Does being Tall bring the excitement? (spoiler…yes)

The other day a girl at work said something that has resonated with me all week. She said, ‘You lead the most exciting life. I love hearing about all of your adventures!’ I was taken aback. I think that I’m pretty boring, in general, only because I still don’t consider myself to have much of a social life here in Madison.  My typical night includes reading, walking, maybe a glass (or two) of wine, surfing the internet, and maybe the tv on in the background.  Oh, and watching my cats chase each other!  Boring stuff.

But then I got to thinking…I’m pretty good at finding the ‘fun’ in my life when those weird situations pop up.  You know, like ALL of those people who comment on my height.  I throw my arms around those situations (not the people) and milk it for everything I can.  Homeless people, vendors at work, co-workers, randoms at the store, etc.  Everywhere I go I can pretty much count on someone saying something.

I went to Bed Bath and BEYOND over the weekend to buy a new comforter.  (And in case you’re wondering, the one I purchased is so awesome I’m showing a pic, below)  And I was asked not once, but twice to assist with grabbing something off the shelf.  That’s 2 times people!  I made social contact because of my height, twice, with complete strangers.  And it was pretty amazing because we giggled, than laughed heartily when I dropped the item, and then we stared longingly into each other’s eyes….okay, I go too far sometimes.  That didn’t happen. The thought does make me giggle though.

This is the Seasons Reversible, Down Alternative.  In Red.

This is the Seasons Reversible, Down Alternative. In Red.

I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve received an ego boost when someone asks me if I used to be a model or if I’ve ever done any modeling.  I always say yes as I hand them a folded up picture from…okay, again, I go too far.  No.  I never modeled. Although for the record, there was that one time in the tenth grade when I did a photo shoot to enter a modeling contest.  (I’m being serious)  My mom and her friend had a couple of drinks and thought that it would be a great idea to enter me.  I didn’t win.

Oh, and I LOVE it when I pass by a little kid.  Recently, I over-heard a youngster say about me, ‘She big’.  That’s right, ‘I big’.  I can also touch the ceiling, look at your teacher’s bald-spot, and clean the top shelf without getting a step stool.  She Big.

I get asked on a daily basis where I purchase my clothes.  I’m a walking advertisement.  I like to think it’s because I’m fashion-forward and totally rad when it comes to putting together that outfit that screams ‘Holli is fabulous’ however I also realize other tall women are simply looking to see whether your hemline hits your ankle, your shoe, or the floor.  But I make that conversation exciting!  I put some punch in my comeback.  How many other women do you know have a 38″ inseam and can kick you in the face?  (I suppose I don’t need to bring up the fact I’ve got a pretty good kick but didn’t I warn you that I keep my comebacks snappy?)

Excitement in my life?  Yes.  I suppose there is some excitement in my life.  But it’s because I make it that way and I use my height as part of it.  I also use my cats.  Remind me to tell you about the time my little white, Persian Doll kitty ate some bacon grease.  He suffered some gastrointestinal distress…and he has extremely long white hair.  Diarrhea and long, white hair.  Yeah, it was a lovely morning.  But once again, part of my exciting, TALL life.

I'm not really sure what that look is.  In fact, I don't want to know.

I’m not really sure what that look is. In fact, I don’t want to know.

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Talk Tall to Me

There are few things I like better than ‘Talking Tall’. I love comparing stories with those like-bodied people who have funny tidbits to share. Usually in some way, shape, or form we can all relate to a tall story because we have experienced it or something similar.  Many times I will be approached by random tall people because they want to share a story with me. It’s a tall brotherhood. Or a tall sisterhood. Whichever way you choose to look at it.

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My Tall Family, with a close family friend (the short one!)

But here’s the rub, when a short person asks me direct and specific questions about being tall, I sometimes find it hard to answer.  I wonder if I start spilling all of my awesomely, hilarious and entertaining tall stories, this short person is going to be at their next party saying, “So I was talking to this giant and she was telling me about her height.  She told me…” and then they relay some of my great stories.

