The tallest man in the room

Cat_243_dover_39 by Mary Jo

Years ago, a friend of mine said that the hero of a Mills & Boon romance was always the tallest, richest man in the room—and she was usually right. (Usually he had dark hair and a lot of arrogance, but those are different blogs.)

Society’s bias toward height is pretty blatant, especially for men.  Twice in the last week, I’ve seen articles on height, both apparently inspired by a study out of Princeton that says that tall people not only earn more money, but they’re smarter, too, and presumably deserve higher salaries.  (A 2004 study showed that each additional inch of height amounts to a salary increase of about $789/year for men.)

I’m willing to concede that taller men may earn more, but taller people more Lincoln_and_the_generalsintelligent?  As a somewhat vertically challenged person myself, I have a vested interest in not believing that taller people are generally smarter!  (But it’s interesting to see how Lincoln, who may have had Marfan’s Syndrome, which give lanky height, towers over his generals in this photo.)

But there is some natural basis for such a claim, quite apart from the intelligence tests the Princeton study is talking about. A better nourished infant is going to grow better both physically and mentally, so a child who never gets enough food is at a disadvantage compared to one who is well-fed.  In the middle ages, this would translate to tall, lordly (well-nourished) aristocrats and puny peasants. 

Also, in the more violent past, a large guy who fought well probably looked like a natural leader.  Bullying = dominance.  A woman who hooked up with the biggest warrior around might be better protected than the woman who paired off with the short guy.  So I suppose that there are grounds for the romance hero who is always soooooo tall.  But I don’t have to like it.

Warren20harding In BLINK, Malcolm Gladwell talks about “the Warren Harding Effect”—that is, Harding became president largely because he looked so presidential.  That didn’t make him a distinguished president, though!  Given me brains and character over mere height any day. 

Size is often used an insult. “You little slimeball.” Or a disparagement.  “She has a nice little figure” or “she’s just the sweetest little thing.”  Those latter don’t sound much like compliments, do they?

Our culture talks about a “Napoleon complex” to mean a small man with Napoleon grandiosity issues.  In fact, the evidence suggests that Napoleon was slightly above average size for a Frenchman of his time—about 5’6”.   He was called “the little corporal” as a term of affection, because of his easy manner with common soldiers.  Hence he has gone into history as an egotistical short guy when he was merely an egotistical tyrant.  ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Napoleon )

I have a pet peeve with all the cliché descriptions of the woman whose head barely reaches the man’s shoulder.  That’s pretty rare in the real world, actually, and when it occurs, the couple tend to look a little unnatural—more like a little girl being taken for a walk by her father than like partners.  These days in America, the average height for men is 5’ 9” and for women is 5’ Willsmith_jada_pinkett 4”, a difference of 5”.  If a woman’s head comes only to a man’s shoulder, the difference is more like 15”—pretty substantial. 

Take a look at Will Smith and Jada Pinkett.  She was considered and rejected for the role of his girlfriend in his tv series because the producers thought she was too short and the couple looked odd together.  So she didn’t get the roll of girl friend, but Will Smith felt differently and chose her for the real world role of wife. <g> 

I get bored with romance heroes who are always tall, though I’ve certainly written a fair number myself.  But my heroes may also be average height, and some have been on the lean and lithe side.  A cat burglar has a physical appeal that is different from a football player, but that can be just as compelling.  Maybe more so, depending on one’s tastes. 

Of course, in fiction a lot of this does come down to taste, so tall heroes will probably always  predominate.  And not just in books, but movies.  A lot of Hollywood leading men aren’t that tall, but if film magic can make an average actor look like a hobbit, it can do the reverse.  I recall reading that Alan Ladd (5’6”) once made a movie with Sophie Loren (5’ 8”), so the producers dug a trench for her to walk in as they strolled side by side.  That way Ladd could look tall and manly.  <g>

Charles_and_diana This still goes on—when Prince Charles became engaged to Lady Diana, who was about his height, I recall that the official portrait of the two of them was arranged so he looked half a head taller.  Say what you will about Tom Cruise, but at least he seems okay with marrying women who loom over him.   

Height is less of an issue for women.  Tall and statuesque is good, but so is petite and pretty.  Some of my petite friends get exasperated when they Cruise_kidman_1 are considered cute rather than authoritative, but I don’t think I’ve ever heard it said that a woman had a Napoleon complex.  As an interesting aside, one of the height articles I read said that the ideal height for a male model is 6’—and for a female model, it’s 5’11”.  So female models have to unusually tall as well as unusually thin.  One more example of the fact that life isn’t fair. <g>

Physical attraction is to some extent hardwired into us individually, so I don’t expect to change anyone’s preference.  Personally, I’ve dated tall guys and short guys and those in the middle.  The one thing they have in common is intelligence, kindness, integrity, and a sense of humor.  (And tolerance, which they need to hang out with a writer!)  Who needs height when a guy has so many great traits?

Mary Jo, who likes the guys who make her laugh–and who laugh at her jokes, too.

116 thoughts on “The tallest man in the room”

  1. I like to laugh, but first you’ve got to talk to them. Me, I prefer short men. 5’9′ is about the tallest I care for. I’m just not terribly attracted to tall men, so it amuses me that so many fictional heroines are.

    Reply
  2. I like to laugh, but first you’ve got to talk to them. Me, I prefer short men. 5’9′ is about the tallest I care for. I’m just not terribly attracted to tall men, so it amuses me that so many fictional heroines are.

    Reply
  3. I like to laugh, but first you’ve got to talk to them. Me, I prefer short men. 5’9′ is about the tallest I care for. I’m just not terribly attracted to tall men, so it amuses me that so many fictional heroines are.

    Reply
  4. I like to laugh, but first you’ve got to talk to them. Me, I prefer short men. 5’9′ is about the tallest I care for. I’m just not terribly attracted to tall men, so it amuses me that so many fictional heroines are.

    Reply
  5. “I have a pet peeve with all the cliché descriptions of the woman whose head barely reaches the man’s shoulder.”
    The version that bugs me is when the woman is described as taller than most women, but she STILL barely comes up to the hero’s shoulder. I’m 5’7″ or 5’8″, so just a shade taller than average, and I almost never meet men so tall I can’t even clear their shoulders.
    As for my own preferences–I don’t like to look down, nor look up so much I strain my neck to meet the guy’s eyes. So anywhere from 5’7″ to 6’2″ or 6’3″ is fine by me, and my husband’s 6’0″ is just right.

    Reply
  6. “I have a pet peeve with all the cliché descriptions of the woman whose head barely reaches the man’s shoulder.”
    The version that bugs me is when the woman is described as taller than most women, but she STILL barely comes up to the hero’s shoulder. I’m 5’7″ or 5’8″, so just a shade taller than average, and I almost never meet men so tall I can’t even clear their shoulders.
    As for my own preferences–I don’t like to look down, nor look up so much I strain my neck to meet the guy’s eyes. So anywhere from 5’7″ to 6’2″ or 6’3″ is fine by me, and my husband’s 6’0″ is just right.

    Reply
  7. “I have a pet peeve with all the cliché descriptions of the woman whose head barely reaches the man’s shoulder.”
    The version that bugs me is when the woman is described as taller than most women, but she STILL barely comes up to the hero’s shoulder. I’m 5’7″ or 5’8″, so just a shade taller than average, and I almost never meet men so tall I can’t even clear their shoulders.
    As for my own preferences–I don’t like to look down, nor look up so much I strain my neck to meet the guy’s eyes. So anywhere from 5’7″ to 6’2″ or 6’3″ is fine by me, and my husband’s 6’0″ is just right.

    Reply
  8. “I have a pet peeve with all the cliché descriptions of the woman whose head barely reaches the man’s shoulder.”
    The version that bugs me is when the woman is described as taller than most women, but she STILL barely comes up to the hero’s shoulder. I’m 5’7″ or 5’8″, so just a shade taller than average, and I almost never meet men so tall I can’t even clear their shoulders.
    As for my own preferences–I don’t like to look down, nor look up so much I strain my neck to meet the guy’s eyes. So anywhere from 5’7″ to 6’2″ or 6’3″ is fine by me, and my husband’s 6’0″ is just right.

