October 2011 Issue

This monthly issue of The Richmond Magazine has an interview with Brian Barwick, and Warren Clark and takes a look at parents who blog.

Editor's Letter

FUNNY how old words can suddenly take on new connotations.

In this bright new age of Twitter, when everyone from Prince Charles downwards is tweeting like there’s no tomorrow, I can’t help recalling the pejorative force with which the word ‘twitter’ first assailed my childhood ears.

To twitter (verb, intr): ‘to make a light, repeated chirping sound’. Or so says the Chambers Dictionary.

In my house, however, it meant something like: ‘to fiddle around for a prolonged period of time, without due cause, to the exhaustion of other people’s patience’.

It was, on the whole, a verbal missile deployed by my father in the direction of my mum, whenever the need to locate 14 shopping bags was holding up the weekly trip to Sainsbury’s.

In a largely harmonious marriage, “You’re twittering, Alma” was about as close to a nuclear strike as it got. Nor can I take ‘tweeting’ too seriously.

A lovely word, really, defined officially as ‘to chirp melodiously’.

Yet for those of us d’un certain age, The Tweets will always be those irritating little buggers who came up with The Birdie Song, providing a generation of arm-flapping Christmas partygoers with a set of photos best confined to the bottom of the wide Sargasso Sea.

Of course, a pop anorak would probably point out that The Birdie Song did not actually originate with The Tweets – they swiped it with their little beaks from some outfit called The Electronicas, whose version is often cited with approval by the cognoscenti.

Personally, I couldn’t care less. Chacun à son goût, and all that, but having a favourite version of The Birdie Song is pushing it.

Anyway, the fact of the matter is this: The Richmond Magazine series is now on Twitter.

Apparently there’s already a treasure-trove of invaluable information on there, such as where to collect your copy of the magazine if you’re not sufficiently blessed to have it delivered, what fabulous free offers we’re running and so on.

Truth to tell, your technologically retarded editor has yet to contribute to this brave new world, but I guess I’ll be doing so very soon.

I won’t promise you a veritable dawn chorus of tweets – life is too short – but I dare say that I’ll find time for the occasional full-throated warble.

If you want to follow the fun, the address to check out is @RichmondMag.

Have a look now. Or, as my late father might have said, oblivious to the linguistic irony: stop twittering and do it.

The Richmond Magazine october 2011 issue
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