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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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Vertically challenged teens often short-changed

Oliver Wendell Holmes [an American author and physician 1809-1894] once attended a meeting in which he was the shortest man present. “Dr. Holmes,” quipped a friend, “I should think you’d feel rather small around us big fellows.”

“I do,” retorted Holmes. “I feel like a dime among pennies.”

This monetary metaphor can be applied to many of the short people of the world. They are often undiscovered gems, a treasure waiting to be found by those of greater height. To the many who do not take the time to get to know these “gems”, the vertically challenged can be seen in a negative light.

“Short people seem to have short tempers,” Victor Cabias, ’05, said. “They are always looking up and pointing at me. Sometimes I’m afraid they might poke me!”

Shortness is a unique trait that taller people often over look.

“Being short is good because you are quicker,” Hillary Kell, ’05, said. “And cuter!”

Cuteness is an especially desired trait among short people.

“I’d have to say that there is only one major downside to being short,” Clinton Jefferies, ’04, said. “For some reason all the hot girls think you are really cute. All they want to do is hug you and hang all over you all day. Other than that, being short doesn’t cause me any problems.”

While being short has its perks, disadvantages come in many forms.

“You always have to hem your pants,” Suzie Falk, ’06, said. “You also can’t see above people in the hallway.”

Girls and boys alike have encountered such problems. One place where the short are at a noticeable disadvantage is the basketball court.

“I don’t like being short because it makes it difficult to play basketball,” Jordan Scott, ’07, said. “It also makes it difficult to play other sports such as football and badminton.”

Many short people believe basketball to be a sport invented to mock those five feet and below. The great athletic equalizer came in the form of jockeys, athletes who were required to be both small and short.

There are many short people in history who have achieved greatness despite their short stature. Napoleon and Frodo Baggins [the hero of J.R.R. Tolkein’s epic book series, the Lord of the Rings] are merely a few examples of short people achieving great things.

Another example of a short hero can be found in the bibical book of Mathew–Zacchaeus, the tax collector. He refused to let his shortness get in the way of seeing the Lord. Instead, he climbed up a tree to watch Jesus preach above the crowds.

Shortness can be transformed from a curse to a blessing by those determined not to be discouraged by their size.

“Short people, like me, are thought to be weak,” Samantha DeLacerna, ’06, said, “but we are strong and tough!”

Often taken for granted, short people can be helpful to those of greater height.

“I think short people are cool because I used to be short myself,” Jake Brown, ’05, said. “One day, when someone from above the heights of five feet reaches down and strains their back, they will wish they had their undersized buddy to help them.”

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