I’m not usually very shy so I’ll ‘talk Tall’ with anyone but I find it much more stimulating to discuss anything height-related with other tall people.  I wonder, does that make me a heightist?  Short people usually don’t get it.  They try.  They will tell me their horror stories of trying to find clothes and I can’t relate.  All I can think about is how the petite sections have been around forever.  And I can’t feel pity for a short person who can buy clothes long enough and then get them tailored to fit.  I’ve even had some short people tell me they can shop in the kids section.  I’m thinking ‘Sweet!’.  The kids section has some of the coolest clothes. Who doesn’t want a Hulk t-shirt?

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Talking Tall with my friend, Megan who is also 6’4″.

So I guess I don’t know where this leaves me.  I have the type of personality where I can’t stop talking to people so maybe I need to get over my reluctance to share my stories with those physically less fortunate.  Because come on, I’ve really got some good stories to share.

I’ll continue to regale short and tall alike and hope that even though both sides of the coin are dramatically different, we can all relate in some way.  And if not, then I hope I can at least make someone laugh.

 

 

Walking Tall

I’ve started walking this past week. That’s my way of starting to get in shape. I’ve been so lazy the last 2 years and since I’ve got it in my head that I’m going to hike Mount St Helen’s this fall, I need to start somewhere.

Today on my hour long walk I encountered many, many people. It’s Saturday, the weather is amazing, and the Farmer’s Market is in full swing.  Usually on my walks I put in my ear buds, turn up my music, and don’t pay much attention to my surroundings.  Today I actually paid attention and I’m glad I did because as I was walking through a huge throng of people downtown, I heard someone comment very loudly, “Look at that beautiful height!”  Then I heard multiple others agree and some really nice compliments made me smile as I passed.  As graceful as a gazelle???  Me?  I pretended like I didn’t hear, but I did, and it gave me the biggest glow from the inside.

What I find interesting is that I was about 7 blocks to my destination and just before I hit this large group of people, all I could think about was “how much my knees hurt, and that little twinge in my back, oh sweat just rolled in my eye….”  And with that one comment (and the others too), I was walking on air.  All of my little hurts were forgotten.  In fact, I probably could’ve kept going for even longer than I did simply because someone made me feel good.

Look at the joy on my face!  That's how I fee today.  (That's Troy in the corner)

Look at the joy on my face! That’s how I feel today.

I overheard a few other comments as well, mostly from young kids.  You know, the point and ‘Look at that tall lady, mom!’  I don’t mind those.   I usually wave and smile.

So I guess today is a great day to be tall.  Sure glad I am.

Tall Girl in Mexico (Bueno!)

I did it! I went to Mexico and was successfully the tallest person in Puerta Vallarta (well…on the Marina anyways…I actually did meet some tall boys downtown so I suppose I can’t declare myself the Tallest Tourist).  What an amazing and wonderful trip!  Let me first start out by saying that I don’t speak any Spanish.  I know the words for beer, bathrooms, hello, and thank you.  Honestly, that’s it.  But the Mexicans were so kind and most were bilingual.  The ones that weren’t bilingual, we did the head nod dance but usually figured out what we were talking about.

Ridiculous, silly, funny, loyal...that's the awesomeness that I'm surrounded with here ( Melissa, Michelle, Me, & Robyn)

Ridiculous, silly, funny, smart, talented, beautiful, loyal and downright amazing…that’s the awesomeness that I’m surrounded with here ( Melissa, Michelle, Me, & Robyn)

I went to Mexico with 3 girls that I’ve known forever and will know forever.  I won’t let them go and they won’t let me go.  We usually plan something once a year (or try really hard) and since this year there are 2 of us turning 40, Mexico seemed like the perfect ‘girls’ trip.  We zip-lined (pictured above), snorkeled, tasted a lot of good and bad tequila, played with monkeys & Mexican raccoons (true story), laughed copious amounts, got tan, and enjoyed each others company.  The world feels right when you are with good friends and that’s how my week went.  So many funny stories….

First and foremost, I caught up with my girls.  We all live so far away from each other and life gets in the way of phone calls and emails (Seattle, Denver, & Madison) so I feel like we are connected again.  I feel more centered myself because I connected with my ladies, I definitely was overdue.

Our last night in Mexico...and we didn't sing karaoke.  BUT we did drink beer on the beach.  Way more important!

Our last night in Mexico…and we didn’t sing karaoke. BUT we did drink beer while laughing and talking on the beach. Way more important!

