Close But No Cigar. Again.
I’ve got to give the organizers credit. They seem to be learning that there are men who participate in these contests. Tonight’s was originally billed as “House Maid” but when the day rolled around, it was rephrased to “Housemaid/Butler.”
Of course, I understand why few men actually participate. It’s really a losing proposition in terms of performance. I really thought I had a chance tonight, but alas it was not to be. Let me introduce tonight’s alter-ego — Head Butler, Mr. Zepp.
The problem with this theme is that there’s not a lot of leeway in it. Having taken themes and run them to the extreme to little effect, I hoped that cleaving closer to the archetype might prove to be a better strategy. This is a classic English butler look with morning coat and red vest. The rim-less glasses are right off Angus Hudson’s face on the classic PBS drama Upstairs Downstairs. The bit of watch chain is actually a bit of necklace that’s embedded in my body to give the look.
The issue with this outfit is the posing. Whenever there’s something in your hand, walking, standing, and posing becomes a problem. Luckily my Secret Source of Animation work took pity on me and made me some very nice custom poses, including a bent-armed, stiff-backed walk along with some very amusing turns and holds. The silver salver became a serious prop in this routine. The card is even a member of the English House of Lords during the time period that Upstairs, Downstairs was supposed to have been played out in – 1903.
I’m left to assume that I’m just too stupid to play this game. Or maybe the issue is that I’m too subtle. One has to wonder if the judge even knew what I was doing out there. In the post-contest feedback, I was informed that I placed fourth (again) and that the judge was really taken by all the girls in their uniforms — and I suppose that was the rationale. She awarded one skimpy, one historical, and one
I took advantage of the offer for feedback from the organizer and was told that there wasn’t anything I could do better.
What would I do differently?
I don’t know. This one was just about perfect.
The custom poses were appropriate to the costume and the theme. The outfit was exact. I can’t think of anything I could have added that would have made me more butler-ish. Even the cranberry vest was within norm. The poses might have been a bit smoother maybe, but I certainly saw worse — and considerably less appropriate ones — on stage tonight.
So, I don’t know. Chalk it up to experience.
At least I got my two votes.
And it was fun planning and plotting to be perfect.
But very disappointing when it didn’t pay off.
* Update: My mistake and looking at the costume in this photo, I have to say it’s much better looking that it looked in the lag fest. I have to give the judge a little more credit this morning than I did in the heat of disappointment last night.
Suit: Morning Coat (cranberry) – sf Designs
Shoes: Sebastian (charcoal) – JCS Shoes
Gloves: Freebie Gift at the sf Designs High Society Shop
Glasses: Plume – freebie gift at primOptica
Salver and Card: Roland Zepp
Shape: David Beckham – Body Doubles
Skin: Emil 3 Tan – Redgrave
Hair: Hibici – Unclewebs