kay, so tattoos. Disclaimer: Not a fan.
I’m sure there are all sorts of people who love their tats. They will point at this one and that one. As a little suburbanite, I’m more aware of the negatives. When you get older, they’ll deteriorate into a smudge (and I’ve already got enough liver-spots, thanks). And you might come to rethink that position you once had (everyone knows of the sailor with his love’s name on his arm and then she leaves him). Personally, I can’t think of any view I’ve held that hasn’t undergone change over the last years – culture moves too quickly for that. And then, of course, there is the perception issue – I know a guy who got tats when he was young and suddenly he was climbing the corporate ladder. And there is his meanings and symbols there (including the usual kanji letter with a meaning that escapes him (and, like Sound and Fury, signifies nothing)). So that’s my take.
It’s interesting, though, to watch the people with tattoos talk about them. Like yuppies with family photos on phones, they want to endlessly show and tell, explaining what this means, what that means. In a way, it’s as if their life (originally conceived as a manuscript by prior ages) has been condensed to a graphic novel. There are splash panels and pages and meanings and symbols. I don’t have any of that – I view my life as private moments which I can reflect on and reconsider across the passage of time. Reducing your life to a series of inked moments seems like, I don’t know, a simplification?
Anyway, it’s your body. Do with it what you want.
All I’ll say is my way doesn’t hurt, and I can still give blood for a year after committing a moment to a memory.