One of the reasons I love my job (besides poop) is my unique opportunity to see people in a state of undress that others do not. I don't love this because I get to check people out - I do enjoy the occasional fox, but most Y-goers actually aren't that sexy. I love it because I get to see everyone's tattoos that they usually try to hide.
Sometimes they're really embarrassing. A lot of older people have tiny cartoon characters in very faded ink, and there's the occasional former jock/frat boy who has an OU symbol or the words "boomer" and "sooner" on opposite biceps. Yeah, seriously.
Look at this douchebag.
But sometimes the tats are really cool. There's one woman who has a sweet tree that takes up her entire back. Another time, a guy came in with one of the most beautiful tattoos I've ever seen. I had to ask him how old it was; the colors were so vivid that I knew it had to have been recent. He said it was TEN YEARS OLD and he'd gotten it in Japan, where they traditionally use the "hand poke" method of inserting the ink below the skin without using electrical devices, like the modern tattoo gun-type machine most of us are probably more familiar with.
Look at all that color and detail!
Anyway, I love tattoos. I love looking at other people's tattoos, talking about and planning tattoos, and having tattoos.
At the moment, I have but two tats.
One is a small outline of Wisconsin on my ankle. I got it a couple weeks before I moved to Oklahoma. I guess it represents my roots, and it's like a little reminder of home and where I came from, part of how I became who I am today.
The other one I got last summer. It's actually a matching tattoo with my boyfriend, Damien. We both got the Roman numerals "IV VI IV" on our backs. They stand for 4/6/04, which is the first day we started dating way back in 8th grade. It's just kind of a love tattoo, without the awkward burden of potentially having someone else's name on our bodies if we ever break up. For the record, I don't think we will anytime soon. I also like the symmetry of the Roman numerals, how the I and V sort of alternate. It just looks cool.
Anyway, I plan to get several more tattoos. I want to decorate my body with tributes to different things that have made an impact on me. Wisconsin and Damien are two of those things. Gradually, I want to get tats for my parents, my best friends, the Beatles, feminism, and probably other musical artists like Bright Eyes. I also want to get one at some point that's purely art, like a bird or flower. Just something beautiful for its own sake.
One of the coolest and most unique tattoo styles I've ever seen comes from this guy Peter Aurisch, who works in Berlin at a shop called Signs and Wonders. Unfortunately I'll probably never be able to get any work done by him, but I can google his name and look at other people's awesome ink!
That overlap effect is SO COOL.
I love the exaggerated and distorted sizes of the animals' heads, and all the layering of different elements. How does he get that brushstroke effect?!
Okay, I was going to post some more pictures of tattoos that I've loved and saved, but it'll have to wait for another day. Peter Aurisch is just too damn talented, I had to focus on him!
Do you guys have/love/want tattoos? What should my next one be?