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A Shared Story: Size and Significance

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I am a short man; 5’6 to be exact. So what? Well, we all carry self-inflicted burdens and being short is (one of) mine. Not so much at all at this point of my life*, but when I was younger, I had a ˜Napoleon’ complex. I was the shortest in grade school classes, even shorter than the girls. For this, I was the butt of every joke you have ever heard. In high school I so much wanted to play baseball but at 5’1 and about 100 lbs, no way, Jose. I couldn’t buy a date in high school, as I looked about 12 or 13 when I graduated at 17. Things really changed for me in the Marine Corps (drafted ’65), where I learned I could do what all the Marines had to do because there was no choice. Do it or die trying. Somehow I did it. So physically I felt ˜normal’ after being a ˜Leatherneck’.

Then, after I fell in love with Christina and she fell for me, well, almost every fear and feelings of inadequacy (to the opposite sex) virtually disappeared. I didn’t care how short or tall she was, just that she loved me and I loved her. In my marketing/advertising career, it was underwhelming (no pun) when I walked into the room. So I picked up what I had learned as a kid. Act tough and strong and talk a lot, loudly. Try and be better than everyone else. But regardless, never should a short ad man enter the state of Texas.

So I began to admire other short men, Einstein (Height is Relative), Churchill (short man with a big V), Phil Rizzuto (played shortstop with the big boys), Ghandi (if he had been tall, India might still be a British colony). The list goes on and must include Frank Sinatra (can’t get bigger than the Chairman of the Board).

Remember, if you’re are a short man, stay away from Dallas and Houston and focus on other big cities, the bigger, the better (did I say that?).

One adage that has kept me upbeat my adult life is: If you split a big piece of wood, you get splinters. If you split a tiny atom, you can blow up the world. Awesome thought, yes? And it’s important for me and (especially) women to remember that big things don’t come from big things. Big things come from small things (like seeds) or in small packages (diamonds).

*It’s still a pain to buy an umbrella that doesn’t make me feel like I’m under the big top, but I’ll live.

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