I will say that my height was of definite ‘interest’ while in Mexico.  I’m not even sure of how many pictures I took with shorter people or even of how many times it was our opening conversation piece but we don’t care, we use it to our advantage.  There were so many free drinks that I’m almost embarrassed to try to guess how many, but it’s vacation so it’s to be expected, right?

Oh, and I should mention: The Timeshare Presentation.  We did it and got some free stuff along with an amazing room upgrade but it was brutal.  The original 90 minutes promised was really more like 4 hours.  However, we brought vodka (again, true story) and we made frequent bathroom trips so our presentation almost seemed silly by the time we were done.  In case you were wondering, we didn’t sign up to own a timeshare.

There were a couple of things that really stood out for me.  Zip-lining was huge.  I’m terrified of heights but by the time I was done, upside-down and spinning is how I careened over the 500 foot ravines.  All while screaming with bloody delight!  And I had a blast on one of our downtown nights as well.  Sometimes you just meet the right people/person at the exact right time and the fun simply begins….oh, and when you get a lap dance on your snorkeling cruise, that kinda makes your day too.

My favorite night out!  Met fun people, had fun times....oh to do it again!

My favorite night out! Met fun people, had fun times….oh to do it again!

If I had a ton of time (and an ‘A’ on my keyboard…long story but one of the cats clipped it with his nail and now I’m short an ‘A’) I’d write about almost all of my adventures.  Some are dear and can’t be shared, some may and most likely will make me cry, and all are precious.   But suffice to say the trip was AMAZING!

I think our next trip is a back packing and possibly Spa adventure.  I’ve decided I need a goal to help whip my butt into shape and Mount St. Helen’s is a perfect hiking opportunity (not gonna lie, I also dearly miss the NW and this is a way for me to get back in a meaningful manner).  This fall may find 4 of the most fun, fearless, hilariously awesome chicks hiking up the NW’s most prized volcano.

So to recap, Mexicans are short and I am tall.  ‘Nuff said?

Tall Attitude

I have an attitude every day of my life (my mother will vouch for this) and this morning was no exception. It started out like any other day…

I walk to work anywhere from 6:30-8:00 am depending on when I get up, what my schedule looks like for the day, and to be entirely truthful, my level of motivation. Lately, I’m all about work. So this morning it was about 6:45 and I was walking near the capital.  I decided that I wanted to stop at Walgreens to pick up some eyeliner.  I’m leaving for Mexico in about a week and it wouldn’t behoove me to run dry on eyeliner on my trip. Now Walgreens doesn’t open until 7:00 so I loiter out front for a few minutes.

I was minding my own business, playing ‘Tiny Tower’ on my iPhone and I hear this voice very clearly say to me, ‘Why you gotta be so Tall?’

In all honestly, I wasn’t in the mood.  It was early and I didn’t want to think about what clever comeback I could come up with.  So I chose to ignore it.

Again that voice, ‘Hey you!  Why you gotta be so Tall?’

I could feel someone crowding my space so I made eye contact with a very, very short woman who was glaring at me as if she had a personal problem with my height.  Immediately, I took offense.  I probably didn’t help the situation when I sniffed (probably arrogantly), looked her up and down, and turned away.

She got angrier, ‘I’m talking to you and I asked you a question?’

Softly I responded, “I heard you.  I figured that you couldn’t be that stupid to ask someone twice your size, a dumb question like that.’  I sweetly smiled and went back to playing on my phone.

She started to say more so I looked up and made eye contact again.  This time I wasn’t smiling.  Oddly enough, she moved on.

I am a nice person.  Way too nice, in fact because I tend to give people far more credit than they deserve but this woman got under my skin.  I ended up not getting my eye-liner.  I guess this means I’ll have to go back.  I should also mention, this did not ruin my day.  I actually told this story in a couple of my meetings and it got people to laugh, so all in all, I chalk it up to yet another Holli-experience.

Big hat, polka dots, water, and a smile.  Now that's a happy face!

Big hat, polka dots, water, and a smile. Now that’s a happy face!

What’s up Tall Girl?

‘What’s up Tall Girl?’

