Thursday, April 3, 2014

No-Nonsense Chayaisms-Beauty pageants...Bravery...Children

  Beauty pageants:

Should they happen of not? Are beauty contests a blow to the image of women? I think they are good for the eyes. Better than eating carrot. It takes guts to walk down the ramp in skimpy nothings and be assessed for your curves and contours. It is as tough as preparing for your Medical prelims or Engineering entrance exams. While those require academic refinement, entering a beauty contest calls for a combination of skills beside looks. Imagine living on salad and drinking ten glasses of water for days to keep the waist in shape. Try walking on those pointed heels, concentration on the smile and managing not to fall on your nose just as you read the end of the ramp. Some are born beautiful while most have to strive to achieve it. I admire the second category. They have to work on various aspects of self-development, before they can muster their courage to face the world in a swimsuit. Things were not so stiff when I contested for the Miss Bangalore crown in 1965!! All we had to do was hold our saree pallav delicately on your left arm, pirouette a couple of times on the ramp and walk back. Some contestants added a provocative swing to that walk back. If you were tall and slim, you made it. A five feet nothing like me had no chance but I went for the fun of facing an audience. It was a tremendous learning experience. I thought I was good enough to contest. If the judges did not think I was good enough to be crowned, it was their opinion!


There are many myths about bravery and many instances, which highlight a person’s ability to do daredevil feats or perform acts of rare courage. But what I am talking about is that strength of firmness of mind which enables a person to encounter danger with coolness and courage, or to bear pain or adversity without murmuring, depression, or despondency. There are some who can challenge many odds, save people’s life or face extreme dangers but when it comes to their personal life, are not able to handle situations with courage. To focus on this definition of bravery, I initiated a contest under the banner of Guild Of Women Achievers-calling for nominations from women who have shown exemplary acts of bravery in their personal life. Our prize winning entry for  sahasa nari was 
Dr Sarvamangala, who was born in a village, ran away from her poverty stricken life, to fulfill her ambition of becoming a doctor. She became a Gynecologist!


One lovely trait of children we adults must emulate is to forget and forgive. Another is to find delight in every little thing. Unfortunately, children today have lost that quality and only expensive toys/ food and clothes can make them happy-till they tire of it for another. To some extent, parents are to be blamed for indulging their whims, to show off their own wealth. With the ‘we two, our two’ norm of small families, children are getting more and more materialistic and selfish. The sharing and caring value is almost extinct. They are fast losing respect for authority, discipline and obedience to elders. In school and at home, they are pretty much a law unto themselves and parents groan and moan about the decadent generation. But wait a minute- who is responsible for all this? Children are like ‘monkey see monkey do’ and reflect the behavior pattern of the adults around them. As it is said, children don’t need critics; they need models-which they have but unfortunately, the wrong kind. As a mother said, having a child is like making a decision to have your heart walking outside your body.