Saturday, January 30, 2010

Shiny Things (That Aren't Glitter)

There's this whole big to do here in Cornopolis over Miss Nebraska (a newscaster on one of the local channels), and her experiences out in Las Vegas, where she is participating in the Miss Universe pageant. The front page of the local rag has a teaser of the story in the "insignificant news" section (which is cleverly (and annoyingly) titled "The (402) 411" (as in, the information for the zip code) so hip, so cool, so trendy (I have so lost track of my parentheses)). I will just call it "The 165, 222," since that is the product of 402 x 411. It makes the same amount of sense, doesn't it?

What was I talking about? Oh, the beauty pageant, right. So, there in the 165, 222 is a little article (right under the profile of the engineer who hooked his snow blower up to a motorized wheelchair to make a robot snow blower) about this (predictably) blond young lady having a time in Sin City. A picture shows her and another (genetically cloned) contestant (Miss Massachusetts), sharing a dessert of some sort with the manager of a local franchise anchor restaurant. Miss Nebraska wears a (predictably) red dress. Miss Mass wears a (not-so-predictably-as-it-used-to-be-but-still) blue dress. They both wear sashes and tiaras.

What's wrong with this picture, you ask? Well, at first glance, nothing, I guess. A couple of pretty girls and a handsome guy posing for a publicity still. Representatives of various states of the union sharing and smiling together. Opponents in a contest showing good manners and conducting themselves with respect for themselves and others. What's my problem?

It's those goddamn tiaras! I can't stand it! These are grown women, not six year-olds. They are not "Little Princesses." Yes, I have a sick (as in ill) little piece of my heart that finds all of these sorts of spectacles ridiculous and undermining to women's status as equals in our (still) patriarchal world. And the organizers of these contests can do whatever they want to make it look less like a "let's give the pretty airhead some attention" event. But, as long as the women involved dress like children at a tea party, I am just going to have to be annoyed.


La Fashionista said...

Dizzying and clever use of parentheses, Reda. Very nice. It's as if the parens were your linguistic tiaras, sparkling annoyingly all over the place.

402 411 is awful. I'm glad you called them out.

Wow, I have to wonder what your thoughts are on the swimsuit part of the competish. And I very much appreciate your feminist critique of the tiaras.

However, also I now want to wear one of my NYE tiaras the next time I see you (whenever that might be). Do NYE tiaras count as annoying as you describe here?

How does the robot snow blower steer itself anyway?

Have I mentioned that post-a-liciousness is one of the best parts of January?



La Fashionista said...

Hey, so how about Miss Virginia being crowned top tiara for 2010? And apparently *Rush Limbaugh* was one of the judges. Ewwwwwwww.


ATR said...

Your knowledge of both tiaras and judges is untoward. Please stop knowing about these things, right now!

Laura said...

It just so happens, that Mike, Frank and I are all three currently wearing tiaras. I think they're festive and fancy.

ATR said...

For some reason, I find that completely acceptable. Everything is relative, you know.