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Big Hairy Mystery
September 13, 2007 2:27 AM   Subscribe

Who is taller, Bin Laden or Bigfoot? Bernard Heuvelmans says: ā€œA creature covered with long hair always looks bigger than it really is...ā€ For that matter how big is Rambo? Or Arnold Schwartzenegger? (Play the game!) How tall are you?
posted by CCBC (38 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
I just got the best idea for penis enlargement treatment.
posted by Grums at 3:30 AM on September 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


O, life's a drag if you come up short
(Unless you can answer to "Cruise").
It may not, sport, be cause to abort,
But wee stature thou doth screw.

When asked if I'm enough of a man
To reach to the top of the fridge,
I'll answer ā€” as only a MeFite can:
"Fathom I'm a smoot ... and a smidge."
posted by rob511 at 3:32 AM on September 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


Actually Rambo is a fidget.
posted by notreally at 3:42 AM on September 13, 2007


I had no idea there was debate about Ahnuld's height. Great! Like a new obsession is all I need now...
posted by zardoz at 3:48 AM on September 13, 2007


That's a somewhat interesting collection of data, but it's screaming out for some kind of Web 2.0 treatment. Surprised that no one has gotten to it yet. Maybe the celeb worship crowd isn't as web savvy.
posted by psmealey at 3:59 AM on September 13, 2007


Who has longer wings: The Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy?
posted by DU at 4:16 AM on September 13, 2007


hat's a somewhat interesting collection of data, but it's screaming out for some kind of Web 2.0 treatment.

Tallr?

I've been accused of being confused, but I'm average weight for my height...
posted by maxwelton at 4:23 AM on September 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


You're hired, maxwelton.
posted by psmealey at 4:28 AM on September 13, 2007


Wow, name-checking Bernard Heuvelmans! That takes me back to my childhood, when I read and re-read his big (and even then very old) popular book on cryptozoology (the name of which escapes me).

Stallone is 5'10", right?

[checking /]

Well, I got the official story right.

Celebrity is all about illusion. An old GF met Charlie Sheen at a party back in the late 80s. They discussed waxing, and he informed her that yes, he did understand the pain of waxing because he had his back and chest waxed on a routine basis. (Not surprising. His dad's a veritable bigfoot. Miniature version, of course.) He said, "I'm so looking forward to the day that I don't have to worry about grossing out legions of teenage girls when I take off my shirt."

It does start to look a bit awkward (maybe even a little sad) when they get so into their illusion that they're afraid to reveal their actual height.

Aside: How tall do you think Sigourney Weaver is, based on her movie roles? Let's just say that Stallone would need more than lifts. I'm convinced that DPs have been shooting her short for years, because most of the men she's played opposite are shorter than her in real life. (I literally started laughing at one point during Alien Resurrection* when I realized that they had her wearing platform boots.)

--
*Funniest movie I saw that year. I'm still not sure whether it was intentional.

posted by lodurr at 6:11 AM on September 13, 2007


A friend of mine had a theory that there were two versions of Hollywood, where never the twain should meet. Tall Hollywood was comprised of Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Edward Norton et al, and Short Hollywood is Tom Cruise, Stallone, Dustin Hoffman, Andy Garcia, etc..

There are those in the middle (5'10" to 5'11") category that are good swing players (Brad Pitt, Kevin Spacey, George Clooney), but you would hardly ever see members of either cadre mixed.

I haven't yet been able to refute this theory other than to say the DeDevito somehow manages to cross all boundaries.
posted by psmealey at 6:21 AM on September 13, 2007 [2 favorites]


When I was working in a hospital in Vancouver Sylvester Stallone came in after sustaining an injury on a movie set. I didn't see him but one of the nurses later said, in her Edinburgh accent, "Ooh! A wee little sparrow he was!"
posted by Turtles all the way down at 6:40 AM on September 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


That Arnold height game is very teh annoying.
posted by Ricky_gr10 at 6:41 AM on September 13, 2007


The weird thing is the tall ones who get shot short. For example, I thought for years that Norton was only about 5'10" or so.
posted by lodurr at 6:42 AM on September 13, 2007


Mean measured paternal height was 173.2 cm, self reported 174.9 cm (p < 0.0001), partner reported 177 cm (p=0.0004).

