If you ever have the privilege of meeting me in person please, please, please don’t tell me, “You really are short!” Look, I am already quite aware of this all too obvious fact. Granted, I don’t really mind when some devastatingly handsome stranger greets me with, “Whassup shawti?”That I can take (and more than likely it will illicit little giggles of glee). But sometimes people just have this insatiable need to remind me that I’m closer to the ground than the average American male. I know you aren’t being rude but…
Check it out…
Today I was in Tarjay (aka Target) and I actually met someone who reads my blog! Oh my god has that totally ever happened to you before? That was a first for me. Anyway, she told me how much she appreciated my stuff. So of course I was grinning from ear to ear(I never thought I would meet an actual reader). Then suddenly she says, “You’re shorter than I thought you’d be!”
Okay, I’m quite sure the comment was just an observation; and we did follow it up with a big friendly hug. Believe me, I won’t try and cut somebody for simply saying “Oh you’re short.” However, having grown up with a Napoleon Complex the size of Gary Coleman, that really did strike a chord with me (just a little). Don’t worry ma’am I’ll not be coming after you with a shank or anything (haha), but I do admit that I’m somewhat sensitive about my height (or lack thereof).
Look, I know I’m vertically challenged. I have accepted my lot in life. This is just the way it is. My dad was 6ft and my mother is 4’11. So I guess it’s just genetics balancing themselves out. However, the shit just wasn’t fair! Yeah, I am still pouting. Just a few more inches and I’d be 5’10! Why mama why? Why didn’t you go on a date with Wilt Chamberlin or something? Woulda gave me a fighting chance! (no offense dad).
Trust me, if you have a short joke I’ve probably heard it already. My favorites were, and still are, “Toddy, you are so short you have to look up to see down.” Others on my childhood playlist are as follows…
“Toddy, you’re so short you can play tennis with the curb…”
“Toddy, can you say that again? I can’t hear you down there.”
“Are you related to Emmanuel Lewis?”
Oh, they also used to call me the black Lucky Charms Leprechaun. Not to mention the obligatory, “Half pint” and a myriad of homophobic epithets (e.g. little faggot ass midget. This one was rather clever if I do say so myself). My ex-boyfriend used to call me “PeeWee”. It was really cute when we were together. Now, it sorta gets on my nerves. You have no right to refer to me as a cute little pet name when I want to punch you in the shins now. Stop it now I say.
Look, I am not somekind of dwarf by any stretch of the imagination. I’m 5’6 and a HALF (don’t forget that half) inches tall, and when I’m in my shoes I’m almost average adult male height. Yet, because I am under 5’8 I fall into the illustrious category of shortness.
Don’t get it twisted I do love all of my height. As a matter of fact I consider it a blessing from the heavens. There are dwarves that would kill to be as tall as me. As a matter of fact I’m thinking of attending a little person’s convention just to be the tallest person in the room for once.
From the age of 14 to almost 19 I was 5’2 inches tall. I am not kidding. I seriously thought that was going to be my full adult height. I did everything I could to grow. I did yoga poses; hung upside down in the closet (okay, I did not literally hang like a bat…But I did stand on my head. Someone told me that would help); and drank milk to the point where I got sick of it (to this day I drink Soy because milk gives me the trots). NOTHING. I just knew I was fated to shop in the boys section forever and ever.
Then, out of the blue after high school, I shot up like a weed! It was like oneday I was knee high to a duck and the next I could see above the blades of grass in my yard! Oh my god I was so thrilled! I was going to try out for the NBA…as a towel boy or something (Allen Iverson I am not). Anyway, with my new height I really thought I was tall. Yet, short jokes plagued me to no end. I came to the conclusion that I was only tall in comparison to how short I used to be…
Curses, foiled again.
Now, I just think it is sorta funny and cute when I hear short jokes…But redundant. C’mon guys and dolls, stop hatin on us short dudes. We are not small animals. If you kick us do the tops of our heads not swell and bleed (in smaller pools but we bleed nevertheless)? If you insult us do we not cry and wind up floating away in our own tears?
Yes, you maybe able to dunk a basketball. I will concede that. However, at least I can fit into a compact car that gets great gas mileage!
And atleast when I buy shoes they don’t look like a whole other brand (those size elevens and twelves look like moon boots)!
Granted, I love really big and tall men myself…But, at the risk of sounding cliche’, BIG things come in small packages. We short men are the business, recognize!
So, before you make that next short joke and give me a condescending pat on the head please remember that I can give you a hard punch in the gonads before you can say, “What choo talkin bout Willis?!”