May 6 2010

Things I Love Thursday, May 6th ’10


Amber Valletta is frickin’ stunning, yes/yes?

G’Day, my little trollops!

I hope you’re all having a splendiferous day, and are frolicking in sun-drenched fields or something equally as commercial-for-a-medication-in-which-they-inexplicably-fly-kites-and-ride-horses-bareback-along-a-beach-and-wink-knowingly-at-attractive-strangers-worthy!   There was a freak hailstorm today in my neck of the woods, so I am frolicking safely inside my room.    It’s time for our weekly round-up of all the wonderful and spectacular highlights of our lives, so let’s spill the bucket of mush already!

* An absolutely magical reunion weekend in Toronto.  Seriously, I didn’t know how much I needed this weekend until it happened.  Some of my best girls flew in from far-flung exotic locales, and we had a long-overdue adventure.  I was also able to reunite with some long-lost dear friends whom I hadn’t seen in years- YEARS!- and it was just magical the way it all came together.  Magical!  There were themed potlucks, restaurants, dancing to the death, incredible surprises, exploring, photoshoots in abandoned historical buildings, sleepover parties, nefarious schemes, old friends, new friends, a million and one new inside jokes, a million and one old inside jokes re-told, and so much laughter that my stomach still hurts from it all.  Simply magical!  I even had the cheese dish on the train ride up!  Yeah!

* A lonnnng-overdue phone call with one of my oldest friends, Allison.  Good ol’ Al and I have been through everything together.  Even though we’re at rather different stages in our lives right now, and don’t talk as often as we’d like, we’re able to slip right back into the same conversation and familiar territory.

* My tax rebate!  The upside of relative poverty!

* Putting all work on hold and dancing around like a happy maniac to Thelma Houston’s “Don’t Leave Me This Way.”  Yup, she’s Whitney’s aunt, and is as ridiculously talented!

* Experiencing renewed feelings of energy and focus.  It might just be Thelma Houston, or it might be something deeper than that, but I’m grateful for it either way.

So there’s my short but super-saturated-with-corn-syrup-sweet Things I Love Thursday offering.  What’s making you get your groove back, Stella?  (Do not tell me that you didn’t get the reference, or Whitney will get you).

Much love,




Apr 8 2010

An Easter Tale…Of Terror

Happy Easter Monday to you all!!  I hope you’ve all been having spectacular weekends, and have been able to make your chocolate last longer than I have…

Easter, like all holidays, tends to bring up special memories, and one of my most cherished Easter memories also still gives me nightmares.  Like many of you, I have a list of pretty sensible fears, like drowning or my dog eating my face off while I sleep.  I also have a mile-long list of irrational fears, like serial killers, my teeth suddenly falling out without warning (although I suppose it would be just as terrifying to hear your teeth warn you that they’re about to fall out…*adds another entry to the Irrational Fears list*), the possibility that a vengeful ghost lives at the bottom of my staircase and slowly ascends when I wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, Cheez Whiz and dead birds.  Suffice it to say, I’m not that tough. 

ANYWAY, let us rewind back to my first year of university, on Easter weekend.  It was a cheery Spring day, and most of us were celebrating by locking ourselves in the library for 14 hours straight, or, like me, bargaining with our floormates to drop something heavy on my head so that we could go to the hospital and thus be spared from exam hell for yet another day.   “If you were our friend, you would drop this on us!” …. “*exasperated sigh*  Yes, I am your friend, which is why I am not dropping this on you.”   Some of us study, some of us bargain desperately for a slight concussion in a stairwell…we all have our own exam preparation methods, I suppose.

The campus was a tad quieter, since some students went home for the holiday weekend, if their exam schedules allowed it.  My exam schedule thought otherwise, as did most of my floormates’, and we all hunkered down for a weekend of exam and essay insanity.  So imagine our surprise on Easter Sunday, when we awoke to find this elaborate set of clues for an Easter egg hunt!!!  My friend Cat, who is a top-notch human being, had concocted the entire thing.  I highly recommend Cat as a friend; surprise Easter egg hunts are just par for the course for her.   I was so excited that I didn’t even change out of my pyjamas, and ended up walking around campus in these really-obvious-pyjamas that were flannel and had penguins or ducks playing hockey or tobogganing or something, and the hems and sleeves were obviously much too short for me – -all while other people were sharply dressed in their pastel Easter finery.  

My friends and I followed the egg hunt clues all over campus until it led us back to the common room of our residence.   The fireplace of our common room, to be exact.   Hopping around in excitement (get it?  Like rabbits!),  we opened the fireplace door to find….a giant basket of eggs and other chocolate goodies….AND!  Nestled beside the basket? A GIANT DEAD BIRD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 


Poor Cat swore up and down that she didn’t plant the giant dead crow in the fireplace; in her excitement, she probably didn’t even notice the corpse-bird when she hid the Easter basket there.   We overcame our collective shock soon enough (some-me-later than others) and started feasting on the chocolate while joking about the most unusual Easter basket accessory ever.   We decided to name the bird “Igor De Mortis” and posted a sign on the fireplace door that read, “Igor de Mortis lives here…although he doesn’t so much live.”  And from then on, Easter celebrations have lacked a certain morbid panache.

