I haven’t written anything about beauty pageants, model runways, fashion shows, A-list celebrities or anything of this sort so far. Truth is, I don’t quite follow any of these (I’m not an enthusiast in these areas), but as and when something appears and catches my attention, I’ll take time to find out what I want to know.
Other than the Miss Universe Malaysia pageant back in 2013 when a good friend of mine participated and got short-listed as a finalist, I’m really out of the scene. Even globally, who’s who and what’s what? (Well, save for Gigi Hadid… Recently got my eyes on her).
That said, I do find some of these reality shows intriguing. It’s even more so when you know someone in it, but in this case (post), I’d like to write on the newly crowned Miss Universe, who’s Miss Universe Philippines (MUP).
When my colleagues first showed me the video of MUP or Pia looking stunned (and stunning in that blue gown too, btw) upon being announced winner, I found it a bit odd as to why she took so long to react to the announcement. It was only later on that news that the emcee made a boo-boo came out (and also which I watched the footage before that where Miss Universe Colombia got crowned) that it made sense.
Anyway, what first caught my interest about Pia was one of her comments I came across somewhere which said that she has been preparing for this since November 2012. Immediately I thought, why 2012? Did she win MUP in 2012 but only got to represent her country in 2015?
I checked out her instagram and youtube videos. But curiousity got better of me and I started stalking her all the way back to 2-3 years ago. I know, I really ‘dak han mou si zhou’. Reason? To see how she was back then, if how she looked was similar to how she looks today, to how she portrays herself (via photos and captions) in social media. I don’t judge where one comes from, but rather how he or she grows in time. And so I was pleasantly surprised that even winding back to 3 years ago, she was already that gorgeous, that well-spoken, that eloquent. (Which some might argue she was already preparing for the 2013 competition then, but still! To be able to keep consistent in the past 3 years in representing yourself is no easy feat)
One of the youtube videos I came across was that of her Q&A in all 3 years of the MUP or Binibining Pilipinas. Yes, Pia took part in the Miss Universe Philippines three times! Talk about persistency, without caring what the rest might think. I personally do not think it’s that easy to keep participating in a public competition after having failed the year before, and the year before that.
But not only that. In 2012 she was placed first runner-up, in 2014 she only made top 15 (a less desirable result from 2013), and finally only made winner in 2015. So basically, she picked herself up from a downgraded result in 2014. If she was moving her way up from 2013 to 2014 then it made sense. But this! It takes more than just the will to keep trying, it takes guts. It takes courage and strength. And a bit of thick skin too, but all worth it as you’re focused and determined to keep giving your all until you get there.
Her answers in the Q&A sessions and in various interviews on youtube were amazing and poised… and just a pleasure to listen to and watch (this considering I’m usually quite particular and stringent about this bit). Her answers in Miss Universe 2015? Absolutely on point. Short, sweet, answers the question so eloquently that leaves you just enough to absorb and want to delve further but not at that point. I used to think longer answers might explain better, but nope, not necessarily now.
My god is she gorgeous. She could pull of so many styles, and of many pictures of her… I like the one below best:
She’s the sort where the more I see, the more I like. In Chinese we call it 耐看.
So many things we can take-away from here… for me, at least:
- To keep pushing on; to keep trying, over and over again despite not winning (or striking the top spot, twice!)
- To do the above with a positive attitude and your head held high
- There is a silver lining in trying and failing. It’s just like job interviews, the more you go for it, the better you get at – because you learn more of tricks of the trade, and you build on that to get better. Practice makes perfect, though I don’t believe in perfection. But I do believe in preparation for when luck strikes,
- Whatever you prepare for today is not and will not go to waste. Do it for yourself. Be it in knowledge, wisdom, experience, a new language, a new skill.
- As long as you focus on yourself and do the right things, do things the right way, leave the rest to the universe — if it’s yours, it will come, at the right time.
- Lastly, it is possible to have beauty with a heart, intelligence, and soul 😉
Not sure if this is true but I also read somewhere that Pia has been the breadwinner of her family since she was 11 years old. If this is validated, my hats off to you even more, Pia!!
P/S: What I’ve written above has not taken into account of her response and reaction post-winning. And reading online media writing about how she has taken everything with such humility and poise made me like and admire her more.