Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Tiny Dynamos

They say good things come in small packages, and I would have to agree. Small people get very little love, but they have accomplished some great things in history. Don't believe me, check out the list of little wonders below. Props go out to Margaret Mead (5'2"), Voltaire (5'3"), and Pablo Picasso (5'4") for living large, despite being small. Another honorable mention goes out to King Tut (5'6") who, despite ruling for only eight years, is best known for his infamous curse, that has been killing tall people since 1922. Without any further delay the "V" list presents the Top 5 small people who made a big difference.

5. Jimmy Doolittle
Most people will know who I'm talking about it I say this guy was played by Alec Baldwin in the movie Pearl Harbor. Jimmy Doolittle was a pioneer in the field of aviation that took on the daunting task of launching a counter-attack on Japan following the attack on Pearl Harbor. Doolittle was the first pilot in history to take a B-25 bomber off from the deck of an aircraft carrier. This move was so surprising that FDR quipped that the planes had taken off from the magical land of "Shangri-La." After successfully bombing Tokyo, Doolittle crash landed the planes in China (where most people remember Josh Hartnett was killed) and made his way back to the United States where he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroics. While the "V" list may consider Doolittle a hero, James always considered himself a failure since he lost all the planes (which were ditched cause they ran out of fuel). Doolittle is the poster child for America's greatest generation, despite the fact he would have to stand on a platform for you to see him in a crowd.

4. Joan of Arc

The French heroine successfully repelled the English attack during the Hundred Year's War despite being at best 5'4" tall. She was either divinely inspired, or was straight up out of her mind, yet her battlefield heroics are still being retold in history books some 600 plus years later. Joan must have been charismatic to have men follow her command given the social order of the time period. Mad love goes out to Joan for standing tall long before it was fashionable to be a dominant female figure.

3. James Madison

Known as the father of the Constitution, James was mad short at 5'3". Madison was was scholar of the highest order, and constantly battled to have his ideas taken seriously, given the fact that he was vertically challenged. James' wife also bears historical significance for having saved the portrait of George Washington while the White House burned during the British invasion of the District of Columbia. He might not be the tallest of our founding fathers, but his contributions stand head and shoulders the rest.

2. Mohandas K. Gandhi
Sorry G, you may be 5'3", but you're not taking the top spot on another "V" list. Yet another amazing fact about Gandhi that you may not have known is that the man changed the world and was uber small. You have to respect this guys philosophy of satyagraha (soul force) in which Gandhi just allows those bigger and stronger than him to beat him unmercifully. Gandhi commanded millions of loyal followers and instructed them to wage a war of tolerance.To this day, one of my favorite Gandhi quotes is that, "Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will."

1. Napoleon
He was so short, and so pissed about it (apparently) that to this day, small people who have problems with their height are "diagnosed" with having a Napoleon complex. Not only was Napoleon short, but he 1. Ended the French revolution 2. Led an overthrow of the state and named himself Emperor and then 3. plunged Europe into a series of wars causing a reactionary period in European history. You're an angry little elf! Even after they sent him away to prison, he didn't get the hint. Perhaps Napoleon said it best when he stated, "Greatness is nothing unless it be lasting." Word.


And by the way, the author of this blog is 5'4, and loves every minute of it.

1 comment:

Bryan Pol said...

I don't care if it's old, cold, or covered in mold. It's for the shorties!!