I’ve been told many times that I look a lot younger than I actually am. At the rate I seem to be aging, I estimate that the movie theater will stop giving me child prices by the time I’m 87. That’s not to say I mind, because who doesn’t like discounts, right? At the same time, it is rather embarrassing to be handed a kid’s menu and have to inform the waiter that I am, in fact, 20 years old, not ten, as is the cutoff age for eligibility for kid’s menus.
Anyways, I don’t really know why people think I’m so young, but when I’m 90 and my friends ask me what my secret is, I’m just going to tell them that I made a deal with the devil himself and leave it at that. I mean, it’s not entirely untrue.
Just last year, a woman took me for a little boy. The audacity! Sure, I have short hair, but most intelligent people know that having short hair doesn’t necessarily make someone a boy, or vice versa. Other than that, I don’t really have any characteristics that make me look male. So here, a shout-out to all you people out there who are always mistaken to be much younger than you actually are. We’re in this together.
Maybe it has something to do with my height. I clock in at an absolutely colossal five feet tall. I remember once several years back, a woman told me that I was ‘very tall for my age.’ It felt pretty good to be called something other than tiny for a change, until I realized that she thought I was ten years old. I was fifteen.
I’m sure tall people get of stupid comments, too, I just can’t really talk about that since I’m not tall myself. I guess I’m just kind of envious of you, what with being able to reach things without jumping and being able to see what is going on when standing in the midst of a crowd. Or, you know, being able to see out of the peephole on your door without standing on your toes.
Hell, I’m sure everyone, regardless of shape or size, gets stupid comments from time to time. Some of those comments might not even be that stupid, and are easy to laugh off and chalk up to being ‘misunderstandings,’ like people thinking I’m younger than I actually am. Other comments, not so much. As a society, we are just so critical of how others look, dress and speak. People who try to make you feel bad about certain aspects of yourself are dumb losers anyway. At the end of the day, you’re better than them, because you’re you.
Lauren Schroeter is a junior majoring in geology and religion.