Crowning myself a pageant queen

Nina Davuluri reacts after being named Miss America 2014. Photo credit:, via BuzzFeed.
Nina Davuluri reacts after being named Miss America 2014. Photo credit:, via BuzzFeed.

Tonight I watched the end of the Miss America pageant. I couldn’t help it. I went downstairs, saw it was on the tv and was instantly sucked into the world of glamour and glitz.

I didn’t just watch– I got into it. The girls I was sitting with (never a lack of those in the sorority house!) and I had opinions on everything: the dresses, the talents, the names, the makeup. Looking back, I feel bad. I had favorites, yes favorites, even though I had known these women existed for approximately seven minutes. I was judging those girls extremely harshly, and I know that standing up to that intense of criticism would make me fold like a collapsible step stool.

I liked the winner, Nina Davuluri of New York. She gave a fantastically honest and emotional  reaction immediately after winning. She is the first Indian-American to win the title. I found this especially nifty, as I have been fascinated with India since seventh grade, when it was my culture fair country.

This got me thinking– why don’t I do pageants? I like to smile! I can wave! I could win scholarship money!

Then I remembered my lack of elegance, coordination and balance, and that when I get nervous I break out in anxiety hives on my chest and neck. (This situation would limit my selection of attire to turtlenecks, which aren’t often seen on beauty queen ball gowns.) One time, a few years ago, a team of my coworkers and I won the Kearney Park and Recreation Lifeguard Challenge. Technically I was wearing a swimsuit. A lifeguard swimsuit. But wearing a swimsuit on stage during a nationally televised event? Even without the stress hives, I don’t think so.

This seems unjust. What about those of us who aren’t particularly photogenic and/or coordinated? I am estimating that this is approximately  80 percent of the general population, 24 percent of the Creighton population and 2 percent of my friends. Aren’t there pageants for the rest of us? Abigail Breslin served as a great example for us in the film Little Miss Sunshine, but I still feel society is slighting us average and clumsy folks.

I decided that we can win titles, even though we may not get shiny crowns with them. I will never become Miss America or homecoming queen or “most likely to become a movie star,” but here are some superlatives and/or titles I know that I would win, based on the past week :

  • Most likely to open a package of mint creme Oreos in the Hy-Vee parking lot (after purchase) and eat them on the ride home
  • Miss Procrastination Omaha
  • Ultimate Grand Supreme, blowing things waaaaayyy out of proportion division
  • Most likely to have a meltdown and get a late night haircut on a whim
  • First Place, Frazzled Female 2013, Best Intentions Division
  • Most likely to wear something from the Gap, any given day division
  • Ultimate Ugliest Hat Award, faded ball cap division
  • Most pitiful trip and fall on the Creighton Mall cobblestones
  • Worst speller, Aspiring Journalist division
  • Most dramatic run after the Creighton Shuttle
  • Creighton’s Creepiest Female, senior standing division
  • Oldest girl to continually wear her retainer at night, upper orthodontics division
  • Most likely to write a blog post instead of doing homework or going to bed or being actually productive

What awards would you win? Have you ever been in a pageant?


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