Nicole Inglis: #Steamboat, meet Ipswich |

Nicole Inglis: #Steamboat, meet Ipswich

Nicole Inglis

— It's a strange, strange world out there in Twitter-land, where global conversations move at the speed of light and strangers are brought together via common interests.

To help make this overwhelming social media tool a little more digestible for a novice like myself, I've directed my Tweetdeck (a free app that organizes each feed, or conversation, into columns for you) to keep it simple.

But by trying to narrow my Twitter focus, I've actually broadened my horizons and learned a few tidbits of mostly useless but entertaining information.

The very first column on my Tweetdeck is #Steamboat, and it's the one I use the most.

Those tweeting photos, links and videos relating to Steamboat Springs put #Steamboat somewhere in their post, linking it automatically to my feed. Whenever I post about something local, I use #Steamboat, too.

It's a fantastically simple way to ease into Twitter-land.

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But we're not the only ones who use #Steamboat.

In some cases, people on Twitter talk about actual steamboats even though the technology hasn't been necessary since the Industrial Revolution.

Sometimes people tweet about the cartoon Steamboat Willie, which is considered the first appearance of Mickey Mouse.

And there's another group that's #Steamboat obsessed.

As I started to get the hang of Twitter — ah, the exhilaration of interacting with someone I've never met — I noticed a rash of seemingly young posters with a penchant for high levels of inebriation.

For example: @SamDickenn tweeted: @Atkin92 I heard about your ruthless Saturday night and sunday morning lol #steamboat #asleepinthebathroom.

When I clicked on the Tweeters' names, they all seemed to be from the U.K.

I couldn't help it. I had to Google it.

I found that the term "steamboat" is also a British slang term for getting drunk, like getting "sloshed" or "wasted." As in, "I got on the steamboat last night."

But more interesting than that, my research led me to a series of tweets about Steamboat coming from the Ipswich area.

That's where I discovered that Steamboat Springs is inadvertently Twitter-connected to a bar and live music venue in Suffolk, England.

And what do you know, the Steamboat Tavern looks a little bit like the Old Town Pub.

The more research I did, the more I realized that we're not really that different from our random sister-bar in the U.K.

At the Steamboat Tavern one can find a riverside view, food, live music, dominoes, cribbage and a "rather lovely crew behind the bar," according to the tavern's website,

This weekend, it's closed for private parties, but on Sunday, you can head to a jazz lunch with the La Fontaine Ensemble, or next weekend, check out Jeremiah Marques and the Blue Aces. The 5 pound cover charge gets you a chili dinner. What a deal.

Like our own local bars, you can attend a "quiz nite" and open mic nights. They apparently have "legendary chili," "chips and incidentals" (I believe chips means fries), king prawns and Sunday roasts.

The difference? Well, the drinking age is considerably lower: Imagine if all the Colorado Mountain College students younger than 21 could go to the bars in Steamboat and then tweet about it.

But other than that, I feel like the Steamboat Tavern is the kind of place that people might ride through on horseback.

I've decided that if I ever find myself in southeastern England, this is a stop I have to make.

While I wasn't instantly gung-ho about having another social media network to manage and navigate — and Facebook seems to be enough for most people in Steamboat — I've realized that #Steamboat is a lot bigger than our little town.

So even if you're not a loose-lipped celebrity, Twitter still has its illuminating and entertaining uses.

To reach Nicole Inglis, call 970-871-4204 or email

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