The following ramblings are based on real-life experiences, mishaps, and downright screw-ups. Names (of past, present, and future boyfriends) have been changed or omitted to protect the innocent. And the guilty...

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Trash Talk Tuesday


I'm totally taking the cop-out approach on Trash Talk today.  I was going to join in on Taboo Tuesday, but I don't have anything prepared, nor am I able to research today.  The same is true for Trash Talk.  Instead of a new and exciting topic this week, you get comments on prior topics.  Two recent Trash Talks have prompted comments containing opposing viewpoints.  Since I love a good debate, I shall post them here: 

If you remember, I rather harshly criticized child beauty pageants - based solely on my extensive viewing of Toddlers & Tiaras and Little Miss Perfect (as well as a couple of documentaries).   I was, to quote Cher Horowitz, "Brutally Rebuffed".  Check out what S Garner had to say: 
Wow.. you write well.. witty even but I would say this is quite one sided wouldn't you? Even you yourself admit that your relative enjoys them, it has raised her self esteem, confidence and even earned some scholarship cash. Sure there are whackos in every sport, hobby and family but come on. You are leaning 98% towards exploitation and bad parenting when, if you've been in it at all, (which my guess is you have not) you'd see that its the crazy ones that really are the rarity. There is no excuse for Miss "this one is prettier than that one", granted that's a horrifying thing to do to kids. Same as the parents you see pitting one sibling against the other in football, baseball, lacrosse and so on. Crazy pageant moms make good tv and give people like you a way to really dig in and bash the whole idea of pageantry. But.. truth have it, its great Mommy and me time, it should be done only when the child wants to do it.. which is sometimes not evident until they are a little older and can express their wants and needs. I see nothing wrong with a Mom putting a dress on her baby and walking her across a stage. Who really cares? This is far from exploitation even at this age. They meet other kids, make new friends, feel good about themselves and so on. I was a pageant coach for 7 years. I did not coach the Moms with a wad of cash but preferred to coach the ones who were short on it, or were friends of mine. The main reason I started doing it was to help the kids who were new or couldn't afford the insane $100 per hour coaches so that they too could have exactly the same advantages at least in modeling and talent. I did ask Moms to leave my group of girls if it was evident the child wasn't into it and it appeared the Mom was doing it more for herself and the A #1 thing I promoted was inner beauty, self respect and good sportsmanship. There's way more to pageants than you can imagine and to see someone as intelligent as you appear to be make such broad insinuations is rather disheartening to me. It seems like you did your research.. or did you? What exactly did you research on the good side of pageants? There certainly is a lot of good in pageantry. 

And for Miss Satan.. come on.. be real. Are the "trashy football Dads" all taken over by Satan too? Do you believe everything you read?
I admit, S Garner does bring up some good points, and I concede that I am one-sided.  Here is my response:

Ah yes, S Garner - one sided perhaps. But that's why I include the caveat that these posts contain MY opinions. I appreciate your perspective, and absolutely respect it. And, I really enjoy sparking debate and good conversation, so bring it! I have not claimed to know anything more about pageantry than what is captured in documentaries, but they are pretty damn scary. Again - as I said though - I know the good pageants have done for my cousin. I think it might be inappropriate to push the very young girls into it, though. At least to the extremes that are profiled in shows like LMP and T&T. They are not old enough to truly know if they want to do it, and you have to admit that some of the routines and costumes definitely border on (or blatantly cross into the realm of) exploitative. That being said, some of these girls, and their families, take a refreshing approach to the pageants, and showcase the child's natural beauty and talent. In those cases, it's truly enjoyable to watch. It sounds like you supported the latter approach, and I think that's awesome. Good for you for helping the girls who couldn't otherwise afford good coaching, and for protecting their interests. You need to get on TV and show the world that side of pageantry.

I checked out S Garner's linked website: Shelbie Anne.  True to her word, she is a coach to kids who might not otherwise afford to have one.  She's clearly proud of her girls, and they seem to really enjoy what they're doing.  I love that she posts stories about other activities in which the girls are involved, and not just about pageants (like her post about Becca's dance team win).  That's a great way to promote well-roundedness.  So, props to Shelbie!  (I also appreciate the compliment on my writing and wit - even if it was tempered with a "but"...) 

What do you guys think, readers?  Pageants: Good?  Bad?  Ugly?  Indifferent?  

I stand by my original point (in the response to Shelbie's comment) that pushing the little ones into it might not be appropriate.  But, for the older girls, I think it's generally fine.  As long as they don't lose sight of the healthy reasons for doing pageants (e.g. self-confidence, poise, public speaking, scholarship money), in order to become obsessed with winning and exhibitionism, or pleasing their parents.  

Moving on...

