All total, through the means of a Google Hangout--hundreds, if not thousands, of people were able to touch the soul and share the life’s journeys of a woman of charm, youth and social elegance. My fellow panelists and I, in what we call the “film strip”, sat across the digital room from Erin Brady and asked fun and probing questions to the calm, humble, yet passionate role model.
Dozens among those who were viewing from afar chimed in with their questions and comments via chat.
We watched and wondered, how Miss Brady, who will soon pass on her crown to the next pageant winner this weekend in Baton Rouge, could possibly stay so grounded--despite the idolatry and bloated egos--that arise when one person stands out among tens of millions.
And to cap the beautiful moment—all of us participating, whether asking questions, chatting or simply being a spectator, were in the same room---yet perhaps thousands of miles away from one another. Each one of us was located in front of our own individual computer or mobile device, taking in the wonderment of this embryonic, but arguably golden age of broadcasting--while also taking in the magnificence of a woman who the world now knows as Miss USA 2013.
So, please watch Part One of our Google Hangout webcast and / or read the transcript. You can also enable closed caption on Youtube to read the narrative while watching the hangout.
Participating in the "film strip" asking questions were Google Plus and Hangout Superstars: co-producer Susan Finch, Ronnie Bincer, Mia Voss, Martin Shervington, Michael Daniels, Jessica Dewell and Stephan Hovnanian questioned Miss USA 2013 about her life, ambitions, future plans and other matters of fun. Read the interview on Bayoubuzz.com http://www.bayoubuzz.com or click closed caption and read the caption as the video plays.
Finch: Hi, everybody, and welcome! We are so excited that you can join us with our visit with Miss USA Erin Brady. Mia Voss and I and Stephen Sabludowsky had a great visit a couple of weeks ago, and she had so much fun with us. She's ready to join us again, and this time, as you can see, it was a quite popular event because our film strip is full! So welcome, Erin, I'm so glad you're here!
Brady: Thank you. Me, too. I'm glad we were able to squeeze another chat in down here in the bayou.
Finch: Yeah, because you're only there for, what, another week?
Brady: Another week.
Finch: Okay. So we're going to catch up with you a little bit. Mia and I were talking to you about things like food and all the special things you've been doing while you've been there. Then we'll let everybody jump in.
Finch: So, tell us, let's start with the food. What has been your favorite thing that you've had so far?
Brady: Well, I'm an oyster junkie, so I judged an oyster shucking contest one of the first days I was here in New Orleans. So I was able to go and check out Bourbon Street and have some of the best oysters that I have ever had.
Finch: Erin, we had to mute you for just a moment. You have an extra window open that has a video playing.
Voss: Raise your hand as to who has done it
Brady We’ve all done it
Finch: Why don't you find that extra window and turn it off so we can get back to visiting with you? And then you can un-mute yourself at the top.
Voss: I'm excited she got to do an oyster shucking contest. How fun is that?
Brady: I think that's like a bonus, isn't it? Just because you are who you are, you get to be in all these special things, whatever you want to choose.
Finch: Yeah, I mean, all your favorite stuff and "Hm, what do I like best?"
Voss: She’s so excited she’s down there having herself (unclear), right?
Finch: Oh yeah, I mean, sure, everywhere she shows up everyone wants her to pose for photos and things. I would.
Brady: I'm back on! Sorry. I just heard myself over and over and over. Like a bad dream.
Sabludowsky: That happens when you're Miss USA.
Brady: Yeah, it happens. Crazy week.
Sabludowsky: By the way, I do want to thank the Bayoubuzz audience for helping out with this, being involved, and I certainly want to thank all the people on the panel. So I'm sure that this will be a really exciting time. Let me just ask one question and that is - I asked you this question last time about Donald Trump - and I just want to start off again and ask you: what type of person is he really? Forget his hair. What kind of person is he?
