Leslie Jones brings the laughs


Leslie Jones performed a stand-up routine at the William Pitt Union Tuesday night. Kyleen Considine | Staff Photographer

By Zoe Pawliczek / Staff Writer

Leaning back on her stool with her legs spread, pretending to take a nude photo of herself, comedian Leslie Jones couldn’t stop cracking herself up.

“Make sure that you have the right lighting [and] the right angle — make sure you don’t do it from above,” Jones told the crowd of more than 350 students at the William Pitt Union Tuesday night. “And the number one thing is: don’t put your face in that s***.”

Jones and her opening act Jon Laster — a New York City-based comedian touring colleges with Jones — shared laughs and a few awkward moments with the audience during the Pitt Program Council’s “Evening of Comedy.” The 90-minute event featured stand-up from both comedians along with embarrassing anecdotes and occasional audience interaction as part of Pitt’s Women’s Empowerment Week — a series of events designed to spark conversations on campus about the importance of working toward the empowerment of all women.

The night got political quickly as Laster ragged on President Donald Trump and dared anyone in the audience to admit that they were supporters, mentioning a previous event where a table of nine people from Alabama said, “None of us voted for him.”

Picking up where Laster left off, Jones shared her take on Trump as well. The “Saturday Night Live” cast member and writer and star of the rebooted “Ghostbusters” said her SNL colleagues think her impersonation of the President sounds Jamaican.

But the SNL references stopped there as Jones prepared the crowd for a night of vulgar jokes and interactive bits.

“This ain’t gonna be like SNL,” Jones said. “There’s gonna be a whole lot of ‘motherf****ers,’ and ‘d***s.’ I’m a horrible person.”

With a hefty dose of swearing, Jones joked about college life, texting habits and what she considered differences between men and women.

“Yes, we are crazy, ladies. F***ing embrace that sh**. And men, stop being part of the f***ing problem,” Jones said.

Though Women’s Empowerment week was not mentioned in her introduction, her outspoken presence was emboldening enough for senior Anna Josephson, a sociology and communications major.

“I admire the way she is very tenacious in her public personality,” Josephson said. “She’s just a badass person.”

Jones’ tutorial on taking nude photos wasn’t the only advice she gave to the audience. For girls, she demonstrated how to seductively dance at the club. For the guys in the audience — how to wash their genitals.

When Jones stepped offstage into the audience, playing with audience members’ hair and teasing their fashion choices, first-year Mark Novales, a finance and global management major, did not expect her to notice him in the crowd — or say that he looked like Bruno Mars.

“I didn’t think she’d call me out, but it was all good,” Novales said. “I’m a big Bruno Mars fan so for all the people for her to pick from that was perfect.”

Jones also interacted with Kendra Browning, a graduate student studying social work and a fan of the comedian. She approached Browning’s group of friends and made fun of them for claiming to be “oldies” at 23.

“I come from a smaller undergraduate school, so they never had anyone as big as her come in,” Browning said of West Chester University. “I rearranged my whole schedule to come here tonight.”

Jones surprised other audience members by climbing on top of them, asking personal questions about their dating lives and rolling around on-stage in a student’s coat.

At the end of the night, while standing among the attendees, Jones doled out some advice for women in the crowd. Mostly, she just encouraged them to take advantage of their youth.

“Embrace your f***ing crazy,” Jones said. “Own that s***. You own that g*d-damn crazy.”

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