Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Miss Georgia Prisons 2003

We had a great time Saturday down in Hawkinsville at the Miss Georgia Prisons 2003 pageant. The staff at Pulaski State Prison really pulled together a great event. Next year the pageant comes to East Atlanta (Metro State Prison), so mark your calendars for July 24.

The show didn't get a lot of play in the Atlanta press (The Hawkinsville Dispatch-Union ran a nice two-page spread), but I think the finalists deserve some recognition.

If you don't know, contestants - who must be between 18 and 24 - are judged on four criteria:

1) Looks
2) Talent
3) Offenses
4) Scars, marks, tattoos

Finishing as 4th runner-up (5th place overall), was Lashay Adams.

Lashay is 23 and is 5 years into a life sentence for murder at Pulaski. She's 5'8", 145 pounds. Lashay has a discolored abdomen, but no other scars or tattoos.

Personally, I was surprised that Lashay finished top 10, much less top 5. Her "talent" was interpretive dance. Enough said there. Sure, she's a murderer, and the judges are always swayed by blonde hair and belly rashes, but I just don't see it.

3rd runner-up was Serena Cochran.

Serena is 22 and is 4 years into a 10-year term for robbery and theft by taking at Washington State. She's 5'2", 125 pounds. She has scars on her right hand, abdomen, left leg and right leg, as well as a medium-sized tattoo on her left ankle.

I think this "retro" thing has gotten a bit out of hand. Selena was born in 1981, so how come her hairstyle is from 1980? At the pageant, she had the Olivia Newton-John thing working; even sang "Physical" as her talent. A bit much for me. Nice scars, though - well balanced.

2nd runner-up was Frankie Menefee.

Frankie is just 18 years old and is a year into her 6-year gig for robbery and aggravated assault at Metro State. She's 5'3", 133 pounds. She sports a scar on the left side of her face, but no discolorations or tattoos.

Frankie rocks! She was Diva Supreme Saturday night. She managed to pull off a solo-version of Lady Marmalade that sounded just like Christina, Lil Kim and all those girls. She's also a local girl, having pulled her crimes in DeKalb County, so I was really pulling for her. But she's only 18 and hopefully won't be released before next year's pageant, so I think she'll have the home-cell advantage when the show comes to Metro.

1st runner-up was Ashley Scarborough.

Ashley is 20 years old and is just 6 weeks into a 5-year stint at Metro for drug charges. She's 5'2", 126 pounds and has small tattoos on her left ankle and right arm, and a medium-sized tat on her left shoulder. The tattoos are nicely complemented by the scar and discoloration on the left side of her body.

Ashley's take on Britney Spears' "I'm a Slave 4 U" really got the crowd rocking (especially 2nd runner-up and fellow Metro inmate Frankie, who I think was taking Ashley's performance somewhat literally), and she scored big points on talent. Folks I talked to in the crowd thought Ashley's less-than-impressive drug charges would hurt her, but turns out her "misc. misdemeanor" charge involved lewd behavior with a Coke bottle, and the judges loved that.

Miss Georgia Prisons 2003
Jessica Juanita Cates

Jessie is 20 years old and is 2 months into an 18-year gig at Metro for burglary and related crimes. She's 5'5", 165 pounds with scars on both arms and tattoos on her neck and left wrist.

Wow, who'd have thought that? Jessie Cates? Not exactly the best-looking gal in the bunch, and her Eminem act was pretty weak if you ask me. But she rose to the top on the strength of her record. Burglary, Conspiracy and "Concealing Death of Another". Powerful. The buzz among the judges was that her arm scars were self-inflicted, and nothing wows a crowd like a neck tattoo.

So congratulations Jessie, and congratulations to all the girls who entered this year. You're all winners (except for the being-in-prison thing) in my book.


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