Yorfess is not a place, it’s a state of mind. The sort of mind that’s in such a state from the events of last night’s drinking that it just has to spill its contents all over the internet. That’s right, Yorfess is a Facebook page dedicated to posting the most absurd, embarrassing and hilarious stories of York resident students. Like a filthy priest who gets his kicks from listening to the salacious sins of layfolk in the confession box, you too can sit down to a list of raunchy, embarrassing, and downright cringeworthy confessions from your penitent peers. It’s pretty wild at York, even for a place that’s essentially just a pond with m a l l a r d s and vicious geese.
You’ve got the “Badg-er Hill Wanker” and his love of public indecency. Derwent’s chronic asbestos woes, immortalised by way of meme. Every college has a couple of signature jokes strapped to it. Halifax is on the edge of the world, Alcuin is a depopulated desert, Constantine is basically a gentlemen’s club, and Wentworth Wing is home to the academic geriatric. Koen Lamberts, the historical Vice-Chancellor, has reached a conspiratorial, dare I say illuminati-esque meme tier. Why did he leave? What did he know? Who is the man behind the meme? To top it all off, there’s even lively competition between Yorfess and Durfess, the spicy sister page that turns a long history of academic rivalry into a meme war. Yorfess keeps it light-hearted but juicy, sometimes even swooping in to leave a sassy comment here or there.
Some say the centre piece at York is the ugly spaceship at the heart of our great hub, but I say the heart is that which is often experienced but rarely divulged: the hilarious, ugly secrets of the students of York. Yorfess offers respite for those hard workers who need five minutes from their studies to enjoy a moment of levity.
But it’s not all comedy. Yorfess is also a space where students come to voice their concerns about university life on a platform which gives them anonymity, while still allowing them to speak. For ex-ample, many of the issues with the on-campus healthcare, by Unity Health, have been expressed by frustrated users. Disgruntled st-dents play a political role in holding the power of YUSU accountable to the people, by way of anonymous submissions. Experienced students have used the platform to provide frank advice during Freshers’ Week to new starters so that they can make the most of their time here. It has even become an ad-space for students to seek accommodation, or a place to host PSAs about University facilities. There’s comedy in spades, a touch of frustration, and the occasional wise word. It’s the whole package, and I keep coming back for another look. It’s easy to see why the page has over 6600 followers and rising.
Anonymity is the keystone to making Yorfess great. You’ll get more honesty out of someone when they think no one’s listening. And arguably we’re starving for honesty. If you’re a fresher or a third year, you’ve probably felt at times like people aren’t giving you the whole picture, and it’s refreshing to hear stories that puncture the veil of perfection tangible at universities of repute. Instead of saving face, let’s dabble in disgrace and debauchery. It’s human to show our vulnerability by sharing our mistakes.
So, maybe you’ve got a few stories you wouldn’t mind keeping a secret but sharing with the world? Maybe you want to talk about your experience at York? Maybe you’d like to ask some advice on a question you can’t get an answer to on your own? Or maybe you’re in it for the laughs? Whatever it is, Yorfess might make you feel at home, while you avoid the impending doom of work you still haven’t done yet, and another night out you know you can’t hack. At least, by the searing light of tomorrow’s post-lunchtime sun screaming through the crack in your curtains, you can confess all your sins, to everyone and all, right?