thief of time

Monday, November 29, 2004

Size and Weight and Body Image

I think I’ve read somewhere that wealthy people tend, in general, to be more health-conscious than poorer people. This apparently means they are inclined to make better lifestyle choices, one of the consequences of which is that they tend to be thinner than the average person from the poorer side of society.

I think I’ve read that somewhere, but it may have come from a women’s magazine while I was waiting to go to the dentist, so I can’t absolutely vouch for its truth and I may just have totally made it up.

I’ve recently been shopping for some new clothing and think I may have come up with an alternative explanation for the relative slimness of more wealthy people. My reasoning is totally ridiculous, but it does square with some observations I made on the weekend.

Because one of our leading department stores was having a final “let’s get rid of this end-of-season stuff” sale and also included an additional 25% off to the bargain, I was shopping for a couple of pairs of trousers far above my usual budget because they were within shooting distance of reasonable, though still more expensive than I usually get (I did have some birthday money to play with).

To my amazement, after swimming in my usual sizes, one of the pairs I finally did buy was actually a size six. Now, there is no way in the world that I’m a size six and I confirmed it today when I went to a blue jeans shop and was quite comfortable in sizes 10 to 12, depending on the cut.

It must be a marketing ploy exercised on the well-to-do to encourage them to buy clothing by flattering them on their extremely petite size.

It’s certainly noticeable in ordinary clothing, where the sizing is much smaller than it was when I was growing up, but they obviously carry it above and beyond the call of duty when dealing with wealthier people, because they have far more disposable income to indulge themselves with.

That’s my theory, anyways. I think it only makes sense in a strange alternative universe, but why the difference?