    Reply
  9. It’s great when you find a guy who makes you laugh and feel protected.My husband was 6’3″ when I met him and I was 5’6″ (we both seem to have shrunk a little bit in the intervening years, LOL) and for the first time in my life I felt “little.” I loved it. Now I’m actually the shortest person in my family and our son is taller than his dad.
    I’m sure admiration for men of stature is hard-wired from our caveman days—we want a strong guy to go out and club something for us and keep us warm at night! But I think we wenchlings know never to judge a book by its cover. So let’s sing the praises of all the good men (and women) out there.

    Reply
  10. It’s great when you find a guy who makes you laugh and feel protected.My husband was 6’3″ when I met him and I was 5’6″ (we both seem to have shrunk a little bit in the intervening years, LOL) and for the first time in my life I felt “little.” I loved it. Now I’m actually the shortest person in my family and our son is taller than his dad.
    I’m sure admiration for men of stature is hard-wired from our caveman days—we want a strong guy to go out and club something for us and keep us warm at night! But I think we wenchlings know never to judge a book by its cover. So let’s sing the praises of all the good men (and women) out there.

    Reply
  11. It’s great when you find a guy who makes you laugh and feel protected.My husband was 6’3″ when I met him and I was 5’6″ (we both seem to have shrunk a little bit in the intervening years, LOL) and for the first time in my life I felt “little.” I loved it. Now I’m actually the shortest person in my family and our son is taller than his dad.
    I’m sure admiration for men of stature is hard-wired from our caveman days—we want a strong guy to go out and club something for us and keep us warm at night! But I think we wenchlings know never to judge a book by its cover. So let’s sing the praises of all the good men (and women) out there.

    Reply
  12. It’s great when you find a guy who makes you laugh and feel protected.My husband was 6’3″ when I met him and I was 5’6″ (we both seem to have shrunk a little bit in the intervening years, LOL) and for the first time in my life I felt “little.” I loved it. Now I’m actually the shortest person in my family and our son is taller than his dad.
    I’m sure admiration for men of stature is hard-wired from our caveman days—we want a strong guy to go out and club something for us and keep us warm at night! But I think we wenchlings know never to judge a book by its cover. So let’s sing the praises of all the good men (and women) out there.

    Reply
  13. My dad was 13″ taller than my mother, who was barely 4’11”, but I don’t think his height or her petiteness was something either considered much. I am 5’4″ and the men in my life have all been from 2-9 inches taller than I. But, as you say, their intelligence, integrity, compassion, and sense of fum were all vastly more important than the height they had–or lacked.
    I wonder with romance heroes though if the height is necessary since the mostly female readers likely range a foot or more in height. I have tall female friends who agonize over being taller than their men. Most of us want our our fantasies to be “perfect,” however we define perfection.
    Hair color is another superficial quality that many feel strongly aboout. How many red-haired heroes can you name?

    Reply
  14. My dad was 13″ taller than my mother, who was barely 4’11”, but I don’t think his height or her petiteness was something either considered much. I am 5’4″ and the men in my life have all been from 2-9 inches taller than I. But, as you say, their intelligence, integrity, compassion, and sense of fum were all vastly more important than the height they had–or lacked.
    I wonder with romance heroes though if the height is necessary since the mostly female readers likely range a foot or more in height. I have tall female friends who agonize over being taller than their men. Most of us want our our fantasies to be “perfect,” however we define perfection.
    Hair color is another superficial quality that many feel strongly aboout. How many red-haired heroes can you name?

    Reply
  15. My dad was 13″ taller than my mother, who was barely 4’11”, but I don’t think his height or her petiteness was something either considered much. I am 5’4″ and the men in my life have all been from 2-9 inches taller than I. But, as you say, their intelligence, integrity, compassion, and sense of fum were all vastly more important than the height they had–or lacked.
    I wonder with romance heroes though if the height is necessary since the mostly female readers likely range a foot or more in height. I have tall female friends who agonize over being taller than their men. Most of us want our our fantasies to be “perfect,” however we define perfection.
    Hair color is another superficial quality that many feel strongly aboout. How many red-haired heroes can you name?

    Reply
  16. My dad was 13″ taller than my mother, who was barely 4’11”, but I don’t think his height or her petiteness was something either considered much. I am 5’4″ and the men in my life have all been from 2-9 inches taller than I. But, as you say, their intelligence, integrity, compassion, and sense of fum were all vastly more important than the height they had–or lacked.
    I wonder with romance heroes though if the height is necessary since the mostly female readers likely range a foot or more in height. I have tall female friends who agonize over being taller than their men. Most of us want our our fantasies to be “perfect,” however we define perfection.
    Hair color is another superficial quality that many feel strongly aboout. How many red-haired heroes can you name?

    Reply
  17. Great topic, Mary Jo!
    As a romance writer and a short woman (I was 4’10 3/4″ until I did yoga and bloomed to a full 4’11”), at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends. What’s it feel like when you sit in a chair and your feet touch the ground? *g*
    I don’t have a problem writing tall heroes, though. My husband is about 6’2″ and our 3 sons range from 5’10 to 6’2″ — I’m used to living with tall guys. I know how they move, how they relate to their environment. Tall heroes are easy for me to write. But my dad is 5’5″ with no trace of short-guy complex (when he and I go to a restaurant, we joke that we need booster seats) — so I grew up around short people and married into tall people.
    One factor in the general popularity and appeal of tall heroes is the theory of genetic attraction — that females are genetically programmed to look for a male who can make strong, healthy babies with her to continue and improve the species…and a guy who is strong enough (and big enough) to protect that family. This goes back to the saber-tooth tiger days. While we’ve evolved mentally and intellectually, physically we’re pretty similar to our Cro-Magnon ancestors, though perhaps taller and better looking, from what I hear. Maybe we have some anthropology people here who can comment–?
    Though I like both short and tall guys, I haven’t written a short guy hero. I don’t know that I would do that in a historical, for some reason — the classic templates seem to apply there — though in a contemporary, I probably wouldn’t hesitate.
    ~Susan Sarah, little person and proud of it

    Reply
  18. Great topic, Mary Jo!
    As a romance writer and a short woman (I was 4’10 3/4″ until I did yoga and bloomed to a full 4’11”), at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends. What’s it feel like when you sit in a chair and your feet touch the ground? *g*
    I don’t have a problem writing tall heroes, though. My husband is about 6’2″ and our 3 sons range from 5’10 to 6’2″ — I’m used to living with tall guys. I know how they move, how they relate to their environment. Tall heroes are easy for me to write. But my dad is 5’5″ with no trace of short-guy complex (when he and I go to a restaurant, we joke that we need booster seats) — so I grew up around short people and married into tall people.
    One factor in the general popularity and appeal of tall heroes is the theory of genetic attraction — that females are genetically programmed to look for a male who can make strong, healthy babies with her to continue and improve the species…and a guy who is strong enough (and big enough) to protect that family. This goes back to the saber-tooth tiger days. While we’ve evolved mentally and intellectually, physically we’re pretty similar to our Cro-Magnon ancestors, though perhaps taller and better looking, from what I hear. Maybe we have some anthropology people here who can comment–?
    Though I like both short and tall guys, I haven’t written a short guy hero. I don’t know that I would do that in a historical, for some reason — the classic templates seem to apply there — though in a contemporary, I probably wouldn’t hesitate.
    ~Susan Sarah, little person and proud of it

