On my recent visit to the doctor’s office, a nurse weighed me and measured my height.
“How tall am I?” I asked. “I can’t ever get a good measurement.”
“You’re five-eight,” she said.
“Ah,” I said. “I thought I was five-nine.”
She laughed. “You’re like every other guy — always trying to say you’re taller than you really are.”
If I were a cartoon character, a little black cloud would have formed above my head. I don’t give a rat’s ass how tall I am. I’m not trying to be macho by claiming to be five nine. I weigh more than 190 pounds, for goodness sake! If I’m going to lie about something, it’s going to be my weight. I say I’m five-nine because that’s how tall I think I am.
Today I finally went to the sidebar at Get Fit Slowly to change my vital stats. Heaven forbid people believe I’m five-nine when I’m only five-eight!
As I was changing my data, I took a look at the vital stats from the doctor’s visit. I noted that the nurse had indicated my height was 174 centimeters. “That’s strange,” I thought. “Wasn’t I 175 centimeters before?” I checked.
Sure enough, when I measured my own height, I had come up with 175 centimeters. The nurse came up with 174 centimeters. But you know what? Here’s how those numbers convert to Imperial units:
- 174 centimeters == 5 feet, 8.50393704 inches
- 175 centimeters == 5 feet, 8.89763135 inches
So, not only was the nurse quibbling over about one-half of once percent of measurement, but she was also truncating instead of rounding. That is, she was lopping the fraction instead of rounding up to the nearest whole inch. I really am five-nine.
But just so you don’t think I have some sort of macho need to overstate my height, let’s all agree that I’m five-eight-and-a-half.