The winner of today’s Miss Pink Garlic contest in Lautrec will receive a crown – and a double-edged sword. After all, the smell of garlic on the breath won’t help the beauty queen to win friends and influence people.
And that’s part of what a pageant title offers its winner. Just ask any of the young women featured in Channel 4’s recent Beauty Queen or Bust series.
The show follows the fortunes of a group of young women as they prepare for glamorous titles such as Miss Black Country and Miss Fylde Coast. They are happy to overlook some of the more outdated ideals of the contest in the hope of escaping the poverty of their lives.
However, a trip to Lautrec’s annual pink garlic festival might prove more than they are up for.
The event is held in the town in Tarn, in the Midi-Pyrénées, on the first Friday of August each year.
It first took place in 1970. The festival draws the crowds to the city to celebrate the local pink garlic. There are various competitions, food stalls and dancing. Tasting the local garlic soup is also de rigueur for anyone attending.
Thereby hangs the sting in the tail – for some at least. Me, I love garlic soup. However, I suspect that the beauty queen hopefuls might be willing to do a lot to secure the title, but they won’t do that.