Gasmii, I never get tired of Toddlers & Tiaras even though it’s sort of the same one each week. It’s like two parts cute kids with dimples, one part spoiled brat, and more than a pinch of crazy parent.
Huge and sparkly, just like I like ‘em!
This week we’re visiting Charleston, West Virginia for the Southern Celebrity Winter Wonderland pageant. Charleston also has one of the coolest state capital buildings I’ve ever seen with a dome gilded in 14 karat gold leaf. Talk about a cool crown!
People, it’s real gold! Leaf!
SUPER YAY! It’s a glitz pageant. These are so much more fun than natural pageants because the crazy is ramped up bigtime. Pageant director Maxine says there is so much competition “some girls may walk away unhappy.” No way!
Over in Justice, West Virginia, we meet Daylee, 2, and Destiny, 5. Nothing like setting your kids up to be strippers with those names. Seriously, when is the last time you saw “CEO of Boston Consulting Group, Destiny Smith”?
Sisterly love. CATFIGHT!
Daylee has just started doing pageants but she’s in full swing as she and her sister get into a fight over what I believe is a huge makeup bag, and Daylee whacks Destiny pretty hard. The dog just looks embarrassed. Destiny has some awesome crowns and by awesome I mean the bigger the better. This one even has colored diamonds and I would totally trade my bike for it, you know, if I had one.
“Destiny has won close to five or six thousand dollars,” her mother Stephany says proudly, “and Daylee has won maybe $150.” Hmm. Who’s your favorite? Although all things considered, you probably spent four times that on the pageants themselves. “You gotta work hard for your money, sister,” Stephany tells her girls. Oh, believe me, they will.
They have attended the Winter Wonderland pageant for three years now, but there’s no monetary prize, it’s all crown, trophy, and bragging rights. Well, I’m still in if there’s a crown involved.
Over in Charleston, West Virginia we meet Karmen, age 6, who will be playing this week’s spoiled brat in dire need of an ass whooping. Her mother Heather says her sister got Karmen involved with pageants and Karmen loved the stage so much “it just escalated from there.” Well, something escalated, that’s for damn sure.
How many Derby races has she won? That’s a lot of ribbons.
“My mom wants me to win all the pageants in the world,” Karmen says. Really, Karmen, or is that a little bit of a hyperbole? She really wants you to win Miss Mongolia? Heather says that Karmen has gained a lot of confidence from these pageants, if that’s really what you want to call it. She thinks Karmen could be Miss America, Miss Universe, or an actress. My guess is she probably won’t be graduating from M.I.T. and I speak from experience of not having graduated from there either.
Still in Charleston, we meet Peyton, age 6, the only boy we’ll be following this week. How do you glitz-pageant a boy? He’s choosing a new suit at a place with the tagline “A Nu Look.” Oh, dear. This kid is adorable and he says he’s won “6 or 20 trophies.” Well, which is it kid, that’s a pretty big spread. His mother Nicole says he’s been doing pageants for the past two years in which time he’s competed in 40 different pageants. Holy crap, that’s like 2 a month!
His charisma is palpable!
“We’ve decided as a family that it’s time for him to retire,” his mother says. Translation: Dad doesn’t want Peyton becoming a florist. Instead, he’s “going to race four-wheelers with his brothers.” Enjoy taking care of him when he becomes a quadriplegic, “family.” Pageantry has fewer injuries except maybe the verbal kind. Since this is his final pageant, his mother hopes he wins.
Back in Justice we find none, because Heather is talking about how much money she spends on dresses that she makes herself – close to $800 each. She says if she bought them they’d be $2500 to $3000 each. Again, I’m all about people having hobbies, but I’m wondering if they could glitz out for maybe $400 and put the other $400 into something crazy like a savings account for college or nowadays, under a mattress. One of the dresses she shows us has $600 in rhinestones alone. Gasmii, I’m torn. I love the sparkly stuff, you know I do, but $600? Yeesh.
I don’t know, that could keep me mesmerized for hours.
As long as nobody jingles any keys.
“I don’t know what I’d pay to let them do what they wanted to do,” Stephany says. Hold that thought and I hope the girls get a copy of this show for when they become teenagers and they want a new car or boat.
Over at Karmen’s house, mom Heather asks her which dress she wants to wear for the pageant and when she picks one out her mother tells her no. Seriously, what the hell? Because of her age group, she still has to wear the short dresses and she’s picked out a long one. How about starting with just the short dresses next time, MOM?
Well of course, Karmen throws a fit, and although I don’t enjoy these, I sort of see her point. Don’t ask me my opinion then tell me yours is right. Mom picks out a really pretty orange dress and Karmen doesn’t want to wear it. “Why do you want to wear the bride dress,” Heather asks her (because ALL girls want to wear a fluffy bride dress every day, that’s why!). Karmen says, “I want to wear it because it’s pretty and I want to wear it because I want to wear it.” Hard to argue with that logic.
This continues through adulthood, or at least does in my house.
Karmen channels me by throwing herself dramatically on the bed and whining. Impressive. Then her mother says that it’s been a tough time for Karmen lately because her grandmother just died and her great-grandfather just died. OR you asked her which dress she wanted to wear then told her no, the kid is only 6 after all.
Karmen sits on her bed looking sad and her mother says, “Do you want to quit doing pageants?” thinking it’s reverse psychology, but psych! Karmen says yes, she does want to quit! “I want to have a little break,” she says. She sounds like a kid who has been in the traveling company of Annie and she just needs one night to herself. But as we all know, NO to pageant mothers means “DOES NOT COMPUTE.”
Heather suggests they look at her crowns to make her feel better. I’m not sure who the “her” is in that last sentence. They begin to count all of the crowns Karmen has won, and it’s 87. EIGHTY SEVEN CROWNS? She’s SIX! That’s 14.5 for each year she’s been alive, how about SHARING with your beloved recapper? Anyway, the counting of the crowns has made Karmen forget all about “being on a break!” Phew for mom!
Peyton is practicing for the pageant and I stand corrected – dad is there and is all about the pageants, which is sort of cute. What is really odd is that his mother is in a full-length red ball gown with shawl helping him practice, for no discernable reason other than cameras are there. This is why grown ups DON’T play dress up, we look foolish, and boy, does she ever!
Seriously, you look like an ass in that dress.
Peyton’s dad admits at first he wasn’t too crazy about the pageants but after the first one Peyton was in, he was hooked. Think it was the sparkly thing for him too? However, dad is adamant about this being his last pageant and says, “We’re going to go out with a bang.” Here’s hoping!
The Sham-Brow is poised to blind yet another child.
The day before the pageant, Destiny is having her eyebrows shaped by mom who says, “Eyebrows are the frame of your face.” You know, they really are, ask Joan Crawford. Stephany says that she’d rather have her girls compete natural (lie) but to compete on their level they have to do the heavy hair and makeup. Or, you could find them another hobby. We see mom hot-rolling the hairpiece and my thoughts go back to the Barbie heads you can buy and play beauty shop with. I miss being a kid.
Over at Karmen’s house, she’s getting into a spray-tan tent that her mother purchased so they can spray-tan at home. I am all over the spray-tan situation and wish I could get one of those machines for my house, although it would look pretty awkward in the living room. Well, of course Karmen throws a fit like her mother is spraying her with lighter fluid or something. She starts crying and whining because it’s cold, which no shit, but beauty is pain!
Please! Call my therapist! Number 3 on speed dial!
Peyton heads over to the barbershop to get his hair trimmed. Hope he gets a dirty word shaved into the back of it. The barber asks him if pageants aren’t for little girls, and Peyton’s dad punches him. Well, maybe only mentally. Peyton’s mom voices over that Peyton is proof that he can do anything a girl can do at a pageant and more. Woo-ooo, big man! Are you kidding me with this? He’s not a girl quarterback! Clearly she wishes she had a little girl instead of two boys. He may grow up to be a florist after all.
Stephany is practicing with her girls who are both dressed like Girls Gone Wild underagers. They have belly shirts on and are wearing shorts with what might as well say “Juicy” on the backsides. Damn, woman, you ARE getting them ready to strip. I’m hoping there is a dad in there somewhere, balancing out this nonsense.
Wow, extrapolate that out 10 years when she runs away.
Karmen is dropped off at her coach’s place for some training. Coach Tiffany (would you expect anything less?) trains her to be “national quality” onstage. Uh-huh. Heather interviews that a coach costs anywhere from $40 to $130 per hour, so they only use their coach once a month. Unfortunately, it is not money well-spent as Karmen spends most of her time ignoring her coach, standing face-first in the corner (good move, actually), and playing with the curtains. When she starts playing tic-tac-toe alone on a white board, the coach threatens to get Karmen’s mother. She’s playing tic-tac-toe alone and loses – go get a therapist instead!
When did kicking coaches become acceptable?
I could have used that trick in elementary school.
Peyton is getting ready for the pageant by playing on an ATV with his brother while his parents look over all of his trophies in his room. Dad tells Mom that they will have to get rid of most of these because they cover his room. Or, you could just leave them until he’s ready to get rid of them. Why do you have to hide your son’s pageantry? Let him wear the crowns and prance around, dad, it won’t hurt. Heh.
Mom, please stop asking me for the margarine, I have none!
There is definitely a quiet fight going on between the mom and dad that even they don’t see – mom sees this as she’s about to lose that connection with her son, that he’s moving over to more “manly” things like crashing head-first into dirt with a very dangerous vehicle. Dad sees it as getting his son out of something “cutesy” although he has enjoyed the pageants. Pageants that are now going away forever, like the trophies he feels they need to trash.
Dad does bring up a good point, though, that some of the crowns Peyton won are girl crowns. Seriously, if you are going to include boys in pageants, bring on the boy crowns. Also, Peyton? If you aren’t going to use those “girl” crowns, I know someone who would gladly take them off your hands….
Pageant day! Not to waste ANY time on letting her child develop neck muscles, one mother brings her 2-month old baby to the pageant. Yes, let your newbie hang out with kids and their germs before she can even focus on large objects. Good thinking, Mom of the Year. “I think she could be Miss America or President of the United States.” Well, at least your goals are reasonable and realistic.
Over-glitter and I will eat your liver. I’m not kidding.
There are 90 kids competing today, which totally exhausts me and I’m not even there. As the kids are getting ready, bleach blonde elderly announcer from I think the Kentucky Celebrity Pageant sticks her head into the dressing room and reminds people to register (duh), then says, “Remember, glitter is for your dresses not your hair or face.” No fair! I say glitter everywhere! Is this a glitz pageant or a faux glitz pageant, lady? Now go dye your roots!
My liver is too young to be eaten!
In an edit that is hilarious, they immediately cut over to Daylee who motions like she’s going to vomit, then she says, “My belly’s hurting.” That lady made my belly hurt too. Or maybe it’s because that huge hairpiece is putting off Daylee’s equilibrium and she’s getting seasick? Actually, she’s sporting a bit of a cold. Dang. Stephany thinks it’s going to be tough competition today. And how!
Moms, be jealous my dimples are in my cheeks
and not in my thighs!
Daylee is up first and for someone who is sick, she works it! Excellent dimples, you should bottle those and sell them. She’s really cute onstage. Stephany finally admits to what we all know, that every mom there is a stage mom. FINALLY someone owns up to the crazy. I applaud you Stephany. And feel bad for you.
Check out the stage mom in the back.Yeah, her kid is loving life right now.
Now it’s time for the boys. Most of the boys look like they’d rather die than be there, one is wetting his pants I think.
In case anyone wonders, this is the moment he becomes a serial killer.
Here comes Peyton! Talk about doing a great job! He struts, he poses, he vogues, dammit. He tips his hat, dusts off his shoulders, and whips off his jacket! He did a great job and mom tells him she’s proud of him. She’ll be in pieces by the end of the day, just wait.
He’s going to be great when he takes over
The Tonight Show in about 20 years.
Karmen is throwing a fit about getting ready and her mother counts to three, which ladies, NEVER WORKS. “What happens when I get to three?” Heather asks. Nothing, giving how she continues not to listen to you. “Why are you being so contrary today?” Heather asks. “Mommy, I’m just tired and starving!” Karmen smarts back. Well eat a granola bar, go throw it up, and get back here. Geez, do I have to think of everything?
I will either count to three or deny you food…
it’s really up to you.
“She’s had off days before,” Heather says, “and you just chalk that up to nature…or whatever you want to call it.” I call it your kid being a brat and really not enjoying the pageant circuit as much as you do. But mostly, I just call it her being a brat.
Destiny is fussing a little and it’s starting to take too much time to get her ready. They are ready for the group lineup and Destiny is nowhere to be found! Crap! They call her out and she is not there, and bleach-blonde is in NO MOOD for these shenanigans. She apologizes to the crowd and tells them “they were supposed to be here at 3:15.” Damn them and their hair pieces.
Stephany takes a moment to attend to her Labradoodle.
Oh, Jon and Kate, will your “Plus 8″ be expanded to include your attorneys? Wahhh!
Destiny finally makes it to the stage after about a 4-mile trek to the stage. That’ll cost her! If she had missed it, she wouldn’t have been eligible for the awards no one cares about like best hair, photogenic, and biggest pain in the ass. Thank God she avoided that landmine!
Destiny comes onstage and looks pretty relaxed and very glam in that white dress. She enjoys singing, dancing, and pageantry. And? Math is hard! Getting off the stage, she air-kisses her sister. Swell!
Good to see she avoided the rigor mortis-look of other contestants.
Peyton is dressing as a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle as his “outfit of choice” and once again, he works it. He says he’s going to play air guitar then sticks his tongue out. Good thinking, because without the tongue, the whole thing really doesn’t work.
Karmen’s being a brat and whining. “I think I’m going to win. I feel a lot prettier than other girls,” she says. That’s because they can’t see your insides right now. Karmen tries to change her routine at the last minute and her mother is like, “OH HELL NO are you going to be doing that.” A little girl behind Karmen leans forward and whispers, “You’re crazy!” HA! Karmen says, “What?” like she’s never heard that before. Heather quickly says, “Just say ‘I’m a little rambunctious.’ ” Whatever works for you, sister.
Apple and tree, people, apple and tree.
Karmen does a good job onstage and Heather says she doesn’t think she’s a crazy mom. Then through a series of hilarious edits, it’s pretty clear she is. We see her doing the routine, twisting, turning, smiling, and basically doing Karmen’s routine offstage. Heather says she’s really proud of Karmen and Karmen says, “Yeah, I’m really proud of myself.” We’re so pleased for you.
Think the overalls were that guy’s outfit of choice?
Daylee comes out in a cute “outfit of choice” with her grandmother, and her mother says she thinks Daylee has a good chance even though the competition is tough. Lots of the outfits don’t look like they were the kids’ choices, and my heart goes out to the one whose parents (mom) made him dress like a Buckingham Palace guard. Sweet Christ!
On second look, I think he’s dressed as a nutcracker.
Peyton gets out there and does his best air guitar. He’s really good. His dad says he’s proud of him but I think it has more to do with the fact that this is the LAST time Peyton will be out struttin’ his stuff. His mom hugs him and you know she’s going to lose it soon.
Suck on this, Aerosmith!
