For whatever reason – not enough food with the wine at dinner, a coup d’état in the brain where the amygdala seizes control, or just a moment of weakness – someone in a position of prominence and authority posts a Dumb Tweet.
Others read the Dumb Tweet and retweet it – often with a brief annotation, such as “OMFG” or “#fail” or “Can’t believe this jackass!!!” or “OMFG #jackassfail”
The tweet becomes a trending topic locally, and a journalist notices it.
The author of the Dumb Tweet gets a panicked call from their press office.
The author shrugs it off, either as a joke or a normal part of the cut-and-thrust of conversation.
The author discovers that the cut-and-thrust of conversation is a lot less fun when that reaction fuels a whirlwind of criticism.
The author issues a half-hearted non-apology.
The whirlwind becomes a firestorm.
Someone in the organization stages an intervention and conveys to the author that something more apology-esque is in order.
The author delivers a grovelling, if not entirely sincere, apology.
The author carries a lingering sense of resentment that plants the seeds for the next Dumb Tweet. And the circle of life continues.