    Reply
  19. Great topic, Mary Jo!
    As a romance writer and a short woman (I was 4’10 3/4″ until I did yoga and bloomed to a full 4’11”), at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends. What’s it feel like when you sit in a chair and your feet touch the ground? *g*
    I don’t have a problem writing tall heroes, though. My husband is about 6’2″ and our 3 sons range from 5’10 to 6’2″ — I’m used to living with tall guys. I know how they move, how they relate to their environment. Tall heroes are easy for me to write. But my dad is 5’5″ with no trace of short-guy complex (when he and I go to a restaurant, we joke that we need booster seats) — so I grew up around short people and married into tall people.
    One factor in the general popularity and appeal of tall heroes is the theory of genetic attraction — that females are genetically programmed to look for a male who can make strong, healthy babies with her to continue and improve the species…and a guy who is strong enough (and big enough) to protect that family. This goes back to the saber-tooth tiger days. While we’ve evolved mentally and intellectually, physically we’re pretty similar to our Cro-Magnon ancestors, though perhaps taller and better looking, from what I hear. Maybe we have some anthropology people here who can comment–?
    Though I like both short and tall guys, I haven’t written a short guy hero. I don’t know that I would do that in a historical, for some reason — the classic templates seem to apply there — though in a contemporary, I probably wouldn’t hesitate.
    ~Susan Sarah, little person and proud of it

    Reply
  20. Great topic, Mary Jo!
    As a romance writer and a short woman (I was 4’10 3/4″ until I did yoga and bloomed to a full 4’11”), at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends. What’s it feel like when you sit in a chair and your feet touch the ground? *g*
    I don’t have a problem writing tall heroes, though. My husband is about 6’2″ and our 3 sons range from 5’10 to 6’2″ — I’m used to living with tall guys. I know how they move, how they relate to their environment. Tall heroes are easy for me to write. But my dad is 5’5″ with no trace of short-guy complex (when he and I go to a restaurant, we joke that we need booster seats) — so I grew up around short people and married into tall people.
    One factor in the general popularity and appeal of tall heroes is the theory of genetic attraction — that females are genetically programmed to look for a male who can make strong, healthy babies with her to continue and improve the species…and a guy who is strong enough (and big enough) to protect that family. This goes back to the saber-tooth tiger days. While we’ve evolved mentally and intellectually, physically we’re pretty similar to our Cro-Magnon ancestors, though perhaps taller and better looking, from what I hear. Maybe we have some anthropology people here who can comment–?
    Though I like both short and tall guys, I haven’t written a short guy hero. I don’t know that I would do that in a historical, for some reason — the classic templates seem to apply there — though in a contemporary, I probably wouldn’t hesitate.
    ~Susan Sarah, little person and proud of it

    Reply
  21. From MJP:
    In the real world, I think most women are pretty practical about what guys are attractive, but in the fantasy world, tall does seem to be the default. 🙂 Susan W., I agree–it’s particularly silly when a taller than average woman is only shoulder height next to Mr. Cavemen. Not all writers are observing the real world!
    In a few minutes I’m off to Maryland’s Eastern Shore to speak at a conference tomorrow. Back Saturday night!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  22. From MJP:
    In the real world, I think most women are pretty practical about what guys are attractive, but in the fantasy world, tall does seem to be the default. 🙂 Susan W., I agree–it’s particularly silly when a taller than average woman is only shoulder height next to Mr. Cavemen. Not all writers are observing the real world!
    In a few minutes I’m off to Maryland’s Eastern Shore to speak at a conference tomorrow. Back Saturday night!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  23. From MJP:
    In the real world, I think most women are pretty practical about what guys are attractive, but in the fantasy world, tall does seem to be the default. 🙂 Susan W., I agree–it’s particularly silly when a taller than average woman is only shoulder height next to Mr. Cavemen. Not all writers are observing the real world!
    In a few minutes I’m off to Maryland’s Eastern Shore to speak at a conference tomorrow. Back Saturday night!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  24. From MJP:
    In the real world, I think most women are pretty practical about what guys are attractive, but in the fantasy world, tall does seem to be the default. 🙂 Susan W., I agree–it’s particularly silly when a taller than average woman is only shoulder height next to Mr. Cavemen. Not all writers are observing the real world!
    In a few minutes I’m off to Maryland’s Eastern Shore to speak at a conference tomorrow. Back Saturday night!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  25. Great post!. I didn’t know taller men got paid more. One best not tell The Donald (who is not that tall of a man.)
    While agree with Wench Susan/Sarah about our genetic programming, I’m a bit of an odd ball when it comes to height. I prefer shorter men. At 5’3″, my DH is two inches shorter than me. But, as woman who’ve “tried” shorter men will often say, there’s advantages when the height is a bit reversed.
    Knock ‘em dead at the conference, Mary Jo!
    Nina

    Reply
  26. Great post!. I didn’t know taller men got paid more. One best not tell The Donald (who is not that tall of a man.)
    While agree with Wench Susan/Sarah about our genetic programming, I’m a bit of an odd ball when it comes to height. I prefer shorter men. At 5’3″, my DH is two inches shorter than me. But, as woman who’ve “tried” shorter men will often say, there’s advantages when the height is a bit reversed.
    Knock ‘em dead at the conference, Mary Jo!
    Nina

    Reply
  27. Great post!. I didn’t know taller men got paid more. One best not tell The Donald (who is not that tall of a man.)
    While agree with Wench Susan/Sarah about our genetic programming, I’m a bit of an odd ball when it comes to height. I prefer shorter men. At 5’3″, my DH is two inches shorter than me. But, as woman who’ve “tried” shorter men will often say, there’s advantages when the height is a bit reversed.
    Knock ‘em dead at the conference, Mary Jo!
    Nina

    Reply
  28. Great post!. I didn’t know taller men got paid more. One best not tell The Donald (who is not that tall of a man.)
    While agree with Wench Susan/Sarah about our genetic programming, I’m a bit of an odd ball when it comes to height. I prefer shorter men. At 5’3″, my DH is two inches shorter than me. But, as woman who’ve “tried” shorter men will often say, there’s advantages when the height is a bit reversed.
    Knock ‘em dead at the conference, Mary Jo!
    Nina

    Reply
  29. Hmmmmm, I’m 5’10”. Taller than the average man, doomed to hunt for the scarce “6′ and over” men out there (who always seem to be dating midgets). LOL! I’d MUCH rather be shorter (not just cause of men, but because clothes are made for women who are 5’6″ to 5’7″).
    That said, I have a group of male friends who are all 6’3” – 7’2” and I LOVE it when they surround me and give me a “tiny moment”. It’s fun to feel girlish and petite.

    Reply
  30. Hmmmmm, I’m 5’10”. Taller than the average man, doomed to hunt for the scarce “6′ and over” men out there (who always seem to be dating midgets). LOL! I’d MUCH rather be shorter (not just cause of men, but because clothes are made for women who are 5’6″ to 5’7″).
    That said, I have a group of male friends who are all 6’3” – 7’2” and I LOVE it when they surround me and give me a “tiny moment”. It’s fun to feel girlish and petite.

    Reply
  31. Hmmmmm, I’m 5’10”. Taller than the average man, doomed to hunt for the scarce “6′ and over” men out there (who always seem to be dating midgets). LOL! I’d MUCH rather be shorter (not just cause of men, but because clothes are made for women who are 5’6″ to 5’7″).
    That said, I have a group of male friends who are all 6’3” – 7’2” and I LOVE it when they surround me and give me a “tiny moment”. It’s fun to feel girlish and petite.

    Reply
  32. Hmmmmm, I’m 5’10”. Taller than the average man, doomed to hunt for the scarce “6′ and over” men out there (who always seem to be dating midgets). LOL! I’d MUCH rather be shorter (not just cause of men, but because clothes are made for women who are 5’6″ to 5’7″).
    That said, I have a group of male friends who are all 6’3” – 7’2” and I LOVE it when they surround me and give me a “tiny moment”. It’s fun to feel girlish and petite.