Off to re-read “The Raven,”


Apr 3 2010



Canadian model Lisa Cant and her gang of candy-haired hoodlums

Whether you celebrate Easter or not, here’s wishing you a festive weekend full of wickedly- competitive easter egg hunts!  Easter baskets!  Ladies wearing bitchin’ pastel-coloured Easter hats! Pysanky eggs! Ham and scalloped potatoes!  (Or is that just my family…Come to think of it, what does ham have to do with Easter in the first place?)  May images of baby bunnies, baby lambs, baby chicks, and other varieties of cute baby animals dance (or prance?  or sit there helplessly because they can’t walk yet?) in your heads. 

Much love,


Feb 27 2010

Pleased to Meet You!!

So now that you’ve all been properly introduced to The Height of Life, it’s high time that the girl behind the computer makes her introduction, all “Phantom of the Opera”-style. 


My name is Kylie, and here are some random facts that are vitally important to know about me.  Or not.

- I once got my fingers stuck in an elevator door.  Great story now…not so great experience at the time.                               

- I’m mildly obsessed with horses and ponies, and, growing up, had two wonderful horses named “Buckshot” and “Sir Legacy.”  Nowadays, I just have to make do with watching “Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken” over and over and over again.

- I hail from the wilds of Glengarry County, Ontario, Canada.  Ok, it’s not “the wilds,” it’s a dairy farm, but doesn’t “the wilds of Glengarry” sound so much more romantic?  Like I’m stalking across the windy moors, wearing this fabulous long dress made out of tweed and wool and velvet and iron, as well as shoes that are totally inappropriate for the weather,  and that my hair is all “effortlessly windswept” but not at all tangled?  Yeah, it’s exactly like that.

-  I have a pretty frickin’ fantastic set of family and friends.   Preeeettty frickin’ fantastic.

- I had 12 teeth taken out, in order to make room for braces.  Not all at the same time, mind you, and most of them were baby teeth, so my teeth look perfectly fine today.   Nonetheless, I like to bust that little story out during competitive “Dental Horror Stories” conversations and polite cocktail parties.  As you do.

- Not to brag or anything, but I play a pretty amazing air guitar, not to mention respectable air drums and air vocals. 

- I studied History and English Literature at school, and also have an MA in War Studies.  It’s a pretty badass-sounding degree, but I’m also discovering that ”badass” doesn’t necessarily equate to “employable.”  I also imagined that, as a Mistress of War, I’d be prancing around, wearing a long velvet cloak or riding my trusty unicorn.  Neither the unicorn or the cloak have materialized yet, but I’m keeping my eye on the mailbox. 

- One of my (many!) awkward tendencies is to inexplicably start laughing when I’m alone or in inappropriate situations.

- I have an imagination that runs away with me, and I absolutely love ghost stories.  Not a great combination at 4 in the morning.

- I try to live a life that I’m proud of.  I try to be empathetic and kind to others.  I try to surround myself with people who make me laugh, think, and who make me want to skip down the street.  I try to be aware of both the spectacular beauty as well as the deep injustices around me, and to right the wrongs the best ways I know how. 

- My motto is: ”Look for the ridiculous, and you will find it” (Jules Reynard)


Sometimes, I look like this


Or this

pyjama cowgirl

But I mostly look like this

It’s wonderful to meet you!  And what’s your name?

Feb 26 2010

Why hello, there! (A Welcome, Part II)


The tree comparison can be a nice one, sometimes

(Glorious image courtesy of

Hello everyone, and welcome to the fourth-ever post to The Height of Life!  (I am now picturing monkeys crashing cymbals.)  I apologize for being so atrociously lax in my writing, and I promise, barring alien invasion or spontaneous barracuda adoption, that you can look forward to regular posts from now on.   Both my trusty computer and I were under virus attack, but we’ve since been de-bugged (tangent alert: what if my computer and I were infected by the same virus?!), and are good to go.   The computer has had to suffer the humiliation of reformatting, and I’m no longer clocking in more hours of bedrest than Colin from “The Secret Garden,” so onwards and upwards!

