@Midnight Is Ruining My Quality Of Life

Jordan rails against Twitter shills. 

Let me tell you how you are all ruining my quality of life.

I am a freelance writer. This means my hours are flexible. I could, if I were a righteous man, set the alarm and work from sun to sun, but it doesn't work that way. What modicum of success I've achieved has come by being a disgusting lazy slob. And it has its consequences.

An average day if I don't need to be in a Manhattan screening room goes like this:

Naturally rise at around 8:45.

Say, “oh, hell no!” and go back to sleep.

Wake again at around 9:50.

Next I lay in bed and moan for about ten minutes, confronted once again by the desperate condition of mankind.

Since I am an enormous and obese man, there's usually some part of my body that is a little achey from lying in bed so long. Next I prod at this part of my body for a few minutes, convinced it is evidence of a fatal illness.

Eventually I get up and use the privvy.

Then I stand in the middle of my kitchen and moan, usually accompanied by scratching myself. Then I put on WCBS-AM radio because I am a thousand years old. I listen to the horrors of the day: war, pestilence, disease, heartache, right-wing assholes ruining our country with their greed disguised as righteousness, left-wing extremists allowing their hangups and fears to destroy individualism, and the ceaseless cultural focus on anti-intellectualism that continues to chew away at what little is left of our culture.

Then the radio cuts to commercials about prostate cancer, diabetes or hospice care. This inspires me to make coffee.

With coffee and a bowl of high-fiber healthy cereal (but a gigantic amount of it, thus rendering it unhealthy), I look at Twitter and my email and my iCal. At this point I realize that this is another day of trying to stuff ten pounds of manure in a five pound bag.

I fully recognize that I am blessed that I am able to support myself by my writing. I am driven by a 10% desire of wanting to express myself through the written word and a 90% desire of not wanting to deal with a boss. Even though my last boss is now one of my closest friends in the entire world, allowing anyone except my wife or mother to tell me what to do is a lifestyle choice I cannot accept.

But maintaining this blessed lifestyle comes at a cost, and once I eventually snap to it, it means I gotta get at my laptop and meet my many deadlines for my many outlets. I very rarely say “no” to an assignment, for fear that one day the opportunities will dry up and I'll have to go back and get a real job.

For about 90 minutes I work really hard, but then the phone rings, or I want a snack, or the cat pokes me, or I am accidentally reminded of porn and then - wham – suddenly it is night time. No matter how you slice it I am always, always, always working late into the night.

Now writing, at least for me, isn't how it goes in the movies. It's having a Word document open, pecking out two-and-a-half sentences, and then suddenly finding every article on the Internet the most fascinating thing in the world. A Wikipedia entry on the Concordat of Worms, you say? Stand back, I need to learn more.

Just when I can't procrastinate any more I hit Twitter. So many people I follow are hilarious and I hit Fav on a hundred tweets. Then I go and check the streams of the people I hate and don't follow. I fully recognize the irony in this, in that I give these clowns more attention by going directly to them than if I allowed their drivel into my feed. But don't talk to me about logic.

This is a slow way to bang out a 600 word review of 300: Rise of an Empire, but it's my way and it's worked for me and, once it starts to get late enough that my back's really against the wall, I get in a rhythm.

Then, something happens at the strike of midnight.

Some dipshit television show I've never watched and will never watch – a Tosh.0.2.0 of sorts – comes on some channel. Part of the show is to, if I can put it in advertising speak, incorporate a second screen interaction.

The show, called Midnight (or maybe it's actually called @Midnight, I wouldn't put it past them) must have some sort of running gag where they kick off a hashtag topic and want people to riff during the show. I'm guessing it's kinda like Pee-wee's magic word. I'm saying “I guess” because I refuse to even go to the show's website to find out. That's how upset I am at @Midnight for interrupting my procrastination regimen each night.

Listen: hashtags – real, organic hashtags – are not the worst thing in the world. I've dabbled in them. Sometimes they even make me laugh. But when they don't stop, they really become annoying. I had to unfollow one acquaintance because he is a hashtag maniac.

But @Midnight is particularly egregious. Because no matter how clever your zing is, when you slip the @Midnight handle at the end, you are advertising. You may as well be saying “Drink Pepsi.”

When a follower first sees these fly by they click the link and now, wham, you have now been advertised to. By someone you CHOSE to follow. That discomfort you feel is an enormous corporate dildo being rammed up your rectum.

Rammed and twisted! Because these @Midnight jokers don't even start their tweet with “@Midnight.” If they did, then only other followers of @Midnight would have to deal with these alleged jokes. But this, no doubt, disqualifies the tweeter from whatever prize the show is offering. (Probably nothing other than the glory of having the tweet read on the air by the numbskull who hosts the show.)

Edit in real time: I just learned that the show is led by Chris Hardwick. This complicates things a tiny bit. I don't know the guy personally, but he seems pretty all right. He's basically saved Comic-Con by being the main host in Hall H, and he's so much better than the usual moderators. I'd like to officially tone down my rage by one notch. But I'm still angry and I hope Hardwick looks at himself in the mirror and realizes he's unleashed a plague on Twitter.

So listen up, @Midnighters! You are all on notice. You've got, like, another week to get this out of your system. After that, we're judging you. And we are all in our right to set up parody accounts mocking you for being shills for whichever slimeballs are paying Chris Hardwick to sell a tiny bit of his soul 140 characters at a time.

When this insanity stops we can all be friends again and sing together in harmony. I suggest this song: