Bikinis and Contests oh my!

This is a combo of two things….a blog entry (duh) and something that I will most likely be expanding on in my latest untitled manuscript I’m working on.  Enjoy.

(ALSO…the pic above is YEARS old.  No new pics of me will be revealed until after my upcoming photo shoot. 😉  I’m not a blonde anymore.)

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For the two semesters I spent in Texas for college, in a ploy to get extra spending money, I used to alternate between bikini contests and karaoke contests.  I had it down to a pretty good science.

Karaoke at Champs (yes I believe they are still in existence…a chain restaurant a step above TGIF Fridays).  This contest was every Thursday night.  However, if you won, you’d have to take a week off before you were eligible again for the cash prize of $150, and a bar tab which was my dinner for the night.  Enough money to get a college student with a small allowance from mom and dad by with necessities from Target and Claire’s botique and last at least until I was eligible again.

In the week I’d have “off” from the karaoke contest, I’d drive about 10 minutes outside of San Antonio to compete in a bikini contest at a Tejano Bar.  It was the same drill.  You could win one week, take a week off, then come back to re-enter.  With karaoke I’d often win with a clean sweep-getting first place-I’m a great singer.  With bikini contests, I’d manage to pull off third or fourth place, with a cash prize ranging from first place being $350 $250, $150, $75.  In case you don’t know what I look like, I’m the hot girl-ish next door, real boobs, all natural-and back then tanning so much that I was orange.  My best friend at the time and I would carpool to these contests, she would win first place more often than not, but I’d be thrilled with simply pocketing cash for strutting around in a bikini for 10 minutes and getting the “quick” gratification of winning something that seemed to be really easy, yet, a little grating on the ego to a certain degree.  The owners of the Tejano Bar did like us, and always were happy to have us back, and we’d win-every other week.

So if you can imagine, being a struggling college kid, these contests were the best “part time jobs” ever.  Maybe I never won first place, but I always had fun and it made me feel good about myself…(until the one time I tripped onstage while walking…I was so humiliated I left early…I did not win that week!)

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So this past year, I actually tried something new that I didn’t make the effort to do when I was competing in college.  I dropped a little over 30lbs, got into shape and told myself that I should enter a bikini contest.  I’m not getting any younger, and want to show off the goods!….SO…Just WHERE that contest would be would remain to be seen.  So I google “Hawaiian Tropic Pageants”, which are now “retired” from the vicious pageant circuit, and in the midst of brainstorming where in world I’d possibly be able to enter one SOMEWHERE in the city…low and behold Rick’s Cabaret was throwing one with a Hawaiian Luau party happening this week.  Could it have been destiny?

It was me and about 12 girls, a girl was chosen from each round to “advance” to the finals…I had my college day bikini routine mentality down pat.  I was wearing a red skirt, a string bikini the size of a bar nap with a dental floss bottom that seemed to up my ass severely, but I was covered with a  red American Apparel tube dress that I hiked up…for the final touch, a Lifeguard wifebeater, that I ripped off for the first round…which the audience seemed to love.  I advanced to the next round.

Realizing that I had ripped off my precious Venice Beach Lifeguard tank top (granted it was only $6.00, but still) there was nothing left to do except….gasp….take off my skirt for the final round and reveal my dental floss bikini.  So for the final round, I took a deep breath and removed my tube skirt, and the audience applauded, and it was narrowed down from four finalists to two.  Me and the adorable waitress, who had entered the contest at the last minute.  She won first place, and I got second.  We were both really excited.  I was excited for the prize money of course, and that someone I genuinely like won first place.  But oddly enough, it made me reflect on my high school days.  I was never even nominated for homecoming queen, never asked to prom or anything like that, or even a date in school…for some odd reason, winning this bikini contest made me really happy.  Even awesomer, some of the managers complimented me on how my progress in the gym has really paid off.  So what’s the point of the story?  I have NO idea when I’ll be doing a bikini contest EVER again…but getting even second place and the acceptance and “nod” from my peers at work was pretty freaking cool.  That’s better than prize money any day.

I miss my Venice Beach Lifeguard tank top….but hey…I’ll get another one next time I’m in LA.

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