Lolly Adefope is a 24-year-old comedian, writer, and actor from London. She performs around London several times a week, and is performing her debut hour at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this summer. You can hear some of her characters here and here. This week I spoke with Adefope about three of her favorite tweets, and we talked about extroversion, unattractive selfies, and tweeting in series.
Adefope: I really enjoy making an unattractive facial expression for the sake of the humour of a tweet or joke – maybe because I’m so aware of people posting beautiful Instagram selfies of them having the time of their lives, and so I’m desperate to do the opposite, but anyway this happens so often. As a comedian your behavior leans towards that of an extrovert a lot of the time, but there’s nothing I love more than talking to nobody and playing Tetris on my phone. And so the idea that someone would dare interrupt that by being a nice person and trying to engage me in polite conversation is what created the nightmare depicted in this tweet.
In your experience, does Twitter require any of the same kind of extroversion as being onstage?
Because you’re hidden behind the computer I think it feels like you can say a lot more – my tweets are probably more ‘controversial’ than my material (though not at all controversial), because I say some quite depressing (but hilarious!!) things about how I see myself, and my love life; things like that. Twitter’s a way of saying things that I find funny but wouldn’t necessarily say on stage – because they’re so specific to me, and I always perform characters rather than traditional standup.
Are there subjects you joke about on Twitter that you don’t joke about so much in real life (and vice versa)?
I guess Twitter is where I play a very different character: myself. Am I right guys! My tweets are more personal because it’s more immediate, and whatever’s in my head at that moment. And onstage my characters are weirder with mad accents – but the humor does tend to overlap a lot.
Every so often I realise that doing mad accents isn’t quite enough and I try and ‘say something’ with my comedy. I tend to do a regular series of tweets (‘I was down to the final 2’) of pointing out the lack of ethnic minorities in a new film or tv show that is well-loved, because it’s good to learn but it’s also good to laugh, guys!!!
Do you notice a much different response to your jokes that ‘say something’?
I think they get shared to different people, which is fun. I’d love to get into a Twitter fight with someone, but it hasn’t happened so far. But no, I can never really tell the response a tweet’s gonna get, whether saying something or not – once I tweeted ‘wanna feel old? why’ and so I sat back and waited for my phone to explode, and I think it got 3 retweets. If you’re reading this, plz RT.
Are there other series tweets you like writing?
I think of Twitter as a cool place to write and read jokes and chat to cool people, so I find it so funny when people use it just to complain to companies about customer service or train delays. I tweet at companies with ridiculous problems, like tweeting at McDonald’s ‘this is the third time i hav got my period in one of your restaurants’. And I like tweeting at celebrities, because they never respond. I used to regularly tweet at Dick ‘n’ Dom (two British childrens’ tv presenters): ‘i will not rest until i find out which of u is my real father’. And they faved it!! Guys, what I’m trying to say is that life is all about the simple pleasures.
I think I like the idea of someone trying really hard to fit in with what everyone else is doing, but falling short and not quite knowing why. Then again, I think this tweet just came from me being jealous of everyone having a nice time without me, and thus me dealing with that the only way I know how – subtle jibes on twitter.com!!
All the tweets you sent are pictures! Is there something about pictures that makes them your favorite tweets?
I like trying to think of very specific but relatable moments, and then trying to take a picture where I look as unattractive as possible. Another series tweet I have is ‘over the moon with today’s tinder match’, where I just post pictures of the weirdest things (what AM I like?) so a goat, a man covered in spoons, etc etc.
In general, do you like tweets with pictures? Are there kinds/styles of Twitter jokes that you especially like (or dislike)?
I like subverting jokes that people do on Twitter a lot, so tweets like this. I also really like the mini-conversation tweets – it’s great when someone gets one so perfect in 140 characters without seeming to have compromised anything. And then I love non-comedy tweets that just stay with me for a while – Ayesha Siddiqi once tweeted ‘be the person you needed when you were younger’, and I think about it every day.
Jenny Nelson lives and writes in Brooklyn and works at Funny or Die.