The Betting Odds Take Shape

Betting on the Miss Universe pageant is now seriously underway. If you are interested in placing a wager, you can go to a number of web sites, including this one. On this site, at least, the current favorite is Miss Venezuela, Ly Jonaitis; click to enlarge:

A plausible choice, at 8 to 1. What I would really like to know, and what the interviews on the Miss Universe site entirely fail to tell us, is her opinion of Mr. Chavez. This would, for me, make all the difference, but we know only that Miss Venezuela is “proud of [her] country.”
In second place in the current betting is my own favorite, Miss Brazil, at 10 to 1.
At 12 to 1 are Miss Nicaragua and Miss Greece. Miss Nicaragua is indeed a strong competitor; click to enlarge:

Once again, a key question is her attitude toward the Sandanistas, but the pageant’s site again gives us no clue. We do know from her interview that Xiomara wants to be an architect–“always respecting the environment”–grew up playing baseball with boys, and volunteers at her local fire department. Not bad.
Miss Greece has suddenly joined the favorites, for reasons that aren’t clear to me.

Miss Greece, who is from an Athens suburb, says she is “the perfect example of the modern woman.” Well, close, anyway.
Some of my favorites aren’t currently favored by the bettors. More about them another time. The Miss Universe site has a lot of interesting features, if you explore a bit. For example, you can watch a video of some of the contestants enjoying a Mexico City night club here. In what could be a preview of the talent competition, some of the contestants sing a U2 tune from the stage. Or you can see a swimsuit photo shoot on the beach here.
We’ll continue our coverage as the excitement mounts toward the finale on the 28th.

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