Ever since a judge in Nebraska granted an offender parole instead of jail time because he was too "short" to survive in jail, many Americans are eager to achieve a short stature any way they can. For Barry Break-in, who has served jail time for burglary, it's simply a matter of career planning. He's been quoted as saying, "Short is not only beautiful, it's smart as well."
The "Love to be Little" movement, called Mini-mania by its supporters, has created numerous ripples throughout the economy. Just about every sector is affected. The medical community was one of the first to feel the impact. Many patients undergoing hormone treatments to make them TALLER called a halt to these treatments. Some of these patients did an about-face, demanding new drug therapies to make them even SHORTER. Pharmaceutical companies are scrambling to meet the changing demand for these medications.
Retailers are hacking inches off a variety of outfits in their ready-to-wear fall lines and/or developing new products to serve little people. Freddy Follower was purchasing a pair of elevator shoes in a New York shop when he picked up the newspaper and read about Mini-mania. He immediately cancelled the order and instead bought a pair of the newly arrived 'Get Shorty' shoes (with flat, paper-thin soles designed to minimize the height of the wearer). "I like to go with the flow," he explained, as he left the store in his new shoes, confident that they downplayed the height of his 5-foot, 3-inch frame.
The entertainment industry is not immune to the effects of Mini-mania. The top-selling DVD in the nation is "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." Jo Stafford's "Shrimp Boats" tops the music charts. Librarians report high demand for the book "Little Women."
Meanwhile, spokesmen for Ken Lay and Jeffrey Skilling have denied that their clients are making special preparations as they await sentencing for their Enron crimes. Spoof spies disagree, saying they can confirm that Lay and Skilling have begun a drastic regimen of "shrinking" pills. Each hopes to be at least eight inches shorter before facing the judge in September.