Dom Joly: Tweets to followers ratio too high? You may be a loony

Related Topics

My second week of hidden camera filming around the UK is over and it has taught me a lot about three of our most visited tourist towns.

First stop was Bath. If I'm honest, I was expecting this to be quite a tough place for laughs, as it has a reputation for being the spiritual home of Britain's "crusty" community. By this, I mean a white man with dreadlocks, dog on string, carrying a large bottle of cider brigade.

We used a couple of rather unsubtle tents in which to hide some of our cameras and therefore had several incidents in which rather self-righteous Citizen Smith types accosted our unfortunate camera people under the illusion that Bath was close to succumbing to some Stasi-like regime.

Day two was in Oxford. I have a soft spot for Oxford and it did not disappoint, with most of the inhabitants being both friendly and reassuringly happy to sign release forms after dealing with the rather ludicrous character I was playing. The city was, however, absolutely packed with gargantuan groups of sullen, badly dressed French schoolchildren blocking every available pavement. I'd forgotten just how deadly dull school trips could be. And once the kids had purchased a hideous sweatshirt saying something like "I love Oxford" and bedecked themselves with a pair of ugly fluorescent sunglasses, they had nothing left to do but wander around sucking on McDonald's milkshakes and seeing who can wear their trousers the furthest down their derrières.

Day three was in Cambridge and by far the worst of them all. I admit to being a little prejudiced against Cambridge, as I firmly believe that you are either an Oxford or a Cambridge person and should not enjoy both. Quite apart from anything else Cambridge is at the start of "suicide country" – the flat, depressing part of England that rolls on into Suffolk and Norfolk.

We set up on the gorgeous King's Parade, in front of King's College Chapel. And then the loonies came. It was like we'd unknowingly stumbled into some unadvertised convention for the movement.

The worst of these was a gentleman who looked as though he spent most of the day noting down engine numbers. He spotted one of our camera vans and stood in front of the window blocking our shot. When the production team politely asked him to move, he refused. He announced that he was engaged in a protest. We asked him what he was protesting about and he told us that it was "top secret".

After further inquiries, he let slip that he believed us to have been following him around the country and that he was "on to us". He was eventually persuaded to clear the camera shot, but then stood nearby making noises not dissimilar to a cow. All the time, he was busy tweeting. We found his Twitter page, and the real give-away were his Twitter statistics. He had tweeted 31,635 times and had 22 followers. That "number of tweets to followers" ratio is possibly the best indication of a person's mental health currently available. No wonder Syd Barrett moved to Cambridge; he must have felt right at home.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - London - up to £40,000

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Creative Front-End Developer - Claph...

Recruitment Genius: Product Quality Assurance Technologist - Hardline & Electric

£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The role in this successful eco...

Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000

£28000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000 QA Tes...

Ashdown Group: Linux Administrator - London - £50,000

£45000 - £50000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Linux Systems Administrator ...

Day In a Page

Read Next

If I were Prime Minister: I would create a government that actually reflects its people

Kaliya Franklin

The UK’s train service is rubbish — it needs a woman's touch

Alice Jones
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower