In which Poppy laments the declining state of talent in America and reminisces about a harrowing fireworks experience…

I come to you today with a heavy heart, Pop Tarts.  I have officially seen an institution that I cherished for the better part of my life finally, officially, and definitively “jump the shark.”  And it was a humdinger of a jump, folks.

A young woman won Miss America and for her talent she played a plastic cup. 

Now, before I go any further, I am not personally disparaging the young lady who won.  Well, at least not completely; she’s the one who decided to do it, after all.  I’m sure that she’s overwhelmingly qualified to be Miss America based on her academic record, community service experience, and leadership abilities.  She is quite attractive, I’m sure that she’s a wonderful young woman, and I wish her well during her reign.  However…

She played a plastic cup.

Yes, yes…technically it was a vocal with “cup percussion,” but…come on…COME ON!  Let’s be honest – neither the vocal nor the percussion was that stellar, bless her heart.  I mean, I know she got the idea from Anna Kendrick, but Anna Kendrick she is not and she didn’t have a nice Foley editor to put in the pitch-perfect “clop clop clop” of the cup.


There were young women on that stage competing their hearts out – dancing, singing, playing classical piano – performing with artistic skills that many of them probably had been practicing their entire short lives, and Miss New York won Miss America with the talent equivalent of a well-practiced frat boy with a lot of time on his hands.

It reminds me of the talent competition when I was competing for Miss Cotton Gin 19….well…never mind that…and Nita Faye Bobo went out on stage in her cheerleader uniform, did a headstand spread eagle, and stuck a lit roman candle in her hoo-ha.  They carted her off to the funny farm after that, but she went out with a bang.  Bang.  Bang. Bang bang BANG bang bang BANG…well, you get the picture.

I won that pageant, thankfully.

And mind you, ventriloquism might only get you a job in Branson or Vegas, and only then if you win America’s Got Talent, but even the girl who sang “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” with her dummy sidekick ranks – in my humble opinion – a bit higher on the chart than playing a plastic cup and sort-of singing.

Look.  I know it took practice…likely hours and hours of practice.  But I would wager not 1/1000 of the time it took to be able to play a classical piece of music on piano or violin; not 1/1000 of the time that some of those young ladies spent in a dance studio during their childhood; not 1/1000 of the time that young ventriloquist spent with her hand up her puppet’s ass.

It burns my biscuits, Pop Tarts.  Burns ‘em right up.  And before you start writing me letters, yes…I know that the talent portion is only one part of the overall score; and yes, I know that she probably did well in the other categories.  However, the talent portion counts for the largest percentage compared to the other categories, so it’s not an insignificant thing by any means.  Conventional wisdom has been for years, “she who wins talent, wins the crown.”

Granted, the whole pageant “thing” seems somewhat “over” now, and exists only for those who continue to focus on and feed its existence…and Donald Trump…and whatever that is on his head that serves for hair.  The relevance of “beauty pageants” is something that has been debated ad nauseum over the last many, many years and is painful for me to admit, since I have so many pageant titles.  Still, shouldn’t they try to keep some heightened standards?  Shouldn’t the talent winner really be the one with the most talent, and shouldn’t the judges know enough about who actually has talent so that they can accurately reward it?

Oh…wait…one of them was Kathy Ireland.  Never mind.  She’s not the sharpest tool in the shed, bless her heart.  I sat next to her once at a fashion show, and I swear…when I leaned in close to her ear, I could hear the ocean.

Well, good for Miss New York.  At least all those hours she spent over the past several months on her kitchen floor paid off for her and she had her dream come true.  Good for her.  And how wonderful that Miss New York has won THREE years in a row!  How fantastic! 

Wait…three years in a row…hmmmm…I suspect something is rotten in the state of Donald Trump’s toupee…

All speculation of “rigging” aside, I suppose it’s just a symptom of where we are as a society, gentle readers, when reality television is de rigueur, being an intellectual is considered unpatriotic, and social media abounds. Nowadays, one can achieve fame by lighting a fart and posting the video on YouTube.  Instant stardom…for 15 minutes, at least, or a guest-spot on Tosh.0.  

Hey, maybe Nita Faye Bobo had the right idea with the roman-candle-in-the-hoo-ha trick after all!  America’s Got Talent – here I come!  Right after I stitch me up some Teflon crotchless panties.


About Poppy Fields 46 Articles
Poppy Fields is indeed from the Deep South – Alabama, in fact – but don’t hold that against her. As one-half of the cabaret duo, Mack & Poppy, she spends most of her time sewing on rhinestones, rehearsing music, and ogling hot men on the streets of West Hollywood.

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