Inkwell: Authors and Artists
Sharon Lynne Fisher (slf) Mon 12 Jul 10 14:45
I agree that short guys and short girls have different, with some overlap, sets of problems. Like buying clothes. I'm too short for normal clothes. However, I am short waisted and have long legs for my height, so petite clothes look funny on me. I'm too overweight for normal clothes, and not heavy enough for fat chick clothes. I wear a lot of elastic waists, and I own a grand total of one dress because I just can't find one item that fits both my top half and my bottom half.
John Schwartz (jswatz) Mon 12 Jul 10 19:31
well, there could be some really negative reviews out there just waiting to trip us up! but yes, it's aimed at kids 12-17, basically -- adventurous young readers and teens.
Idea Hamster On Speed (randomize27) Mon 12 Jul 10 19:50
Just read this from the beginning. And, do you feel there is a bit of truth to SGS, or Short Guy Syndrome, where a short male makes up for it with arrogance? I've known some short guys who were cool, and others who were exceptionally arrogant. Myself, at 6'+, I'd gladly swap 6 inches with anyone. I'd drop to 5'6" and they could be taller, and I'd quit banging my head on things. Also, I know someone who is a midget, and he promotes that fact. He works for a local bar, and suggested they add the phrase "...and a midget" to their advertising. Great guy, not arrogant at all. So, what do you think makes some short males arrogant, and others not?
Michael D. Sullivan (avogadro) Mon 12 Jul 10 20:48
I've shrunk from 5'9" to somewhere around 5'7" over the last 40 years. I have short legs -- short enough that the shortest standard pant legs (29") are really a bit too long, especially if the waist slips down below my too-large abdominal protrusion.
Gail Williams (gail) Mon 12 Jul 10 21:02
The "arrogant" thing is so complex. It relates to "uppity nigger" --- i.e. don't be so rude as to try to be equal to one's betters -- in some ways, and yet we have all seen people "overcompensate" in awkward and uncomfortable ways for feeling at a social disadvantage. Maybe it's healthy. A parent wouldn't want to teach a small child to be meek, after all.
those Andropovian bongs (rik) Tue 13 Jul 10 07:29
"uppity nigger" Bingo!
Lisa Harris (lrph) Tue 13 Jul 10 08:24
I did have one short male friend back in college who was a caricature of the overcompensating short guy: puffed up his chest when he walked, and seemed to be standing a bit on the balls of his toes, his chin would pop up and out whenever he spoke as though to be propelling his words upward.
John Schwartz (jswatz) Tue 13 Jul 10 08:24
yeah, I find the range of behaviors among short people, and have met plenty of arrogant tall people. VERY arrogant tall people, in fact. So some short men compensate? Sure. Just ask Napoleon. But I see short guys compensate by building social skills, by being clever, just as much. I try to make people laugh.
person of crevice (obizuth) Tue 13 Jul 10 08:49
lisa, you were college friends with tom cruise???
John Schwartz (jswatz) Tue 13 Jul 10 14:00
Lisa, you were college friends with Nicolas Sarkozy?
Brian Dear (brian) Tue 13 Jul 10 21:26
<scribbled by brian Wed 20 Mar 13 18:19>
Julie Sherman (julieswn) Wed 14 Jul 10 08:40
I was at the hardware store this morning and passed a man who was my height (5'3.5") or a little shorter. I had this urge to tell him about your book, but didnt.
person of crevice (obizuth) Wed 14 Jul 10 10:58
David Albert (aslan) Wed 14 Jul 10 12:12
If you want to tell people about this book, a good place would be outside the office of the doctors who give out growth hormones to kids....
person of crevice (obizuth) Wed 14 Jul 10 12:50
seriously, i think it would be a great choice for any kid who is developing a healthy suspicion of the media and advertising and does not like being marketed to. i remember a study of what kind of anti-smoking advertisements were the most effective with teenagers and it was definitely not the YOU ARE GONNA DIIIIIIIIEEEEEE ones (teenage translation: ooh, danger! cool!) or the YOU ARE TOO YOUNG TO SMOKE ones (which were mostly cynical ones made by cigarette companies as "education" -- there is of course no better way to say ENTICING to a kid than "this is only for grownups") -- it was the YOU ARE BEING TARGETED AND MARKETED TO BY CYNICAL WEALTHY CORPORATIONS.
Lisa Harris (lrph) Wed 14 Jul 10 16:52
Marjorie's right, of course. While this book is great for short folks, it's even better for critically thinking young people. You've given them a road map of sorts to decipher the language of manipulation.
John Schwartz (jswatz) Wed 14 Jul 10 17:49
Marjorie, that's the TRUTH campaign, pioneered in Florida with tobacco settlement money. It's worked better than the old approaches, for sure. it's quite the subversive little book, isn't it? y'all really get what I was trying to do. It's a joy to read these comments. Brian, there is a section of the book that discusses the fact that it can be a drag to be tall, by the way...
Sam Delson (samiam) Thu 15 Jul 10 00:16
This may be more for adults than kids, but I recently came across an article about "The Biggest Lies People Tell in Online Dating." <http://blog.okcupid.com/index.php/2010/07/07/the-biggest-lies-in-online-dating /> The author compared the stated heights in online dating profiles with the actual distribution of heights in the population. Perhaps not surprisingly, it appears that both men and women exaggerate their heights by about 2 inches. The article claims the data also indicates that taller people have more partners, up to a point, and that taller men receive more unsolicited messages from women than shorter men do. (Conversely, shorter women receive more unsolicited messages from men than taller women do). It seems to me that much of this is not really statistically valid or fully supported by the data, but I'm not qualified to evaluate the claims. I'd be interested in your take on the article.
John Schwartz (jswatz) Thu 15 Jul 10 06:19
I'm traveling in Louisiana today for a story, and won't be checking in or commenting. Talk among yourselves!
Gail Williams (gail) Thu 15 Jul 10 07:22
Louisiana in July. Even without the aftermath of catastrophe, and even for somebody like me who loves the culture, summer's a daunting time to travel in the Gulf states. Stay cool, John!
Lisa Harris (lrph) Thu 15 Jul 10 08:05
and eat well!
John Schwartz (jswatz) Thu 15 Jul 10 19:12
very hot, and hot weather makes helicopter rides uncomfortable... I survived the day, however, and had a largely lovely dinner...
Lisa Harris (lrph) Fri 16 Jul 10 18:36
John, or anyone here, have you heard from any actual kids that have read your book? I did give it to a 14 year old girl, but I haven't heard from her yet. /
John Schwartz (jswatz) Sun 18 Jul 10 12:28
I would so love to hear what kids think. So far, though, I've heard nothing from kids... amazing response from adults, but I do not know if the tone I struggled to find actually reaches young readers. I tried to get my youngest, at 13, to read it as a tester, but he smirked and said "I'm not your target audience." Tall bastard.
Lisa Harris (lrph) Sun 18 Jul 10 13:33
How strange that you originally wanted to write it for adults, but were directed toward this other audience instead. Now it's the adult audience that seems to be reading it. Is it possible that we read it *for* our children?
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