On being female and tall

There are very few bad things about being a tall gal. But this is one of them. THE GAPS! The gaps that can occur between sock and legging, between glove and sleeve, and especially between waistband and shirt hem. Those are horrible things to experience, especially on a cold and windy day such as today. UGH. I had to bring auxiliary socks in to mitigate such a disaster. (Much better now, see?)

What are the few other bad things about being a tall female, you ask? Well, as a 5'11" woman, I shall tell you. Bumping your head more often than you’d like; being too tall for the men or women you’d like to date, and having to put up with their insecurities about your height until you finally find a keeper; being a wuss in heels because you wear them less often and are therefore unconditioned to the pain they inflict; having your head/shoulders stick way above the other members of your dance circle in a club, thus making you feel even more self-conscious than usual; a tendency to develop shoulder-slump-related spinal misalignments; having to pay more for extra length in trousers and wedding dresses and winter coats; never finding a computer monitor stand and/or task chair and/or desk that quite fits your ergonomic needs; never ever being able to find over-the-knee socks or boots that truly are; not being able to even consider most miniskirts unless you wear fully opaque leggings underneath; constantly feeling bad for whoever is behind you at movies/shows; riding Mexican buses which are designed for people shorter than the average Mexican citizen, who is in turn shorter than the average US citizen, who is in turn shorter than the average “tall” US citizen; occasionally being mistaken for a man in certain outfits or contexts; uncomfortable clown syndrome any time your car gets delivered to you from any valet anywhere; having to cram your legs or dangle them awkwardly in the aisle when occupying nearly any US bus seats, unless you manage to get the inner/window seat, and even then ow; everything about all affordable airplane trips/always having to factor in the cost of the extra leg room upgrade; occasionally intimidating insecure men whose approval you need during job interviews; being able to see right over the stalls in some awkward bathrooms with ridiculously short doors (usually in fun but seedy bars); friends setting you up with or assuming you would enjoy the romantic attention of otherwise obnoxious men based solely on their similar height.

What are some things that are pretty darn awesome about being a tall lady, you ask? Being the one to always have to get things down off shelves for people (it sounds annoying but it’s actually kind of a little usefulness/power trip); being able to see almost no matter what at concerts/movies; having a built-in excuse not to wear high heels like all the other ladies when getting fancy; justification to shell out for the extra leg room that everyone would like to have an excuse to pay for on planes; totally pulling off maxi dresses, long gloves, really long scarves, and tunics/caftans, when your shorter counterparts usually fail to do so; justification for dropping money on certain pricey bespoke items like knee-high leather boots that actually go up to your knees; being able to spike volleyballs even when you have no real athletic ability; slight inherent HORSE advantage; justification for doggedly seeking a taller mate, as opposed to those 5’2″ girls whom everyone thinks should be less whiny about how they only like men who are six feet or taller, because come on, princess; built-in limits on shopaholic tendencies for items like boots and trousers and tights that are too short at most retailers; plausible claim of Viking heritage; slightly less likelihood of being mugged or harassed or otherwise targeted as a weak female who can be bothered in a rough part of town; feeling like part of a secret superior superwoman club whenever you meet other tall women.

How can you support your local tall woman? Don’t give her too much crap about wanting to date a taller man; put up with her incessant whining when she wears heels; don’t get bent out of shape if she suddenly towers over you because she chose to wear heels since she hates feeling left out of the Fun Shoe Club the other 364 days of the year; think twice about personality and general likability before you try to fix her up with just any old tall dude you know; and go ahead and ask her to retrieve something for you from the top shelf or place that star upon the top of your Christmas tree. Better yet, ask her quietly if she can tell whether you’re going bald or have any gray hairs on top. She’ll probably feel special and she’ll probably tell you the truth, but gently, because she likely appreciates that only she can provide the specific insight you need. Win-win.