I had never dreamed of being a queen.
Growing up a grubby tomboy, the idea of being any sort of feminine royalty was revolting to me. So, when recently I told my oldest sister Chiemi that I wanted to compete in the D-Queen pageant, it didn’t offend me when she burst out laughing. I doubt I would be gutsy enough to join the pageant, except I am going to be documenting my time as a pageant contestant through a series of articles.
I know nothing about pageants beyond what I learned from the movie “Miss Congeniality,” and like many women, I struggle with body image issues. But when I received an email inviting me to participate in the 2017 D-Queen pageant, there were a few details in the email and the informational meeting that convinced me that this pageant would be something I would not regret participating in.
First off, there is no age limit. Since I am a non-traditional student, I am quite a bit older than your average beauty queen, so I’m ruled out automatically from other competitions. However, while attending the informational meeting, I saw not a sea of beautiful blonde girls, but women both older and younger than me. That put a bit more courage into me.
In that vein, there is no restriction on marital status, fitness competition and no swimsuit component to this pageant. I’m not married yet, and I am happy to skip showing off my untoned shape.
The elimination of these kinds of requirements is what really intrigued me. I’ve always considered pageantry the shallowest kind of popular contest – you don’t even have to be popular, just pretty – but the D-Queen is scored differently. The points breakdown are as follows:
-Private interview – 20 percent
-Essay (on an assigned topic about DSU) – 10 percent
-Academic achievement (GPA and course evaluation) – 20 percent
-Community service and involvement – 15 percent
-Talent (2-minute time limit) – 20 percent
-Evening wear/on-stage statement – 15 percent
Also, only the last two events – the talent and the evening wear/onstage statement – take place in front of an audience, which is good, because I think my nerve might break otherwise.
So, stay tuned for my experiences with the D-Queen pageant and get a glimpse of what the world of pageantry is like.