Brady: To be honest, I've had the pleasure of meeting him and hanging out with him on a personal level probably seven or eight times now. I really clicked with him. I'm a businesswoman, so it's been nice to kinda share that commonality with him. He's an icon. It's just quite the presence to be in with him. Anywhere we go, he's just striking. People gravitate towards him. I think it's very interesting to be in that inner circle for the few times that I've had the chance to do so. I really like him. I think he's a very opinionated person, but he obviously knows what he's doing in life. I'm very lucky that I've had the chance to interact with him and speak with him; not just in the pageant world, but actually on a personal level, too. So I'm very lucky.
Sabludowsky: That's really terrific. I think my audio and video are now working. Susan?
Finch: Yeah, you sound much better.
Sabludowsky: Susan? Why don't you introduce yourself, then, and why don't you, if you don't mind, tell us something about yourself, and why don't you ask a question, please?
Finch: Allright. Susan Finch; I'm Susan Finch Solutions. I do just about everything you need online, from graphics to website design to wrangling comments to putting comments graphics and re-purposing your content. But my question for Erin, and everybody probably ask you what your favorite part is of being Miss USA. What I want to know is when you pass the crown, what will be the thing you will not miss?
Brady: I will not miss having somebody else tell me what I do every day. That's been the hardest part for me, being 26 and being a very independent woman and having somebody else plan your day-to-day activities and where you have to be and what you have to wear. Yes, it's great, but after a year of it, I think that's the one thing that I will be kinda relieved to get back; my independence and the ability to plan my day-to-day life will be very nice. So I'm actually leaving from Baton Rouge and going away for a week and a half to California to explore Northern California. I've only been there once before. So I'm looking forward to that because I don't have to worry about anything, and it will be a very stress-free trip for me.
Sabludowsky: It looks to me like you're going to trade your tiara for a halo.
Brady: You know, I thought it was a nice change for the day today. I've been wearing the crown all week, all year, so I figured I'd get used to not having it on all the time.
Sabludowsky: Sure. Stephan, you're next.
Hovnanian: I have a very, very serious question for you.
Sabludowsky: Why don't you tell us about yourself?
Hovnanian: Sure. I'm Stefan Hovnanian. I kinda do a lot of the same type of things Susan does. Focus a lot on Google Plus and business, trying to weave that whole thing together for you to build a great web strategy. But my very important, serious question for you, Erin, is: if you had three apps on your phone, what are they? Only three apps.
Erin: I would have my CNN app because I'm a news person and I like to know what's going on in the world. Seamless.com, which is the ability to order anything in New York City to your doorstep in about fifteen minutes. And because I'm a finance chick, my bank account app because I need to know what kind of money I have so I can live my day-to-day schedule.
Voss: So you can order from seamless.
Erin: And I can order from seamless and make sure I have enough funding to do so. I have a question for you, Stefan, are you Armenian?
Stephan: I sure am.
Erin: Your last name gave it away.
Hovnanian: Yeah, it tends to do that.
Brady: I'm a quarter Armenian; that's why I ask. My grandma is 100%.
Hovnanian: Oh, cool.
Sabludowsky: Which quarter?
Hovnanian: The best quarter.
Sabludowsky: Which quarter?
Bincer: The French Quarter.
Brady: That's very fitting since I'm down here.
Sabludowsky: That's right, that's right. Now, Ronny, Ronnie Bincer Ronny runs the Mastery Center where all these people are coming from. This is where we learn all the tricks in trade. Ronny Bincer, the Mastery, the Maestri group. Why don't you ask a question and tell us more about yourself, please?
Bincer: You bet. Hi, I'm Ronny Bincer. Hi, Erin. I'm Ronny Bincer, the hangout helper. I help people use this wonderful, magical communication tool that we're using right now called Hangout and Hangouts on Air. It's a phenomenal way to communicate your message. That's what I do. And I have a question for Erin. Erin, over the last year, how have you seen the technology change such that your job and communicating your message is different than maybe when you first started?
Brady: Yeah, well, I think Skype and FaceTime have been great for me because I'm a family person, and I'm not always able to see my friends and family. My grandma, who's 76, purchased an Ipad Mini so she could FaceTime me when I was in New York. So that's been really great for me because I can show her around my apartment and take her around the different locations that I travel to. So it's been really nice for her to get an inside scoop as to what's going on in my life even though I'm not as close to her physically as I used to be. I think that I was really not tuned in with Instagram and Skype and Twitter before all of this because I kinda was a private person. But being Miss USA, they are very, very adamant about making sure that I know how important social media is. So I think, for me, I have learned so much about branding yourself and marketing yourself through social media. And I think it's been amazing because it's been great to have my fans being able to follow my journey being from all over the world through social media. So it's been really a great tool that I'm glad I've got to know a little bit more about.
