The Mr. Gay Canada pageant is this week September 16, 2008
Posted by Raul in link love, local events.
Tags: local event, Mr. Gay Canada, Vancouver
Credit: Junn on Flickr.
I used to be a fan of pageants. If you wanted to test my photographic memory, you could have asked me the names and countries of each Miss Universe winner since the late 1980s up to about 1997. Right after the Mexican contestants lost very close races (with Laura Elizondo being a very worthy winner when Canada’s Natalie Glebova took the title) I decided to stop watching pageants.
But there’s a couple of pageants I still follow, and one I will be following closely will be the Mr. Gay Canada pageant.
The primary purpose of the Mr. Gay Canada (MGC) is to identify leaders who will take responsibility not only in his own community but on a global stage speaking out for equal rights. MGC is a positive role model and will work on humanizing being gay in the media both queer and mainstream.
PLEASE NOTE: The Mr Gay Canada Competition is a 3-day, indoor/outdoor series of events to help our judges identify a strong spokesman or Ambassador to tell the world about our mission. The Competition includes physical tests and interviews with a panel of international judges. Only 15% of the judging points are assigned to appearance, which means 85% of the points are for qualities other than appearance. [Mr. Gay Canada website]
There are some very relevant and note-worthy elements to discuss here, but there are two that I will just highlight here. First, the fact that 85% of the points are for other qualities. This is an important element for a competition amongst a stereotyped community. Queers, and particularly Vancouver queers are more often than not perceived (even by their peers) as being shallow and just focus on the appearance (six pack abs and perfectly manicured hands). So, this element is perhaps being brought as a way of legitimizing the contest.
The second element is the fact that the contest serves as a way to showcase the diversity of Vancouver and Canada. Why is this relevant? Well, because as you may recall if you’ve read my other posts about queer events and milestones, in other countries, being gay is a crime. In Vancouver, having a gay friend is almost as common as wearing an umbrella (given our rainy weather!).
The Vancouver delegate, Aaron Ursacki, won the 2008 Vancouver’s Next Gay Top Model. And you may ask yourself, how did I end up covering the event? Well, at Third Tuesday on a Monday, one of the promoters pitched the attendees and ended up giving the tickets away to the first person who raised his hand. Even though my dance card is full, and I’ve got events every single night of the week, this was too good a chance to pass, so I’ll be going there on Thursday. I am slightly shocked that they didn’t invite me to the Whistler thingy (given that I *do* indeed cover some queer events), but whatever 🙂 But trust me, if they don’t link to my posts in their Media page, I’m definitely going to be very unhappy 😀