Excuse me, I had beans for lunch #ttrttpt

A few months ago I started to see a few people putting #ttrttpt at the end of some tweets, usually ones that related to some sort of miserable event. For example:

But I’ve asked him before and he keeps saying he’ll get back to me. #ttrttpt

I didn’t know what it meant, but thought maybe it was an expression like “pffft”.

It turns out it’s an acronym used by a small group of New Zealanders on Twitter. It stands for “this tweet relates/refers to the previous tweet”, and it is used to show that two sequential tweets are linked.

I think this hashtag started with a good dash of humour (and it looks like it was first coined by the fab @harvestbird), but somehow it’s been jumped upon by people who use the seven-letter hashtag seriously.

It’s not like it’s impossible to figure stuff out from context. Take a tweet like this:

It didn’t have any water in it. Phew!

I’m not left looking at it thinking “What does that even mean? So weird!”. Instead I’ll just scroll back a little bit and see this:

Arrgh! Mr Fluffy just knocked mum’s vase on the floor!

Years ago Ellen Degeneres had a comedy routine about how writing “PTO” in a letter is unnecessary. Does anyone reading a letter, she asked, actually get to the bottom of a page and wonder why the correspondent suddenly stopped mid-sentence, without thinking to turn the page over and check to see if there’s writing on the back?

Before #ttrttpt came around, was there even a problem with letting your followers know you’d written sequential tweets? No. Conjunctions – otherwise known as ‘nature’s #ttrttpt’ – serve that purpose well. And this also explains why #ttrttpt hasn’t caught on with the larger Twitter community.

The most hilarious thing about #ttrttpt is how non-users of it have no idea what it means. It’s not at all self-explanatory, so most people just ignore it or assume it’s some sort of a fart noise. Perhaps it actually is.

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