    Reply
  33. It was pretty clear to me what our society values as “ideal” when I saw some ads for egg donors in one of my alumni magazines. They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.
    At 5’2″ I am the shortest one in my family, and I married a normal height guy of 5’10”. Our daughters are both petite–our youngest barely reaches 5th percentile in height–and it may be that when they reach full height they will be shorter than me! They both have Powerful Personalities, though (girls of their generation seem to, LOL).
    I do find being short irritating when attending theatre events or movies (the Tallest Person in America ALWAYS chooses the seat in front of me). There is also the feeling of being helpless and overwhelmed when I’m in a big crowd and it feels like no one can see me down here. Driving a clutch car is a challenge, as is finding a pair of pants that are the right length. That extra five pounds also expands my waistline more than it would on my taller friends.
    As a romance reader, it seems to me that most of the heroines I read about are “gloriously tall” and that their heroes are Even Taller. It’s a version of life populated by Egg Donor Ideals–and although I sometimes wish for a heroine who is “more like me” I can enjoy the fantasy as much as anyone else, LOL, pretending for a moment to be “gloriously tall” myself. . .

    Reply
  34. It was pretty clear to me what our society values as “ideal” when I saw some ads for egg donors in one of my alumni magazines. They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.
    At 5’2″ I am the shortest one in my family, and I married a normal height guy of 5’10”. Our daughters are both petite–our youngest barely reaches 5th percentile in height–and it may be that when they reach full height they will be shorter than me! They both have Powerful Personalities, though (girls of their generation seem to, LOL).
    I do find being short irritating when attending theatre events or movies (the Tallest Person in America ALWAYS chooses the seat in front of me). There is also the feeling of being helpless and overwhelmed when I’m in a big crowd and it feels like no one can see me down here. Driving a clutch car is a challenge, as is finding a pair of pants that are the right length. That extra five pounds also expands my waistline more than it would on my taller friends.
    As a romance reader, it seems to me that most of the heroines I read about are “gloriously tall” and that their heroes are Even Taller. It’s a version of life populated by Egg Donor Ideals–and although I sometimes wish for a heroine who is “more like me” I can enjoy the fantasy as much as anyone else, LOL, pretending for a moment to be “gloriously tall” myself. . .

    Reply
  35. It was pretty clear to me what our society values as “ideal” when I saw some ads for egg donors in one of my alumni magazines. They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.
    At 5’2″ I am the shortest one in my family, and I married a normal height guy of 5’10”. Our daughters are both petite–our youngest barely reaches 5th percentile in height–and it may be that when they reach full height they will be shorter than me! They both have Powerful Personalities, though (girls of their generation seem to, LOL).
    I do find being short irritating when attending theatre events or movies (the Tallest Person in America ALWAYS chooses the seat in front of me). There is also the feeling of being helpless and overwhelmed when I’m in a big crowd and it feels like no one can see me down here. Driving a clutch car is a challenge, as is finding a pair of pants that are the right length. That extra five pounds also expands my waistline more than it would on my taller friends.
    As a romance reader, it seems to me that most of the heroines I read about are “gloriously tall” and that their heroes are Even Taller. It’s a version of life populated by Egg Donor Ideals–and although I sometimes wish for a heroine who is “more like me” I can enjoy the fantasy as much as anyone else, LOL, pretending for a moment to be “gloriously tall” myself. . .

    Reply
  36. It was pretty clear to me what our society values as “ideal” when I saw some ads for egg donors in one of my alumni magazines. They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.
    At 5’2″ I am the shortest one in my family, and I married a normal height guy of 5’10”. Our daughters are both petite–our youngest barely reaches 5th percentile in height–and it may be that when they reach full height they will be shorter than me! They both have Powerful Personalities, though (girls of their generation seem to, LOL).
    I do find being short irritating when attending theatre events or movies (the Tallest Person in America ALWAYS chooses the seat in front of me). There is also the feeling of being helpless and overwhelmed when I’m in a big crowd and it feels like no one can see me down here. Driving a clutch car is a challenge, as is finding a pair of pants that are the right length. That extra five pounds also expands my waistline more than it would on my taller friends.
    As a romance reader, it seems to me that most of the heroines I read about are “gloriously tall” and that their heroes are Even Taller. It’s a version of life populated by Egg Donor Ideals–and although I sometimes wish for a heroine who is “more like me” I can enjoy the fantasy as much as anyone else, LOL, pretending for a moment to be “gloriously tall” myself. . .

    Reply
  37. “at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends.”
    I made my first two heroines petite, partly because I didn’t want them to look too much like me. So then I interviewed my short friends to find out what it’s like to kiss a guy who’s 10, 12, 15 inches taller than you!

    Reply
  38. “at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends.”
    I made my first two heroines petite, partly because I didn’t want them to look too much like me. So then I interviewed my short friends to find out what it’s like to kiss a guy who’s 10, 12, 15 inches taller than you!

    Reply
  39. “at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends.”
    I made my first two heroines petite, partly because I didn’t want them to look too much like me. So then I interviewed my short friends to find out what it’s like to kiss a guy who’s 10, 12, 15 inches taller than you!

    Reply
  40. “at first I wrote short heroines because that point of view comes more naturally to me. I remember my first tall heroine — I interviewed my tall friends.”
    I made my first two heroines petite, partly because I didn’t want them to look too much like me. So then I interviewed my short friends to find out what it’s like to kiss a guy who’s 10, 12, 15 inches taller than you!

    Reply
  41. Very interesting subject, and, as a woman of considerably above average height (6′ in my socks) one that is also a pet peeve of mine. How it irks me to read a romance or other novel and find that the male is described as 6′ or over while the female is petite. Is this the only possible combination known to romance writers?
    Do you have an opinion on the psychological underpinnings of great height disparity in male/female pairings? I’d be interested in hearing it, if so. My theory, borne out by some experience, is that very tall men can be insecure and look for shorter women (and the reverse is also true) to bolster their self-esteem. I’m in favor of similar-height pairing, but then I don’t rule the world, so…
    CK

    Reply
  42. Very interesting subject, and, as a woman of considerably above average height (6′ in my socks) one that is also a pet peeve of mine. How it irks me to read a romance or other novel and find that the male is described as 6′ or over while the female is petite. Is this the only possible combination known to romance writers?
    Do you have an opinion on the psychological underpinnings of great height disparity in male/female pairings? I’d be interested in hearing it, if so. My theory, borne out by some experience, is that very tall men can be insecure and look for shorter women (and the reverse is also true) to bolster their self-esteem. I’m in favor of similar-height pairing, but then I don’t rule the world, so…
    CK

    Reply
  43. Very interesting subject, and, as a woman of considerably above average height (6′ in my socks) one that is also a pet peeve of mine. How it irks me to read a romance or other novel and find that the male is described as 6′ or over while the female is petite. Is this the only possible combination known to romance writers?
    Do you have an opinion on the psychological underpinnings of great height disparity in male/female pairings? I’d be interested in hearing it, if so. My theory, borne out by some experience, is that very tall men can be insecure and look for shorter women (and the reverse is also true) to bolster their self-esteem. I’m in favor of similar-height pairing, but then I don’t rule the world, so…
    CK

    Reply
  44. Very interesting subject, and, as a woman of considerably above average height (6′ in my socks) one that is also a pet peeve of mine. How it irks me to read a romance or other novel and find that the male is described as 6′ or over while the female is petite. Is this the only possible combination known to romance writers?
    Do you have an opinion on the psychological underpinnings of great height disparity in male/female pairings? I’d be interested in hearing it, if so. My theory, borne out by some experience, is that very tall men can be insecure and look for shorter women (and the reverse is also true) to bolster their self-esteem. I’m in favor of similar-height pairing, but then I don’t rule the world, so…
    CK

    Reply
  45. I suspect a lot of the Tall Man as Hero comes out of marketing. In the first historical romances, the big alpha male lugging around the helpless female became a sexual fantasy that women bought into. And given that we’re getting more of the same with the hulking vampires and werewolves and Navy Seals out there even now, it’s apparently a very strong domination fantasy.
    On top of that, it’s really quite difficult to make a hero “seem” romantic on the written page if we have to describe him as “short and wiry.” “G” So maybe some of this Tall Man business is built into the genes,or certainly into our culture.
    Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization. If we’re going to have Mutt and Jeff, then I want her to threaten to get out the stairs to kiss him. Or if he’s shorter than her brothers, I want him to make the rowdy lot back off by using his skill in some other area. Otherwise, height is irrelevant, IMO.

