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Names like Baby Elephant, Donut, Arm Rest, Small Fry, Harry Potter, 4 Eye, and Train Tracks bring back memories mostly to people who had some appearance issues in their teenager life. Some of these experiences were: the tallness, shortness, the state of being much overweight than others or the act of wearing braces or glasses among others. In Garry Trudeau’s essay “My Inner Shrimp,” he discusses body image and focuses more on the impacts of being a short person or “a midget” as a teenager. Some of the impacts that come with being short include the feeling of inferiority complex and the tendency of being antisocial.
I have a feeling of how Trudeau must have felt about his short nature. In contrast to him being short, I was very tall in my teenage life, specifically in my middle school life, and I was given funny nicknames such as “Skyscraper” and “Big Foot.” The names hurt me most, and this led to my two week suspension after getting into a fight with other students. I stopped being violent after the suspension, but my anger and the lack of paying attention to anyone worsened my grades.
All this came to an end the moment I joined high school, because there were other tall boys like me and some were much taller. This changed my self-esteem completely because I was no longer a subject of ridicule and mockery, thus I found myself performing better in my exams and, at last, I received the second highest GPA in the school.
Trudeau might have gone through many challenges due to his nature if height but that never stopped him from becoming a successful man when he grew up. He dreamt of being tall due to all the kinds of separation he went through and the importance of meeting girls to a point of reading a book how to grow tall, stretching every day, doing exercises. This condition went on for six years to a point where he became unsocial and started the run-ins with bullies. He was lucky to shoot up some inches in his seventeenth year for his life could have been more miserable and full of disappointments. Despite what happened to Trudeau as a teenager, he finally became a writer for the New York Times, The New Republic, Harper’s, the Washington Post, Time, and the New Yorker. He is also well known for his comic strip and winning a Pulitzer Prize in 1975.
Funny teenage nicknames make someone’s past life more vivid as it is hard to forget the past experiences. In regard to Trudeau’s story, it is important to note that a person’s destiny is never known in the early ages, and we should all respect each other because we might one day require some help from those people whom we despised a lot.