J-nonymous is BACK!  I'm so excited!  (She's been MIA for a while, travelling and such.  I've missed her loyal readership and good comments.)  She had this to say about last week's post on Miley Cyrus, Hilary Duff, and other Disney Divas: 
You know, K, I've had these exact same thoughts *about* some of Shia LeB's comments... so though I agree that he has some talent, he definitely falls into your warning category. I've actually thought about this a lot. I mean, he's better than Megan Fox about press, but not much. (Been gone so long, and this is the point I have to tune in to make? I promise I'm catching up!)
My response: 
J-nonymous - Don't tell me that! I've never heard of him trashing Disney! I want to believe he's a good guy! I love him!
Again I quote the honorable Cher when I say: "Do you recall the dates of these alleged [remarks]??"  I want to see some articles supporting these hateful allegations, before I will accept that Shia is also a tool.  J - please reply to this post with some links.  

No thought provoking responses to this post, but I thought I'd follow up, nonetheless.  

Sixteen & Pregnant: Season Two is SOOOOOOOOOO inferior to Season One.  The girls are more naive, more annoying, and more selfish than ever, and their boyfriends are way bigger douches.  While one might think this would make for better viewing, it's actually detracting from my enjoyment.  Part of what made this show such an anomaly was the fact that you really could relate to the girls, and your heart went out to them.  Their struggles were real and realistic, and they each had some endearing quality that made you want to root for a happy ending to their sordid tales.  This season - not so much.  I find myself losing focus and wandering out of the room to fold laundry (and that says a lot, considering I loathe laundry with all the fire of hell) or do other meaningless chores, because I'm no longer connecting with the characters.  MTV needs to not worry so much about creating shock factor (like the notorious text to episode 4's Chelsea), and should refocus on finding girls that viewers want to follow.  Like Maci, Amber, Catelynn, and Farrah...

...which leads us to Teen Mom: Not a whole lot to report, since this show is over for a while, but I will say HOORAY!  All four girls will be back for a second season of Teen Mom, so we'll get to see year two of parenthood.  Woo hoo!  

Secret Life: The Secret Life of the American Teenager had its finale last week. Luh-AAAAAMMMMMMMEEEE.  We're left with the cliffhanger of whether Adrian (the slut and ex-girl friend to baby-daddy Ricky) is pregnant, too.  But not with Ricky's baby!  Oh no!  With BEN'S!!  (Baby-mama Amy's "nice guy" ex-boyfriend)  It would seem that the condom broke during their little revenge-induced indiscretion, and now there will be two teen moms in this epic love quadrangle.  Meanwhile, every other girl on the show is planning to have sex with some random guy or another.  Will they EVER learn???  (Ridiculously stupid or not, you can bet your ass I'll be tuning in when this trash fest returns this summer!) 

Alrighty - that's enough mindless dribble/filler for one day.  Off to research net assets for NMTC allocatee banks.  (Be glad you have no idea what that means.) 


In response to Shelbie's comment below, here are some examples of what I think is cute, and what is crossing the line:

VERY Scary... 

Eye on the Prize
Beautiful, and natural...

Newcomer Angelina


Suit is fine, but hair and makeup are over the top (you talk about this in your post today, and I totally agree with what you had to say)

This kid is AWESOME: 

Payton (age 6) competes in the Southern Celebrity Beauty Pageant in Charleston, West Virginia as seen in Toddlers & Tiaras.TLC/Rebecca Drobis - Friday, January, 23, 2009, 10:23 PM

LOVED this Mother/Daughter pair on LMP: 

Not seeing why they need to show this much skin: 




Double hmm...


Too provocative:

Again, too much for a kid this young: 

Perfectly Beautiful: 

Just plain wrong...  

Shelbie - Agree or disagree??


SGarner said...

Darn.. I was so looking for a reply that included talk about my dark roots.. LOL

Definitely was fun chatting with you and I'll be back.. (Every Tuesday) ha!I truly respect and appreciate your opinions one-sided or not and your ability to at least be open to the other side. I guess I get frustrated because the media does not show the other side of pageantry at all. I cannot tell you how many benefit pageants I have attended with my own little girls and young children that I coached. Even at this age you will see 5 year olds using a title they won to walk door to door to collect cell phones to be donated for repair so that battered women can have cell phones with 911 access, collecting used socks to donate to organization who provide socks to the poor and so on. While I have scrapbook after scrapbook of very young girls who have used their pageant titles to do some good in this world... you're right. Sadly very few take notice and this kind of deed gets very little press compared to the pushy Mom who is really putting her child in pageants for her own crazy benefit.

Maybe its time we start sensationalizing the good in people. But I just don't think that's going to be the next VH1 show of the year now is it?

One question though.. what clothing do you believe is provocative in pageantry? 2 piece bathing suits? Can you explain that one to me? I have heard that several times and have yet to hear or see something to back that up. Yes you'll see bathing suits in swimwear and dance costumes in talent.. but I'm afraid that's the one bash I can't wrap my head around. I like my little ones in age appropriate clothing but I guess by that I lean more towards a 'babydoll' dress with pink bows for example versus a sequined crowning dress, etc.. but I can't say even the sequined dress would I consider provocative. Its pretty darn sad when a child in a 2 piece bathing suit becomes anything but cute.. but alas, we do live in a society of perversion and pedophiles.

Looking forward to the next time,

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