What a cool statistic.

I believe - I haven't checked in many years - that I'm between 6'2" and 6'3", but people often say I'm taller by as much as 2". I've always been convinced this was because they wanted to be taller themselves.

But then there is the partner reported bias.. Hilarious :)
posted by Chuckles at 6:42 AM on September 13, 2007


Stevie Ray Vaughan was reported to be 5'9", but most who met him say that was a generous estimate, influenced at least a bit by the coyboy boots he often wore.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:06 AM on September 13, 2007


The linked site has an entry for Tom Cruise. Should we delete?
posted by DU at 7:17 AM on September 13, 2007


Delete Tom Cruise?

We can do that?
posted by lodurr at 8:22 AM on September 13, 2007


"Ooh! A wee little sparrow he was!"

That is the perfect description. He also has by far the most shiny plastic face I've ever seen on a human being. Well, second only to his mother.
posted by miss lynnster at 8:47 AM on September 13, 2007


Somewhat serious question for bigfoot aficionados - let's play the whatif game and assume bigfoot is real. There were many species of hominids competing on this planet 100,000+ years ago. As homo sapiens came on the scene, started taking over, driving other species into extinction (e.g. Neandertals), the bigfoot strategy might have been to avoid confrontation and adapt to isolated, heavily forested habitats. But that begs the question, what species would bigfoot most likely have descended from?
posted by Nquire at 8:59 AM on September 13, 2007


Nquire, Gigantopithecus
posted by MythMaker at 10:24 AM on September 13, 2007


That's one of Heuvelmans' speculations, as I recall.

Fossil records are spotty, though. It could just as easily have been something we've never known about.
posted by lodurr at 10:35 AM on September 13, 2007


So, apparently you ladies have this widespread 5'10"-and-over rule, which means that the artful misrepresentation of height (read: lying) must be, for many of us guys, an evolutionary adaptation. In this light, I offer a few survival tips that will help nearly every man to add that extra cubit to his furlong.

Accessories

These are key in establishing scale. For example, I carry a violin conspicuously on my person, but always refer to it as either "my cello" or "my upright bass." Remember, it still has to look heavy - affect an a slight limp when dragging it. There you go.

Transportation

Perhaps you think a fixed-gear bike will help you snag hipster girls - but just imagine how grand you'll look astraddle the back of a pygmy elephant. Generally speaking, the more miniaturized your chariot, the more you tower, and vice-versa. Don't be like Dukakis in the tank.

Dress

When on trial by the senses, instill a little reasonable doubt. You should use clothing that attacks and confounds the viewer's spatial reasoning. Generally, cubes are a safe choice - t-shirts featuring hypercubes, late cubism, Timecube, Q-bert, or M. C. Escher are good.

Behavior

In mannerism, you should press the suggestion that you're being observed at a distance. You might practice a wistful, far-away look, or squinting and cupping the ears when being addressed. You can even practice a variant of sotto voce to give your voice that long-traveled quality, and add some echo: "What? I'm like thirty feet away. Can you hear me? Hear me? Hear me?"

Binoculars make a great prop too - see Accessories.

Denial

Eventually, you may be suspected or even confronted about the above tactics. In such cases, it's important not to panic - you can still escape! The best denial is to fall back upon art-school jargon, to wit:

Girl: Hey, wait a second. Now that you're off that elephant, your legs look way shorter than mine.
You: Nah, babe, that's just *foreshortening.*

This tactic not only gives you plausible deniability, it also suggests that your date has just narrowly survived a brush with high culture. Totally hot.

By following all of these tips, you'll be well on your way to inducing vertigo everywhere you go. And, as we all know, vertigo is close kin to butterflies. And butterflies? Somewhere in earshot of affection... which has been compared to love!
posted by kid ichorous at 10:45 AM on September 13, 2007 [5 favorites]


A friend of mine had a theory that there were two versions of Hollywood, where never the twain should meet. Tall Hollywood was comprised of Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Edward Norton et al, and Short Hollywood is Tom Cruise, Stallone, Dustin Hoffman, Andy Garcia, etc..

