Skip to comments.Tween Hobo Takes Twitter by Storm [INTERVIEW]
Posted on 04/02/2012 11:43:51 AM PDT by nickcarraway
Have you come across the Twitter account @tweenhobo? If not, get ready to laugh and learn. As the littlest hobos Twitter bio suggests Im only twelve, but Im a hard twelve. theres much to be gleaned from her about tween life, hobo life and yes, digital life.
Mashable spoke with Tween Hobos babysitter, Brooklyn-based playwright Alena Smith, about the characters quirky personality. According to Smith, the Twitter account isnt just something to laugh at its something to make people think deeper.
I think part of the reason the joke lands so much is because theres something incredibly profound going on in our culture. The last 10 years, with technological development, the internet has changed our culture so much, Smith says.
Since the character appeared in December 2011, shes tweeted about everything one might imagine would preoccupy a tween hobo: weight anxieties, crushes, ambitions for the future and fellow hobos that shes met since she ran away from home.
Her best friends, Stumptown Jim and Tin Cap Earl, cant relate to her infatuation with Justin Beiber but give her insight into cultural icons she would otherwise know nothing about, such as James Van Der Beek and Pearl Jam.
Of course, when she hears these names, Tween Hobo does what anyone of her age would do: she looks them up on YouTube.
Though Tween Hobo speaks fondly about traversing the railroads and leaving it all behind, shes hooked on technology. Shes prone to checking in to the edge of the road on Foursquare and has live-tweeted thunderstorms with her stick phone.
In this way, Smith says, shes an avatar for digital culture and the way people interact with it. She sort of only exists in technology, so its a meta joke, Smith says.
In addition, Smith says, the hobo culture of going from place to place and meeting random strangers is a metaphor for how people are interacting online tweeting at someone youve never met in person, for example, or being able to see a strangers Instagram photos.
On the internet, were all drifters and having random encounters, Smith says. But of course, the joke of the whole thing is that you can never be off the grid now. Theres sort of a nostalgia for this time of dropping out of society, and I dont think thats possible anymore.
With Smiths help, Mashable grabbed an interview with the nomadic Tween Hobo. Heres what she had to say:
Q&A With Tween Hobo So, you say you left home because your au pair revoked your Facebook privileges? Whats the real story behind that?
Id rather not go into detail, but lets just say it involved me hacking into her Gchat history and doing a little of the old one-two cut-and-paste.
Got any brothers and sisters, Tween Hobo? You miss them?
As a sister of the road I consider all lonely travelers my brothers. I also made up a big sister on The Sims, but ever since our virtual dad got fired shes been lying face-down in the pool.
Ever planning on going back home?
Maybe when Im in my 30s, if I dont have a job by then.
You still in touch with that au pair of yours? Whats up with her always Skyping with her boyfriend in Holland?
I could tell you, if only I knew the Dutch word for inappropriate.
So from your tweets, I see youre preparing for you bat mitzvah. When is it? And what kind of bash is it going to be?
If I have my way itll be held in a sacred clearing on a woodsy mountainside in the Pacific Northwest, and the only people there will be me, my rabbi and a sexy vampire who knows how to do the chicken dance.
Are you seeing anybody right now? I know Hot Johnny Two-Cakes didnt text you back that one time, but I was just wondering
Im not really old enough for serious dating, but Im in a situation Id call hobos-with-benefits.
So, whats really going on with you and Taylor Swift? Is that admiration or jealousy?
Taylor Swift is perfect cuz she knows she has her flaws! Im perfect too even though I set a barn on fire.
What do you think about people biting your style, like Lisa Bonet, Taylor Swift, Mary-Kate you got something you want to say to them?
Keep up the good work, ladies 2012 is ALL about layering.
Do you feel like hobo life is pulling you away from other things you want to do?
Yeah, I really miss doing my math homework ROTFLOL just kidding!!!!
If you ever do meet Justin Beiber, what are you going to say to him?
Huh? Sorry I just blacked out for a second cuz I got too psyched. What was the question?
So Tween Hobo, which social network do you like best? Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare? Im sure youre not ready for LinkedIn yet or are you?
Well, shucks, I spose not yet but on the other hand, I sure am looking for a job in these hard times!
Tween Hobo Takes Twitter by Storm
Say that three times real fast.
Ugh, another attention-seeking, Brooklyn-infesting hipster loser.
Hobo = hippie?
“You’ll never be Emperor of the North Pole, kid.”
One of my favorite films. And Ernest Borgnine’s best performance ever.
I really miss Breitbart on Twitter. I really enjoy David Limbaugh and the Talkmaster Neil Bortz. Very witty people.