Bad timing on a tweet that was supposed to be clever
Timing is everything, and yesterday was the wrong time to send out a tweet about exploding transit shelters.
The Fixer column in today’s paper is about the curious case of a transit shelter on Eastdale
Ave, where three of the four glass panels shattered during high winds last Thursday night.
The panels on the latest design of shelter are made of safety glass that is capable of sustaining tremendous force before shattering into small square chunks, which made it even more puzzling.
An email from a reader had “Another TTC shelter explodes in wind,” in the subject line, and noted that glass panels in the same shelter were also broken during high winds on Jan. 20.
It turns out that powerful wind gusts are capable of lifting the angled glass roof, which slams down on the top edges of the panels when the gust subsides and eventually breaks them.
With so many people using the 1,600 new transit shelters already on city streets, it raises questions about others that may also be vulnerable to high wind; a maintenance worker cleaning up the broken glass said panels on other shelters have also shattered in windstorms.
I often tweet out a teaser about a column or blog, along with a link to it, and tweeted “What’s the city coming to, when transit shelters ‘explode’ on windy days? Better wait for the bus somewhere else,” shortly before 4 p.m., after the column was posted on the star.com.
I looked at my twitter feed right after and saw a tweet from Star editor Garnet Fraser about a photo of a casualty with missing limbs, which sent me scurrying to the star.com, where I first learned about the Boston marathon bombings.
A couple minutes later, a guy named Chris Bateman tweeted me, saying, “Badly time tweet.”
Was it ever. When I realized that someone might think I deliberately tweeted about an exploding bus shelter while twitter was lighting up with tweets on the bombings, I shuddered.
It was a feeble attempt at cleverness at the worst possible moment, borne of ignorance about what had just happened. I’m truly sorry and hope I didn’t offend anyone.