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The Power of Social Media (especially Twitter) Strikes Again!

Top Gear America hosts.  L to R: Adam Ferrara, Tanner Foust, and Rutledge Wood.
Top Gear America hosts.
L to R: Adam Ferrara, Tanner Foust, and Rutledge Wood.

I have to say, this was just a fun experience, even if it was just a short-lived moment.

First, some background information. As many of my readers know, my son is high-functioning autistic/Asperger’s Syndrome. This means that he will obsess about certain topics and learn everything and anything about those topics. His most recent obsession–which I suspect will be a long-term one, is that he’s obsessed with cars. He’s always been a fan of cars, but what really put it over the top most recently is the discovery of the show, “Top Gear”. He watches the episodes of both the UK and US versions over and over and over, absorbing every last nuance and detail said about the cars. Half the time, I think I have a miniature Jeremy Clarkson talking around the house. Nonetheless, he loves both shows equally, and loves to quote the hosts, and drool over the exotic cars they’ll have on the program. This served my son well when about a month ago, we came upon a group of Lamborghini owners in our town doing a photo shoot for an enthusiast’s magazine. He was able to “talk shop” with the owners, showing them he knew all the engine specs and how to compare the performance of the Lamborghini models against other models.

My son living his dream of hanging out in a Lamborghini at the photo shoot last month.

So, in other words, my kid knows his cars.

This afternoon, he told me that on his way home from school, at a specific intersection, he saw a red Lambo and an orange MacLaren, both with Top Gear license plates, and he swore he saw two of the co-hosts of Top Gear America, Tanner Foust and Adam Ferrara, plus a camera crew. My husband and I thought that maybe–just maybe–my son was joking with us, but he swore up and down that he knew what he saw. He even named the specific models (which I can’t remember or keep up with).

How did we confirm that he saw what he saw? I immediately went to Twitter, and…well, I tweeted Tanner and Adam to see if they’d respond. Why not? It was worth a shot.

About 15-20 minutes after I sent out my initial tweet (I sent a few follow-up ones to explain about my son–what the heck, right?), I got these gems:


WOW! It WAS them! When I showed the Twitter responses to my son, he flipped out in excitement. He was SOOOOO happy and amazed that BOTH Tanner Foust and Adam Ferrara wrote back!

I mean, what are the odds of celebrities writing back, even on Twitter? Tanner and Adam, if you are reading this, you made a little boy very happy, to say the least. He was sorry that he missed Rutledge Wood who was most likely in that Viper. We’ll definitely be watching even more than ever to see if we can discover any footage at that gas station on the show.

This whole incident is why I love Twitter. It’s an example of social media at its best. For making initial connections with people of all backgrounds, it’s top notch…or should I say, Top Gear.


Danielle M. Villegas is a technical communicator who currently employed at Cox Automotive, Inc., and freelances as her own technical communications consultancy, Dair Communications. She has worked at the International Refugee Committee, MetLife, Novo Nordisk, BASF North America, Merck, and Deloitte, with a background in content strategy, web content management, social media, project management, e-learning, and client services. Danielle is best known in the technical communications world for her blog,, which has continued to flourish since it was launched during her graduate studies at NJIT in 2012. She has presented webinars and seminars for Adobe, the Society for Technical Communication (STC), the IEEE ProComm, TCUK (ISTC) and at Drexel University’s eLearning Conference. She has written articles for the STC Intercom, STC Notebook, the Content Rules blog, and The Content Wrangler as well. She is very active in the STC, as a former chapter president for the STC-Philadelphia Metro Chapter, and is currently serving on three STC Board committees. You can learn more about Danielle on LinkedIn at, on Twitter @techcommgeekmom, or through her blog. All content is the owner's opinions, and does not reflect those of her employers past or present.

One thought on “The Power of Social Media (especially Twitter) Strikes Again!

  1. What a delightful story, and how wonderful of Tanner and Adam to respond. Thanks for sharing it. Twitter is able to break down barriers, and we sure need more of that. Drew’s automotive knowledge is indeed extensive and inspiring.

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