    Reply
  46. I suspect a lot of the Tall Man as Hero comes out of marketing. In the first historical romances, the big alpha male lugging around the helpless female became a sexual fantasy that women bought into. And given that we’re getting more of the same with the hulking vampires and werewolves and Navy Seals out there even now, it’s apparently a very strong domination fantasy.
    On top of that, it’s really quite difficult to make a hero “seem” romantic on the written page if we have to describe him as “short and wiry.” “G” So maybe some of this Tall Man business is built into the genes,or certainly into our culture.
    Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization. If we’re going to have Mutt and Jeff, then I want her to threaten to get out the stairs to kiss him. Or if he’s shorter than her brothers, I want him to make the rowdy lot back off by using his skill in some other area. Otherwise, height is irrelevant, IMO.

    Reply
  47. I suspect a lot of the Tall Man as Hero comes out of marketing. In the first historical romances, the big alpha male lugging around the helpless female became a sexual fantasy that women bought into. And given that we’re getting more of the same with the hulking vampires and werewolves and Navy Seals out there even now, it’s apparently a very strong domination fantasy.
    On top of that, it’s really quite difficult to make a hero “seem” romantic on the written page if we have to describe him as “short and wiry.” “G” So maybe some of this Tall Man business is built into the genes,or certainly into our culture.
    Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization. If we’re going to have Mutt and Jeff, then I want her to threaten to get out the stairs to kiss him. Or if he’s shorter than her brothers, I want him to make the rowdy lot back off by using his skill in some other area. Otherwise, height is irrelevant, IMO.

    Reply
  48. I suspect a lot of the Tall Man as Hero comes out of marketing. In the first historical romances, the big alpha male lugging around the helpless female became a sexual fantasy that women bought into. And given that we’re getting more of the same with the hulking vampires and werewolves and Navy Seals out there even now, it’s apparently a very strong domination fantasy.
    On top of that, it’s really quite difficult to make a hero “seem” romantic on the written page if we have to describe him as “short and wiry.” “G” So maybe some of this Tall Man business is built into the genes,or certainly into our culture.
    Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization. If we’re going to have Mutt and Jeff, then I want her to threaten to get out the stairs to kiss him. Or if he’s shorter than her brothers, I want him to make the rowdy lot back off by using his skill in some other area. Otherwise, height is irrelevant, IMO.

    Reply
  49. In Loretta’s Mr. Impossible, there is a stated reason for making the hero tall- our heroine has to employ him as a bodyguard. But what really made him attrctive IMHO was the description of his voice as being so deep it rumbles. I’m thinking “Alan Rickman-type”- I’ll take a deep voice over height any time.

    Reply
  50. In Loretta’s Mr. Impossible, there is a stated reason for making the hero tall- our heroine has to employ him as a bodyguard. But what really made him attrctive IMHO was the description of his voice as being so deep it rumbles. I’m thinking “Alan Rickman-type”- I’ll take a deep voice over height any time.

    Reply
  51. In Loretta’s Mr. Impossible, there is a stated reason for making the hero tall- our heroine has to employ him as a bodyguard. But what really made him attrctive IMHO was the description of his voice as being so deep it rumbles. I’m thinking “Alan Rickman-type”- I’ll take a deep voice over height any time.

    Reply
  52. In Loretta’s Mr. Impossible, there is a stated reason for making the hero tall- our heroine has to employ him as a bodyguard. But what really made him attrctive IMHO was the description of his voice as being so deep it rumbles. I’m thinking “Alan Rickman-type”- I’ll take a deep voice over height any time.

    Reply
  53. Wench Pat said…”Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization.”
    I agree. W/o it, he’s just tall and she’s just short.
    And, I am so with Gretchen on the deep voice. I’ll take that over height anyday.
    Personally, I’m tired of the tall hero picking out the petite heroine. He’s big and strong and she’s a kitten with a tiger-sized attitude. I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise. Either way, I wouldn’t trade the Wenches books for the world and everything in it.
    On a sidenote, RevMelinda, I thought for sure you’d bring up the whole King Saul point. I had the book of I Samuel out this morning, checking my facts and everything, but decided I didn’t want to steal your thunder. Ah, well….
    Nina, trying to add another 2000 to her MIP today.

    Reply
  54. Wench Pat said…”Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization.”
    I agree. W/o it, he’s just tall and she’s just short.
    And, I am so with Gretchen on the deep voice. I’ll take that over height anyday.
    Personally, I’m tired of the tall hero picking out the petite heroine. He’s big and strong and she’s a kitten with a tiger-sized attitude. I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise. Either way, I wouldn’t trade the Wenches books for the world and everything in it.
    On a sidenote, RevMelinda, I thought for sure you’d bring up the whole King Saul point. I had the book of I Samuel out this morning, checking my facts and everything, but decided I didn’t want to steal your thunder. Ah, well….
    Nina, trying to add another 2000 to her MIP today.

    Reply
  55. Wench Pat said…”Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization.”
    I agree. W/o it, he’s just tall and she’s just short.
    And, I am so with Gretchen on the deep voice. I’ll take that over height anyday.
    Personally, I’m tired of the tall hero picking out the petite heroine. He’s big and strong and she’s a kitten with a tiger-sized attitude. I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise. Either way, I wouldn’t trade the Wenches books for the world and everything in it.
    On a sidenote, RevMelinda, I thought for sure you’d bring up the whole King Saul point. I had the book of I Samuel out this morning, checking my facts and everything, but decided I didn’t want to steal your thunder. Ah, well….
    Nina, trying to add another 2000 to her MIP today.

    Reply
  56. Wench Pat said…”Personally, I prefer height issues to play into characterization.”
    I agree. W/o it, he’s just tall and she’s just short.
    And, I am so with Gretchen on the deep voice. I’ll take that over height anyday.
    Personally, I’m tired of the tall hero picking out the petite heroine. He’s big and strong and she’s a kitten with a tiger-sized attitude. I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise. Either way, I wouldn’t trade the Wenches books for the world and everything in it.
    On a sidenote, RevMelinda, I thought for sure you’d bring up the whole King Saul point. I had the book of I Samuel out this morning, checking my facts and everything, but decided I didn’t want to steal your thunder. Ah, well….
    Nina, trying to add another 2000 to her MIP today.

    Reply
  57. Don’t forget, when they talk about the Nixon/Kennedy debates, the ones that were first broadcast on Television, people who listened on the radio thought Nixon did better, and those who watched the tvs thought Kennedy did better — why, of course, the looks. Kennedy, well we all know how movie starish JFK looked, and then there was Nixon with I think was his five o;clock shadow and sweat or whatever.
    But I wonder how hard-wired we really are though, or is it as much as people think . . . because after all, they have showed that you go to different countries (western, African, etc) and not everyone goes for what our general idea of a perfect man or woman is. And throughout history too, that has changed, it hasn’t always been the pencil thin blond model type. Makes you wonder. 🙂
    Lois

    Reply
  58. Don’t forget, when they talk about the Nixon/Kennedy debates, the ones that were first broadcast on Television, people who listened on the radio thought Nixon did better, and those who watched the tvs thought Kennedy did better — why, of course, the looks. Kennedy, well we all know how movie starish JFK looked, and then there was Nixon with I think was his five o;clock shadow and sweat or whatever.
    But I wonder how hard-wired we really are though, or is it as much as people think . . . because after all, they have showed that you go to different countries (western, African, etc) and not everyone goes for what our general idea of a perfect man or woman is. And throughout history too, that has changed, it hasn’t always been the pencil thin blond model type. Makes you wonder. 🙂
    Lois

