The Art of Being Yay at SUNY Oneonta

Aidan Park

Maeve Bidonde, Staff Writer

On Monday, Dec. 4th comedian Aidan Park came to SUNY Oneonta with jokes and life lessons to share with us. The event took place in the Red Dragon Theater in Hunt Union at 9 pm and went on for an hour. The event itself was a lot of fun and most if not all of us left while laughing. It was the perfect blend of humor and serious advice with a side of real-life experiences.

Park interacted with us and always made sure we were okay with him making a joke about us or a serious topic such as suicide. One of the highlights of the night was when he brought up his good friend Matt Rife and was shocked to discover that one of us didn’t know who Matt Rife was. He was excited to be here and he mentioned how he wanted to perform at colleges. Park is an amazing performer from what the event could offer him. He kept us engaged, asked us questions, and joked with us.

The point of the event as a whole was to teach us, stressed-out college kids, how to destress and stay in a calm and happy headspace. He demonstrated tactics for us to use and still managed to entertain us with some humor while teaching us breathing techniques for heart rate variability. We learned about his life story and he started it off by saying “I promise there’s a point and a happy ending to this.”

One of the jokes that resonated the most with the crowd was a joke about Americans thinking all Asians look alike. “Now I know why Americans think all Asians look alike.” it really made us wonder if we’ve ever thought that or if someone we know has. Aidan Park enjoyed watching us react to his jokes and stories. He loved that we interacted with him even more because it felt as if it were more relaxed and less of a performance by having the interactions.

The Activities Council put the event together and had free food and stress balls for us. The stress balls were star shaped and had inspirational sayings on them. The Activities Council put a lot of work into the event and it was definitely a success.

The event was a success and it would be amazing to have him back here to do his presentation The Art of Being Yay again. It was really informative and more realistic to life than what he said were social media accounts trying to empower you. He reiterated that it was okay to feel negative emotions throughout his lecture. It was nice to hear that said so many times because so many of us are told that we shouldn’t feel those things and be human but he not only supported feeling those things but also showed us healthy ways to cope with them.

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