By JULLIE Y. DAZA
“So many beautiful girls, so little time” was the oft-repeated lamentation of a former boss of mine. Known for his fine taste in fashion and women, he had a forgiving wife whose revenge was taking yearly trips to Switzerland for rejuvenation treatments that cost him a leg and an arm.
What would he have felt had he been at the coronation of six Misses Philippines in one night, under one roof? That was one pageant, but one in which many of the girls return to year after year in hopes of improving their poise and walk, their Q and A chops, makeup and choice of couturier, before finally winning the prized crown, sash, cash and all. As Filipinas become ever more beautiful, the Motherland is blooming and being groomed as a country of beauty pageants.
With their practice-makes-perfect seasoning, today’s winners may be older than yesterday’s young contestants (Gloria Diaz was 16 when she was Miss Universe in 1969), but the trend also indicates that “mixed-blood” candidates with foreign names and, presumably, multicultural backgrounds will improve the race and therefore our chances for bagging more international titles well into the future.
Might not the same thing happen in sports for us to upgrade the build, height, skills, etc. of our athletes, at least the ones with an eye (and bull’s-eye) on the Olympics, Asian Games and such? If we can import them, as we have been doing, we can make them, here.
A report in 2018 found a disconcerting fact. Stunting. Our babies are being shortchanged either by nature or nurture. Due to malnutrition and other factors affecting their mothers — poverty, heredity, ignorance, bad habits (smoking, drugs) — they’re being born shorter, not taller. We need our newly elected mayors to follow Malabon Mayor Oreta’s example of feeding the kids starting in kindergarten, with their mothers learning by preparing and cooking healthy, nutritious meals for them.
Unlike the pretty girls who have spurred a 40 percent spike in the local “luxury beauty market,” the task of building boys to become sports heroes requires, verily, a program with much, much more muscle. Unlike lipstick, lavish lashes, hair extensions for the ladies, the guys will need more than moisturizers, sunblock, vitamin-enriched shampoos, and hair-saving tonics.