Saturday, August 15, 2009

Tall and small

Standing in the queue today at the shopping centre, I reflected upon how everyone seemed to be going out with someone who was taller, but only a little bit taller than themselves. It seemed to me only natural that if tall people went out with people who were a bit taller than them, and if smaller people get going out with people who were a bit taller than them (but still small), it wouldn't be long before homo sapiens had split into two separate species, just like H G Wells' Eloi and Morlocks, except these two separate species would be called the 'tall people' and the 'small people'. 

And relations between the two species would be amicable at first, but gradually, the bodily and cultural differences between the tall people and the small people would become all too apparent, and whenever a tall person would look upon a small person, he would behold an incomparably hideous visage the like of which he had never seen before except that one time when he went to the small person village, and a small person would think the same, only in reverse. 

And so it would come to pass that a state of war would exist between the tall people and the small people, and neither side would prevail over millenia, though both would possess certain advantages over the other side: for the tall people would be taller than the small people, and the small people would not only be not taller than the tall people, but not taller than some others of the small people, which is an advantage if you a small person. 

But finally a lasting peace accord would be struck between the tall people and the small people. However, hatred and resentment would last between the tall people and the small people for generations, and it would only be through the enlightened activism and forward-(not to mention upward and/or downward)-looking policies of various concerned citizens in the tall and small person communities that the two would come together again. And from henceforth, they would exist in a state of enlightenment and happiness, with every community event and festival at which they attended being full of size-appropriate activities and thoughtful and sensitive acknowledgments of the tall and small people who had existed on this land before the current tall and small people. 

And there would be great rejoicing. 

But then, as I stood there in the supermarket, it struck me that almost everyone goes out with someone who is either taller or smaller than them, and that it's not all that remarkable really, since it would be so freakishly amazingly unlikely for a person to go out with another person who was exactly the same size as them (to within one tenth of a millimetre) that it would only happen sometimes. 

So I paid my money to the supermarket guy (who by this time had been waiting for some time) and toddled off to catch the tram. Which I missed. 


Maria said...

How does everyone go out with someone who is a bit taller than them, I mean if A is going out with B, and B is a bit taller than them, then does that mean B isn't going out with A? because A's a bit smaller?

So basically it means a kind of strange thing, either if you're the taller person in the relationship you are free but the smaller person is going out with you.

Or maybe it's some kind of change height thing where two people go out and every so often they look at each other and they've changed heights and so they really are going out with someone who's a bit taller than them, it just depends on which minute or second you're talking about. Their heads are bobbing up and down all the time.

Or maybe it means the end of pairing so maybe A (shortie) goes out with B, who's a bit taller, but then B is going out with C, who's even taller then B, and C is going out with D, who's even taller than C. I guess that has to end somewhere but for the most part it could be a huge long tag-teaming thing with everyone in the world lined up in order of size going out with someone who's in line in front of them!

I'm going out with Mr Coffee, he's taller than me.

Ummm, sometimes Mr Coffee goes out for a beer with a good friend of his and that friend is taller than Mr Coffee so I guess that is that tag-teaming idea!

Dan the VespaMan said...

Don't worry Tim, they will form an organization where people of all the heights will have representation to discuss their issues.

It will be called the "United Mutations".

screamish said...

i was never good at maths so i won't try to explain, but i think i agree with Maria (comment above).

And yet we also have the great wildcards of evolution, the really tall guys that go out with the really short girls.

i think they might bugger up the averages.

the really tall guys love the feeling of being tall- they embrace it, and magnify it by going out with the small girl (who they can then feel protective, feel tall and strong etc etc).

and the really small girl does the same- embracing her smallness by exaggerating it, strolling arm in arm down the street with Tall Guy. she doesn't feel insecure or vulnerable anymore- she has Tall Guy now.

and their kids...average height, I guess, in the long run...

cristy said...

I think I fall into screamish's category, although my partner is not freakishly tall and nor am I freakishly short (at least I wouldn't say I was)... Also he is little in a non-physical sense and so I don't think of him as being tall.

Maria said...

Hi screamish,

I don't think of myself as good at Maths at all.

I'm just imagining a long congaline of the human race dancing round the world to the beat of our own drums. How ... fun that will look.

It could be an interesting Utopian/Dystopian image. A disturbing futuristic one. Everyone line up in order of size in the future, people, and dance, dance, dance!

If we are all lined up how many times around the world does a conga line of the human race go?

TimT said...

I did think of that A - B - B - A dilemma but never let the logical fact get in the way of an illogical story, I say.

I like screamish's theory. Possibly more than my own.

(This post is a good example of why I'd never make a good scientist, btw.)

Maria said...

I remember reading a Judy Blume novel called Forever where there was a girl clled Erica Small who really was very small.

She said that she was going to marry someone extremely tall just so that their kids 'had a chance at being normal-sized'.

But screamish's theory is lovely. Everyone is so well-adjusted and happy. It is a heaven of uneven heights!

Email: timhtrain - at -

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