Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Is height a natural advantage: Part II - Disadvantages

On Friday I posted my list of advantages of being tall. Today I tackle the disadvantages:

  • Grocery bills are more expensive. Hey, it takes more fuel to power a bigger machine.
  • I read that, as a result of more hormones throughout adolescence, tall people are more prone to hormonal cancers, e.g. breast and prostate.
  • Riding on an airplane sucks if you don’t get an aisle or the bulkhead. Or first class. But what kind of an economizing individual wouldn’t fly coach?
  • Can’t be a fighter pilot or a sub commander. Don’t you remember how cool Tom Cruise was in Top Gun or Gene Hackman in Crimson Tide? Now multiply that by a factor of 10 because I was just a kid. Yea, so that explains why my dream in 7th -9th grade was to be the CO of a submarine. That is, until I passed by the maximum height for those professions. So being tall limits your professions, e.g. I can also not be a horse jockey.
  • Throughout middle and high school, excessive goofiness is a side effect. It takes way too long for someone to be able to recalibrate after gaining inches a year. I was into college before I became comfortable with repetitive motions in precision sports, i.e. darts.
  • *tied to the ability to reach the top shelves à I can reach the top shelves, which means that any little old lady in the grocery will ask me “dearest child, will you help an old woman who can’t reach the oats?” Or any time I am sitting in my rocking chair reading and looking comfortable my girlfriend will need anything that is on the top shelf.
  • Knees, ankles, and other joints start deteriorating faster.
  • In most beds my legs hang off and I wake up in the middle of the night with icy cold feet.
  • *tied to height being an ice breaker à I am perpetually asked: “How tall are you?” and “Do you play basketball?”
  • You have to buy XL clothing for the length and if the arms or pant legs shrink even the tiniest bit then you have to buy new ones. This isn’t exactly true. I had a great grey sweater that I loved and despite the fact that the arms shrunk to ¾ length I continued to wear it for years.
  • You are a lightning rod to men with a Napoleon complex. I’ve never been challenged to a fight because of this, but I’ve been the victim of insults and social slights because of it.
  • Low entrances suck. You would think after years and years you would learn, but there is something in the human psyche that assumes all doors should be taller than we are. That’s not the case, because some architects suffer from the syndrome alluded to in the previous bullet.
  • *tied to height being a natural advantage in most physical sportsà it is a natural disadvantage in games such as hide-and-seek.
  • Your legs burn really bad when you dance.
  • I didn’t know until recently that people just stand in the shower and let the water hit their head and run down. I never knew that because I have never had a shower head that was above my own head to make this comfortable.
These reasons are more slight inconveniences in being tall more so than they are actual disadvantages, which lends support to my conclusion that being tall is a natural advantage.