Thursday, May 7, 2009

It's not just me!

Stumbled across this article - How Bea Arthur helped my body image - today on HuffPo and cracked up.

Author Leslie Goldman writes in her piece about how even though she's not particular masculine or muscle-y, she's always identified herself with Arthur's character Dorothy on Golden Girls.

As a tall girl growing up, I often felt much...bigger. Bigger than the other girls, bigger than the boys, too big for tapered Guess jeans or cheerleading uniforms. And for some bizarre, warped reason, I always identified with Bea. I thought I looked like her. She was tall and slightly manly looking and when I watched her sipping coffee in her Florida kitchen, chastising Rose (who I now realize I am so like, it's scary) for making some inane St. Olaf remark, I thought, "That's what I look like. I'm going to wear shoulder pads and floor length caftans and look like Bea Arthur when I grow up." I am not fabricating this -- ask my mom or my husband. Of course, I could have looked to any number of tall actresses or models. Cindy Crawford, maybe? But my sweet little lost mind chose Bea.

I find this whole bit hilarious, mainly because I feel exactly the same way. The only difference is that this chick is 6'1 sometimes. In heels. Blake Lively is probably approximately the same. I, however, am six feet even. No shoes. If I bust out the hot shoes (or more likely borrow a friend's, because I rarely buy heels taller than three inches) and go out, I am positively ginormous. Like, 6'5, a-head-at-least-above-everyone-else-in-the-bar tall. Goldman hits the nail on the head when she brings up a Blake Lively interview:

I'm not alone in my Tall=Big Girl Syndrome. Recently, I read an interview with my Girl Crush, Blake Lively, in Allure, and was shocked (but strangely relieved) when she admitted, "I feel like a tranny a lot of the time. I don't know, I'm...large? They put me in six-inch heels, and I tower over every man. I've got this long hair and lots of clothes and makeup on. I just feel really big a lot of the time, and I'm surrounded by a lot of tiny people. I feel like a man sometimes."
Please don't be mistaken. This is not a "poor me, the tall girl" post. My body image is just fine, and women like Lively (though I suspect she's not the brightest crayon) and Charlize Theron and Aisha Tyler do us six-footers proud. And I can inconspicuously gain quite a bit of weight and still look A-OK. It's none of those things.

But... when we go to the drag show, or the high heel drag race in Dupont Circle, I do end up cracking a lot of jokes about getting confused for a competitor. And can you blame me?

Which of these things is not like the other?

No reason for this particular tangent, other than that I find it hilarious and refreshing that there are those out there in the same predicament. Hooray for tall (mannish....?) girls! Kidding! Sort of.

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