Whenever I read any form of the word “follower” in a tweet, something boils inside my belly.
Language gives things life. When a word is used habitually, you start to believe it. Words have power.
Did you ever look up the word FOLLOW? Go do that. Then, hit up the thesaurus. Yeah. Shitty. Words like “conform, comply, proceed”. The intended definition is probably “to comprehend, pay attention to, to dig your vibe” Do you want to be defined as A FOLLOWER? Probably not. Do you want followers? Yeah, megalomaniacs want followers. Genocidal maniacs NEED followers. Think about that next time you see the term “team followback”. Remind you of anything? Do you follow me now?
No one is following you. You don’t HAVE followers. You are in no way any kind of motherfucking leader. You are writing some shit that some people might find interesting for a brief time. They are NOT YOURS. You didn’t LOSE someone. Fuck you, and your bullshit notions of everything. If you say “my followers” in a general and possessive context I think you are a complete and total ass. Thinking of people in the aggregate as a distant mass of unimportant underlings. Who the fuck do you think you are? Fuck you.
It’s more like having subscribers. But not exactly, because they are under no obligation or contract and the currency is their attention. This site uses that term. I don’t hate it. It’s not so bad. I remember subscribing to a magazine and getting really annoyed that it kept coming after my subscription was finally up and I didn’t want to get charged for it, but didn’t want to go through the hassle of calling and having to cancel it. Now there’s a fucking pile in the bathroom of pictures and ads that you don’t look at unless you are having a lengthy shit. Ooh, I really liked Omni. Do they still put that out? That was a cool fucking magazine. I remember standing in a drug store staring at the wall of magazines wondering which one suits me best. There isn’t one, but some are kinda cool to flip through and let the subscription cards slip out and leave them on the floor. Subscribing is sort of a commitment. Still, it gives you the impression that you HAVE a subscriber. You want to KEEP them. There is a feeling of pressure to please them by putting out timely and informative publications that appeal to your subscribers. It is a business relationship. So no. It’s not quite on the mark.
Another decent analogy is “Customers”. Customers only exist as customers while they are being customers. It’s fleeting. They wander into your shop of verbal delights to peruse the shelves. Dingalinging the little brass bell on your door as they enter. You smile! Ah! A customer! You clap your hands together and straighten your bowtie. Hot diggity! “Good day, fine fellow! How may I be of service?!” They may leave without buying anything. Maybe they will politely pick out what they like and purchase it making you feel wonderful and like you have had a mutually beneficial and enjoyable transaction. Possibly someone will compliment you on the items you have and remark on the cleanliness of the establishment and the friendly bang-up job you are doing as purveyor. There is the mysterious and interesting person who comes in sometimes and one half smile from them makes your heart pound as you nervously hand them their change hoping to brush their fingers and catch a spark off of them. The regulars come in and shoot the breeze and make your day the brightest and sweetest there ever was.
Some customers may stay and talk and annoy the fuck out of you and still not buy anything. Maybe they will come in every day as soon as you open and hang out there all day waiting for you to ask them if they need help. Some will come in and start screaming and throwing things until you have to kick them out. They might use the bathroom and take a monster dump in your upper tank and jerk off all over your sink. Bums hang out front. Shoplifters are a given. You may get robbed at gunpoint. You are held up, but instead of stealing anything they tie you up in the back. After mouthraping you, they put on your nametag and try and force people to buy shit they don’t want and give out too much change or use your phone to call sex lines. The store could burn down overnight and you could lose everything. The phone rings and it’s someone asking you if you have something and what your hours are and where you are located and they will be right down to purchase said item. Your relatives want a discount. A lady comes in and loses control of her bladder on your nice clean floor and starts blubbering and losing her fucking mind because she is ill or just got dumped and now you don’t want to be mean but you just want her to go the fuck away. You get the point, you are smart.
Grand Opening. Seasonal Sales. Under new management. No returns. Going out of business sale, Everything must go.
Wait, that’s not quite right either.
People who read what you write are individuals with thoughts and feelings and lives. Often contributing to what you say and making it magical. What you write might exist in a vacuum, but that isn’t the point. You probably want someone else to read it. Even if that someone is merely yourself. Start there. Whoever comes in is a blessing, even if they just wander by and never even come in.