inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #26 of 118: Velma J. Bowen (wren) Thu 8 Jul 10 08:08
    
<scraps> was 5'4" as well, but I suspect he's now about 5'3" because
of the stroke.

I am intrigued by this topic, and the book, because of the wide ranges
in height in my blood-kin (we all, male and female, range between 5'2"
and 7'6", within the same generations).
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #27 of 118: David Albert (aslan) Thu 8 Jul 10 08:26
    
Have you spoken to a lot of people who DID give their kids growth
hormones?  How do they and their kids feel about it now?  Do they feel
that they or their children have truly benefitted from the treatments?

Of course, you point out in the book that people are in general going
to want to feel good about ANY decision they have made, so it could be
hard to distinguish between truth and wishful thinking.
 
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #28 of 118: John Schwartz (jswatz) Thu 8 Jul 10 10:07
    


  I did not speak to a lot of parents, but I spoke to doctors and looked at
research on parents who give their kids hormones. The surveys suggest that
parents and the kids are happy with the choice to get the treatment,
irrespective of the effect. They are glad they did it, and tend to credit
the hormones with any growth that occurs.

  Those surveys, it seems to me, miss the people who drop out of therapy,
which could introduce a bias toward positive results. But that's what the
surveys say, in any case.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #29 of 118: those Andropovian bongs (rik) Thu 8 Jul 10 10:46
    
It used to be instructive to read the personals ads and see how many women,
even the short ones, insisted on a tall man.    One would seldom see a man
post that he was looking for a woman with big tits, even if he was.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #30 of 118: Gail Williams (gail) Thu 8 Jul 10 11:52
    
True.  Men do feel free to indicate that women should be significantly
younger than they are, or specify "hot," "cute," "full-figured,"
"slender," "blonde," "asian," etc...  

I suspect that in general girls are less concerned about being short
for their age, and their parents are probably less likely to look to
growth hormones.  John, are there numbers available that confirm that?
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #31 of 118: Sharon Lynne Fisher (slf) Thu 8 Jul 10 12:51
    
<rik>, I can't speak for why all women might do that, but in my
experience, with a few delightful exceptions, short guys can have a
real chip on their shoulder about it, and it's just easier to avoid
that.

I'm 5' 3 3/4". Everyone's tall.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #32 of 118: those Andropovian bongs (rik) Thu 8 Jul 10 13:07
    
Well, I used to cruise the ads.  Met a great little (5'1") woman that way,
and we've been together 22 years.   So I'm pretty familiar with what women
claim to want.   And I really doubt that women's desire for tall men is
based on personality.  Biology makes more sense, both on this issue and the
one about men's attraction to youth and big racks.   And, of course, there
are exceptions.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #33 of 118: John Schwartz (jswatz) Thu 8 Jul 10 13:38
    

<rik> writes:

>>  It used to be instructive to read the personals ads and see how many
women,
 even the short ones, insisted on a tall man.    One would seldom see a man
 post that he was looking for a woman with big tits, even if he was.

  I've got a riff on that in the book, explaining to these young readers
that there are women who say they only want to date tall guys. And others
who only want to date rich guys, etc. etc. I recommend that they consider
themselves lucky to not have to worry about them.

<gail> writes:

>>>I suspect that in general girls are less concerned about being short
 for their age, and their parents are probably less likely to look to
 growth hormones.  John, are there numbers available that confirm that?


   I haven't seen numbers, but the pediatric endocrinologists confirm that
this is so. Boys, and parents of boys, show greater interest in height and
hormones.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #34 of 118: Lisa Harris (lrph) Thu 8 Jul 10 13:59
    
I used to be 5' 1 1/2" when I was in high school.  I told people that I was
5' 2" on a good day.  When I was measured at the time I was pregnant, the
doctor said I was 5' 3".  I wasn't really happy about it, because by that
point I was comfortable with my short stature.

That's me.  My best friend's daughter is another story.  At 14, she is not
5' tall.  It disturbs her because eveyrone treats her like she is 10 and she
is NOT TEN!  She is currently reading your book, John.  I'll let you know
what she thinks as soon as I speak to her about it.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #35 of 118: Sharon Lynne Fisher (slf) Thu 8 Jul 10 14:04
    
If there was a skinny hormone, I expect girls and parents of girls
would be all over that.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #36 of 118: those Andropovian bongs (rik) Thu 8 Jul 10 14:12
    
You bet.

John, your advice is excellent.   The way I cousel guys who bitch about the
fact that the average woman wants a tall guy is to ask them if they're
really looking for an average woman.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #37 of 118: person of crevice (obizuth) Thu 8 Jul 10 14:37
    
>Biology makes more sense, both on this issue and the
 one about men's attraction to youth and big racks.

i find that people ascribe all kinds of cultural and individual 
preferences to evolutionary biology. whenever i see an interview with an 
evolutionary biologist in the paper, i expect him to tell me that men are 
GENETICALLY OBLIGATED to cheat on their wives. it usually comes in 
paragraph 3. 
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #38 of 118: Lisa Greim (lisa) Thu 8 Jul 10 15:49
    
John, I gave the book to my Sara, who at 5'2" is trying to figure out
how to be authoritative while young, female, pretty and small --
without being bitchy. It's a tough task, but she's 15, so she's got
some time to figure it out.

