Who knew a beautiful smile could get you a spot in the Olympics?
In preparation for the Beijing Summer Olympics 2008, Chinese high school girls are going through a grooming process in which they're expected to wear painfully high heels and smile from ear-to-ear around the clock. They're in competition with each other in hopes of being selected as one of the few beauties who will be given the honor of presenting medals to qualifying Olympic athletes.
"I practice at home, and smile to the mirror for an hour every day," one young girl told Reuters in her training classes. "I want to present my smile to the world, and let them know that the Chinese smile is the warmest."
Along with perfecting their smiles, they take etiquette classes and in their "medal presentation rehearsal sessions" they need to walk in heels while balancing books on their heads as they present themselves with perfect posture.