It's Pageant Time Again!!
Tomorrow (Monday) is the "Miss Universe 2007" pageant and besides being Memorial Day it also means one thing: Get out the Guacamole and chips and Margaritas, it's time to get your score card out and rate those gowns!!!!
But really, because of my sister's involvement in beauty pageants and having designed many "Miss USA" and "Miss Universe" gowns, as well as the gown Nancy O'Dell wore to host last year's telecast, this is my other "Academy Awards"! As you may remember, I went to last year's telecast, which was held in Los Angeles, at the famed Shrine Auditorium. This year, the pageant, is being held in Mexico City, Mexico featuring almost 80 girls from all over the world.
I was going to go for the weekend to "El D.F.", but I was called in for a job assignment over the weekend which ended up being a lot more lucrative. I was hoping to return to Mexico City and visit some family and friends (my sister's ex-husband's family is from there and my nephew and niece were born in Mexico City), but alas, I could not. I was even more disappointed when I found out Olympic Ladies Figure Skater, Michelle Kwan, would be one of the judges for the event. This would have been my chance to "slip in" one of my dresses to her, amongst all her Vera Wang's (Wang is her one and only designer).
Just recently, I had a "double" run-in with Miss Universe, when I attended my friend, Brook Lee's wonderful Baby Shower, thrown by her best friend, comedian Alec Mapa. At the party, all of sudden, out of the corner of my eye, I recognized another guest, former "Miss Universe", the beautiful Justine Pasek , from Panama. Well, I just about died! But of course, I could not show it. I was calm, cool and collected (as much as "Uncle Nick" can be!) We ended up talking for a long time, like old Panamanian girlfriends! Brook almost had to pull us away! She was like "Excuse me! This is MY Baby Shower!" She did tell me that she was on her way to the Mexican capital to judge the preliminaries of the Miss Universe Pageant. I just kept thinking of what my Missologist (pageant experts) friends would think of this moment: Brook Lee, Justine Pasek, and myself; I had to capture it with a photo.
The contestants have been in Mexico City for about a month and last week were the "National Costume" and "Preliminary" Contests. There was a bit of a scandal during the open air Parade of Costumes show, when the gorgeous "Miss USA", donned up as a sexy "Elvis" impersonator(she hails from Tennessee), was booed and jeered by the Mexican audience. Poor girl is getting the brunt of a whole country's feelings towards the US Government and especially its immigration policies. It reminded pageant-watchers of an incident that occurred the last time the "Miss Universe" pageant was held in Mexico City, when the Mexican audience also booed --for an hour--the contestant from the United States. She was continually booed when she made it into the Final 10, during her presentation on bathing suit and evening gown, as well as when she made the Final 5. An entire country looked tacky and "unsportsmanlike". History repeated itself.
Amongst other minor gossip, Jessica Simpson-hairstylist Ken Paves, has declined to appear as a final telecast judge, and was replaced by a Mexican soap-opera actor. Also, former "Miss Universe" Cecilia Boloco from Chile has declined an invitation to Monday night's show. This would have been the year celebrating the 20Th Anniversary of her crowning. Instead she opted to "lay low" as a result of recent scandalous topless photos of her that have appeared in the media showing her having an affair (she is married to the former President of Argentina, Carlos Menem).
But on to more fun stuff: Who are my favorites? Miss Venezuela (of course), Ly Jonaitis. She really is beautiful and will wear a stunning Angel Sanchez gown, designed especially for her. Some say she can "take it all". As long as she shows a "real, more down to earth" side of herself. Miss Venezuela's are known to always be perfect; from the hair to the gown to the surgically-enhanced body. Miss Venezuela is perfect from almost any angle but she can come off as rather robotic and rehearsed. Those savvy international panel of non-pageant watcher judges are looking for "realness"and personality, not necessarily a "pageant Betty". My other favorites include, Miss Korea, Miss Thailand, Miss Guatemala, Miss India, Miss Spain, Miss Dominican Republic, Miss Greece and Miss Japan (she will be wearing Gucci directly from the Milan runways!) Lastly, I am certain that Miss Mexico and Miss USA will also duke it out for that coveted crown. You can go to one of my favorite sites Global Beauties and check out all the contestants and their swimsuits and especially, their gowns. Some are absolutely a mess, and you wonder "what were they thinking?" with slits going up to their cha cha's and way too much whickety wack! While many of the "Top Tier" girls that I mentioned above chose beautiful, elegant and sexy dresses. May the best gown, I mean girl, win!
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