Saturday, October 17, 2009

Tattoos, piercings, and ‘other’ body art

You know what? – I must be a square peg in a round hole. But looking back over my years, I have never once been tempted to get pierced, branded, tattooed, or cut in the name of art.

I realize that ‘body art’ is a form of individualism, a form of rebellion – but when you are 50yo, 60yo, 70yo – how do you explain to your grandchildren the ear lobes which have holes in them, the size of a small family car? That the lovely piece of art that was on your breast is now somewhere near your belly button and twice the size it used to be.

What about piercings which are common these days, once upon a time it was fashionable but somewhat risqué to have your ears pierced once. Now it is uncommon. The more holes the merrier it seems.

Another thing I have trouble with is skin carving(I won’t publish pictures as they are quite graphic, but google “Skin Carving” and you’ll see what I mean) Why would you wish to go through the pain and risk the infection for something that is considered ‘art’, will disfigure you for life and can never ever be removed.

When you are 20 and drunk, getting your boyfriends/girlfriends name emblazoned on your chest in indelible ink might seem cool and smart. But what about when you are 30 or 40 and yet to find a soul mate? – Would it be considered cool then?

The funniest story that I recall occurred in 2007, a young man while overseas, decided to get a tattoo. Should be no problems we all say –he wanted a matched pair on each bicep. He drew a picture of what he wanted, he labeled each with left and right. No problems. He sits in the chair, during the procedures manages to down 15 beers. 5 ½ hours later goes back to the motel and to bed. His brother in law walks in the next morning and has a giggle – under each tattoo is left on the left arm and right on the right arm and both tattoos had the word 'gay' rather than 'day'. Imagine living with that for the rest of your life!

Then there is the child and at 16yo she is still a child who had 56 stars tattooed across her face – what can you say?

I might be square, I might be backwards, I’m sorry – but an unadorned body I find prettier than one scarred with all sorts of garbage, that some call art-work.

Maybe I don’t appreciate art, maybe I don’t understand the tribalism behind these things, maybe I am old fashioned – but stuff the lot of you – You were born the way you were for a reason and it wasn’t to join some imaginary cult – that does nothing other than harm your employability.

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