David Rees becomes discouraged as he investigates Jake Gyllenhaal’s height. Incidentally, there is a website completely devoted to figuring out the heights of celebrities.
The CelebHeights.com discussion of Jake Gyllenhaal goes quiet for weeks at a time. Then someone posts an account of a recent sighting, or a photo of Gyllenhaal standing beside a celebrity of quantifiable tallness (like Xzibit), and then someone else counters that Gyllenhaal’s height is hard to calculate because “his body is like a peruvian guy (large oblong head, short neck),” adding “I should see him shaven” (?!?), and the whole thing flares up again. Any new piece of data, in the hands of the right maniac, can help a fact of the matter remain perpetually contested. This debate has been going strong for almost two years; is it any wonder that issues of slightly graver import—climate change, the theory of evolution, President Obama’s citizenship—are usually 5,000 percent overdebated?