She has passed the book along to her tiny friend Kathy Chawla, who
passed it along to her tinier eighth- and sixth-grade sisters.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #39 of 118: Sharon Lynne Fisher (slf) Thu 8 Jul 10 16:01
    
#36-37: word! both of youse!
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #40 of 118: Lisa Harris (lrph) Thu 8 Jul 10 19:41
    
I love this, "The way I cousel guys who bitch about the
fact that the average woman wants a tall guy is to ask them if they're
really looking for an average woman."

I really thought that your tone in the book was great, John. 
Authoritative, yet not lecture-y and as hip as a Dad-type person can
be.  
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #41 of 118: David Albert (aslan) Fri 9 Jul 10 07:55
    
There was an op-ed piece in the Boston Globe a year or two ago from a
well-educated journalist.  The piece was mostly about education and
standardized tests, but he started off by writing about being
devastated to learn that his son was in the 50th percentile for height
and weight, because (not an exact quote) "what parent wants to learn
that his child is only average"?

If we have people upset that their kids are going to grow to be even
of fully-average height, what hope do we have to convince them that
shorter than average is also okay?
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #42 of 118: John Schwartz (jswatz) Fri 9 Jul 10 08:05
    

  Thanks, guys! I'd love to hear what these young readers think--I've gotten
zero feedback from kids so far.

  As for convincing some people that below-average height is okay, well,
some people just can't be pleased. They don't understand that every kid will
be a basket of above- and below-average attributes. And they fret, and they
look for ways to perfect their kids.

   My parents largely let me be, while encouraging me by example to work as
hard as I could to be good at what I cared about. I think they did a good
job. It's not just that they declined to give me growth hormone--the let me
know, through their actions every day, that they thought I was doing just
fine.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #43 of 118: Lisa Greim (lisa) Fri 9 Jul 10 09:50
    
The only thing I can report in the way of young reader feedback is
that Sara didn't get much farther than "He's short, he's from Texas,
yada yada." 

It suffered from a lack of zombies. If you had included some undead
short people, I imagine she would have been more engaged. But she's not
a big nonfiction reader in general.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #44 of 118: Mrs. Bigby Hind (jessica) Fri 9 Jul 10 10:06
    
At this time I will trot out one of my favorite moments from the late
great Murphy Brown.

Miles, who is short, is agonizing over asking out Audrey (Jane Leeves)
who is much taller, and goes to Murphy for advice.

MILES: Well, what would you say if you saw a much taller woman out
with a shorter man?

MURPHY: I'd say "Good evening, Dr. and Mrs. Kissinger."
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #45 of 118: bill braasch (bbraasch) Fri 9 Jul 10 10:08
    
definitely throw a few short vampires into the sequel.

my daughter who is 5'2" played lacrosse goalie.  pity the poor fool who
tried to shoot over her head.  conventional wisdom was to have a tall
goalie, even better a tall, wide goalie.  it's better though, to have a
fierce goalie.  that's how her teammates described her.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #46 of 118: person of crevice (obizuth) Fri 9 Jul 10 10:09
    
josie is away at camp, but likes non-fiction. i'll see if she'll read it 
when she's back. since she's tall, it might not interest her. 

i was recently horrified by a comment on the blog Jezebel. it was about a 
dad in a cyberbullying case who sued his 8th grade daughter's school 
district after it suspended her for posting a mean video about a classmate 
on the YouTubes. The dad said his daughter wwasn't a bully -- uh huh -- 
won the case and insisted that the video stay up, even tho his daughter 
offered to take it down, because he's a douchebag. He chose to engage with 
Jezebel's readers, insisting that he had won a victory for the First 
Amendment, etc. while the readers were yelling at him that he'd only 
taught his daughter that bullying was ok and daddy would bail her out. 

what horrified me (i mean, besides the douchebag dad) was that one 
commenter insisted he had to be short. another commenter called her on it, 
and she went OFF on short men, and how she just KNEW from his behavior 
that he had to be short. her language was just BREATHTAKINGLY mean, and 
i'm thinking um, bully, meet bully! 
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #47 of 118: person of crevice (obizuth) Fri 9 Jul 10 10:11
    
slippage!

Good evening, monsieur et madame sarkozy!
Good evening, mr and mrs cruise! 
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #48 of 118: those Andropovian bongs (rik) Fri 9 Jul 10 10:48
    
In the early 80s, when I was living in Nashville, I had a 6'2" girlfriend
who just loved the looks we used to get.   Smart, cute, hot, and
(obviously) open-minded.   It came to an end due to the long separations
from my touring, and she married a guy who's 6'4".  Their kids are huge.

"...how she just KNEW from his behavior that he had to be short."

Sizeism rears its ugly head.
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #49 of 118: E (wickett) Fri 9 Jul 10 12:02
    <scribbled by wickett Sat 10 Jul 10 17:37>
  
inkwell.vue.387 : John Schwartz, Short: Walking Tall When You're Not Tall At All
permalink #50 of 118: David Albert (aslan) Fri 9 Jul 10 12:35
    
Our language is full of casual references that put short people down. 
Referring to someone as "little" might mean that they are emotionally
backwards, or miserly, or insignificant historically. or just plain
mean (as that father a few posts back, who might reasonably in English
have been referred to as a "little" man, rather than a short one).

It is told famously of Stephen J. Gould that when an opponent referred
to him as that "little commie Jew bastard" he retorted at full volume,
"How DARE you call me little?"
  

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