Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Unsolicited Opinions on Body Art

I think tattoos are cool.


For other people.

As long as they’re not everywhere.

Or on someone’s face.

Everything in moderation. (The above statements also apply to my feelings about piercings.)

Body art is a personal choice. I know plenty of people with one or two tattoos, or with a few holes in their ears. The addition of this body art doesn’t usually change who they are, although there are some people do take it too far, who have too many tattoos or too many piercings, in my opinion.

Aside from the “overdoing it” aspect, my main objection to getting a tattoo myself is that it is permanent. Whenever I see a tattoo that I think is really cool, it inevitably makes me think about getting one myself, until I remember that if I did, someday I will be sitting on a porch, relaxing in the retirement of my old age, with this tattoo. I can’t wrap my head around that.

My sisters-in-law and I were discussing the subject recently, and one of them brought up the idea that maybe the reason that some people are reluctant to get a tattoo is that they haven’t got an idea of what they would like to have inked onto their body for the rest of their lives. They don’t know what they want, so it’s better not to commit to anything. I agreed; it’s not that I’m scared of getting a tattoo, it’s that I haven’t yet found something I’d want to have on my skin for the rest of my life. I’m very doubtful that I ever will.

My other reason for not getting a tattoo is that they are very noticable, unless you put them somewhere where they can’t be seen. And since part of the reason behind getting a tattoo is for someone besides yourself to see it, it seems a little silly to me to hide it away. But it seems a little irreverent to show up at your cousin’s wedding with “AWESOME DUDE 2002” in huge letters down your arm. One of my sisters-in-law has a delicate butterfly on her foot, and all she has to do to cover it up is to put on a sock.

These opinions, you must understand, come from a person who didn’t even get their ears pierced until turning 21. 

The only “crazy” thing I have done is to get an ear cuff in my right upper ear. Several months before I got it, I had been wearing a clip on one because I thought they were cool. The first few times I wore it, my mother would reach up and tug on it, just to make sure it wasn’t in there for good. Earlier in the year that I got married, my friends and I decided to step into Ironbrush Tattoo (the best place to get a tattoo in Lincoln, Nebraska). We all walked out with something new: they got tattoos, and I had replaced the clip on cuff with a real one. My mother’s habit of tugging on it had ceased, so a week before my wedding when we went to pick up my aunt at the airport and I said, “look what I got!” and showed her my ear, she said, “that’s so cool!” (Aunts are always cooler about these things than mothers are), and my mother said, “Tah-rih-shah! I didn’t know that was real! When did you get it?!” I laughed and said, “March!” The best part about it is that if I ever decide that I don’t want it, I can just take it out.

To sum up, I think body art is cool. Usually. Provided the person who has it is not me, does not have tons of it, is a young person, and can remove or cover it up in a formal setting (such as their job or their grandma’s birthday party).

Everything in moderation. If you’re looking to get a tattoo now but you don’t know what you’d like, there’s always henna or airbrushed tattoos (which you can find at most shopping malls, especially in the summer). If you have been begging your parents for a bellybutton piercing, quit bothering them and go buy a spring close pierceless ring at Claire’s and be done with it.

Chances are that no matter what you do, you’ll be rolling your eyes at yourself when you’re 30 anyway.

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