Greeks learn about alcohol abuse

Posted May 4, 2007
Christina Carter
Inspirational comedian Wendi Fox has traveled to hundreds of colleges informing students about alcohol abuse, joining together a serious subject in a stand-up comedy format. Fox shared stories from her past about her personal struggle with excessive and destructive behavior, last Thursday in La Fetra Auditorium.

Greek students in matching black t-shirts got together, some cheering while others slept, seeing that it was one of the last events for Greek Week 2007.

They filled La Fetra Auditorium last Thursday to hear comedian and motivational speaker Wendi Fox.

Fox shared her personal stories about issues related to students and social life.

“We wanted to touch on positive aspects of Greek life, one of those aspects is developing the welfare of human beings so that is why we brought that speaker,” said Diana Westmyer, a junior and Greek Week co-coordinator.

“We wanted an event that would be calm compared to the other fast paced events earlier in the week,” Westmyer said.

Other students appreciated the speaker for reasons other than the educational aspect.

“It was a good thing to get this before lip-sync when we are serious,” said Tasha Lo, a sophomore business administration major.

“It got people’s spirits up and people seem a lot more positive,” Lo said.

Alcohol issues along with Fox’s personal battle with alcohol took center stage as she made it clear that she was not here to tell students not to drink, but rather to do it in a responsible matter.

Fox brought the crowd to laughter with stories of her past.

This included a story of how the neighborhood knew her as the moving drunk lawn ornament.

Fox told the audience about the time when she was pulled over by a police officer for drinking and driving.

When the police officer asked her to say the alphabet backwards, she took it literally and walked backwards as she said “a, b, c.”

The Virginia Tech shootings and the issue of safety were not far from the minds of Fox and students in attendance.

Fox said Virginia Tech served as a wake up call for students and people to realize that there are 12 of those guys at every college just waiting to snap.

Students started to make a snapping motion at this statement in agreement to the statements that Fox made.

Even in the midst of a serious subject Fox found a way to make it comical and light by not knowing what snapping meant and thinking that it was a ritual that only students at the University of La Verne did.

Everyone knows that alcohol impairs your judgment but Fox put it in a way that did not seem repetitive or boring.

Students were eager to listen to Fox’s stories.

Fox said that she was not trying to encourage the audience to do what she did, but to let those stories serve as examples of what not to do.

For example Fox pointed out that you can be in danger when you are completely sober or when you drink.

But that no one should be in a dangerous situation that would prevent you from jumping a fence when you need to.

Along with subject of the dangers of situations while drinking, Fox touched on the dangers of date rape drugs.

She emphasized how easy it is to become a victim as she was drugged in her past by a friend she went out with one night.

Fortunately for her, another friend came to her rescue.

“A lot of the things I already knew, but she put them in a new light,” said Christina Dobszewicz, a junior art history major.

Fox asked the audience members if they would be willing to loan someone thousands of dollars.

If her question could be answered with a “no,” Fox made it a point to say that hooking up with random people was a bad idea because most people would not loan someone they did not know that money.

Living your life through the spirit of a child was another theme that Fox touched on in her comedic, motivational lecture.

“When little kids have a bad day they don’t get drunk, they color,” said Fox.

Fox talked about her son and how he could sense bad situations and dangerous people right away.

Fox closed her set by showing a picture of a little girl.

She asked the audience questions like “would you put this little girl in a compromising situation?” and “would you drink and drive with this little girl in your car?”

It turned out that the picture of the little girl was Fox.

She went on to say that we as a society have more respect for a 5-year-old than a 25-year-old and that needs to change.

Fox encouraged students to carry a childhood photo of themselves to serve as a reminder of their innocence and carefree lives as children.

The brilliance of Fox’s routines was that she used comedy to break down barriers and open up people’s perspectives.

Michelle Ajemian can be reached at majemian@ulv.edu.

Syncing with the Stars

Greeks learn about alcohol abuse

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