Oh for three more inches!

Have you done any back to work shopping? I’ve noticed that within shops, ever since the schools broke up in July there has been ‘Back to School’ signs encouraging those early purchases of stationery, clothes and sensible, yet durable, shoes. Although I rarely actually purchases stationery nowadays I do find that I need to buy new work shirts, shoes and work trousers and, it is when I try to buy the latter that I have a slight problem and always wish I had a few more inches – what were you thinking this blog was about?

I’m not the shortest person around – at 5’9″ and standing tall I’m not tiny. I am, however, quite an odd shape though – well not actually an odd shape, more strange proportions. I tend to have a really long body and then short, stumpy legs. I don’t get people stopping me in the street commenting or sniggering at them, but I do feel like I would benefit with three more inches on my legs in order to come in at 6′. According to the internet – the actual average height of males in the UK is 5’9 – what a surprise, yet again I am just average – but I feel that it seems more the norm to be 6′. If I was three inches taller – wading in at 6′ I think I would benefit in three main ways which is lucky since this is how I like to write these blogs. I just need to state here that where I would like the extra three inches. I don’t want a longer body – I want it all on my legs please!


  • Buying trousers – When I head off to the shops to buy trousers, I find that the usual ‘short’ size actually is 30″ inside leg. If I wear 30″ I have to either tuck them into my socks and cascade the excess over the top so the trousers rest on my shoes, or let them to drag along on the floor for the whole day, collecting dirt and moisture and gradually getting heavier and heavier. After shopping around, I have found that a certain shop actually makes trousers which are only 28″ in the ‘short’ size. I still get a bit of an overhang with these, but these are much more doable. If I had my three more inches, I am sure that not only would I have more choices in style, since there are very few 28″ left on the trouser racks, but also be able to shop at a range of clothing stores! It is either that or I am going to have to learn how to be a seamstress in order to lift the hemline on all my longer trousers – although I am not sure how I could stand on the chair and pin a new hem all at the same time!

  • Taller in huddles – I’m not very good at close contact. I recognise that I have a well defined area of personal space and, just so you know, I like to keep everyone firmly outside this space. Get too close and I tend to shrink away. Travelling on public transport on crowded buses are a total nightmare! Also, while stood in crowds, I get this awful feeling that people are towering above me and almost like overpowering me. Its a bit like standing in the middle of a circle of immensely tall tower blocks and they are all staring down at you and getting closer and closer (even when describing it I need to regulate my breathing in order to calm down). Now if I had three more inches, I would stand at 6′ and would not be the small fry in the group. I’m sure this would help me be more ‘level’ with the other people and not feel so intimidated – yes I know – I could also overcome this by wearing heels, carrying a small box around with me or even ensuring that I only group with people smaller than me…

  • Using less energy – I like to walk. When I say that I’m not takling about walking the across the peak district or the length or breadth of the country or even walking in the countryside – that falls definitely into the category of hiking – definitely not my thing. I like walking when, for example, I am walking to the shops, or walking to get a coffee or walking to work. I like to have a walk to the coffee shop most days and it was when I was walking back from the one on campus that I noticed something which related to desiring longer legs. Clutching my takeaway coffee I started to walk back to my office level with a tall guy with long legs. Within a few strides he was already a head of me, striding out effortlessly towards the journey endpoint. In a vain attempt to keep up and match his stride I made my little legs go faster and faster so much so that I was actually building up a sweat! I soon gave up and as the guy vanished over the horizon I suddenly realised that my short legs gave me a major disadvantage. I was actually using up more energy walking around than I would if I had longer legs! The science appears simple – longer legs = longer strides = get there quicker using less strides and therefore use less energy. No wonder I am always so tired! Due to my little legs I am actually using up more energy constantly! I have been considering buying roller skates or even a skateboard but, as you can imagine, with my coordination and lack of trendy flare, both purchases would actually end in disaster – or at least me spilling my coffee every where!

  • I am sure that there are many people reading this post who are thinking, I should consider myself lucky to be 5’9″ and I understand that completely. I’m sure that there might even be some advantages of having short legs rather than long ones, but I guess I am here on the short leg side of the fence gazing enviously over at the long leg side of the field thinking that it looks a lot greener over there! Although my legs are an issue – being not only short, but scrawny, pale and quite bony, I’m not going to embrace Cuban heels or anything similar – I’m going to continue to dream of long legs … hang on that sounded wrong. And, while we are on the topic of sounding wrong, if you thought this blog post was about adding three inches to another part of my body, then shame on you – I am completely happy with the length of my arms!

