Pinky's Book Link

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Pinky and the Surf Life Savers

Pinky the Surf Girl
The subject of today’s post is a particularly embarrassing incident I still cringe over decades after the event.

When I turned nineteen and had recently been dumped by my boyfriend of two years, my mother suggested I use the resulting heart-break weight loss to my advantage. (The boyfriend didn’t actually dump me… he just stopped calling me. Just like that, after two years… bloody b#stard.)

Mum knew a lady who was scouting out a possible entrant for the local Surf Life Saving Club’s Surf Girl Quest.

“It will get you out of your funk, Pinky.” Mum encouraged and put my name forward with my semi-reluctant and sceptical assent. Hanging out with a bunch of beefy life-savers and p#ssing off my ex-boyfriend was a strong motivational factor behind my decision.

I was accepted and spent the next few months in a whirlwind of selling meat tray raffle tickets at the pub, organising beach parties and progressive dinners and desperately trying not to gain any weight.

The end of the quest quickly arrived and I had to fly down to the big smoke to stay in a hotel with the other 50 odd entrants for the lead up to the final judging.

We contestants had to be interviewed by the judges and parade around in day wear, evening wear and swimmers. The judges would decide on the finalists and the winners would be announced on a live telly broadcast on the last night.

The worst thing was we were staying at a stunning hotel, all meals included and none of us could eat anything for fear of nurturing a pot belly.

Anyway, in preparation for the big night all the girls were required to attend a rehearsal with Mike Higgins (the host) for the big glitzy broadcast.

“Girls! This is very important information… ” stressed a world weary Mike, “If you don’t listen and you are selected as a finalist you will do the wrong thing and make a fool of yourself on blah…blah…blah......”

Pinky had drifted off into Pinky Dreamland, visualising Mars Bars, hamburgers and big glasses of chocolate milk floating on pink clouds and had stopped paying attention long ago.

The evening arrived and we all paraded around in our evening wear for the cameras then huddled in the green room waiting to see if our names were called out as finalists.

While I sat dreaming of the decadent food I was going to devour as soon as this boring rubbish finished, I felt one of the other girls shove me in the ribs,

“Pinky! That’s you. They called your name! You’re one of the finalists!”

I must add there was a hint of incredulity in her voice.

“Oh sh#t! What am I supposed to do?” I yelped.

“Go out backstage and change into your swimmers like they told us to at rehearsal!” she said impatiently, pushing me towards the door.

It was dark backstage and my eyes were still adjusting to the dearth of light. I couldn’t see any of the other girls. Oh well, I thought, I’ll get changed here anyway. 

Whilst I balanced on one foot, stark naked, in a particularly ungainly stance as I attempted to squeeze my feet into the swimmers, something caught my eye. 

It was a crowd of discomforted, fidgeting stage hands and camera guys waiting to go on stage. Oh… and also Grant Kenny (the famous 80's iron man) who was presenting the awards that night.

Of course the other girls were in the toilet getting changed. They were where they’d been told to go because they had listened to the instructions.

I didn’t reach the dream of winning the Surf Girl crown that night, but you know those dreams you have where you are suddenly naked in front of everyone, I brought that dream to reality.