For most of my 70+ years I have been surrounded by friends, close and casual, that are just my height or often taller, some of you very much taller, Dick, Roger, Dr. Garvey, Eileen, Amanda, Larry, Louise and so on. The list is quite extensive.
I am always checking my immediate surroundings for looming, towering objects choosing to carefully align myself with people and things that will not bring attention to my diminuitive nature. Possibly, as to the inherent height limitations of the colonizing Spanish and Indigenous communities, there exists a general population of very modestly short people, here in Central America, of which I find myself very comfortably a part of.
I am now around five feet four and on the shrink and beginning to see the world from yet another viewpoint from well below the average horizon line.
I am baffled by the inability of those taking the higher road to never understand what it might be like to see the top of your own fridge or peer over the car dashboard without the need for not one but two wedge cushions.
Accepting my vertical limitations, I have gone on, and still do, believing my close proximity to the ground will decrease the potential for future serious fractures, give me quicker access to money dropped in the grass and justify the height rule for not being allowed on scary rides that my grandchildren often expect Grandfathers to be fearless of.
Despite all the positive things to be said about a modest height, many inconveniences must be expected.
Until recently a chest size close to 50 inches forced me to buy shirts in XL size which would bring the tail of the shirt nearer my sock line rather than my waistline and give me the look of a floor weighted punching bag. The removal of a 4 lb goiter from my chest improved my balance and I dropped 2 inches from my chest. Still, with pant crotches hanging at my knees a waist of 44 and inseam of 28, it was a bit hard to find clothes at the worn out before store. With rolled up shirt sleeves, and funny T-Shirts with any printed punch line just below my belt, my frustrations had peaked.
It was not until I was caught harvesting coconuts from the refuge near Manzanillo beach, Costa Rica, and saw this enormous but very friendly policeman towering over me that the switch clicked. This man was so big he could have worn my T-Shirts on his arms. It registered on me, at that moment, that he too, may have trouble getting stuff to fit. He very graciously split my coconut open to avoid making a report that included the mention of a old gringo swinging his machete aimlessly at nothing in particular.
I did make big changes in diet, activities and exercise in 2014 and now slither into a large size shirt without too much being leftover. Much improved stature and some redistributed fat gets me in the main door of the bank with little notice to what part of my attire is dragging on the tiles.
I have abandoned the policy choosing to wait in line only with short people, measuring my dance partner, using 4 pairs of insoles and stealing other peoples grandchildren to stretch my stunted ego.
Be the first to laugh at yourself – “Randy Newman singing SHORT PEOPLE”
Life is too short to be obsessed with being too short in life, although sometimes is nice to be the tallest guy in the room.