Northwestern Sex Week and Comedy Forum present “Balls, LOLZ! A Night of Sexy Comedy”

Sean Foer, event host, performing standup comedy.
Sean Foer, event host, performing standup comedy.

“My jokes are like my balls: I think they’re kind of funny and I really want to share them with you all.”

Sex in comedy is often viewed as an easy target- but that doesn’t mean it isn’t funny. Sean Foer’s series of jokes about “dicks, balls, and masturbation” were a big hit with the audience of “Balls, LOLZ! A Night of Sexy Comedy,” one of the many events put on for Northwestern Sex Week and co-sponsored by Comedy Forum.

More than 50 people came to Harris Hall’s Accenture Forum Thursday night for racy standup performances by Sean Foer, Sarah Mowaswes, Quinn Rattan, and Aimee Hechler, followed by a discussion with Professor Laura Kipnis on the taboos of sex.

The comedians covered a variety of topics, ranging from porn and having sex on playgrounds, to buying flowers and condoms for yourself and having the awkward sex talk with your dad.

Aimee Hechler, introduced by Foer as the “premier queer Jewish comedian,” centered most of her stand-up routine on being gay.

“There wasn’t any single moment when I realized I was gay. It wasn’t like in the movies when you wake up one morning with glitter all over your face and Neil Patrick Harris and Ellen Degeneres pop out of your closet with a big cake that says ‘Surprise, you’re gay!’”

On the other hand, Quinn Rattan joked about the lengths he went to in high school to get girls.

“Guitar… there’s an idea. So I learned to play guitar and thought, ‘yeah, now all the girls are gonna to be all over me.’ Two things: no one has ever gotten laid from ‘Smoke on the Water’ acoustically. [Girls] didn’t care that you played guitar, they just cared if you were f***ing hot. So then I decided to do comedy, see if that would get me laid. But like, that’s clearly not working out.”

After about 30 minutes of comedy, Professor Laura Kipnis took the stage for a critical discussion with the audience on the nature of sexual repression, and how it affects sex and comedy. Kipnis pointed out what she thought was a “glaring contradiction of this event:” the fact that it was designed to end taboos around sex and sexuality.

Professor Laura Kipnis, Media Studies Professor at Northwestern University, discussing sexual taboos and comedy.
Professor Laura Kipnis, Media Studies Professor at Northwestern University, discussing sexual taboos and comedy.

“One of the theories about what makes sex funny, is that it requires a certain amount of repression and embarrassment of what sex is about,” said Kipnis. “You push against taboos to be funny, but not too hard or you will make people uncomfortable.”

Some audience members did not agree with Kipnis’ idea that sexual repression allows comedy about sex to be funny, debating the definition of sexual repression.  Aimee Hechler added that she was never repressed physically, but growing up she couldn’t talk about [being gay] with her friends, so she began to write jokes about it.

The event ended with sex trivia questions and a prize giveaway. Did you know that ancient Egyptian societies would insert stones into their vaginas to prevent pregnancies? Most audience members didn’t.

“Balls LOLZ! A Night of Sexy Comedy” was a new addition to Sex Week. Simone Alicea, Medill sophomore and event organizer, said it was “less provocative and barrier-breaking” than other Sex Week events, some of which took on heavier topics such as rape in the military.

Photos by Megan Spengler.

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