Every Sunday night at 8 p.m., Northwest Pizza hosts an intellectual open mic called “AweTalks,” an event where students and the general public are given the opportunity to take the stage and talk for 5 minutes about anything that interests them.
The event was started by Kyle Pate, director of communications for the Associated Students of Southern Oregon University, who was inspired by similar open mic events at other universities.
The most recent AweTalks had around 30 students in attendance. Nearly half of them presented, making for about 15 presentations on everything from an online artistic movement called “Illhuminati” to the political ramifications of 3-dimensional printing.
Spoken word was one of the more abstract art-forms presented that night, one through a video about anti-bullying and another where a poet improvised a speech about beauty in darkness.
One of the presentations at AweTalks was about inventors who were killed by their inventions, you can watch the video here.
One of the funnier presenters Sunday night mentioned he always enjoyed using more archaic or obsolete words in the English language.
One example is the word “ergonomic.” He started using the word as an adjective on Facebook, stating things like “That’s so ergonomic,” for something that was cool, for instance.
He later mentioned that he also found an eighteen-word compilation of English language words that were outdated, such as “jerbil,” which according to the speaker means “to pour out liquid with an unsteady hand,” or “wonderwench,” which he said used to mean sweetheart.
The atmosphere was comfortable enough where the participants had no problems sharing hilarious and even personal stories or art forms. One person who ended up speaking didn’t even know there was an event going on that night. She had gone to Northwest Pizza to study, and later felt inspired to speak.
AweTalks is hosted every Sunday at 8 p.m. at Northwest Pizza and welcomes all participants to share anything they wish. Participants were also allowed to speak multiple times.