Mrs. Iowa, saved by Mrs. Tennessee, doing fine, writes Mrs. Idaho

I recently made fun of one beauty pageant contestant, so it’s only fair that I give props to another, theRyan
fast-acting Mrs. Iowa, who, I’m sure, knows how to find America on a world map.

Mrs. Tennessee was bitten by a rattlesnake on the way to rehearsals
for the Mrs. America pageant — and was treated on the scene by one of
her competitors for the crown, Mrs. Iowa.

Christina Ryan, 28, was leaving a breakfast Sunday at the Loews
Ventana Canyon Hotel in Tucson, Ariz., when the wily serpent — coiled
at the bottom of some concrete steps — struck, biting her on the foot,
according to The Tennessean newspaper.

Wily serpent indeed. We can only imagine how long he had been planning this attack. I’m sure investigators are doing a background check on him, making sure he and Mrs. Tennessee didn’t have any sort of prior relationship.

Luckily, Mrs. Iowa — nurse Taryn Schuyler, 30 — was with her and was able to extract the snake’s fang from Ryan’s skin.

“I guess he bit me and let go,” Ryan told The Tennessean. “I ran up
the stairs and became totally hysterical … It hurt worse than

Worse than childbirth? I didn’t know that anything was worse than childbirth, other than perhaps listening to Roseanne sing.

The whole ordeal threw a wrench into preparations for the Mrs. America show.

"Rehearsal was postponed due to Mrs. Tennessee getting struck by a rattlesnake," wrote Mrs. Idaho, Lauralyn Salinas, on her blog
on Sunday, where she posted photos of the viper. "It was right by the
entrance to our rehearsal. She is going to be fine, but was taken to
the hospital just to be sure. Very Scary! Rehearsal will be a different
location today. Our thoughts are with her for a quick recovery."

Wow, I’m impressed with the Mrs. America contestants. Not only does
Mrs. Iowa know how to extract a snake’s fang, Mrs. Idaho knows how to

As for whether the snake was planted there in a “Miss Congeniality”
sort of plot to rig the upcoming pageant — which unlike Miss America is
for married women — the executive director of the Mrs. Tennessee
America Pageant said she didn’t think that was the case.

"I would certainly hope not," Delayna Bridges told the newspaper,
laughing. "Mrs. Arizona won Mrs. America last year, so, hopefully, they
are feeling pretty happy right now and not feeling the need to sabotage
our girl."

there’s more pressure on this year’s Mrs. Arizona, because last year’s
Mrs. Arizona won it all. They’d better do a background check on her
too. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that herpetology is one of her hobbies and Tonya Harding is one of her role models.

If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through and You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.

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