IT took, of all people, American funnyman Jay Leno to remind me of the age-old truism: beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.
Leno, who did a cameo appearance as himself in the Jodie Foster-starrer “Contact,” used a breakthrough in humans’ attempt to establish a connection with intelligent life forms beyond planet Earth as fodder for his TV show.
Now that a certain segment of the world, este, universe is focused on unfolding events in Moscow, as the erstwhile communist bastion stages its first ever global beauty pageant this Saturday—Lenin must be rolling in his glass case—how does one define a fleeting and highly subjective attribute like beauty?
Beauty contest-crazy Filipinos rooting for Ariella Arida, please continue reading.
Only Jay can get away with it
Leno wasn’t able to define it himself, but he advanced this scenario, which managed to leave me in stitches. No matter how hard I try to write it, there’s nothing like hearing the talk show host deliver a line nonchalantly and with surgical precision right to the jugular.
“With the discovery of life outside our planet, people behind Miss Universe are now scratching their heads as they try to rethink their concept of beauty,” Leno deadpanned before Foster’s astronaut character switched the TV to another channel.
Soon enough, my imagination went into full throttle. Picture this: a beauty contest where the most beautiful female Earthling competes head to head with “delegates” from other galaxies such as a three-eyed blue creature with a trunk for a nose and a shape-shifting green, glow-in-the-dark being that turns almost transparent once she moves into the spotlight.
Despite all the perks that supposedly await me, I wouldn’t want to be a judge in such a contest. Where do you even begin?
Inter-galactic beauty gurus
To lessen the complications, organizers, now composed of a stellar group of inter-galactic beauty gurus, would most likely tap judges of every shape, size, color and form from every corner of the universe to promote transparency and in keeping with the beauty tilt’s name.
Instead of holding it in a host city on Earth, the venue of the annual contest would move from one host planet to another. Delegates would get to experience truly exotic locales, as they rocket through vast distances at the speed of light.
Apart from air conditioning, the pageant venue would be equipped with breathing devices for both spectators and contestants to allow them to breathe the air they were designed to survive in.
Of course, the delegate from the host planet would have a home-court advantage. While her rivals are hampered by portable bubbles to ensure their survival, the hometown girl could freely hobnob with fans and sign autographs without having to don those cumbersome and, ah, alienating breathing devices.
Miss Blue Planet
Although it would be fun to see them in the traditional parade of nations, er, planets with Miss Blue Planet going to the archives to take a leaf from Miss USA 2013 by wearing an updated Optimus Prime costume, the swimsuit competition could be quite tricky.
Apart from taking into consideration the delegates’ varying proportions, the swimsuit sponsor would also have to know the sensitive or private areas in need of coverage. Indeed, this is one swimsuit show where one size fits all doesn’t apply.
Take note that the inter-galactic court has yet to decide on whether anyone from the Blue Planet could legally use the title Miss Earth, as it is already patented by a small group of pageant organizers from an obscure country in Asia.
Of course, the likelihood of one delegate having her rival for dinner couldn’t be discounted. More so if the sour graping overachiever with an extendable set of razor-sharp teeth and acid for saliva finds the results unacceptable.
To address such a bloody scenario, delegates, apart from getting lessons on hair, makeup and ramp modeling, would have to undergo an intensive course on behavior management.
Just in case it fails to work, each delegate would also be getting a shot of “friendship” serum that would compel her to act like a sweet and caring sister on coronation night. Since organizers started giving the serum, incidence of missing shoes and gowns, which they secretly blame on delegates from the Blue Planet, abruptly stopped.
Additional booster shots would be given the winner during her entire reign to ensure that she doesn’t lop off the heads of Miss Universe owner Donald Trump and right-hand woman Paula Shugart should they fail to deliver on their promises. Show-me-the-money scenarios would likely be minimized.
This brings us back to the issue, which Leno earlier raised, of coming up with a single standard of beauty for every living, breathing being joining the Miss Universe.
If an Earthling who chose to channel, say, a bloodied “Carrie” could end up winning the coveted Miss Universe crown one year, then every standard known to man and beast that’s being used in Moscow right this very minute would be rendered useless.