I can't believe that this year was the fifth Miss Georgia Pageant that I covered. I'd been involved with the pageant since about 1992, helping Oz Roberts with the script. Back in those days, the pageant was televised, and we had to make sure everything was timed.
Things are different now.
Saturday night, there were two instances where the judges were missing in action and held up the pageant.
All three co-hosts were brand-new. Two of them were the reigning Miss Georgia and Georgia's Outstanding Teen. They were fine, but they had other duties and missed rehearsals for other commitments. The hosts often went off script and the technical folks were scrambling trying to figure out where they were in the show.
That would never have happened had the show been televised.
Yes, it was televised, but it was live-streamed by WRBL-TV. There's a difference.
And once the Top 10 was announced, the techies, whom I hang out with, were talking, hoping one of women won't become Miss Georgia. Apparently, she was always late getting to her mark. She didn't become Miss Georgia.
After watching every single contestant, both teens and misses, do their talent, I wonder why.
If a girl plays piano, why doesn't she pick something she can play and play it well? Don't pick a piece that's intricate. You are not going to be in the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. You can't even dream of going.
If she's a singer, why not pick a song and sing it well? Or get a vocal coach.
If she's a dancer, pick a routine that's simple and do it well. Don't pick something that's too difficult.
Yes, these girls probably are not used to performing in front of a huge audience, but come on ...
Of course, that's easy enough for me to say. I've never had to be nervous singing or dancing or playing an instrument in front of a huge audience.
I've been "background scenery" in musicals at the Springer Opera House, but I never had to do a solo.
So nerves might result in some of the performances. But some of the so-called talent was abysmal.
But do not think these are dumb girls. Many of them have already graduated from college. A couple are going to law school. Four of them go to Georgia Tech.
Should swimsuits still be part of the pageant? I know it's tradition. But why high heels?
I guess some things will never change.
I'll probably write a similar blog next year a couple days after the pageant.
The one thing I do enjoy is hanging out with the technical people working the pageant.
RiverCenter for the Performing Arts' technical director John Camp takes very good care of me.
My colleague Sonya Sorich came to visit me one night and she was impressed the set-up. The year she had to cover it, she was seated in the audience, typing on her laptop, surrounded by friends and family members. I can't imagine how awkward that would be.
A big thank you goes out to John Camp and Cherwanda Jones of RiverCenter and Bill Rich of RSL Theatrical. They're my Miss Georgia cohorts.
I won't have to think about beauty queens for another year.