Rye group reclaims the pussy with the pageant

In Arts & Life /

By Barbora Simek

Pinning the tail on the donkey and sculpting with Play-Doh teach you more than hand-eye coordination. At the Vagina Friendly Pageant, 17 contestants had to prove their below-the-belt knowledge through fun and games to snag the crown at the Ram in the Rye last Friday, Nov. 27.

Planned by VDay at Ryerson, the pageant aimed to raise awareness for the International VDay campaign, an initiative to end violence against women around the world.

“To say ‘vagina’ out loud is empowering. This event is about having fun and engaging people who otherwise wouldn’t be engaged,” said Ashley Tran, president of VDay at Ryerson. Along with a group of seven other members and her sister, Tran helped bring the campaign to Ryerson.

“It’s about recognizing that violence against women is a serious cause but it doesn’t mean women need to victimize themselves and be in a depressed state,” said Virginia Tran, one of the event’s organizer. “Instead, we should celebrate.”

At the end of the event, judges finally crowned fourth-year politics student Mihial “Cunning-Ling” Salariu as Most Vagina Friendly .

“My crown is hilarious,” he said.”It is the biggest vagina I have ever seen; fluffy around the sides. She’s a little dry, but I will take care of that.”

Salaris won after pinning the bush on a poster of a woman’s hips, enticing the vagina with clit compliments and moulding a vulva out of Play-Doh.

Other events included completing lyrics to vagina-friendly tunes, a speed banana-split eating contest with the plates placed provocatively by the hips of six female organizers and vagina jeopardy.

Yet the night also educated the crowd about the impact and severity of violence against women and girls.

“I didn’t how much violence there actually is,” said Balu Kanagalingam, a third-year Business Management and Accounting student.

“It’s really good for men to know that because we have to make sure that the next generations of men learn from the older generations.”

Salariu claimed the title from collecting the most money from the crowd after his pitch of what he’d do if he won, and after some deliberation from the judges.

“It’s nice that it’s bringing the issue of violence against women and girls out in the open,” he said. “You can address violence as a whole, but when you address specific issues it makes it easier for people to identify and do something about the problem.”

Before hitting the streets with his sash and crown Salariu added, “I am sure there are going to be some people in here who are going to be able to leave and say the word ‘pussy’ without blushing.”


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