Why did no one warn us that Brexit might lead to the break up of the Union?
I mean it’s good news for everyone not stuck in England. Imagine what it’s going to be like - the reason we’ve got no friends at all is because we’re so fucking brilliant. We don’t need to trade with anyone. Not even Wales.
A couple of days I made what I thought was a fairly innocuous tweet. I should know better. A few years back I suggested in what I thought was possibly my least offensive tweet ever that it’s polite to address people in the way they wish to be addressed (didn’t even make any mention of gender, though of course that was the reason for tweeting it - but if someone is called Stephen and says they like to be called Steve, I don’t insist on calling them Stephen.) It was a minor though and a casual tweet, but within the hour people on Twitter were accusing me of wanting to go into women’s changing rooms so that I could rape teenagers. Which seemed a bit of a leap. But hello, welcome to the sewer.
This was this week’s tweet:
People who want imperial measurements back. Young people stayed indoors for two years to keep you alive, don’t punish them with this shit that’s not relevant to anyone under 60 (you already have Brexit)
I felt this was fairly clear, but of course on Twitter you have to be very clear about your meaning. It was addressed to those who wanted imperial measurements back. I wasn’t trying to say that young people had stayed in doors specifically for those people, but if someone does you a favour, even if they don’t intend to, it’s still cool to thank them (or at least not try to fuck them up). I was making the point that anyone under 60 (don’t know the exact cut off would be - maybe 65) learned metric measurements at school and so don’t know how many ounces there are in a pound or yards in a mile, or pecks in a hasslehoff. I wasn’t trying to make a comment about all older people (after all, I am one myself) and wasn’t saying that all old people voted for Brexit. I guess I was implying that most people who want imperial measurements back are old and that probably anyone obsessed with imperial measurements likely voted for Brexit. But it’s a leap of logic to say that that means all older people voted for Brexit (or even care about old style measurements). All people who want imperial measurements may be old, but that does not mean that all old people want imperial measurements.
In hindsight I might have tried to belt and braces clarify that my target was only those who were trying to impose an outdated system on people who have absolutely no knowledge of it. But if you get into that then I’d also need to clarity that I was only talking about adding back additional imperial measures (I felt the word “back” did that, because yes, we still use loads of them (though how many people of my generation and younger know how many yards are in a mile, or even pounds in a stone for sure and though they have pints in pubs, a lot of us drink from bottles or cans which are 33cl, 500cl or 750cl).
A lot of people seemed to agree with the message as the tweet got RTed over 2000 times and got liked 25000 times and so it got into the feeds of a lot of people. And a good chunk of those people (less than a thousand but more than a hundred) decided I was saying all old people voted for Brexit and said I was ageist or that they are older but don’t care about imperial measurements.
As I agree with all these people and am on their side, I decided I would reassure them all that they had misunderstood my tweet. So I’ve spent a good part of the last couple of days explaining why I am not ageist and how logic works and what a subset is and acknowledging that I understand the confusion, but that if the tweet is read again they should see that they have inferred a meaning that isn’t there. Some of those people refused to accept this - I don’t know why they think I would tweet something and then immediately reply to say the opposite, surely I would just ignore them or be pleased my target had been hit. One man said I was arrogant for daring to defend myself and that the arrogant refuse to even consider that the other person might be right and that I was only tweeting for likes. I told him I didn’t even look at likes and didn’t care about that, but he insisted that I did. I thought it was quite funny that he was arrogantly refusing to consider that I might be right. And then it did make me look at my likes (which I genuinely don’t usually do) which at least made me realise that most people had understood what I meant. You might get a RT from someone who is cross with you. But you don’t get likes.
Maybe people liked it because they hate old people and had misunderstood my meaning though. You can’t win.
I genuinely don’t care about likes and after this I don’t think I want to get them at all, if that means people who are going to resolutely refuse to admit that they might have misread something with an intention that isn’t there are going to get in touch with you. I tweet for fun or to encourage people to see my shows or buy my books or listen to my podcasts. But mainly in the hope of getting a laugh or occasionally making a small point. I have learned my lesson. I will never try to make a point again. Certainly not a reasonable one.
Everyone was much more polite than the anti-trans brigade, though. Or rather the anti-call people what they ask to be called brigade. Why should they? They don’t like being called the anti-call people what they ask to be called brigade and have asked me to stop, but you can’t have it both ways.
I made friends with most of the older people who I’d offended, even though we thought the same thing and only blocked the arrogant man who refused to believe that I didn’t mean what he thought I mean, even though I explained that I didn’t. Rather than just ignore him or be glad he was upset, which would be what had happened were he right.
What a world.
It certainly left me thinking that most old people are stupid cunts.
Snook-a-dook from two very tired and slightly dizzy snookerists up on video
Also we will now have too many RHLSTPs so the gig at the Phoenix in 11th July will be a second birthday edition of Twitch of Fun PLUS me trying out (and maybe recording) some stand up for my new “Can I Have My Ball Back?” Podcast. Buy tickets here.
If we are getting big enough crowds for this to start thinking about a move to the Leic Sq Theatre, then we can film it too.