in their Friend List or whatever will one day secure me a permanent office in their Hollywood cool-kids fraternity.
So it’s great that funny celebrities are on Twitter. What’s no so great is that they can’t shut up.
The celebrity Twitterings to which I am plugged are ASTONISHINGLY REGULAR. Seriously, there was a day in which like 60 percent of my total Tweet quotient came from famous people, which means either famous people are much blabbier than my friends, or I am in desperate need of more friends. It’s a little bit of a wonder that some of these famous people have time to help create our valuable entertainment, and yes, I’m sort of talking to you Ted Leo, whom I had to unfollow because YOU WERE ALL UP IN MY FACE LIKE ALL THE TIME. Dude, I am a big, big fan of your music, but when the hell do you have time to make it?
It turns out also that celebrities do what the rest of us snoozebox pinheads do: deliver rapid-fire random inside jokes, promote their friends/colleagues’ art shows and improv nights and indulgent musical side projects, make witty obscure pop-culture responses to other Twitterers and most obviously, talk extensively about their kids. It turns out that Rob Corddry can’t stop writing about his child, just like all regular unfamous parents, speaking of which, Jake today wrote the following sentence using magnet-words on the fridge: PLAY SOME CHEESE MUSIC. Thought it was the funniest thing he’d seen since I dropped a Polar Express on my foot.
So, to all you funny celebrities, I beg you: YOU DON’T NEED TWITTER. You are already funny. And also you are ALREADY FAMOUS, which is why you have tens of thousands of people hanging on your every Tweet. This flighty temporary fixation is for those of us who are still a few years away from giving up on our dreams. WE NEED THIS. Except you, Al Yankovic. You I’ll stick with forever, because you’ve been awesome since ’83. Feel free to re-Tweet that.