Upon his arrival to Florida from Los Angeles, Crazy Rich Asians star Jimmy O. Yang was in disbelief of the drastic shift in weather due to the intense thunderstorms and high temperatures.
“You know what really f*cks me up is the ‘feels like’ temperature,” he said. “It’s like 88 degrees, but it feels like 95. Why don’t you just say 95?
“Temperature is the only thing you can ‘feel like.’ I can’t just be like ‘Hey man, I drive a Toyota Corolla, but it feels like a Ferrari.’ My penis ‘feels like’ 12 inches.”
Thursday night’s Round Up Comedy Show was held in the Yuengling Center, a larger venue than its recent home in the Marshall Student Center Ballroom. However, Yang found inventive ways to involve the audience of over 3,000 attendees, such as asking the crowd questions they would answer by cheering and raising their hands.
“I changed my major to one of the easiest majors that would still appease my parents — economics. Any econ majors out there?” he asked the audience, eventually pointing to a student in the front row who had their hand up.
“Oh yeah, an Asian guy. Come on bro, we’re gonna be working at Morgan Stanley after this.”
Aside from the laughter Yang produced, the crowd was vocal and attempted to have their voices heard by the comedian. Many girls sitting near the back of the arena became the punchline of a joke relating to age differences in the dating world by shouting out how much they loved Yang.
“Thank you, thank you. Maybe I’ll see you on Tinder later,” he joked, resulting in the audience bursting into applause.
The fog being projected onto the stage caused Yang to stop mid-performance. He joked about getting high from it, which resulted in him asking the audience if weed was legal in Florida.
When the crowd answered his question, Yang gave those living in dorms advice on how not to get caught smoking weed.
“I’m not encouraging any of you guys to smoke weed, but if you do, this is the old school trick,” he said. “You get a shower cap and set it over the fire alarm, so it doesn’t set it off.”
His advice caused sounds of realization to erupt from the audience, followed by cheers of approval.
The show consisted of a common theme surrounding the Asian experience, from stereotypes surrounding the community to familial customs.
Yang joked that Asian people take pride in spending less money on things rather than bragging about expensive purchases.
“White people will never tell you how much money they got … Black people on the other hand will tell you exactly how much money they spent on something,” he said. “Asian people, we love to brag about how little money was spent on something.
“My mom’s favorite catchphrase is “Guess how much?” She wants you to guess high so she can brag about how much she saved.”
While he normally guesses high when asked this question by his mom, Yang said he once accidentally guessed too low, offending his mom in the process.
“I’ve never seen my mom so disappointed,” he said. “She’s like ‘Jimmy, Jimmy, these shoes? Guess how much?’ I said I don’t know, they’re very nice shoes, like $100?
“She said ‘Jimmy, these are Jimmy Choo’s, okay. That’s $300. Better Jimmy than you.’”
Yang told numerous stories throughout his hourlong performance, but it was one of his longer bits that received the most engagement from the audience.
Everyone has that one friend who is embarrassing to be around, which in turn makes them a great friend, Yang said. Speaking from his own experiences, the comedian mentioned his friend, Guam, whose goal in life was to win the lottery and take his friends out to a buffet with the money.
When Guam received an opportunity to appear on Let’s Make a Deal, a game show where players dress up while participating, he won the top prize of $50,000. Yang added that Guam cried on live TV dressed as Master Raiden from Mortal Kombat, but the costume was so poorly created that Yang thought he was cosplaying as a Vietnamese farmer.
Upon receiving the money, Yang said Guam kept true to his promise and took everyone out to a buffet. However, it wasn’t long before the excitement of winning the show caught up with him.
“He was balling out of control — for about three months,” Yang said. “Of course, it’s Guam so it has to end in an embarrassing way. Not only did he blow off $50,000, but he didn’t pay any taxes on that money. So now, he has no money and he owes the IRS about $30,000.
“I said ‘Guam, this is horrible, what are you going to do?’ And all he said to me was ‘See? This is how the government f*cks you up.’”
With the ups and downs contained in the story, the audience expressed their excitement and shock with roars of laughter during Yang’s retelling.
Although jokes surrounding race and ethnicity were frequented during the performance, Yang took the time to emphasize the importance of Asian representation in media, and how it contributes to debunking stereotypes and instilling pride in those being represented.
“I think it’s important to be proud of who you are,” he said. “Not all Asian people are good at math, not all Asian people are engineers and not all Asian people look alike. I think that’s important.
“And we’re getting there with all this representation stuff. I want you guys to be f*cking proud of yourselves.”