I started my Twitter account to drive folks to my site. David Pijor told me what I needed to do on Twitter was get “conversation going.” So #ToTheEtherTuesday and #WordAssociationWednesday were born as conversation starters.
And I like them as improv pattern practice.
Obviously they rely on more on text than emotion and are near-devoid of physicality. And obviously contributors have time to craft their response, as opposed to having to follow in-the-moment in improv.
But – learn rigidly to play loosely! Text-concentrated patterns can get heady; through Twitter we can focus on our head so as to make it a better partner to heart and body when on stage. The extra time for thoughtfulness when playing Twitter games hones in-the-moment thoughtful reactions.
In the spirit of Improv As Improv Does Best, though, while I love that we can practice improv through Twitter, there’s an “Improv Twitter As Improv Twitter Does Best” aspect too. And that lies in the medium’s conductivity to following multiple paths at the same time.
In stage improv you pick a direction and commit to it. If an alternate path was seen, the improviser who saw it and did nothing about it will tell you all about it at the bar.
In Twitter Improv games there are these wonderful moments where The Offer splits and contributors explore different paths from a shared start.
Today was one of those days.
Both are clear Offer, Set, Cement progressions. Though each could progress further and/or Reset, the clear heightening and structure justifies their being One, Two, Three and Done.
Toddlers -> Teens -> College Student = Clear Progression
hair trigger -> hot take -> high tolerance = Cemented “h- t-” structure BUT ALSO… this sequence of characteristics is a progression of relaxing reactions with “high tolerance” carrying dual meanings for the kicker.
Toddler -> Grown Men -> Old Men = Another Clear Progression
hair trigger -> “well…actually” -> “Fake News!” = the theme of how children of all ages react to disagreeable subjects. The “Toddler” tantrums. “Grown Man” Sets the progression toward a more mature form of a toxic reaction. And the “Old Man” snaps back to “tantrum,” erasing any pretext of maturity.
That’s how I saw these games played out.
You don’t have to see things like I do. Remember, we’re all playing by the rules in our own heads – but if we commit to making each next move in service of what has happened then individual contributors become an ensemble.
Interesting (to me anyway) when I went to save the jpeg above I saw that I had also saved the #ToTheEtherTuesday from a year ago this week.