It’s Christmas in Twitterland!


Anyone who knows me well also knows that I am an unapologetic Twitter addict. I can’t help it. I blame my social media guru @marciaforbes, who got me hooked a few years back. Now, I need a daily fix (well, almost hourly, actually). And no, you don’t need to cure me. Oh, I am @petchary. Do follow me.

If you are not a tweeter, I believe you are missing a lot. It is a mine of information, discussion, inspiration, new insights, amusement, occasional controversy, and at times downright silliness. I follow journalists, educators, bloggers, actors, astronauts, feminists, politicians, singers, novelists, activists, photographers, artists. I follow Stephen King, David Beckham, a few Presidents and Prime Ministers – but not the Kardashians or Justin Bieber. I follow Australians and Egyptians, Kenyans and Scots. And of course, Jamaicans, here there and everywhere. It doesn’t matter where in the world anyone lives, because, fleetingly, they live on Twitter.

The Christmas season on Twitter has been quite entertaining, once we had all gotten over the Miss Universe fiasco. Here are just a few Christmassy highlights…

Pope Francis.
Pope Francis. “It’s all a charade,” he said recently.

In the midst of the fun and laughter, I think we should all take note of Pope Francis’ sobering remarks over the season. You can read the full text of his Urbi et Orbi (of the City and of the World) Christmas Day message here: http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2015/12/25/pope_delivers_christmas_urbi_et_orbi_message/1196855 He spoke up for the “most vulnerable, especially child soldiers, women who suffer violence, and the victims of human trafficking and the drug trade,” and used the word “dignity” several times. We must give people their dignity. In a quite gloomy homily at the Casa Santa Maria recently, the Pope said: “We are close to Christmas. There will be lights, there will be parties, bright trees, even Nativity scenes – all decked out – while the world continues to wage war…It’s all a charade. The world has not understood the way of peace…. The whole world is at war,” adding, “While the world starves, burns, and descends further into chaos, we should realise that this year’s Christmas celebrations for those who choose to celebrate it may be their last.” The Pope believes we are already experiencing a version of World War III – a “piecemeal” one, conflict everywhere. These are strong words, but isn’t this the cold truth, perhaps?

On a much lighter note, a comedian I follow, Sam Kalidi, posted a lively video of a group in those white Star Wars soldier costumes doing a funky dance in an alleyway – “Get Down with Star Wars this Christmas.” There was a lot of Star Wars stuff, since the blockbuster appeared. The Webby Awards tweeted a funny little GIF of those same guys in white running down a spaceship hallway with reindeer horns on their heads, and a Santa in tow.

I just adore all the astronauts' tweets.
I just adore all the astronauts’ tweets.

Talking of stars, did I mention the astronauts? Their tweets from space are always a source of joy and wonder to me. Station Commander Scott Kelly tweeted Christmas greetings. I wonder what Christmas is like, up there…

My fellow blogger and artist in Ecuador posted and tweeted a splendid series of beautiful “red for Christmas” photos “from the cloudforest.” Follow her at http://playamart.wordpress.com

And lots of dry humor and wit – a trademark of Twitter, which I greatly enjoy. Below are a couple of tongue in cheek anti-capitalist greetings…

A Palestinian band marching to Bethlehem at Christmas time. Tweeted by Nasser Atta.
A Palestinian band marching to Bethlehem at Christmas time. Tweeted by Nasser Atta.

I think it is the fascinating global insights that I enjoy the most. An ABC News producer in the Middle East whom I follow posted a video with the caption: “More than 25 Palestinian bands came from all the cities and towns to #Bethlehem today to celebrate #christmas.” 

And did you know that some 7,000 Cuban migrants are spending Christmas stranded in Costa Rica, en route to the United States? Guatemala will not allow them to pass through, and complex negotiations among several Central American countries are in progress.

Some 5,000 Cuban migrants are stranded at Costa Rica’s border with Nicaragua, and some 2,000 more are at the border with Panama. Álvaro Sánchez/The Tico Times
Some 5,000 Cuban migrants are stranded at Costa Rica’s border with Nicaragua, and some 2,000 more are at the border with Panama. Photo: Álvaro Sánchez/The Tico Times

I look forward to seeing you in Twitterland next year. Meanwhile… Happy Boxing Day, if you celebrate it!

Those crazy Welsh… A dip in the sea (a charity event) in Tenby today. Tweeted by Wales Online.
Those crazy Welsh… A dip in the sea (a charity event) in Tenby today. Tweeted by Wales Online.
Finally…Have a drink of sorrel on me!
Finally…Have a drink of sorrel on me!
I also follow a silent movie account, which tweeted scary GIFS from "Nosferatu," and here is a scene from "A Christmas Carol" (1938).
I also follow a silent movie account, which tweeted scary GIFS from “Nosferatu,” and here is a scene from “A Christmas Carol” (1938).

 

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Sign of the times: An early morning line forms in May Pen, Clarendon outside the Western Union. Posted by a tweep.
Sign of the times: An early morning line forms in May Pen, Clarendon outside the Western Union. Posted by a tweep.
Queenie at Christmas. Her annual message also referred to "moments of darkness" and "candles of hope." (Photo: Getty Images)
A rather serious Queenie at Christmas. Her annual message also referred to “moments of darkness” but also “candles of hope.” (Photo: Getty Images)
A beautiful Greek Orthodox Christmas greeting.
A beautiful Greek Orthodox Christmas greeting.

 

An interesting factoid from the ever-reliable Pew Research Center.
An interesting factoid from the ever-reliable Pew Research Center.
Looking for a New Year party frock? This is "online shopping in Jamaica," posted by a tweep.
Looking for a New Year party frock? This is “online shopping in Jamaica,” posted by a tweep.

 

A Persian textile design depicting the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus. I follow a nice account called "Iran Style."
A lovely Persian textile design depicting the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus. I follow a nice account called “Iran Style.”

 

There is the daily beautiful art and poetry from writer/novelist Rabih Alemeddine. Here is "Giovanni di Paolo, Five Angels Dancing Before the Sun, ca. 1430 / 1435."
I always enjoy the daily beautiful art and poetry from writer/novelist Rabih Alemeddine. Here is “Giovanni di Paolo, Five Angels Dancing Before the Sun, ca. 1430 / 1435.”

 

African Santa… An article in Kenya's "Daily Nation" (I follow many overseas newspapers) suggests you cannot go to "the village" empty-handed. Here comes Santa! (Daily Nation File Photo)
African Santa… An article in Kenya’s “Daily Nation” (I follow many overseas newspapers) suggests you cannot go to “the village” empty-handed. Here comes Santa! (Daily Nation File Photo)

2 thoughts on “It’s Christmas in Twitterland!

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