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Model Behavior With Sharon Quinn: Beauty Pageants and Reality TV, 11/01/2009
sharon quinn
Meet Sharon Quinn

I had the opportunity a few weeks ago to be a guest judge for a local beauty pageant.  Although, I don't really consider myself a "pageant girl" of any sort, I have literally been addicted to them for most of my life.  I grew up on The Miss America, Miss USA, Miss Universe pageants and my memories go back far enough that I can remember when the Miss BLACK America pageant was also televised. My best friend from my childhood, Tommy Brock and I would never, ever miss a beauty pageant.  We sat in his living room (back then his family was one of the first on our block to have a color television) watched them all (the pageants) intently, oohing and aahing over the beautiful, ornately beaded evening gowns, critiquing their performances and occasionally arguing if we had a disagreement about who we thought would take the crown.  This pageant thing was a long-standing tradition for both Tommy's and I.  Of course we noticed that there weren't a whole lot of black women in these pageants and there were most certainly no women who had my body "type" competing.  You had to be poised and graceful with the ability to think quickly on your feet – not mention that you HAD to wear that bathing suit so you had to be in great shape.  But at the end of the day it always came down to the final question.  No one ever knew what they were going to be asked but it was all about how you handle pressure in those 30 seconds and how gracefully you could do it. 
 
Like most young girls my age, I too, dreamed of having that crown placed on my head, sash across my chest and taking that "first walk" as the new "queen", Unfortunately for me that whole bathing suit thing quickly put a damper on any pageant dreams I may have had back then.  It would be 30 more years before I would even come close to knowing what it felt like to participate in a beauty pageant. 
 
 
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