    Reply
  59. Don’t forget, when they talk about the Nixon/Kennedy debates, the ones that were first broadcast on Television, people who listened on the radio thought Nixon did better, and those who watched the tvs thought Kennedy did better — why, of course, the looks. Kennedy, well we all know how movie starish JFK looked, and then there was Nixon with I think was his five o;clock shadow and sweat or whatever.
    But I wonder how hard-wired we really are though, or is it as much as people think . . . because after all, they have showed that you go to different countries (western, African, etc) and not everyone goes for what our general idea of a perfect man or woman is. And throughout history too, that has changed, it hasn’t always been the pencil thin blond model type. Makes you wonder. 🙂
    Lois

    Reply
  60. Don’t forget, when they talk about the Nixon/Kennedy debates, the ones that were first broadcast on Television, people who listened on the radio thought Nixon did better, and those who watched the tvs thought Kennedy did better — why, of course, the looks. Kennedy, well we all know how movie starish JFK looked, and then there was Nixon with I think was his five o;clock shadow and sweat or whatever.
    But I wonder how hard-wired we really are though, or is it as much as people think . . . because after all, they have showed that you go to different countries (western, African, etc) and not everyone goes for what our general idea of a perfect man or woman is. And throughout history too, that has changed, it hasn’t always been the pencil thin blond model type. Makes you wonder. 🙂
    Lois

    Reply
  61. <>
    Have we forgotten the shame of “Aryan Supremacy”? Or do we have a societal disconnect going on? Neither seems particularly *intelligent* to me.
    I like heros and heroines I’d like to know or be, in other words, interesting people! And yes, Alan’s Rickman’s voice is enough to melt me into a puddle.
    Reply

  62. <>
    Have we forgotten the shame of “Aryan Supremacy”? Or do we have a societal disconnect going on? Neither seems particularly *intelligent* to me.
    I like heros and heroines I’d like to know or be, in other words, interesting people! And yes, Alan’s Rickman’s voice is enough to melt me into a puddle.
    Reply

  63. <>
    Have we forgotten the shame of “Aryan Supremacy”? Or do we have a societal disconnect going on? Neither seems particularly *intelligent* to me.
    I like heros and heroines I’d like to know or be, in other words, interesting people! And yes, Alan’s Rickman’s voice is enough to melt me into a puddle.
    Reply

  64. <>
    Have we forgotten the shame of “Aryan Supremacy”? Or do we have a societal disconnect going on? Neither seems particularly *intelligent* to me.
    I like heros and heroines I’d like to know or be, in other words, interesting people! And yes, Alan’s Rickman’s voice is enough to melt me into a puddle.
    Reply

  65. My comment was inresponse to the egg-donor ideals. Typepad messed with me. 🙂
    They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.

    Reply
  66. My comment was inresponse to the egg-donor ideals. Typepad messed with me. 🙂
    They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.

    Reply
  67. My comment was inresponse to the egg-donor ideals. Typepad messed with me. 🙂
    They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.

    Reply
  68. My comment was inresponse to the egg-donor ideals. Typepad messed with me. 🙂
    They all wanted women donors who had SATs of 1500 plus, were athletes, blond and blue-eyed, and 5’10” or taller.

    Reply
  69. It’s hair that does the trick for me, for whatever reason. Give a guy shiny dark curls and I’ll fall everytime!
    I forget where the egg donor story came from and don’t have time to go back and run it down, but unless they were targeting a market of blond, blue-eyed athletes, I can’t imagine all parents wanting that child. What if they were African or Oriental? What if they were quiet introverts who never lifted a basketball? I’d think parents would want kids who looked like them, but I guess I’ve been wrong before!

    Reply
  70. It’s hair that does the trick for me, for whatever reason. Give a guy shiny dark curls and I’ll fall everytime!
    I forget where the egg donor story came from and don’t have time to go back and run it down, but unless they were targeting a market of blond, blue-eyed athletes, I can’t imagine all parents wanting that child. What if they were African or Oriental? What if they were quiet introverts who never lifted a basketball? I’d think parents would want kids who looked like them, but I guess I’ve been wrong before!

    Reply
  71. It’s hair that does the trick for me, for whatever reason. Give a guy shiny dark curls and I’ll fall everytime!
    I forget where the egg donor story came from and don’t have time to go back and run it down, but unless they were targeting a market of blond, blue-eyed athletes, I can’t imagine all parents wanting that child. What if they were African or Oriental? What if they were quiet introverts who never lifted a basketball? I’d think parents would want kids who looked like them, but I guess I’ve been wrong before!

    Reply
  72. It’s hair that does the trick for me, for whatever reason. Give a guy shiny dark curls and I’ll fall everytime!
    I forget where the egg donor story came from and don’t have time to go back and run it down, but unless they were targeting a market of blond, blue-eyed athletes, I can’t imagine all parents wanting that child. What if they were African or Oriental? What if they were quiet introverts who never lifted a basketball? I’d think parents would want kids who looked like them, but I guess I’ve been wrong before!

    Reply
  73. ***I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise.***
    Amen! I think the market will take all types. I can think of lots of books (including mine) where the heroine is tall enough to give the hero a run for his money.

    Reply
  74. ***I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise.***
    Amen! I think the market will take all types. I can think of lots of books (including mine) where the heroine is tall enough to give the hero a run for his money.

    Reply
  75. ***I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise.***
    Amen! I think the market will take all types. I can think of lots of books (including mine) where the heroine is tall enough to give the hero a run for his money.

    Reply
  76. ***I say give her some size and make him think twice before trying for what he wants. But, then again, maybe the market demamds otherwise.***
    Amen! I think the market will take all types. I can think of lots of books (including mine) where the heroine is tall enough to give the hero a run for his money.

    Reply
  77. I was the one with the “egg donor” story, and my memory is that these ads appeared in the back of one of my alumni magazines (I think they were display ads from fertility clinics, along the lines of “Ivy League Women! Make some extra money by donating some eggs!”). I haven’t seen one of these for a long time, btw, so they must have moved on to some different egg solicitation technique.
    At the time, I recall having much the same visceral “yuck” reaction as Jane, and then I was just insulted (so brown eyed short women aren’t desirable?).
    Pat, I guess I also thought that these “high class” eggs were perhaps being marketed to couples who wanted to give their kids “every advantage”–whether that meant a Harvard degree or a 5’10” frame. (After all–true confession time, and please don’t hate me–as perfect as my own short children are–IF I were able to CHOOSE–I would give each of them about 5 more inches than I have. As much as I love the beauty and diversity of God’s creation, I do think there’s a societal preference favoring the tall, and I, too, want my children to have Every Advantage. Sigh.)

    Reply
  78. I was the one with the “egg donor” story, and my memory is that these ads appeared in the back of one of my alumni magazines (I think they were display ads from fertility clinics, along the lines of “Ivy League Women! Make some extra money by donating some eggs!”). I haven’t seen one of these for a long time, btw, so they must have moved on to some different egg solicitation technique.
    At the time, I recall having much the same visceral “yuck” reaction as Jane, and then I was just insulted (so brown eyed short women aren’t desirable?).
    Pat, I guess I also thought that these “high class” eggs were perhaps being marketed to couples who wanted to give their kids “every advantage”–whether that meant a Harvard degree or a 5’10” frame. (After all–true confession time, and please don’t hate me–as perfect as my own short children are–IF I were able to CHOOSE–I would give each of them about 5 more inches than I have. As much as I love the beauty and diversity of God’s creation, I do think there’s a societal preference favoring the tall, and I, too, want my children to have Every Advantage. Sigh.)

