Sunday, 12 August 2012

The challenges of being short

Okay, I can hear you thinking; Short? Ingrid is not that short? Average, maybe, but short, nah. I would agree with you if I lived in any other country than I do. Apparently, people in the Netherlands decided to feed their children fertilizers, and my parents did not get that memo. At elementary school, I was still able to boast with the fact that I was one of the tallest girls in class. As puberty kicked in, most of my classmates shot up into the air like rockets. I was left with the very same height which once brought me glory. It was now....*dramatic music* my burden.

Now, it might be difficult to understand how being 5"5' would be any problem in a country filled with walking towers. I do have some examples of harrowing moments in the life of an average/short person.

For example, that one time during my driving lesson, when my driving instructor told me to get into a parking garage. Seems to be easy enough. The only issue was that I had to take a ticket out of a machine. I tried just by reaching out. It did not work. I tried by getting closer to the window. Still no success. It wasn't until I was literally hanging out of the car that I was able to grab the ticket. My instructor said he wished he had a camera. If only I were a little taller, I would have been able to grab that damned ticket and not look like a failed escape artist in America's funniest home videos. Argh the trauma!

Supermarkets are also not convenient for short people such as myself. Whenever you need something, it's always on the top shelf. And to reach the top shelf is like having to climb the Mount Everest. Literally. The past week it has often happened that old ladies asked me to grab something from the top shelf. Because I was so much taller than they were. Basically, we were the same height, but hey, I won't be the one to crush their dreams. So, without any security, I set out to climb the mountain of frozen foods in order to grab a box of frozen spinach for the lady. Like Spiderwoman, I climbed and climbed and reached out into oblivion, as the last box of spinach laughed at me from the ends of the world, erm...freezer. I finally was able to grab the box and frozen solid, but victorious, I returned. The woman thanked me and word spread, as a few days later, I was requested to embark on the very same journey, yet this time, in the wine department.

I could bore you with many more examples, however, being short has it's advantages. I, for example, am an expert at maneuvering through crowded areas. Like a cat almost. I am a pro at this. It is ideal when you have to get into a crowded train and you can just swiftly creep right in between until you can go in. If anyone still blocks your view, you just use puppy eyes, because being tiny = cute. Works all the time.
Apart from that, I barely bump my head when a wild low-hanging chandelier appears. And in case I want to disappear into the crowd, it's so much easier to just stand behind someone else and it's just as if you've never been there at all!

I guess, apart from some inconveniences, being short is not that bad at all. Unless people think I am a 15 year old because I am short. Moments like that are quite annoying. But at least I don't have to fold my legs in difficult positions in those small air plane seats. And hey, at least 50 cent, the ultimate lover of all shawties, wants to party like it's my birthday all the time, plus if he's annoying, I am in the perfect position to headbutt him in his holy area. Bring on the champagne! Call Napoleon! Short people rule!

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