That's how I would have ranked them, but according to IMDB, you're way off:

Tall Hollywood came out how you would expect ...

Liam Neeson - 6'4"
Ralph Fiennes - 6'
Edward Norton - 6'

Swing and Short in order of height:

Andy Garcia - 5'11"
Brad Pitt - 5'11"
Stallone - 5'10"
Kevin Spacey - 5'9"
Tom Cruise - 5'7"
Dustin Hoffman - 5'6"

I have a friend who does runner things on set and another who is both a serious actor and legitimately tall (~6'4"). The basic rule is that if they are under 6 ft, expect them to fudge their height at least 2 inches. The more serious the actor, the less this is true. The surprising thing to me was how short these stars actually were in person. I am 5'10" barefoot and was seriously shocked how I was probably on the tall end of all the men on set. Lifts and camera angles do a lot.

Once you find out that most egotistical stars wear lifts, it almost becomes comical to spot them. Wait for the group shot and look how all the extras are wearing shoes with no heels and the male leads are wearing monster lifts.

To add a further level of irony, the legitimately tall actors have a harder time landing the leading roles for big budget films. It is rather simple: framing a tall guy and an average size actress is hard and sometimes looks funny. Much easier to get an average to short-average guy and put him in the correct lifts to get a proportion. You don't want a 12" height difference.
posted by geoff. at 10:59 AM on September 13, 2007


I believe that a Rambo should be a new standard unit of measurement.

The hole was twelve Rambos deep, or that guy is 1.02 Rambos tall.

Now I'm gonna go run a couple of kiloRambos, I'll be back later.
posted by quin at 11:21 AM on September 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


How many rambos in a furlong, again?
posted by lodurr at 11:46 AM on September 13, 2007


How many rambos in a furlong, again?

No, Stallone never stared with Edward Furlong. You're thinking of Arnold in T2.
posted by kid ichorous at 11:58 AM on September 13, 2007


Stallone was in Arnold?
posted by lodurr at 12:08 PM on September 13, 2007


I always compare people's height to Jon Stewart's [5'65"] when they're on the Daily Show.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:20 PM on September 13, 2007


Stallone was in Arnold?

Please, the coefficient of friction would never allow.
Please, physics. No.
posted by kid ichorous at 12:29 PM on September 13, 2007


Well, he is just a wee little sparrow.
posted by lodurr at 12:39 PM on September 13, 2007


I always compare people's height to Jon Stewart's [5'65"]

Jon Stewart is ten feet tall?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 12:58 PM on September 13, 2007


About 10.42 feet, to be precise.
posted by lodurr at 1:46 PM on September 13, 2007


Glenn Danzig is, uh, not very tall. Fans claim that he gets bigger when he goes on stage. Literally. Bigfoot tall. Like ten feet. Twelve! A Misfits fan told me so. Said he had witnessed this happen.
posted by CCBC at 2:11 PM on September 13, 2007


At 5'9" the only time I've ever felt like I towered over the majority of a room full of adults was at a Ween show. Apparently burnouts tend towards minuteness, whod've guessed?

I'll confess to buying shoes based more on the lift the sole gives me than any other consideration. While I may be considered average in other parts of the country, here in Memphis I'm the fucking ambassador from Lilliput.
posted by bunnytricks at 2:33 PM on September 13, 2007


Old, beatup, steel-toed DMs have a little lift to them, plus they radiate a respectable vibe of "I'll kick you," so they're good short people shoes.

But when I'm going out with a girl who's several inches taller? I wear flat, flat Converses. Why? Because screw those gender roles, that's why. With the multitude of 7-foot male/4-foot female pairings I see every day, y'all can get down with just one measly exception!
posted by kid ichorous at 3:20 PM on September 13, 2007


You look bigger with hair? Iā€™m like 80 feet tall, man.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:27 PM on September 13, 2007


He is actually 6'5", with the afro 6'9".

Stupid decimal points. I was too worried about making a Spinal Tap-style error with the foot and inch markings.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:17 PM on September 13, 2007


Not Rambo is kinda short.
posted by vronsky at 5:32 PM on September 13, 2007


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