    Reply
  79. I was the one with the “egg donor” story, and my memory is that these ads appeared in the back of one of my alumni magazines (I think they were display ads from fertility clinics, along the lines of “Ivy League Women! Make some extra money by donating some eggs!”). I haven’t seen one of these for a long time, btw, so they must have moved on to some different egg solicitation technique.
    At the time, I recall having much the same visceral “yuck” reaction as Jane, and then I was just insulted (so brown eyed short women aren’t desirable?).
    Pat, I guess I also thought that these “high class” eggs were perhaps being marketed to couples who wanted to give their kids “every advantage”–whether that meant a Harvard degree or a 5’10” frame. (After all–true confession time, and please don’t hate me–as perfect as my own short children are–IF I were able to CHOOSE–I would give each of them about 5 more inches than I have. As much as I love the beauty and diversity of God’s creation, I do think there’s a societal preference favoring the tall, and I, too, want my children to have Every Advantage. Sigh.)

    Reply
  80. I was the one with the “egg donor” story, and my memory is that these ads appeared in the back of one of my alumni magazines (I think they were display ads from fertility clinics, along the lines of “Ivy League Women! Make some extra money by donating some eggs!”). I haven’t seen one of these for a long time, btw, so they must have moved on to some different egg solicitation technique.
    At the time, I recall having much the same visceral “yuck” reaction as Jane, and then I was just insulted (so brown eyed short women aren’t desirable?).
    Pat, I guess I also thought that these “high class” eggs were perhaps being marketed to couples who wanted to give their kids “every advantage”–whether that meant a Harvard degree or a 5’10” frame. (After all–true confession time, and please don’t hate me–as perfect as my own short children are–IF I were able to CHOOSE–I would give each of them about 5 more inches than I have. As much as I love the beauty and diversity of God’s creation, I do think there’s a societal preference favoring the tall, and I, too, want my children to have Every Advantage. Sigh.)

    Reply
  81. I can see the ‘tall is better’ for boys, but for girls? Really? I think my itty-bitty sister (5′ nothing) has it way better than I do. Clothes fit her and men worship her (and they trip over themselves to take care of her every whim). Same holds true for all my tiny girlfriends. I think all the Amazons in my crowd would shrink 3-10 inches if it were an option.

    Reply
  82. I can see the ‘tall is better’ for boys, but for girls? Really? I think my itty-bitty sister (5′ nothing) has it way better than I do. Clothes fit her and men worship her (and they trip over themselves to take care of her every whim). Same holds true for all my tiny girlfriends. I think all the Amazons in my crowd would shrink 3-10 inches if it were an option.

    Reply
  83. I can see the ‘tall is better’ for boys, but for girls? Really? I think my itty-bitty sister (5′ nothing) has it way better than I do. Clothes fit her and men worship her (and they trip over themselves to take care of her every whim). Same holds true for all my tiny girlfriends. I think all the Amazons in my crowd would shrink 3-10 inches if it were an option.

    Reply
  84. I can see the ‘tall is better’ for boys, but for girls? Really? I think my itty-bitty sister (5′ nothing) has it way better than I do. Clothes fit her and men worship her (and they trip over themselves to take care of her every whim). Same holds true for all my tiny girlfriends. I think all the Amazons in my crowd would shrink 3-10 inches if it were an option.

    Reply
  85. This blog brought to mind that scene in the film Flirting With Disaster, where adopted Ben Stiller thinks he’s found his birth family and his “sisters” are tall blonde volleyball players. Everyone’s trying to make family comparisons while ignoring the obvious. It’s fall-down funny.

    Reply
  86. This blog brought to mind that scene in the film Flirting With Disaster, where adopted Ben Stiller thinks he’s found his birth family and his “sisters” are tall blonde volleyball players. Everyone’s trying to make family comparisons while ignoring the obvious. It’s fall-down funny.

    Reply
  87. This blog brought to mind that scene in the film Flirting With Disaster, where adopted Ben Stiller thinks he’s found his birth family and his “sisters” are tall blonde volleyball players. Everyone’s trying to make family comparisons while ignoring the obvious. It’s fall-down funny.

    Reply
  88. This blog brought to mind that scene in the film Flirting With Disaster, where adopted Ben Stiller thinks he’s found his birth family and his “sisters” are tall blonde volleyball players. Everyone’s trying to make family comparisons while ignoring the obvious. It’s fall-down funny.

    Reply
  89. RevMelinda, I feel your pain. I’m also quite short with dark hair and brown eyes. And 5 lbs is a dress size larger or smaller for me, whereas my taller friends don’t even have to let out their belts.
    A funny story: I went to the SuperBowl in 1995. Had tickets on the 20 yd line about 15 rows from the front. And the only way I could see the game was to look at the end-zone screen. 3 of the tallest men in the world were continually standing up in front of me during the entire game, very excited and enjoying themselves so much. Even if I had stood on my seat I couldn’t have seen over their heads. There are defintely advantages to being taller. None of my kids are tall, but they are all taller than I am, thank goodness.
    In case you ever wondered, here’s a quick and dirty way to figure out how tall your children are likely to be:
    Average your height with the height of the child’s father. Add 4 inches for a boy, subtract 4 inches for a girl. It worked just about right for our kids.

    Reply
  90. RevMelinda, I feel your pain. I’m also quite short with dark hair and brown eyes. And 5 lbs is a dress size larger or smaller for me, whereas my taller friends don’t even have to let out their belts.
    A funny story: I went to the SuperBowl in 1995. Had tickets on the 20 yd line about 15 rows from the front. And the only way I could see the game was to look at the end-zone screen. 3 of the tallest men in the world were continually standing up in front of me during the entire game, very excited and enjoying themselves so much. Even if I had stood on my seat I couldn’t have seen over their heads. There are defintely advantages to being taller. None of my kids are tall, but they are all taller than I am, thank goodness.
    In case you ever wondered, here’s a quick and dirty way to figure out how tall your children are likely to be:
    Average your height with the height of the child’s father. Add 4 inches for a boy, subtract 4 inches for a girl. It worked just about right for our kids.

    Reply
  91. RevMelinda, I feel your pain. I’m also quite short with dark hair and brown eyes. And 5 lbs is a dress size larger or smaller for me, whereas my taller friends don’t even have to let out their belts.
    A funny story: I went to the SuperBowl in 1995. Had tickets on the 20 yd line about 15 rows from the front. And the only way I could see the game was to look at the end-zone screen. 3 of the tallest men in the world were continually standing up in front of me during the entire game, very excited and enjoying themselves so much. Even if I had stood on my seat I couldn’t have seen over their heads. There are defintely advantages to being taller. None of my kids are tall, but they are all taller than I am, thank goodness.
    In case you ever wondered, here’s a quick and dirty way to figure out how tall your children are likely to be:
    Average your height with the height of the child’s father. Add 4 inches for a boy, subtract 4 inches for a girl. It worked just about right for our kids.

    Reply
  92. RevMelinda, I feel your pain. I’m also quite short with dark hair and brown eyes. And 5 lbs is a dress size larger or smaller for me, whereas my taller friends don’t even have to let out their belts.
    A funny story: I went to the SuperBowl in 1995. Had tickets on the 20 yd line about 15 rows from the front. And the only way I could see the game was to look at the end-zone screen. 3 of the tallest men in the world were continually standing up in front of me during the entire game, very excited and enjoying themselves so much. Even if I had stood on my seat I couldn’t have seen over their heads. There are defintely advantages to being taller. None of my kids are tall, but they are all taller than I am, thank goodness.
    In case you ever wondered, here’s a quick and dirty way to figure out how tall your children are likely to be:
    Average your height with the height of the child’s father. Add 4 inches for a boy, subtract 4 inches for a girl. It worked just about right for our kids.

    Reply
  93. One more quick comment to once again (smile) refer to My Favorite Heyer, THE MASQUERADERS, which features two romances–one between the “queenly” tall Prudence and the “Mountain” Sir Anthony, and the other between the “fairylike” petite Letty and the short, slightly built (but strong and clever) Robin. Both Sir Anthony and Robin are really thrilling heroes and they couldn’t be more different in stature!

