On being a tall man in a short city

I went shopping for costume bits yesterday afternoon in the Upper Haight. The weather was glorious and the panhandle–especially–was full of The Love. My partner-in-crime and I stopped by the Goodwill, La Rosa Vintage, Wasteland and Held Over. She found an awesome used wedding dress at Held Over, where they had over a bazillion to choose from (it’s totally true, I counted them all myself.) But I had no luck at all finding a used suit. Why you ask? And I’m so very glad you asked, it’s because all of the suits at the used clothing stores are made for men much shorter than I. Much much shorter. Way shorter. Possibly even Hella shorter.

I clock in somewhere around 6’2″ or 6’3″, depending on how compressed my spine is that day. (Note: Did you know that astronauts can be up to two inches taller in space, since gravity isn’t compressing their spines? No word yet if anti-grav lengthens other parts of the body. My research is inconclusive.) And all of the suits I could find, when I tried them on, made me look like an organ grinder’s monkey, fresh from a funeral. I didn’t find a single suit that I could fit an arm into, let alone the rest of my body. Not in tan, black, navy or any other color (are there other colors?). And as attractive as seeing a meaty arm popping out of a suitjacket like a weasel from a garden hose is, I’m going to have to take a pass on traumatizing the rest of San Francisco with the sight.

Is there some secret used clothing store for tall men out there in the city, tucked away in Potrero or Bernal perhaps? Is there a clique of Gigantors who have no day jobs and spend all day scouring the used shops for clothes that should rightly be mine? Halloween is but a few days away–or maybe it started weeks ago–and I am still suit-less, un-formal attired, what ever shall I do?

(pic via Flickr, facilitated with Creative Commons licensing)

4 Comments so far

  1. Lauren (unregistered) on October 23rd, 2006 @ 11:41 pm

    I think that is part of the reason why I am not a big used clothing fan. I am 5’8″, and while that isn’t crazy tall for a girl (like you aren’t crazy tall for a guy), finding clothes long enough is hard enough in a regular store, let alone a used clothing store. And don’t even get me started on shoes…


  2. Nick (unregistered) on October 24th, 2006 @ 5:03 pm

    I feel your pain man. Being 6’5 there’s not a restaurant in town i don’t clock my knees on pulling up to the table for dinner…or brunch, and no it’s NOT from the Mimosas!


  3. Nancy (unregistered) on October 26th, 2006 @ 7:10 pm

    My guess is that vintage suits are likely from previous generations, who were likely less nutritionally supplemented than we are, and therefore, ran a tad bit shorter by the norm.

    I feel your pain, though. At a hair under 5’10″, I have a limited list of shops I can buy pants from. At least skirts are forgiving in height variations, but in your suit search, you’re definately getting the short end of the stick (pardon the pun).


  4. Rose (unregistered) on October 31st, 2006 @ 5:12 pm

    I have to weigh in for the shorties. I’m only 5’2″ and I have just as much trouble with pants. Yes, I can cuff them but I think that looks schlumpy. And as a side note, I can’t reach the bar on BART unless I’m wearing heels so if you see someone who looks like they’re surfing, it’s not just for fun.



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