Even though Ariadna Gutierrez didn’t technically win the crown of Miss Universe, she’s a goddess in my mind. The way the 21-year old Miss Colombia handled the disaster that was Steve Harvey (I love you Steve, but come on now) wrongly crowning her before taking it back and crowning Miss Philippines was grace beyond measure. But Ariadna Gutierrez has the chance to turn this whole thing around, and give the world a chance to know her beyond that single moment, so what will Miss Colombia do next?
Gutierrez is already treating herself to some well-deserved and honestly necessary R&R after the Harvey debacle. A representative from the Concurso Nacional de la Belleza de Colombia said that Gutierrez has already arrived in Miami on Tuesday to spend some time with her family: “She wants to spend a few quiet days with her family over the holidays and unwind, and she plans on addressing the media when she goes back to Colombia.”
And it’s a double whammy: her birthday is on Christmas Day, which I hope she will spend lounging on the beach and drowning her sorrows in umbrella-filled drinks. Even though she deserves a vacation that lasts a lifetime, as her representative said, Gutierrez will address the Colombian media when she returns home. Many Colombians were extremely bothered by the gaffe, but embraced the moment to speak out about their pride. Even the president of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, weighed in. He initially congratulated Gutierrez for winning, then amended his statement on Twitter: "Ariadna Gutierrez, you are still our Miss Universe! We feel very proud!"
If I had to guess, Ariadna Gutierrez's future will probably look a lot like that of Miss Philippines. After being crowned, the standing Miss Universe spends a year in New York working with charities and advancing their professional goals and humanitarian leadership. Obviously, Gutierrez will not be living in New York, but she already has the vocal support of the president of her country, so I wouldn't be surprised if she were to work with charities and humanitarian aid at home.
Guitierrez is amazing, and even her grace in the post-pageant interviews was inspiring. She posted photos to her Instagram of her momentarily wearing the crown, saying: "The moment will always be with me!"
Gutierrez, even though she did not technically win, is becoming a hero in and of herself. I mean, the woman is already a meme. She has the chance to do whatever she wants with this opportunity, and, judging by her incredibly graceful reaction so far, she'll do what she would have done had she won: use her platform for good.