College comedians crack up audience

On Friday March 20, the College Union Board hosted their Student Comedy Competition, a contest to see who will open for the second comedy show in April.

Based on audience response and the ruling of the judges, eight comedians brought their best material to a packed house. Rick Cohen, sophomore English major and the night’s final performer, was the clear victor with the most laughs.

Mark Smith, sophomore history secondary education major, was the first comedian up on stage. With some nice observations about the childhood mecca of Chuck E. Cheese and fire drill procedures, he started the evening with a few decent chuckles.

Next up was Rob Dougherty, health and science exercise major, giving a set based heavily on the fact that he may have “reverse beer goggles,” a condition in which women start to look uglier as his drinking progresses.

Following Dougherty, Phil Toronto, senior technology education major, performed, focusing his act around a batch of atomic wings, a case of food poisoning and a trip to campus health services. While it was a fairly lengthy story, its strange mix of the relatable and absurd brought out some serious laughs.

Shelley Snyder, sophomore interactive multimedia major, the only female performer of the competition, took a page from the book of Stephen Lynch and brought her guitar into the routine. Snyder played a “Hey There Delilah” parody, an offbeat and ghastly song about dead babies and closed with a magnetic song about the merits of being a nerdgirl.

Adam Mamawala, senior communication studies major, came up next, discussing ice cream toppings and trying out some fun GPS voices.

The night then moved on to comedian Garrett Hoffman, sophomore math major, who performed his standup act during CUB’s snow day festivities on March 2. Hoffman has honed his material immensely. His narration of a documentary on guidos and the fun aspects of discrete math drew some generous laughs from the crowd. However, his joke about an electric toothbrush was obviously pinched from’s Top 15.

Jason Cantor, junior business major, followed. This act fell short. While other acts got progressively funnier, Cantor’s was ultimately insignificant.

The night’s final performer was Cohen. With material covering the “Saw” films, “Above the Influence” commercials and rough sex, Cohen’s routine was downright hilarious. Deconstructionist and self-referential, Cohen’s smart brand of humor was just the thing the audience needed.

After the votes were tallied up by CUB representatives, it was decided after a close competition that Cohen was the winner. He’ll open for CUB’s second comedy show in late April.