Posted by: nastypen | March 11, 2007

A Beauty Pageant Expert Speaks

I was just lying in bed collecting my fat into the jiggly parts of my body when the phone rang and my former officemate Ivan was on the other line. I haven’t spoken to him for a long time because we were in “busy modes.”

He found out that I resigned and called me on the latest gossip from the former office. Word has it that I shall make a comeback to that office. Some people actually feared this happening. Others wanted me to return. I just had one thing to say:

Sinusubo ba yung sinuka na?” (Shall I ingest what I vomitted?) Diva statements, darling, that’s what I do.

Anyhoo, he commenced talking about his most favorite subject (more favored than his coterie of younger men) Beauty Pageants. I subjected myself to an hour and 20 minutes of mobile phone conversations about these beauty contests.

It is great to have fag moments like these. I kind of miss this. I wrote before how we used to do impromptu beauty pageants at the newspaper’s lifestyle section among the gay editors, writers and this art director.

I enjoyed it. Then I left. And I don’t dilly dally much into that sort of gay sphere as much, so Ivan jabbering on about the physics behind hair aerodynamics and bikinis during the turns at the competition, I was enjoying this old feeling of being in this corner of the super pink gay life.

I asked him about our latest bet for the Miss Universe pageant. I mentioned of the hype that surrounds this summa cum laude law student of my alma mater University of the Philippines Diliman. Ivan actually interviewed her and he was pretty bowled over.

Day, kaya nyang sagutin anong na-una, manok o itlog.” (Girl, she can answer the question, which came first, the chicken or the egg.) He then mentioned that her lowest grade in UP Diliman is a 1.5 (that’s still pretty high). She seems to me as a super alpha female.

I just raised an eyebrow and said, “That’s great if we’re sending her to a quiz bee. This is the Miss Universe for goodness sake. They ask questions there like ‘What is the best advice your mother gave you?’ or how about ‘Waht makes you blush?’ and not ‘Do you agree with American foreign policy regarding the plight of internally-displaced Sub-Saharan Africans?'”

He made a remark that I should be supporting this girl who graduated from my school. I just don’t like the hype surrounding her win. She does not really strike me as beautiful. She’s pretty, yes, but as alluring as a puppy. I told her if she were to be shot for one of those campy pageant montages when she would rice up from the pool, she gives me a vibe that goes “Oh look a wet cute porcelain doll!”

Ivan laughed and, like me, still wishes that we do well in this year’s beauty pageant that will be held in Cancun, Mexico. I mentioned that Ms. Philippines won’t stand a chance against the towering Latina beauties. I cynically raised an eyebrow “Venezuela will win, of course, unless they send a man again like they did last year.” Ivan injected politics, “No, Venezuela will not win because of what their President Hugo Chavez is doing to George W. Bush.” What?!?!!? So, a country’s socio-political structure is intricately woven to the cahnces of getting a beauty title? That could be a great dissertation on aesthetics and politics! Must note that down for a possible PhD.

But Ivan, being the beauty pageant expert…nay HISTORIAN….noted that twice the Miss Universe was held in Mexico and we didn’t even cause a ripple.  So, maybe this year will be a charm.

I trust Ivan.  I mean he is the only person I know who has news clippingby the bushel of beauty pageants.  He actually dresses up for coronation night as he sits in the press area surrounded by faggots with old pashminas and sandals.

He knows that fellow UP Fine Arts Alum and beauty queen Nina Ricci Alagao placed a disappointing 32nd in the Miss U standings.  He was the one who I wrote about before whose one of his earliest memories is being carried by his aunt as they greeted Miss Universe finalist Desiree Verdadero‘s motorcade in Laguna in the early 80s.  He knows that all but one Misses Universe are still alive.  I could hear Ivan’s sombre tone as he said that Miss Universe 1955 Sweden’s Hellevi Rombin died in a plane crash.

So on the subject of beauty queen deaths, I mentioned of an historic television death.  Miss Universe 1980 America’s Shawn Weatherly‘s character was attacked by a shark in Baywatch.  I actually watched that episode and was fascinated at sharks then and to see a beauty queen attacked by one gave me chills.  Ivan said, “Nagka-korona nga pinakain naman sa pating!”  (She had a crown but she was fed to a shark!)

Ivan mentions that our bet for this year’s Miss World has dark armpits.  I noticed that, too.  She’s very pretty but man those pits just stole my attention.  What will she do in Miss World?  Wear a two-piece bikini with sleeves?!  Ivan mentioned of some issue that Miss World wanted the Philippines to have a separate search for the representative and not just in a three-in-one schtick Bb. Pilipinas is accustomed to do.  Ergo, accroding to Ivan, as a compromise they had to highlight the Bb. Pilipinas World winner and place her at the center and n ot the usual Bb Pilipinas Universe.

Whatevs.  All I know is we better win something more than a freaking Miss Photogenic award.

I said that one of the most beautiful Miss universe ever is a Mexican, Lupita Jones.  Ivan agrees but his fellow beauty pageant experts say that she cheated.    It was the late 80s and early 90s and the Miss Universe had one question for the finalists while one is onstage, the rest are crammed inside the sound-proof booth.  Apparently, Lupita Jones was the last one out.  Allegedly, she did not slam the door shut and thus overheard the question and gave her ample time to formulate a winning answer.  Ivan shreiked, “You can watch that in Youtube!”  whoa!  Is this stuff for a CSI episode or what?

I wondered who designs our national costumes for the parade of nations.  Ivan mentioned a name but I forgot who.  He is from Columbia.  Incidentally, we send our beauty queens to Columbia for “training.”

I just hope it won’t be something over the top hideous like what Zorayda Ruth Andam wore:


Photo taken from, an insanely delicious internet forum where you can learn that the Philippines is number 6 in the list of Top nations in terms of number of international beauty titles. 

You can’t see it, but atop the parasol she was carrying was a severed head of a parrot.  I swear to God.  I almost died when I saw her sashaying onstage with that “Reyna Elena is a victim of a paint factory explosion” gown.

This blog entry is long, but this is not even half of what Ivan discussed.  You see?  We just don’t talk about boys you know.




  1. How I laughed reading this entry!!!

  2. Isn’t it “Colombia?”

  3. that’s correct ganns! sorry typed this at about 2am… fanatical teacher is my witness. hahahahaha.

  4. my dear, you know what i miss? i miss our panlalait and the full range of topics we discuss! as most people would say, i hope we could repeat it again. hahahahaha! belated happy birthday, dahlin! magkita naman tayo ulit, mare.

  5. It’d be nice if Miss Summa Cum Laude would win, but I’d much rather Maggie ‘Darkpits’ Wilson win. I understand Miss World’s the last major beauty pageant we haven’t won. Here’s hopin’. 🙂

  6. While we’re on the topic of beauty pageants, why don’t you check these beauties out 🙂

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