The other day I spotted an elderly man not wearing a mask in the pharmacy. He had a badge pinned to his shirt which proclaimed him to have COPD, absolving him of his responsibility to do the decent thing. At first glance everything looked legit, but to my keen eyes, the kerning on his medical exemption badge was all wrong. A friend of mine is doing a graphic design course and after discreetly WhatsApping them a close-up, they confirmed to me it was indeed a clever forgery. I immediately opened my Twitter app so that I could broadcast me shaming him to my 128,000 followers, but my plan was abruptly scuppered.
I tapped the familiar icon and was confronted with a message telling me that my account, MY account had been suspended! SUSPENDED! Can you imagine that? What in the world was going on? Of course, my housemate Titania’s account had been locked a few days earlier, but I’d simply assumed this was due to her rather robust method of enforcing social justice, and fascist hackers had determined to purloin her online identity with the intention of causing hijinks. I quickly closed Twitter: live-streaming the plague-ridden old man had disappeared from my list of priorities. I counted to five and reopened the app, praying to the Goddess that it had been a glitch. Gremlins in the algorithm. But no. As I attempted to post a tweet, another message popped up, informing me that my account was indeed, banned. My fingers silenced. My thumbs impotent. I sunk to my knees and let out a raw, animalistic scream. The evenings spent at Wrightly’s Primeval Naturist Therapy Clinic had served me well, as the ground fair shook beneath me.
As the final strains of my guttural pain were extinguished, the world seemed a hostile and unwelcoming place. I felt as if my very existence had been rendered invalid. I felt sick. My head was spinning. I stood up and searched the faces of the people in the crowd which had begun to form around me. They would not supply me with the likes I craved. Useless, feckless peons. My stomach lurched as the realization of this new and frightening world dawned and I ran from the store, hot tears stinging my eyes. I ran, and I ran, and I ran. I did not care to where.
When at last my breath was spent, I found myself outside a familiar church, the lodgings I share with Titania McGrath only a couple of streets away. I gazed upwards and a gargoyle glared back at me, ‘Ha! Who are you now, Jarvis?’ he appeared to say. ‘I…I am a nobody,’ I whispered to myself. Feeling numb, I walked home.
My keys must have fallen from my pocket during the panicked flight from the pharmacy and so I pressed the buzzer and hoped Titania would answer. I glanced at my watch. It had just gone 3 p.m. so there was a chance she might still be in bed. Thankfully, I heard her familiar muffled obscenities and she opened the door. Our eyes met, and immediately she knew something was wrong. I held out my phone to her. ‘My Twitter account…it’s…gone’ was all I could manage before I collapsed into the hallway.
Later that evening, as we sipped our green tea, Titania and I learned that ours were not the only accounts to have been purged. The Babylon Bee, (aptly named as it is a notorious hive of problematics) had also faced the ban-hammer. There was nothing unusual about this, wrongthink should always be punished. But why us? ‘Why me?’ I said out loud. I looked at Tit. Her face was washed out. She’d been crying for days. Her room was destroyed, along with mine. To be honest, she wrecked my room before hers. Such is her way! The only clue I’ve been given is in an automated email from Twitter informing me my account is banned for ‘Violating our rules against platform manipulation and spam’. What does that even mean?
Jack, why have you done this? What did I do? You have stolen the best years of my likes from me. You have ripped the hard-earned retweets from my soul. You have raped and pillaged my followers in front of my very eyes. Oh God. What do you want from me? Blood? Tears? Money? (I mean, seriously, if you want cash my father is genuinely loaded it can be arranged, unmarked bills, no questions asked). Do you want me to beg? Because that is just not going to happen (although honestly if there’s the slightest chance it would get my account reinstated, I would be willing to consider it).
Actually, to hell with it. I am SOOOOO done with Twitter. Ha! I don’t need you, Jack. In fact, YOU need ME. You messed with the wrong woman. Twitter is NOTHING without me. Watch your profits tank. Witness your shareholders leaving in droves. Yes, you will regret this. Not a day will go by when you won’t think ‘I should never have suspended Jarvis Dupont.’ FOOL. I hope you BURN. I hope your skin melts from your body as you writhe in searing agony. I hope your phallus turns into a snake and slithers up your backside, eating away at your entrails until it emerges from your mouth. As you drown in your own filth, you look up at me with pleading eyes, wanting the pain to stop, begging me to end your torment. I’ll simply shake my head and chuckle in mild amusement at your predicament, knowing that your anguish will go on for eternity. Your suffering will bring me exquisite joy, you smug-faced, bitch-titted bucket of hog puke.
So, anyway, that’s my appeal process completed. It you would be good enough to give me my account back ASAP, that would be utterly wonderful and much appreciated.