Improv season is in full swing at UW Madison, and Sophomore improviser Trey Grant posted recently to advertise his upcoming show.
“HEY YOU. YEAH YOU,” Grant said. “Now that I have your attention (which I so desperately need haha) I have an improv show coming up on Friday. We’re called “Stellar Tubesocks”. If you want to come see me make a fool of myself come on down its’ in Vilas 1110 at 8pm. Be there or be square! (Not that there’s anything wrong with squares, Wendy’s has pretty good square burgers!)”
According to UW Madison Statistics major Molly O’Brien, Trey’s post was liked solely by other members of his improv team. In O’Brien’s full study, she delved into the numbers surrounding posts like Grant’s.
“Every month, at every university, every improv team on campus uses quirky facebook posts as their main source of advertising,” O’Brien said. “On average each improv team has 12.4 members, and each university has 3.1 improv teams. If they perform monthly, that’s 38.44 quirky posts every month, more than one a day. We can’t let them get away with this.”
Accompanying O’Brien’s study, UW Madison’s english department head Andrea Mill released a linguistics analysis of these posts in.
“We see a lot of puns, misuse of capital letters, and attempts at cute self deprecation,” Mill said. “Some of them go even so far as to say outright that they’re shamelessly promoting themselves as if that makes it any better. Others will resort to overt begging but try to make it sound cute, or refer to the audience as ‘homies’ or ‘peeps’. Who do they think they’re amusing?”
At Grant’s show, 94% of the suggestions offered by the audience were “Shrek” or “Donald Trump”