Karmen’s outfit of choice? Cleopatra. Are you kidding me? Destiny is dressed sort of like a snow bunny and she’s fussing a bit. Her mother tells her she doesn’t care if she doesn’t win…”Not my crown…not my trophy.” But deep down it really is, what with you living vicariously through your kid, right? Right?
You know, I prefer the sparkly tiaras, but one
with a snake could come in handy.
Karmen gets onstage and does her best Cleopatra – she holds her leg up and out straight, which, what? Then she does a backbend and walks over backward. Yikes! As she gets off the stage her mother says, “She was off, waaaay off,” to another woman. Way to rat out your kid. Also? I’d like to see you do that with your fat ass!
CRISIS! Peyton has a huge booger in his nose. Get it! GET IT! Phew. Dad helps to avert the crisis. Next time, code phrase should be “Bat in the cave!”
I wish you were a girl so this could go on forever
without any stigma attached to it!
Time for crowning, and you know there are more supreme titles than a Pizza Hut menu. With the boys involved, it just doubles the number of supremes – boys ruin everything!
Daylee is really being a trouper with her cold and she does have great dimples. She wins Most Photogenic, but nothing else, which as you know means she moves up to win the Supreme title. “You done so good,” her mother says, and English teachers everywhere weep.
This Sicilian thing must end!
Peyton’s up! He wins Best Dressed and goes on to compete in the Supreme title for boys, which may not be as competitive as we think since he’s only competing with 2 other boys. Destiny doesn’t win anything but she will be going on to compete for the Supreme title. And what about our little gem Karmen? She wins Little Miss Celebrity Queen and as you know, winning means losing the Supreme title.
What makes you think I stress-eat?
“Karmen didn’t Supreme,” her mother says, creating a new verb, “and I think she’s a little disappointed.” She is or you are? Tell the truth. Karmen interviews with a face that makes it clear her soul has died. “I didn’t win Supreme, but I did win a crown,” she says in a monotone voice that will eventually drive her first husband mad.
Listening to her complain about not winning while
wearing a crown on her head is like listening
to the Queen of England complain about taxes. Suck it!
Heather says, “I don’t really think she deserved the Supreme.” Heather, go eat a doughnut to assuage your sadness over what apparently is your loss. “She was off a little bit,” she continues. Karmen walks up to her mother and blatantly hands her the crown as if to say, “Here are your winnings.” She says, “Can we go now?” Interviewing offstage, she says in the dead monotone of a zombie, “I’m smiling on the inside.” Only if “smiling” means “dying.”
Here’s your damn crown. HAPPY NOW?
Who will win the Grand Supreme? Daylee wins for her age group! OH MY GOD I LOVE THAT CROWN! It is super tall and has lots of sparklies! I must have it! Grand Supreme boy? Well, there is only one boy onstage, right? So it’s Peyton! He gets a blue-bonnet-margarine-like crown. His mom bursts into tears and even his dad chokes up, and I’m wondering why they just don’t continue competing if they are going to miss it this much? Weird.
BEST CROWN EVER although I say that each week, don’t I?
The Grand Supreme winner with the highest score in the land, or at least Charleston, West Virginia? Destiny! She got a perfect score, even with showing up late. So Destiny and her sister Daylee both win Supreme in their age groups.
But wait – there’s more. They announce that Peyton is retiring from the tragically busy life of pageantry. His mom cries, his dad gets choked up, Peyton looks sad. People, let him compete, he rocks the pageantry world. “We wish him well in his future endeavors,” a phrase which makes me shudder since my former company used that every time someone got laid off and they announced it on the intranet. Basically, it’s “We wish this person well as they sign up for unemployment!”
You are adorable! Well done!
The judges kiss Peyton and wish him well in his four-wheeler competition. Be brave, young Peyton, and remember – the crowns won’t work as well as a helmet!
See you at the Extreme Games, bitches!