He Said She Said "Bachelorette Contest"
Here in the Lowcountry, one of the more popular CH2 issues is the annual bachelor issue, which features single local men who have been nominated by their friends, family and co-workers to be CH2’s “Bachelor of the Year.” It’s been a rousing success. The competition, while fierce, is fair and generally family friendly. As of this writing, no candidate vying for the title of Bachelor of the Year has ever been seriously hurt participating in any of the events to win. Well, except for that unfortunate “Hungry, Hungry, Hippos” episode. How Maggie managed to get real live hippos from the Riverbanks Zoo in Columbia still boggles my mind.
By the way, add hippos to the list of animals that “look like they would be fun to ride but aren’t,” along with zebras, lions and ostriches. I can kind of understand a lion’s reluctance to having some human ride him. Lions aren’t really built for riding, but zebras? I mean, those guys are really just striped horses, and saddles fit them perfectly. People have been riding non-striped horse for centuries. What makes the zebra so special that he can’t be trained for riding, hmm? The stripes? Get outta here. I think that all that face time on Wild Kingdom has gone to their collective striped heads and made them uppity.
Anyway, Maggie, editor in chief of CH2, recently posed the question: “Should CH2 have a bachelorette of the year contest?” I thought long and hard before answering, mainly because I was too busy trying to get my dislocated shoulder back in its socket. Oh, it’s not over zebras. I’ll have the last laugh, just you wait and see. There will be zebra carriage tours in Beaufort and Charleston before I’m done. Where was I? Oh, the bachelorette contest. Dang zebras.
I think that it’s an excellent idea. Some of the more attractive and accomplished women in the southeastern USA are here in the Lowcountry. Many of them have no problem being career-minded, 21st Century women, yet are as feminine as their mothers and grandmothers were. I know quite a few single women who would make excellent candidates for Bachelorette of the Year.
One smart and sassy teacher, let’s call her “Madame X,” who hails from “Tarheel Country” immediately comes to mind. Yeah, that’s right I said “Tar Heel Country”. Michael Jordan went to school there, you know. Madame X is the perfect woman except for her allegiance to the dark side. That’s right, fellas; she’s a fan of the Duke Blue Devils. I know, it’s shocking but she’s really a sweetheart. She loves kids and she likes dogs and she helps old people across the street.. Oh who am I kidding?
Madame X, you’re from Chapel Hill. You can’t root for Duke—that’s just wrong on so many levels. It’s also a well known fact that the Duke Blue Devils along with the New York Yankees are part of an evil empire that conspires to bring misery to all sports fans who don’t bow before their collective might. I won’t mention that the majority of their “fans” are bandwagon-jumping, fair weather sorts. Not Madame X, though. I fear she will have to be re-educated, as her love for Duke runs deep.
Oh, sure “Coach K” from Duke is a nice guy, and he helped steer the latest “Dream Team” to the gold medal in basketball this summer during the Olympic Games held in China. But LeBron James and Kobe Bryant were on that team, and they are both almost “Jordan-like” when it comes to basketball skills and IQ. Did I mention that Michael Jordan is a Tarheel, Madame X? Michael Jordan played basketball in your hometown.
Any college coach worth his salt could have brought home the gold medal with those two cats on the court. Not to mention that his name is way too hard to pronounce and hard to spell, so people just call him “Coach K” instead of Krzyzewksi. The number of sports writers with carpal tunnel syndrome had gone through the roof before they wised up and shortened his name to Coach K. No one ever got carpal tunnel typing “Dean Smith,” you know.
But to answer Maggie’s question, I think that a bachelorette contest would be fun. What red-blooded man in his right mind would vote against a contest featuring a large number of women who are smart, accomplished and easy on the eyes to boot? Not me and not you, if you’re smart.
This is the third year that CH2 has sponsored the Bachelor of the Year event. With each passing year, the contest has added improvements and upgrades. After the first year’s success, the party got bigger and more lavish (in fact the party now comes with a theme) and the event added a charity element, which was true again this year. The contest has captured area-wide interest, and local ladies who submitted questions for the fellas to answer aided the selection process. Judging by the batch of solo gents, this year promises to be no different. I, for one, am not complaining, nor will I ever disavow the blatant promotion of bachelors; being a single gal, it’s always good to see what’s available on the current market.
I’ve had the unique privilege of interviewing Bachelor ’07, Jimmy Leppert and Bachelor ’08, Chris Wells. It was a job I approached with enthusiasm, since the interview is such fascinating human interest piece and excellent journalistic opportunity, of course. Both Mr. Leppert and Mr. Wells were delightful dinner companions, willing interviewees, deserving winners and adorable cover boys in their respective years; however, as of deadline, both are still single. Which begs the question: Is it time to give the girls a turn?
At inception the staff of CH2 agreed that having a “beauty contest” for gentleman was not only cheeky and amusing, but also a much-needed post-holiday diversion. It works. Ladies love it for the clever photos and questionnaire results, and fellas find it equally enjoyable due to the added ammunition for mocking nominated friends.
Just as women have called out for their turn, one could argue against a bachelorette contest a thousand ways. On any given day, I may be one of those people checking off a list of cons (as a woman and a Gemini, I relish playing both sides). Yup, girls can be catty and nasty to other girls. Although we have plenty of forums to show off, such as a local dance floor, I contend that it is possible to elevate this event above the stereotypical beauty pageant or bikini competition.
Did I mention that I’m single? I like to see what’s out there on the bachelor front, but I don’t enjoy hunting out a new beau at a bar. So the Bachelor of the Year contest is great; it shows off HHI’s finest, so we know if it’s worth donning the high heels and applying mascara on Saturday night. On the other side of that, I’d like to see what my real competition may be. CH2 should not consider posting photos of scantily clad girls; this should be a modest contest and one that is about the actual women who seek the title Bachelorette of the Year, just as the Bachelor contest is handled. That being said, I’d surely not turn in a photo with my submission that wasn’t as flawless as possible.
Then there is the issue of how girls will handle the disappointment if they aren’t nominated. No question there, some girls are going to be very heartbroken if they lose, and rightly so…but so were the boys. If you can’t get a grip on the disappointment, don’t put yourself in the running. If you seek to win only to feed your already cracked and shattered self-esteem, then this contest isn’t for you. If you feel that you can balance the disappointment of losing with the possibility of meeting lots of local guys, taking model-like professional photographs, meeting some other fun girls and getting to be the belle of the ball, then by all means petition CH2 to give the ladies a chance.