Beauty Pageant Quotes
Jay Leno on the Miss America Pageant Judging
“Isn’t it a little ironic here? We pick politicians by how they look on TV and Miss America on where she stands on the issues. Isn’t that a little backwards?” — Jay Leno
Miss Teen South Carolina’s Infamous Answer
At the 2007 Miss Teen USA Pageant, Miss Teen South Carolina was asked why one fifth of Americans can’t locate the USA on a world map.
“I personally believe that US Americans are unable to do so because some people out there in our nation don’t have maps, and I believe that our education like such as South Africa, and the Iraq, everywhere like, such as, and I believe that they should, our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., or should help South Africa, it should help the Iraq and the Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future, for our children.”
— Lauren Caitlin Upton, Miss Teen South Carolina.
Terry Meeuwsen, Miss America 1973
At that moment, it’s kind of like dying. You’re ALONE. There’s nobody that can do it for you.” –Terry Meeuwsen, Miss America 1973, on winning
In 1958, two finalists flabbergasted Bert Parks by revealing on live television that they’d discovered backstage that they shared a common bond … a two-timing military cadet boyfriend.
Miss Iowa pronounced judgment on the philandering cadet: “I think he has two very lovely ex-girlfriends.”
“She said it very well,” seconded Miss California.
—Miss America: In Pursuit of the Crown
Miss Rodeo USA 1992 on Horseback Riding Accidents
Miss Rodeo USA 1992 broke her neck, a leg and a foot in separate horseback riding accidents during her reign. They thought my bones were weak. But I said, ‘No, horses are heavy.'”
Columnist David J. Spatz on Reporters’ View in the Swimsuit Competition
Columnist David J. Spatz once revealed that the seemingly enviable view of the press during the swimsuit competition had a surprising downside…
“You get to see too much watching the show in the hall, especially from a runway seat where it’s difficult to ignore epidermal imperfections like tiny pockets of cellulite, fading stretch marks and dimples. But television cameras have a habit of filtering out unsightly blemishes; every woman looks perfect.”
On Miss Columbia…
For Colombians, the beauty pageants replace the violence we live with every day. Especially Miss Columbia is a sacred event; no one dares to criticize.”
–Adriana La Rotta, Columbian TV reporter
Carole Gist, Miss USA 1990
Carole Gist, Miss USA®1990, on being the first black woman ever to win the Miss USA® title: “Nelson Mandela had been freed and I had a feeling in my heart from God that a black would win.” –To Cindy Adams
By the end of the 1930s a disgruntled talent scout at the Miss America Pageant complained to Holiday magazine, “I’m telling you, culture and respectability have ruined the Miss America Pageant!”
Bob Barker on hosting the Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants
“The cardinal rule for hosting the Miss USA and Miss Universe beauty pageants is to expect the unexpected.” –Bob Barker, longtime host of both pageants
Upon being crowned “Little Miss Cherub,” a three-year-old girl waved an envelope containing her scholarship at her mother watching from the audience and yelled, “Mommy, I got mail!”
When asked to give her astrological sign, Miss Sri Lanka 1985 replied, “Oh, I don’t have any.”
Gary Collins asked one Miss America finalist, “What’s your favorite part of the pageant?”
“Lunch,” she replied.
Patricia Gorrasi, a mother of five, quipped upon being crowned Miss Garlic at Kentucky’s Garlic Fest II… “Hey, I can’t be Miss America!”
During one memorable moment at a Miss World Pageant, the short master of ceremonies couldn’t resist teasing Miss United Kingdom, a six-foot-tall beauty who towered over him.
“And what are you going to be when you grow up?” he asked.
“I don’t know,” the finalist replied without a smile. “What are you going to be when you grow up?”
Movie star Joan Blondell, Miss Dallas 1926, once described herself as having “a good, big chest, the kind garbage men whistle at.”
When asked who she thought would be crowned Miss Universe®, pageant commentator Daisy Fuentes answered, “I’m kind of hoping I’ll win.”
Tom Snyder once asked Albert Marks, then boss of the Miss America pageant, if he had a favorite winner. “No,” he answered, “to me they all look like a plate of yesterday’s mashed potatoes.”
Ooops. Wrong analogy.
Later, at a gathering of former titleholders, one winner called him to the podium for an “award” and smashed him in the face with a plate of cold mashed potatoes.
“The sameness was what I meant,” he lamely tried to clarify. — The Miss America Cookbook
Twelve Miss USA® contestants were dining at a New York City restaurant to promote the upcoming pageant when they were asked to pose for photos. One of the chaperones, a fiftyish grandmother, joined them in the picture.
“That,” quipped an on-looking diner, “must be Miss New York.”
“It’s thrilling! When you’re a kid, you never dream that one day you’ll be hosting the Miss America Pageant. I still can’t believe it!” — Regis Philbin
During the 1993 Ms. Senior Palm Beach County Pageant, the pageant director asked one entrant to name her life goals. “Honey,” replied the 75-year-old contestant, “I don’t even buy green bananas!”
Royal Ego Busters…
A teenage boy dismissed one Miss America titleholder with the ultimate put-down: “Ahhhh, my sister’s prettier!”
Another national winner overheard a little girl in line for an autograph complain to her mother, “Gee, mommy, she’s not very pretty!”
When asked who she thought would be crowned Miss Universe, pageant commentator Daisy Fuentes answered, “I’m kind of hoping I’ll win.”
Sources: Atlantic City Magazine, Glamour, New York Times, Miss Herald, Miss America Cookbook, Miss America: In Pursuit of the Crown, People, Press of Atlantic City, Union News, Tropic, TV Guide