Chris Rock once joked that as a father you have only two responsibilities: to keep your son from winding up on the (crack) pipe and your daughter from winding up on the (stripper) pole.
After last nite, I would add a third: keep your daughter away from winding up on Donald Trump‘s “Miss Universe Pageant.”
Billy Bush was the host of the festivities broadcast live (sort of) from the Bahamas. His main function was to repeatedly remind us that contestants would be sporting some of the hottest bathing suits. Ever. OMG!
All buttoned up in an ill fitting tux, he kept promising us repeatedly that “lots of skin” would be on display.
He wasn’t kidding. To fill time as the top 15 contestants changed into their suits, we were treated to a photo shoot of contestants in (perhaps the tackiest of) string bikinis. While Flo Rida came out to perform, bikini clad contestants who were not lucky enough to make it into the top 15 were lucky enough to be made to sashay behind him, in the manner of what used to be disparagingly called “a video ho” on MTV. Now on NBC, it’s apparently simply called “competing for the crown.”
[picapp src=”e/f/1/6/Miss_Venezuela_Stefania_24fa.JPG?adImageId=4846903&imageId=6164899″ width=”380″ height=”488″ /]After the contestants were winnowed down to the top 10, based on their “fitness,” we were finally treated to a synopsis of their inner life, whilst they stood there …..in their string bikinis.
Billy’s pithy revelations were limited to their ages and their hobbies, which were almost exclusively limited to exercising, shopping and watching reality television. Really? At least in the pre-feminist 70’s, pageant organizers wanted us to know so much more about the contestants, including their measurements and favorite color (peach used to be the most common, as I recall).
It is difficult to walk away from the telecast last nite without thinking that the “pageant” should be properly retitled “Donald Trump Presents: I’d Like to Hit That (When Melania Isn’t Watching).” The top 15 we were told were chosen by an (unnamed) panel of judges and by representatives from the “Donald Trump organization.”
Hmm. When we were introduced to the judges who were actually going to pick the winner, I couldn’t help but wonder what qualification any of them had to pick the winner of, well, anything.
Some of the judges (both male and female) were downright creepy in that sex trafficking sort of way. And because, unlike the Miss America pageant, the Miss USA/Universe pageant has never bothered to add the pretense that it is a scholarship competition in which some (dubious) talent is involved, sex–sorry, skin– is all it can traffic in.
Also notable in the skin department was the train wreck music debut of Heidi Montag, which painfully recalled Britney Spears’ appearance on the MTV Music Awards a few interventions back. And then there was the irrefutable evidence that makeup artists, hairdressers and stylists have been terribly unkind to Kelly Rowland since she stopped singing backup for Beyonce.
Oh, it turns out Miss Venezuela won the title, even though Miss Dominican Republic was by far the most stunning and beautifully dressed of all the contestants this year. She had to settle for runner up.
I, simply, better settle down.