|Extreme full-head tattoo, nicely (perhaps ironically?) |
accessorised with a conservative tie.
Image source: http://www.ultimatetattooexpo.com/
Then I moved to Coolgardie/Kalgoorlie and my nakedness really stuck out like the proverbial, ahem, canine appendages.
Here it appears so uncommon to be uninked it puts me on the verge of freak territory. I'd guess there are more tattoos here than there are people.
I did a quick yet highly scientific survey while in the main street one recent afternoon and spied six separate tattoos over a total of eight men, three over a total of six women and one dog with its ruff area shaved and 'Freo Rulz' inked there. (Yes I made that last bit up, but people do love their tats around here. As well as football and mangled English, so it's entirely possible such a dog exists).
And that was just the ones visible on a mild May day.
I don't have an aversion to tattoos - or needles - but have never felt the urge to get one. In my mother's words, "they just don't appeal to me".
Excepting tattoos that form part of the owner's ethnic culture, for instance Maori tattoos, I've always viewed them as an expression of a kind of hardcore, rocker culture. So, and maybe it's the purist streak in me, but I think a tattoo should either stick to those origins or represent some other deeply important part of the owner's identity they wish to express. I can't help thinking that anything else is just a tacky tattoo gained for the sake of getting a tattoo.
My sister-in-law, for example, has several of what I'd describe as the above-mentioned rock-chick genre. Not everyone could pull them off but they look great on her because they suit her rock music-loving, live-life-loud-and-full personality.
Whenever I had that 'I don't think I'd like to get a tattoo because what the hell would I get' conversation people said 'oh, you could get a nice flower, or a sun or dolphin or something'. Which, despite their good intentions, makes me want to gag.
I do like flowers. But not enough to stamp one on me. The fake ones I stick in vases around my house is enough flower-tackiness for one person.
The sun is lovely, I'll give you that. But I'm not exactly sunny myself.
As for dolphins, they're very nice swimming about in the sea but I don't feel a resounding connection to them.
So, I believe I'll remain ink-free for the foreseeable future.
Now, there is something about tattoos that sparks my curiosity. And that is the craze for ones declaring the name, and sometimes birthdate, of one's progeny. Given countless generations of parents experienced the wonders of parenthood without accompanying tattoos, what is so compelling about them now? Can anyone fill me in?
So, what about you? Do you have any tattoos, and if so, what is their significance to you? Do you plan to get one, or add to your collection? Or are you someone who's changed their mind and had ink removed?