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The Gap Hates Short People

Short People got no reason
Short People got no reason
Short People got no reason
To live

They got little hands
And little eyes
And they walk around
Tellin’ great big lies
They got little noses
And tiny little teeth
They wear platform shoes
On their nasty little feet

Well, I don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
Round here

Short People are just the same
As you and I
(A Fool Such As I)
All men are brothers
Until the day they die
(It’s A Wonderful World)

Short People got nobody
Short People got nobody
Short People got nobody
To love

They got little baby legs
And they stand so low
You got to pick ’em up
Just to say hello

They got little cars
That go beep, beep, beep
They got little voices
Goin’ peep, peep, peep
They got grubby little fingers
And dirty little minds
They’re gonna get you every time
Well, I don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
‘Round here

I hate this song. I have hated this song since it first came out when I was a kid. But apparently, it has become The Gap’s anthem. Because The Gap hates short people.

I’m lucky because I can wear jeans to work every day. Even if I have to meet a client wearing jeans is acceptable. I don’t wear ripped, or old or funky jeans, though—usually a nice pair that’s fairly tailored-looking. The Gap usually does a pretty good job of offering a variety of fits for every size. And they have cute jeans that don’t cost as much as a car payment. Although, at $60 a pop, it’s not like they’re dirt cheap. Which is why I’m a little pissy with them right now.

The other day I bought a pair of boot cut jeans online from The Gap. I know what fits me there (I should—I buy about 10 pairs a year) so I don’t need to haul my ass into the store to try on 65 pairs. Or so I thought. I was looking for a slightly different style than the ones I’ve been wearing and I found these:


Nothing fancy. Just simple boot cut jeans. Because I usually wear them with some kind of heel for work, I bought regular length—not petite. Over the years I’ve found that petite jeans (or any petite pant, really) not only has a shorter inseam, but the waist and hips are narrower, which I don’t need because my hips and ass are not narrower. I didn’t get that part of the petite gene.  So I buy regular whenever I can. If you dig around in the Fit Guide they tell you that the Petite Inseam is 29 inches, Regular is 32″ and Tall is 36″. With a 3- or 4-inch heel, regular-length jeans should hit me where those jeans above hit the model’s foot.

This morning when I was getting ready I was so excited to try on my new jeans. I pulled them on—and then kept pulling them on. And pulling. The waist fit perfectly, the thighs were just right but…they were about 8 inches longer than they should have been. I could make a (hoochie-mama length) jeans skirt out of what I’m going to have to cut off.

The average height of American women is around 5’5″ (or so my Wiki tells me). I realize that at 4’11” I’m smaller than average but c’mon, really? Eight inches? I called customer service to see if they were mislabeled and see if I could exchange them. Turns out those weren’t mislabeled. They’re really meant to be that long. Something to do with the wash of the denim, and since they’re a medium shade they’re longer, yada yada yada. I tuned out because she might as well have just told me “Suck it up, short stuff. Until you grow some legs, we’ve got nothin’ for ya.”

So now if I want to keep them, I have two options: Exchange them for petites, which are too short unless I wear flip-flops or pay another $30 to get them hemmed by a tailor. Because you can’t just hack off the bottom—it’ll leave a wide bell bottom thing going on that went out of style 30 years ago.

On principle I’m tempted to send them back. Either Regular means 32″ or not. It shouldn’t be 32″ unless you buy a dark wash on an even date on the third Sunday of the month. It’s bad enough that they do vanity sizing (a 2  is really a 14), but now they exaggerate height too.

Like I’m not insecure enough. Now I’m fat and short.


6 Responses

  1. Since Old Navy and gap are the same company, this is relevant. I recently bought a pair of black skinny jeans. I’m 5’10” so I always buy my pants in tall. I’ve bought them from old navy before, so I know their tall size fits me. When I put these on I have about 4-5 inches too much. I’m tall, and have never ever had to deal with having pants too long. I think the whole gap/old navy company has changed their sizes or something. I dunno, but I can relate to what you’re saying.

  2. Don’t these stores offer free alterations/hemming? Nah, they’d probably have to send them all the way back to the 3rd world sweatshop that churns them out and that would take forever. Have you ever thought of getting your jeans custom made? It’s not as pricey as you might think. Once the tailor has worked up a basic pattern for you, you can get all sorts of jeans and pants made up from it with a few variations for variety. And they’ll always fit perfectly. And they’ll look amazing on you.

  3. i’m 5’1 and i HATE buying pants because i cannot buy a single pair of pants or jeans that don’t need to be taken to a tailor. even with heels. and that automatically adds between 8-20 dollars, depending on what kind of hem they need. GRRRRR.

    BUT someone just told me that banana republic has amazing pants for short people.

  4. They hate fat people too. Send them back. and buy a pair of lucky’s…or better yet, go get classic levi’s.

  5. Percy: I hate Lucky’s. If I can get them over my hips (and I usually can’t), then there’s enough space in the waist for 2 people. I do miss my good-old 501s sometimes. If they’ve lowered the waist a little I might try them again. I have no idea where you find them anymore.

  6. I just found some great low rise 501s at the levi store…they may also have them at Macy’s. I like Lucky’s for me because they actually have the length right. But I love my 501s and also love PaperDenim and Cloth Jeans. They fit nice around the ass for those of us that doesn’t have any.

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