walking a little taller
January 30, 2002 07:39 AM

I have a dollar tucked into my shirt.

It's not quite in my bra or bra strap, but it's close. I'm the sort of girl who tucks money into her clothes. Apparently.

And what happened was. I thought about getting something sugary from the machine while I was micro-ing my lunch. And then I thought, well maybe I don't want something sugary. And then I thought, well I'll think about it later. I was washing a square plastic purple plate while I thought these things. So the dollar ended up in my shirt.

I also have "I am strong. I am invincible. I am woma-a-an" in my head. Thinking of baby arms and television channels that presume a non-existing unity among women's tastes, amounting to, roughly, treacle.

The sum of these things is, I believe. That I am a battery-operated Mary Tyler Moore. Or maybe I am Rhoda. I never watched Rhoda, but I'm sure I am she.

I think I've grown. Vertically, that is. I feel so tall, and have felt constantly taller since college. I'm erect and Amazonian. Only not. I am round and short (five foot two at highest estimate) and probably give an impression of being horizontal. Of being broad. Which I'm not really. Though, I suppose, I am a broad by some reckonings.

But I feel tall. I think I walk a little taller each time I learn again to stand up. I feel taller when I sit relaxed but forward with my ankles crossed and ready for motion. It could be people looking up to me makes me feel my head's closer to the sky. And it could all be things like the Alexander Technique, movement training, my natural sense of self in space. [Men are better at spacial relationships, my ass. I've known more women with this innate feeling for where they are, physically.]

I have been pert and helpful quite a bit of late. And wry. I would be perfect for a situational comedy about a girl who is ordinary and works an ordinary job but who is, as we know in the audience, extraordinary and exactly who we want to be. But I would still be a fat girl.

Margaret Cho's "I'm the One That I Want" cable/comedy/whatever/thing is sad. Sad in a way that proves her better than where she is/was. But sad that a place could be so unwelcoming. That there are still places where it's so unsafe to be a woman. That the world in general is so menacing.

The world is menacing, but the people who are the world aren't. The why and how of that boggles my mind. That we can, as individuals, be so pleasantly understandable. But, taken at a distance, we're a dark and threatening mass.

I don't understand that. It's possible that I don't really want to.

But I'm sure I'll eventually grow so tall I can see right over and beyond it. It'll happen.

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