I hear this phrase about twice a week on my walk to work.  It’s always from the same man and it’s usually right around the capital as I make my way around it.  It doesn’t bother me, in fact I usually look up, grin, maybe wave, and keep on walking.

The first few times he said it, he would then say, ‘Did you play ball?’  I’d answer it the exact same way until he finally said, ‘Didn’t I talk to you yesterday?’   It’s almost like he didn’t recognize me at first but now we have a mutual ‘morning thing’….and I like it.  It’s like being Norm from Cheers.

So, let’s see….what IS up?

I met another tall girl here in Madison.  My sister (6’1″) came to visit me a couple of weeks ago and we hopped around all day, having a drink and sometimes an appetizer, in as many places as possible.  We bellied up to a bar right in the downtown square and this is where we met our tall bartender.  She was 6’1″.  My sister and I started chatting with her about our different height experiences and this girl was so cool!  I love it when you meet tall, cool, chicks.  I think I made a friend and even better, we exchanged digits.

I got my heart busted up…again.  I let someone back into my life and probably should’ve waited til things were a little clearer before trying to jump back in.  It’s not like you can simply stop loving someone at the drop of a hat and I thought that he was ready to compromise and work towards the same goals.  At least that was the message I was getting…I guess just because it’s love doesn’t mean it will work.  Love does not conquer all, people!  Remember that…  Smile through the hurt (and eat).  Okay, don’t really eat but you know the drill.

Eating

Yum, yum gimme some!

I am going to Mexico in about a month!!!  I will probably be the tallest girl there,but I’m ready to have a good time.  I’m going with 3 of my closest girlfriends and I have a feeling we are going to make some great memories.  I’ve known these girls since college and I simply can’t wait to see them and share a lot of laughs.  I’ve never been to Mexico so I’m picturing tequila, beaches, tans, and some debauchery that I probably won’t be able to share.  Ha!

So while my 2013 so far has had multiple stops and starts and right at the moment I’m not ‘feeling it’, things can only get better.  This Tall Girl has low expectations and high hopes.  What more can you ask for?  Cheers to that!

Leffe

I found this beer in Bruges and I think it’s the most wonderful, spicy beer ever! Cheers!

Tall Girl Update from Madison, WI

So I’ve been in Madison, WI since mid-September, 2012.  I’ve found that overall I think Madison is a wonderful town. Everyday I walk to work and even when it’s freezing cold, I feel grateful that I’m walking through a beautiful downtown, to a job that I’m passionate about, and that I work with people whom are equally passionate about their jobs.  We spend so much time at our place of employment that it’s very important to me we like our co-workers and that we enjoy our time at our jobs.  I’m grateful to have found this perfect combination.

I’m enjoying living downtown although I’m a little under-whelmed at my current apartment.  I think I’m paying too much for a living space that although is ideally situated, it’s not modernized and the setup is a little odd.  I expect I’ll be moving this summer.   I’ve already started looking.

My last post I talked about how 2012 was not a good year for me and how towards the end of 2012 I had started taking steps to create more a happy life.  I’ve continued those same steps and I’m excited for what 2013 has in store.

So far in January I’ve kept a pretty low profile.  I’ve spent this month working on myself.  I’ve lost 15 of the 20 pounds that I had gained (this has been SO hard and definitely not happened overnight, I actually started in December).  I’ve done this using Medifast and a combination of playing on my Wii and walking. I’m starting to be able to fit into some of my clothes and I’m feeling much better with my overall health.

I’ve been spoiling myself a bit too. I’ve been getting facials and I’ve found a wonderful hairdresser.  I’ve also been making plans for this year.  Starting next month I’m traveling to see friends I haven’t seen in quite a while and I’m doing a lot of fun things!  You’ll be hearing about it on the blog (and seeing it too through pics!).  I’m getting really excited for 2013!!!!  It all begins when I head back to Iowa next weekend and Dallas, TX later in the month for work, Las Vegas in March….and more!

So that’s my update for now.  I’ve got some really great things coming this year and for the first time in a long time, I’m excited.

Oh, and don’t forget the big one…I turn 40 this year.  We are going to make this year ROCK!  More to come…

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This is from Hawaii a couple of years ago…I was so happy and I see this type of happiness coming in 2013!