…the Miss America 2014 pageant was last Sunday night. The roomies were gathered in the living room to watch this cultural event. So, in scenes reminiscent of the 1980s when my little sister and I would spend a Sunday afternoon watching this as little girls, I joined them to watch the pageant once more. It would have been rude not to.
As if you didn’t already know, Miss America is not a beauty pageant it is a scholarship fund. The scholarship comes in the form of cash-prizes which delegates use to either pay off student loans or to fund graduate school. After witnessing their dancing in the opening number of the telecast I, for one, was relieved that all these girls have academics as a back up.
Here is my view of the most ‘interesting’ elements of the spectacle.
Thumbs up to…
- The ‘bedazzled’ knee brace holding Miss Florida upright.
This rhinestone covered knee brace allowed Miss Florida to overcome her torn ACL injury, sustained in the preliminary rounds, and take the stage to make it to the top 5.
The magic of the sparkly brace took her from this…
And the prize for best sympathy-enducing strategic move goes to… Miss Florida
- Twitter feed #MissAmerica
Kept me sane, and entertained, throughout the night. For a retrospective on the gems coming through the Twitterverse check out tweets for this hashtag from 15th September.
The winner and first runner up were young women of Asian-American background. Which apparently was A Big. Deal. The face of Miss America is changing.
Thumbs down to…
- The non-projectile clause in the talent competition rules.
This rule meant Miss Kansas had to forgo her ‘real’ talent of archery. Her fallback talent? Opera singing. Click here to see the result.
- Miss Florida’s parents’ spelling
For letting the alphabet spill all over daughter’s name at birth: Myrrhanda Jones
- The pageant organisers
Who allocate 15 minutes to the health and fitness parade* but only 15 seconds per contestant to showcase their speaking skills in the Q&A section.
Historical fun facts about Miss America
- The event originated from a decision made by the Atlantic City Businessman’s League of 1920 which was trying to solve the problem of how to have tourists continue visiting after Labor Day.
- In the last 56 years of Miss America (through 2013), 29 winners have been blonde, 15 were brown-haired, 9 had black-hair, and 4 were redheads.
- Whatever you do, do NOT mistake Miss America for Miss USA. The former is a scholarship fund. The latter is just a qualifying round for Miss Universe.
*Formerly known as the swimsuit competition.