The weather forecast was set – testosterone clouds teeming over Dubai signaled it would be raining men. Petty picture politics, Emirati hitches and all manner of stumbling blocks notwithstanding, the postponed date arrived and with it the man-parade  that the ladies awaited.
On Saturday 13 October, 23 strapping lads thrashed it out for the glory of being crowned 'Mr. World International 2012 Middle East'. And it was survival of the 'fittest' in the man-on-man battle at Dubai's luxury H Hotel.
There was nowhere to hide as the judges cast their eagle eyes on the competitors' physical appearance, intelligence and special talent. Mr World of course needs to be a man of multiple skills - Bonnie Tyler might have wanted a strong, fast, fresh from the fight kind of guy - but for these judges, model style, impeccable speech and a winning face were the mark of an international hero.
Blink and you missed the Arab ingredient
Mr. World International, 2012, Middle East  has come and gone, and if you're a man about town in the region that fancies himself hot stuff, then you've missed your boat and will have to wait til next year. You could have taken the 'Middle East' out of the contest, if this gallery of Far East finalists was anything to go by. The title went to the proud-as-punch Pakistani Mr Aseem Shaikh, crowned the honor of “Mr World International 2012, Middle East”.
Other male hopefuls– from India, Pakistan, Nepal, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, The Philippines, Tunisia, Egypt, Russia, Kenya, China and the UAE - all Dubai residents - came from the Arab world as much as the wider globe, but the winning gallery looked distinctly un-Arabian. This was a fairly accurate representation of Dubai’s migrant make up, and while finalist countries represented included the Arab map, the winners' panel - primarily Filipino with a dash of Pakistan and Nepal - did not.
Mr World International, 2012, Middle East was the Gulf’s diverse showcase of migrant workers. Sweating it out under the Emirati sun by day, these men know how to capitalize on their downtime, while giving back to their community with capital entertainment.
Mr. World International 2012 was brought to you by Mr. Aaron Panegro, sponsored by Mayaza Productions Dubai, UAE.
What do you think of this male-model beauty pageant? Are you glad no one rained on their man-parade? Do you agree with the judges' choices?