TSC: This is a MUST watch video of a college presentation from a female student who is shorter than 5’0”. She is talking to her class about what it’s like to be a short person, the disadvantages and advantages. Most of the advantages are ridiculous, but at least she only included ones that might be considered advantages for short people and not short women only (like, I can date more men and not be shorter than them). This woman is pretty brave to have done that.
Also, notice how rude the questions are after the presentation. And you’ve GOT to check out 5:55 onward where she is asked “how tall are your parents” and she says, “I get my height from my dad, he is 5’4”” and you can hear a Frat Bro in the background exclaim “WHAT!?”, really loudly. And then she says, “And my mom is 5’7”” and that same guy says “WOW!”. From then on, you can hear people whispering things in the background but you can’t quite make out what’s being said.
This is the transcript of a brief conversation I had with a female co-worker today. She was trying to help me remember a lawyer whose name sounded familiar, but whom I couldn't quite place. The conversation is illustrative of how height and gender intersect in ways which sometimes cause cognitive dissonance. And yes, this totally happened today in Real Life.
Me: What was her name again?
Co-Worker: Joanne. You just met her at The Firm Christmas Party, remember? Her "plus one" was that man with the Australian accent.
Me: Ummm? I think I sort of remember her (lie). She was our age, right?
Co-Worker: No. No. This is a much older lady.
Me: Huuum. Oh wait, I know now. Sort of a tall woman with silver hair?
Co-Worker: She had grey hair, but I wouldn't really call her tall.
Me: I mean, I guess she was about 5'9" or so, right?
Co-Worker: Yeah, I guess so. I guess that would be tall for you.
Me: (*paused with confusion*)
Me: What do you mean "for you"? You and I are the same height.
Mary Lou Retton (born January 24, 1968) became an instant darling of the sports world at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. She was the first American woman to ever win the Gold Medal in the All-Around in women’s gymnastics. She also won medals in the Vault, the Uneven Bars and Floor Exercises. She won a total of five medals, the most won by any athlete that year.
Mary Lou’s historic Olympic performances, along with her radiant smile and charming enthusiasm, brought her recognition as Sports Illustrated Magazine’s “Sportswoman of the Year” in 1984. Also in 1984, the Associated Press awarded her the title “Amateur Athlete of the Year”.
Following her Olympic performance, she embarked on a public speaking career, averaging 40 to 50 engagements a year. Today she makes occasional television appearances as a sports commentator.