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June 17, 2006

Tattoo Fever

A quarter of the US population has tattoos.

I don't. I missed the chance, when I was in my twenties. I'm not going to be like a guy mentioned in the article, who gets a tattoo before he turns 40 because he can hear the "minivan approaching." I don't know of any minivan-warding symbols I can put on my skin.

I'm anti-tattoo. I'm generally anti-fad, and I was really anti- this particular fad. I don't want to knock people too hard for having them, but they really made my life annoying during my twenties. Every time I was at a party people would begin having their "tatt talk," explaining how and when and why they got this particular Celtic-knot-circumscribing-a-dragon-biting-down-on-the-Chinese-character-for-entropy tattoo, or what this particular interlaced-barbed-wire-and-rose-vine-around-their-ankle might say about their personality.

It was, I guess, an identifier of a personality type -- Suburban Rebel -- and an excuse to talk to people of the opposite sex, neither of which are bad reasons for doing something. (I started smoking as an excuse to talk to girls -- girls always need cigarettes -- and that's a far less healthy thing to do.)

Still-- as one of the tribe of the non-inscribed: Really, really boring to sit through so much tatt-talk. And I didn't understand why others found it so fascinating. Sure, I doodle on the cover of my notebooks, but I don't strike up conversations with strangers about what I was thinking when I "inked" my Mead dream-journal with a sketch of Darth Vader fighting Robocop.

And so predictable. How many times can one hear a girl say she has a tatoo of a rose "in a place I can't show you" and react with titillated surprise? I mean-- well of course you do, darlin'. Who doesn't?

Always the same. This is my ankle one, I've got another one on the small of my back, and I've got a unicorn sodomizing Calvin and Hobbes simultaneously with his horn "in a place I can't show you." And then, as reactive as saying "God bless you" when someone sneezes, I'm supposed to raise my eyebrows as if I'm scandalized and aroused to hear something I just heard three minutes ago from the last chick telling me about her tatts.

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posted by Ace at 01:54 PM

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