Tweeting the Twilight Zone
If there’s one thread that unites the many different characters that populate the fifth dimension, it’s the unexpected.
An ordinary drive? A typical day at work? Guess again. You suddenly veer down a very different path.
I had that experience recently. Just as the New Year’s Eve marathon was getting underway, a serious family matter came up out of the blue. So after welcoming hundreds of new followers to my Twitter page, I tweeted for only one out of the following three days.
I certainly expected to throttle down after two days of high-intensity updates, but 48+ hours of radio silence wasn’t the plan.
When I signed off at the end of the marathon, I said things would be back to a “normal” schedule starting the next day. So much for THAT plan.
But it occurred to me that new followers might be wondering what normal is when it comes to my Twitter page. Basically, it’s a series of quotes and facts drawn from the works of Rod Serling. They’re primarily from The Twilight Zone, of course, but also from Night Gallery and Serling’s movies, books and other TV shows.
In short, if it’s related to Serling in almost any way, you’ll see it on my page. And on a typical day, you’ll see me doing it periodically throughout the day (roughly once an hour).
There’s no staff. It’s just one man, with a full-time job that has nothing to do with Rod Serling, using Twitter as an outlet for
an obsession a serious hobby.
How do I decide what to quote and when? On most days, you’ll find me defaulting to the “anniversary” episode for that day. I’ll highlight the one that aired on that day in, say, 1962, and follow it up with quotes and facts from that episode (and a few other unrelated ones thrown in for good measure).
On anniversary-less days, it’s more or less random. Or I might focus on a common theme. Either way, of course, the goal is to entertain — both myself and you.
There are two rules I set for myself early on, and you’ll find that I’m religious in my observance of them:
- If a quote or fact has been used in the last several months, I won’t reuse it, except for a very specific reason (such as a marathon or a special event). I hate “quote accounts” that recycle the same item too frequently, so you won’t catch ME doing it (at least not deliberately).
- I edit quotes for length only. This one is absolutely inviolate. I often have to shorten a quote to make it fit, but I never, EVER change the wording. If I can’t edit it for length and make it fit, I refuse to rewrite it, even a little bit.
When space permits, I add the season and episode number for those who want to look up the episodes. For example, #S3E14 means it’s the 14th episode of Season 3, or “Five Characters in Search of an Exit.”
TZ fans often comment how much they enjoy the marathons and wish they could occur more frequently. My Twitter page is a modest attempt to do just that. We may not be able to watch The Twilight Zone non-stop, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have it in our timelines 365 days a year.
I hope 2014 brings us many opportunities to enjoy the best television show of all time — and to celebrate all things Serling. Here’s a toast … to that “signpost up ahead.”
Photos courtesy of Wendy Brydge. For a daily dose of Serling, you can follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest. You can also get email notifications of future posts by entering your address under “Follow S&S Via Email” on the upper left-hand side of this post. WordPress followers, just hit “follow” at the top of the page.
Hope to see you in some corner of the fifth dimension soon!