Size matters: It’s not what you’re thinking

We are a society measured by size. Not populous in nature, but rather we measure most everything by its girth and weight.

We boast of a newborn’s weight and length; we do the same thing when we catch a fish. I’m not sure why. One gets stinky after a while and the other comes from the ocean.

Size does matter when it comes to hotel bathroom soaps and bodyguards.

Cars are certainly rated by size. And it’s not just the difference between a Bentley and a Pinto. Sweden’s Koeniqsegg Regera boasts 1479bhp and drives nicely at 250 mph. And if you have to ask the price tag of this crazy hypercar, you can’t afford it.

So that’s a car. But so is the Smart Car, with its mighty 70 horsepower. That is not a typo. I believe this car can be pulled back manually with two hands, and when you let it go, it goes 0-60 mph only if it is being driven off a cliff. I jest. If you pull this car back manually with two hands and let go, it will go 0-60 mph in 1.2 days, and that’s if it’s only going downhill. And when you get to the bottom of the hill, you simply throw your Smart Car over your shoulder, climb back up the hill and repeat. It works a lot like tobogganing.

Size plays a role our living conditions throughout our lives. We start in the womb, not a lot of stretching can be done, so occasionally we kick mommy’s stomach as reminder that we need roomier accommodations.

From there, we go to a baby jail, with a flat, unimpressive mattress and bars on the windows. We move to a bed, then a larger room.

Even mattresses must puff out their Temperpedic chests to announce they are a king or a queen. This is not where the expression ‘size queen’ comes from.

Next, we switch to a small dorm room, then a small apartment before we can muster the courage – and the cash to buy a house.

Like many people, my first apartment in New York was slightly larger than an elevator. It was small. My welcome mat just said, “WEL.” You had to step outside to eat a large pizza. But you could close the curtains in the living room with one hand, and change the toilet paper roll with the other. Apparently multi-tasking was born in some person’s studio apartment.

My next apartment was hip and chic, I thought at the time. It, too, was small. It was the 1990s. My microwave was bigger than my refrigerator.

My apartment was so small, when I dropped a Kleenex, I had wall to wall carpeting.

My apartment was so small, when I put my key in the lock, I broke a back window.

So it was small, but I loved it. Friends from Nashua would come to visit during a basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden and everybody would crash at my studio apartment. The next morning, the place looked like Jonestown.

Size, therefore, also comes in square footage. There is where size is at a premium.

Landlords are size-mometers. Their only experience for training for their job is to have a room or an apartment or a house. They have no discernible skills. They don’t have to train or get a learned degree. They must have a key chain with many keys on it. I believe each key represents a notch on their belt, like in the Old West or a Pat Benetar song.

If you own your own home, you should be able to call yourself a landlord, as you are lord of the land. But again, it comes to the keys that open a million door locks.

Landlords know that a room is simply a matter of opinion. They see a room. You see an aggrandized broom closet. That’s when the landlord says, “That’ll be $1,500 a month.”

Ah, but the jokes on you, because everybody knows a tenant rarely ever gets to see a closet.

Size does matter but it’s all relative. A small wonder can become an oasis. It’s all in how you look at it.

Like someone once said, lice don’t seem so small when they get in your hair.

George Pelletier may be reached at