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    Have fun and I’ll catch you all later and, until then, consider yourself waffled!

    2 comments for “Let Me In! – Simon’s Cat – YouTube

    1. February 19, 2017 at 2:00 pm

      Would be cool to play an one off, one of the dungeon crawls you made! Maybe the 8 level one!!!

    2. March 21, 2017 at 12:05 am

      I miss those early days so much. The current state of rpg’s , the rpg xubculture if you like, doesn’t feel like it did back then. I can’t quite put my finger on it.

      I was introduced to Advanced D&D 1st Edition, by my sisters boyfriend (the BEST boyfriend of the many she had IMHO..), who showed me S3 Expedition to the Barrier Peaks module after discovering I enjoyed computer based adventure games, I was hooked immediately and it wasn’t too long before I was hanging around the local game shop, Games Gallery, from which I was invited to join in a game run by the assistant manager, who was to become my long and good friend Steve, who was coincidentally, the reason I got to work at the local branch of Games Workshop for a time. Working there, in those days, before it became a Warhammer only shop, was amazing. It was the proverbial kid in the sweet shop!. Staff discount made it even sweeter – 50% off GW’s own products, and 25% off everything else. We also ran a great rpg club, with about 60-80 members at its peak.
      I was always the GM for my main group as no one else had the time it took to prepare a game properly, though after a few changes to the group, and people from the club popping up, I eventually got to play. Games by a company called Fantasy Games Unlimited (FGU) were very popular in all of my groups. FGU sold games such as Bushido, Aftermath,Space Opera, Chivalry & Sorcery, Freedom Fighters, and Bunnies & Burrows, but there were many many more games, by many different companies, covering all sorts of genres – and I still have them all. Many were, as was the style back then, table and chart and rule HEAVY. We loved that. Comparing themto the current crop of “rules lite” systems, I would certainly go back to the old games instead. We played these games sometimes 5 days a week, as for a time we were all unemployed. It was all we did.
      I often spent days creating scenarios, making maps, creating player characters as well as npc’s. I found it quite therapeutic, as is miniature painting – thousands of the little buggers packed away testify to the time I spent doing it. My “toy soldiers” as my brother in law calls them…
      I used to get quite attached to my favourite characters, and whilst one or two died over the decades, most did not.
      For almost all of my characters I would go overboard by most people’s standards. I like to have an image for my characters, whether a photo or artwork. Sometimes I will see an image and that is the base for the whole character, built around the image.
      I always believed as a player, that giving the GM a detailed background, list of goals, motivations, friends, contacts and enemies, will help the GM bring my character into the game more, by using some of what I have given him in the game. As a GM I like to see what players come up with for their characters, and will often use it in the game. It involves the player more, makes the game more personal if part of the game is suddenly about them, and it can help the players become more invested in their characters.
      For myself, I would often map out the characters home, create a family tree, siblings, etc.
      For our Star Trek RPG (by FASA Corp), I created the whole crew of a 500+ personnel star ship… All as detailed player characters. Unnecessary and a bit OTT I know, but it helped bring every department on the ship alive, every member of the landing party was a person not simply a red shirt.

      I am often bemused whilst watching streams when I see the gm of a streamed game pull some “new” idea out of his box of tricks, and the players are like “wow!”, “that’s original”, “I would never have thought of doing it that way!”, knowing we did it 30-40 years ago.

      The games my most recent group and I played/ran, were very detailed games with a lot of depth. Quite dark games too, mature themed, and often very emotional and intense. Having played with the same people for nigh on 20 years, you create a bond, a closeness and familiarity that allows you to communicate in a way you couldn’t, with people you don’t know very well.
      I have been brought to tears several times in recent years during the last (decade long) game we played ,as some scenes were simply too emotional or powerful, overwhelming (GM was a bastard – but an EXCELLENT GM).

      Sadly the group folded, but the GM offered to keep the game going for just me, which he did for a few years, which to be honest I really needed, as it helped me through a bad depression at that time).
      Over the years I have experienced a lot of things because of rpg’s, and made some great friends, too. I have a lot to be grateful for, regarding rpg’s. I was discussing with my brother in law, my collection of rpg’s and miniatures. When he realised how much they are worth, (some regularly sell for £100’s!) he always tells me to sell sell sell. He doesn’t grasp what they mean to me .
      Yet I won’t. Part of me hopes and prays that I will get a local group together (even some of the old group!) and start using them again. But aside from that, as my memory fails, little by little each year, these boxes and books and miniatures on the shelves are my constant reminders of happy and sad and exciting moments, and great fun, and more importantly, great friends.

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