In a culture obsessed with appearances, being as skinny as a piece of string is–for many women and girls–a must and they’ll go to great lengths to achieve it. Having been born skinny, the concept isn’t something that I’ve had to strive for. That doesn’t mean that I applaud the stereo type, but there are some advantages to being skinny.

The first involves summer. I live in central Texas with reaches temperatures of blistering proportions during to summer. When you’re nothing but skin and bones, staying cool is a state of nature that’s easy to ensure. Wearing shorts and tank tops also helps. It also means that you can get away with fashion statements that would drive others to heat stroke. Let’s just say that my jeans and long sleeved t-shirts aren’t collecting dust between May and September.

There are also jobs where being stick thin is helpful. I used to work as Banquet Waitstaff. When we’d have large events such as Thanksgiving or a 500 person wedding, those tables and chairs were so close together that most people would need slight of hand to get around. Me? I used slight of body, slipping through those tight spaces with the ease of a well practiced magician. It meant that I spent less time navigating and more time working, a mentality that my associates seemed to have trouble with on any given day of the week.

Another–fictitious–benefit is survival of the zombie apocalypse. I’m serious. I’d be able to out run the shambling, loose limbed walking dead in my sleep, or give them the slip while they chow down on the unfortunate souls that were the first to go. And if they did somehow back me into a corner, the mob would take one look at my skin and bone frame and say “not worth it.” Why chow on me and risk getting bone stuck on your teeth when there are more—edible options available?

Being skinny isn’t all good. I freeze easily and would be the first to die of hypothermia if a group was dropped in the Antarctic. There are also a long list of things that I can’t pick up because they’re more than a fraction of my own weight. Not to mention that it’s ridiculously hard to find pants that fit without a belt. That being said they’re are plenty of benefits to being skinny.

If you come by it naturally.

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