At its best, Twitter is supposed to be a kind of all-encompassing wire service, a wave of information forever breaking. Even if it’s not always perfectly relevant, the service is at least perfectly timely—the chronological 140-character updates are as close to the present as we can get on social media. But that same ultra-relevance can also be painful, say, if you’re keeping tabs on each Trump campaign mini-meltdown and the ensuing media frenzies.
That’s why lately, I’ve decided to trim down my feed and focus on image-heavy accounts rather than breaking news—at least until November 8th. Some accounts post art, others incisive comics, and a few just cute animals, but all break up the timeline and add some visual bacon bits amongst the newsier vegetables.
Twitter has never quite embraced the Internet’s quirkier side. Sure, we had Weird Twitter, and thirsty comedians practicing one-liners abound. But the utopian @horse_ebooks dream that an algorithmic robot could provide us perfect absurdist humor has been shattered for a long time now (three years, to be exact). Instagram is for lifestyle porn. Snapchat is for hanging out with friends. Tumblr’s impenetrable teen wilderness is where the real memes get made. The image accounts I follow bring some of that sense of fun to Twitter at a time when it’s desperately needed.