Bincer: Quick follow-up with that. Is there anyone who tries to manage your presence? In other word, when you are on social media, are you just free to do whatever, or is there someone sort of watching over your shoulder?
Brady: Um, I think I'm free to do whatever as long as it doesn't hurt the image of Miss USA. I think, I have to take into consideration that I am being watched by my fans and a lot of younger demographics. So I just have to be very choosy as to what I decide to post. Again, it's hard, because everybody has a phone and can video you and take pictures of you and put things up that you may not want to be up. So you have to be cautious everywhere you are and everywhere you go, that you're making the right decisions for the year because, heaven forbid, somebody snaps a shot of you doing something naughty and puts it all over the web.
Sabludowsky: Don't want that. By the way, just want to mention that the panel here are what I call the superstars of Google Plus and Google Hangout. So I really thank them for joining us. Michael Daniels, you're next.
Daniels: Oh, great! Thank you. I appreciate that. Hey, gang, how are you? So glad to be here. I do a lot of different things with Hangouts. Lot of different things! Trying different things. I'm a baseball coach, anywhere from a baseball coach all the way up to helping with doing this. Getting the comments and stuff, that's what I was helping Stephen with today. My question to you: Obviously, being a beautiful woman as you are, how tough is that to date for this year? How do you pick that? How do you read through that and the, I don't know, the not-so-cool guys, let's say?
Brady: Well, I have a very easy year because I've been engaged for almost three years.
Brady: Somebody already scooped me up a few years ago. So I didn't really have to deal with much of that.
Daniels: Fantastic, fantastic...
Brady: So, I was kinda lucky. I could wean through all of that with showing them my ring finger, you know.
Finch: I have to add, Michael Daniels, the last time he missed out with Mia and with me, he was like: "Oh man, I wanted to do that!"
Brady: Now you got your chance!
Daniels: I know, I did. I also have been doing this thing with this game show type of thing, too. I've been doing this for the past couple of Fridays and Sundays. I get all kinds of stuff I'm working on. Maybe we can sneak you in as a guest, maybe one time or so.
Brady: Oh, I would love that! I love game shows!
Daniels: There you go.
Sabludowsky: Mia, you are next.
Voss: Hey, Erin!
Brady: Hey, Mia!
Voss: Good to see you.
Brady: Good to see you, too.
Voss: So, I am Mia Voss and I have two shows. I have the Mia Connect Powerchat, and I have the Food and Booze Show. That's what I do here on Google. I also have a building inspection business because I like to mix it up. Right? I chucked it all for a hard had so, Erin, I'm so impressed with you. I love that you have this business background. So what are you going to do now for business as an entrepreneur?
Brady: I have been told by seven people in the past month that I should write a book about my life and my journey. So I'm absolutely going to do that. If it takes me thirty years, I don't care. I feel like writing all of my life down is going to be really cool and important. So I definitely would love to do that. But I also really want to stick to my finance background because it's my interest, and I think it's a great field to be in, especially living in New York City. But I would love to combine it with entertainment. So maybe pursuing something on CNN, CNBC...I would love to be part of a show that can incorporate and educate people about the business world and finance world, but kinda more in a fun way. I think bringing personality to something that's kind of a bland subject to many is going to be the right technique to make it so that everybody wants to learn about it. That's by goal. I think once I get back and clear my brain, I'll be able to figure things out. Update my resume with Miss USA, which is going to be a lot harder than I expected. But I'm looking forward to it. I think, for such a planner, it's really hard for me not to have something lined up for right when I return. But I also think it's a blessing because it has been such a crazy year. So I think a couple of weeks of me just getting my thoughts together will be a lot more beneficial than just jumping right into something new.
Voss: I love the book idea. I think that is great. You'll have a lot to say.