    Reply
  94. One more quick comment to once again (smile) refer to My Favorite Heyer, THE MASQUERADERS, which features two romances–one between the “queenly” tall Prudence and the “Mountain” Sir Anthony, and the other between the “fairylike” petite Letty and the short, slightly built (but strong and clever) Robin. Both Sir Anthony and Robin are really thrilling heroes and they couldn’t be more different in stature!

    Reply
  95. One more quick comment to once again (smile) refer to My Favorite Heyer, THE MASQUERADERS, which features two romances–one between the “queenly” tall Prudence and the “Mountain” Sir Anthony, and the other between the “fairylike” petite Letty and the short, slightly built (but strong and clever) Robin. Both Sir Anthony and Robin are really thrilling heroes and they couldn’t be more different in stature!

    Reply
  96. One more quick comment to once again (smile) refer to My Favorite Heyer, THE MASQUERADERS, which features two romances–one between the “queenly” tall Prudence and the “Mountain” Sir Anthony, and the other between the “fairylike” petite Letty and the short, slightly built (but strong and clever) Robin. Both Sir Anthony and Robin are really thrilling heroes and they couldn’t be more different in stature!

    Reply
  97. From MJP:
    The Eastern Shore was cold, bright, and beautiful, and our B&B had a great big working fireplace. 🙂 The conference was small but diverse and very fun. Now–it’s back to work.
    I’m glad you all had fun with the height topic. I usually try to match my characters size-wise. Jack, the big, jockish hero of The Marriage Spell, likes that his Abby is a fine strapping wench that he doesn’t have to worry about breaking.
    But I also work with how a character will be perceived by others. Jean Macrae, a secondary character in A Kiss of Fate and Stolen Magic and heroine of the upcoming A Distant Magic, is petite and redheaded because I wanted people to think of her as delicate and fragile when she’s actually a sword wielding hellion Highlander. She finds the disparity between perception and reality helpful. 🙂 But I didn’t pair her off with a big hulk, either.
    Mary Jo, agreeing that kissing a guy a foot taller can lead to a sore neck

    Reply
  98. From MJP:
    The Eastern Shore was cold, bright, and beautiful, and our B&B had a great big working fireplace. 🙂 The conference was small but diverse and very fun. Now–it’s back to work.
    I’m glad you all had fun with the height topic. I usually try to match my characters size-wise. Jack, the big, jockish hero of The Marriage Spell, likes that his Abby is a fine strapping wench that he doesn’t have to worry about breaking.
    But I also work with how a character will be perceived by others. Jean Macrae, a secondary character in A Kiss of Fate and Stolen Magic and heroine of the upcoming A Distant Magic, is petite and redheaded because I wanted people to think of her as delicate and fragile when she’s actually a sword wielding hellion Highlander. She finds the disparity between perception and reality helpful. 🙂 But I didn’t pair her off with a big hulk, either.
    Mary Jo, agreeing that kissing a guy a foot taller can lead to a sore neck

    Reply
  99. From MJP:
    The Eastern Shore was cold, bright, and beautiful, and our B&B had a great big working fireplace. 🙂 The conference was small but diverse and very fun. Now–it’s back to work.
    I’m glad you all had fun with the height topic. I usually try to match my characters size-wise. Jack, the big, jockish hero of The Marriage Spell, likes that his Abby is a fine strapping wench that he doesn’t have to worry about breaking.
    But I also work with how a character will be perceived by others. Jean Macrae, a secondary character in A Kiss of Fate and Stolen Magic and heroine of the upcoming A Distant Magic, is petite and redheaded because I wanted people to think of her as delicate and fragile when she’s actually a sword wielding hellion Highlander. She finds the disparity between perception and reality helpful. 🙂 But I didn’t pair her off with a big hulk, either.
    Mary Jo, agreeing that kissing a guy a foot taller can lead to a sore neck

    Reply
  100. From MJP:
    The Eastern Shore was cold, bright, and beautiful, and our B&B had a great big working fireplace. 🙂 The conference was small but diverse and very fun. Now–it’s back to work.
    I’m glad you all had fun with the height topic. I usually try to match my characters size-wise. Jack, the big, jockish hero of The Marriage Spell, likes that his Abby is a fine strapping wench that he doesn’t have to worry about breaking.
    But I also work with how a character will be perceived by others. Jean Macrae, a secondary character in A Kiss of Fate and Stolen Magic and heroine of the upcoming A Distant Magic, is petite and redheaded because I wanted people to think of her as delicate and fragile when she’s actually a sword wielding hellion Highlander. She finds the disparity between perception and reality helpful. 🙂 But I didn’t pair her off with a big hulk, either.
    Mary Jo, agreeing that kissing a guy a foot taller can lead to a sore neck

    Reply
  101. More heroes of deep voice, red hair, and average height and build, please!
    As another 5’10” woman, I have to say I wouldn’t give it up. My height has been a big advantage when it comes to striding quickly and reaching for the last nonfat milk in the back of the grocery case.
    I appreciate when writers have tall heroines, but I suppose most readers appreciate heroines with whom they can identify.

    Reply
  102. More heroes of deep voice, red hair, and average height and build, please!
    As another 5’10” woman, I have to say I wouldn’t give it up. My height has been a big advantage when it comes to striding quickly and reaching for the last nonfat milk in the back of the grocery case.
    I appreciate when writers have tall heroines, but I suppose most readers appreciate heroines with whom they can identify.

    Reply
  103. More heroes of deep voice, red hair, and average height and build, please!
    As another 5’10” woman, I have to say I wouldn’t give it up. My height has been a big advantage when it comes to striding quickly and reaching for the last nonfat milk in the back of the grocery case.
    I appreciate when writers have tall heroines, but I suppose most readers appreciate heroines with whom they can identify.

    Reply
  104. More heroes of deep voice, red hair, and average height and build, please!
    As another 5’10” woman, I have to say I wouldn’t give it up. My height has been a big advantage when it comes to striding quickly and reaching for the last nonfat milk in the back of the grocery case.
    I appreciate when writers have tall heroines, but I suppose most readers appreciate heroines with whom they can identify.

    Reply
  105. Well. I’ll be!
    I’m 6 foot, and 2 inches!
    Tall & thin…w/Marfans Syndrome.
    Loved this post! Height can be crappy too; particularly, if you’re thin. I used to get hell from my peers, when growing up (kids can be downright cruel)..
    In any event, I’m with ya on this, no matter. Like the reference to Gladwell’s book [his, essay on “speed-dating” was great too,btw]
    Okay. Enough of me. Keep writing, Wenches!!
    xx,Res.

    Reply
  106. Well. I’ll be!
    I’m 6 foot, and 2 inches!
    Tall & thin…w/Marfans Syndrome.
    Loved this post! Height can be crappy too; particularly, if you’re thin. I used to get hell from my peers, when growing up (kids can be downright cruel)..
    In any event, I’m with ya on this, no matter. Like the reference to Gladwell’s book [his, essay on “speed-dating” was great too,btw]
    Okay. Enough of me. Keep writing, Wenches!!
    xx,Res.

    Reply
  107. Well. I’ll be!
    I’m 6 foot, and 2 inches!
    Tall & thin…w/Marfans Syndrome.
    Loved this post! Height can be crappy too; particularly, if you’re thin. I used to get hell from my peers, when growing up (kids can be downright cruel)..
    In any event, I’m with ya on this, no matter. Like the reference to Gladwell’s book [his, essay on “speed-dating” was great too,btw]
    Okay. Enough of me. Keep writing, Wenches!!
    xx,Res.

    Reply
  108. Well. I’ll be!
    I’m 6 foot, and 2 inches!
    Tall & thin…w/Marfans Syndrome.
    Loved this post! Height can be crappy too; particularly, if you’re thin. I used to get hell from my peers, when growing up (kids can be downright cruel)..
    In any event, I’m with ya on this, no matter. Like the reference to Gladwell’s book [his, essay on “speed-dating” was great too,btw]
    Okay. Enough of me. Keep writing, Wenches!!
    xx,Res.

    Reply

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