Chuck Williams: Famous for what exactly?

chwilliams@ledger-enquirer.comJanuary 14, 2013 

Man, it is hard to understand this whole world of beauty contests and scholarship pageants.

We have a Miss America who speaks with a Southern drawl and graduated from Opelika High School. Now, that is cool.

Except when you factor in that she is Miss New York and not Miss Alabama. And she lives in Brooklyn, not Beulah. And she was Miss Brooklyn before she represented the entire Empire State.

I was terrible in geography, but I do know that Opelika is a far piece from Brooklyn, in theory, practice and distance. You could spend a lifetime trying to connect those dots and still not figure it out.

Now, you see why we're left scratching that spinning head. Makes no sense unless you understand that world. I have never been in that universe and likely never will understand it.

Which brings us to Miss Alabama USA, and another real head scratcher. A week ago, the Alabama Crimson Tide won the national championship, demolishing Notre Dame in show of Southern football force.

It was impressive.

So, all the headlines should have been about Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron and his Crimson Tide teammates. It didn't work out that way.

The winner was Katherine Webb, McCarron's Miss Alabama USA girlfriend who drew the attention of the ESPN cameras and play-by-play -- we use that term loosely -- announcer Brent Musburger. He went on about how beautiful she was and something about how all the boys in Alabama need to start playing quarterback.

His comments were stupid. He didn't need to tell every kid in Alabama to go start throwing a football and dream of playing quarterback. Most of them are already doing it.

Webb rose to stardom, even eclipsing her boyfriend. She, not AJ, was on the Today Show being interviewed by Matt Lauer.

What is going on here? I just don't get it.

We have become a nation of celebrity. We care more about pop culture and superficial distractions than what really matters.

A girl from the Chattahoochee Valley who now lives in California can rise to overnight stardom because she is a pretty face and she is dating the quarterback of the national champions.

This is not to begrudge Webb's success. More power to her and good luck on taking her Twitter following to more than 300,000 followers. More than 270,000 folks follow her on Twitter right now, all of it a direct result of the airtime she got on the BCS title game.

Social media recognition is the name of the fame game right now.

And, now Webb is going to be in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition.

That's big news in a small town, just like an Opelika girl becoming Miss America.

It looks like it is a pretty good time to be a beauty queen from east Alabama, even if you live in Brooklyn or Los Angeles.

Chuck Williams, senior editor for content, chwilliams@ ledger-enquirer.com.

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