Brady: I'm looking forward to it.
Sabludowsky: As far as you program, the TV program, how about a Hangout program?
Brady That would be great! I think the internet is really the way to go. A lot of people have said, "What about your own Youtube channel?" Or hangout. I think it would be really interesting to kind of incorporate that, too.
Sabludowsky: Well, this team here, you're with the best team. Absolutely. Now, Martin is now in California, although he's from Britain. He's the comedian of our group. Sure, absolutely. Martin?
Shervington: I'm doing well. The thrill to meeting you. You're ready, aren't you? I want to run something past you because you seem kinda progressive; you got business background and I know some people will look at the Miss USA and the Miss World sort of and see that as almost a bit traditional. And you've probably run up against that. You get occasionally people comment.
Shervington: So how about this? Over the next, fifty, hundred years, technology is really going to progress really quickly. You know Donald Trump. So I'm going to pitch you an idea, right here and now. You've got Miss USA, you're Miss USA. Because you're Miss Universe, as well, I think you won that title?
Brady: No, we have a Miss Universe. She's from Venezuela.
Shervington: Okay, so there's a Miss Universe. Okay, that's that. So we got that as a concept. What about this: a Miss MultiVerse. We tie into string theory, and we look up which Erin Brady would have won the Miss USA title based upon the decisions she made in her life? What about that?
Shervington: Just hold on to it, no need to act now. There's no need to rush. You don't need to call me. You can come back to me in 20-30 years time. Miss MultiVerse.
Brady: I like it.
Shervington: Okay, good.
Shervington: Miss MultiVerse
Brady: Like it
Sabludowsky: And your question Martin,
Shervington: My question is are you in? You don't have to tell me that. I'm going to wait. I'm going to keep that an open ended question. I don't want to know yet. Stephen. So, how do you deal with it, when people want to know, it's from the eighties, or the seventies or sixties, it's a throw-back. You are darn busy. How do you deal with that.
Brady: Well, I'm a very unique individual. I think me coming into this pageantry, it is very new in my life, so I came in with a very different mindset. It's a job. You know, i went on an interview for two weeks here, or Las Vegas, for the job of Miss USA and I just tell them we are not really what you expect, we just tell them that each girl is really unique. it teaches you self confidence, and the ability to be a public speaker and the face of a brand so you learn how to brand. There's a lot more business involved than people think and i think that being involved in business, being a business girl, I've been able to show sides to people so I think this is a great year for me to kind of take their brand and their name and show people a different side of it.
Jessica: i love it. I'm Jessica.
Brady I Jessica, I recognize you from twitter.
Jessica: Yea, I know. It is really fun to come across you the other day the Official EBrady, I thought that was a fabulous twitter handle for you.
Brady: Thank you
Jessica: That way we can follow you after you retire, after you pass on your crown next week.
Jessica: I am a purposer. I am a digital strategist and I help people and their businesses do, anything related to taking something they have already done and really help them get the most out of it because their ideas are great, sometimes they just need outside advice to look at it and with you being the role model that you are for so many people on so many levels, how did you and yourself identify potential, the potential to say, you know what? "This is what I want to go do. And I know what it takes to do that"
Brady: I think, just the path I have taken in my life, I'm the older sister of three girls so I knew I had that role model already in my blood and I said you know, what a great ability to showcase all of the great things that I have to offer on such a global scale. And when i competed for Miss Connecticut, I went on a whim, and I came first runnerup, the first year but I think it was a blessing because i think I was able to learn about it and kinda bring my own little unique character to it and when i won and i went on to Miss USA I think the great thing is, when I was standing there on the stage with Miss Alabama, the whole rest of the crew were chanting for Connecticut and for me, it is so great because I think I've stayed true to my who I am and I think i have a lot to bring to the table from my heart. And that's what i really wanted to showcase this year and bring all of my great attributes that i think i have and show people that and i think I've done a great job because I've gotten a lot of positive feedback and notes and letters and messages from people who have followed my journey and have told me how much of an impact I've made on them and that's really the special beauty of this. You can stay true to who you are throughout the year and remain very humble and i think it makes a real impact on so many and so I am glad I was able to do that.