I figure that it’s high time I introduce The Height of Life.   This website is a celebration of all things kooky and wonderful and random that help make life so great; a celebration to which everyone is invited (and you don’t have to even bring anything, but if you do happen to have some artichoke dip lying around, I’m not going to say no…)

In addition to having a lifestyle-ish element that’s relevant to everyone (what, ramblings about “horses vs ponies vs unicorns” aren’t relevant to us all?!), much like the oh-so-punny title suggests, The Height of Life is also geared to those of us who happen to be taller than average.   I’ve found that it can sometimes feel lonely and alienating to be the token tall person, and I’ve also noticed that when one tall person encounters another, an immediate sense of friendship and familiarity develops.  I’ve found this to be particularly true among tall girls and women.  Aside from a few places scattered across the web, like the excellent tallchicksrock community over at LiveJournal,  there didn’t seem to be very many places where people could come together and share their stories, advice and experiences.    Inspired by the punk rock DIY spirit, I decided that if change wasn’t going to come to me, then I had better make change myself, and so I decided to claim this little corner of the internet as our own.  Consider this the metaphorical staking of the flag.  The idea came to me this past autumn, while I was taking a nap in a parking lot…err…I was in my car, waiting for my sister, if that makes it seem a little less dodgy.  When I woke up, I truly felt like I had a flashing-lightbulb moment, and had to stop myself from galloping down the street, shouting “Eureka!” at the top of my lungs!   With this website, I hope to inspire a sense of solidarity and community, and to discuss the unique and not-so-unique issues that we face.  Although we know we’re not alone, it is still comforting to be reminded of that.

If you’re anything like me, you’ve encountered more ridiculous stereotypes and assumptions about your height to fill up several lifetimes.   Although to be tall is kind of like having a spotlight on you at all times, we’ve somehow been reluctant to command the spotlight for ourselves.    The space tall people, especially tall women, take up in the pop culture imagination is not necessarily from images we’ve created and defined ourselves.    By not speaking up for ourselves, we allow others to do it for us.   The Height of Life is an antidote to “The Attack of the Fifty-Foot Woman,”  “The Jolly Green Giant,” and all the other inanities we encounter, and strives to create and highlight positive representations of tall people in society.  In addition to odes to cheese, tips on the best places to people-watch,  and stories of epic car song and dance routines to one hit wonders while stopped in traffic, you can count on The Height of Life to feature advice on a myriad of things of interest to the tall community, including humour, news, inspiration, medical information, stories, fashion, and sports.    Essentially, The Height of Life is a guide, a reflection, and a celebration of living the high life in a world that is slightly less than. 

The Height of Life is so much more than a one-girl celebration; it’s a community where sharing your diverse thoughts, ideas and suggestions are welcomed and valued.  So hop on in!  We’re listening.  And there might even be some artichoke dip.


Much love,


Feb 17 2010

A brief update

G’day, m’dears!

Just a quick note to let you know that my trusty computer crossed paths with a  pretty nasty virus (is there any other kind?), and so it’s been out of order for the past few days.  Uh, Happy Valentine’s!  I’m due to pick it up in the next few days, so regular posts shall resume then.  I’m writing this from my parents’ computer, which is a state-of-the-art model from 1892.

Thanks for your understanding.  In the meantime, let’s watch the Olympics (which are currently on home soil!  Mind you, across the entire expanse of that soil) and pretend that we’re ski jumpers.  I’m entranced by them!  Nevermind that I”m kind of afraid of heights.  Nevermind that I haven’t been skiing in a couple of years.  Nevermind that I have chair-lift issues.  How amazing would it be to be a ski jumper?!

Jan 19 2010

Well, hello everyone!!!! … and by “everyone” I mean “my little sister”…

I am ridiculously, deliriously excited for the new beginnings of this site!!! New beginnings, like the way a first snow looks before it becomes mottled with yellow and grey slush marks and you realize that since you don’t actually own a cute pair of snowboots, you’ll never look as effortlessly sporty and rosy-cheeked like the models in the L.L. Bean catalogue. New beginnings, like a fresh, creased pair of underwear straight out of the package, even though you know you have to wash them first and then you’ll never be able to fold them quite the same way again. New beginnings, like a freshly-Zamboni-ed skating rink, before you realize that the reason why you’re hobbling across the ice even more than your normal-hobbling-skating-style is because you still have your skate guards on. And then you realize that you don’t even know how to skate in the first place.

New beginnings like that, except without all the disappointment bit at the end.

This site will explore the “tall woman experience,” if it can even be generalized like that, as well offer insights and advice in navigating the world as a tall woman or girl. It will also feature a heaping ladle of lifestyle content, random trivia, general musings, funny stuff from the internet and life, and all the other little quirks and quarks that make life so great. This site will have a little somethin’ for everybody and their pet llama (or other novelty pet of their choice).

My next few posts will be all about why I was inspired to start this site, and all of the freakin’ great (if I do say so myself) ideas in store for you! I haven’t exactly been raised by feral wolves (or, y’know, civilized ones, or the ones that front like they’re street but are still really cooperative with wildlife photographers), so please expect a proper introduction of myself, too.

Alright, I’m off to do some flying split jumps of excitement!!! Perhaps they will be dignified flying split jumps. Perhaps they won’t. Perhaps this will finally be the time when I won’t accidentally kick something and injure others and/or myself. I am that excited.