My wife and I were out for dinner the other night and our waitress was an attractive looking young woman who I judged to be in her early twenties. She was very personable and knowledgeable, but she was wearing a short blouse that revealed her midriff and showed a tattoo just above her rear end, and, on her front, there appeared to be something drawn from her belly down to her public area (sorry I couldn’t verify this for you). I’m sure she thought this was all rather attractive and I must admit it caught my eye, but frankly I was disappointed that a charming young woman found it necessary to defile her body in order to get someone’s attention.
I’ve never understood the need to paint the human body with tattoos, Some say its nothing more than an example of self-expression. Actually, I think its more of a cry for attention than anything else. Some people try to hide their tattoos, but more and more people today proudly display their body art, regardless of the symbolism or what is printed on them. To me, its kind of like sitting next to a kid at a traffic light with his music blaring. I don’t know who he is trying to impress other than himself. It most certainly isn’t me.
When I was growing up, I only knew of two men who had tattoos on their arms, my uncle and my barber. Both got their tattoos while serving in the military, but spent several years thereafter trying to have them removed as they found them to be an embarrassment among their friends as they grew older. I’ve also met a couple of people who survived the concentration camps of World War II and now bear identification numbers tattooed on their arms. In other words, tattoos are not something my generation or those that preceded me hold in high regard. But today’s younger generation doesn’t think this way and whimsically have their bodies painted at the drop of a hat. Recently, a group of underage girls from the local high school were caught trying to get tattooed at a local parlor (down here in Florida, minors cannot be tattooed without a parent’s or guardian’s permission).
Years ago, tattoo artists struggled to make ends meet. But with the recent wave of tattoo popularity, they have been elevated to near celebrity status. Heck, there has even been a reality show featuring tattoo artists on A&E. I find interviewing people painted with a lot of tattoos and body pierced like a porcupine to be rather amusing. They certainly do not command any credibility with me, but the kids sure seem to love them.
I guess I have always equated tattoos to a person’s intelligence level. The more tattoos they have, the lower the IQ they appear to have. I don’t know where I get this image from; maybe it was from watching a few prison documentaries where the inmates are interviewed, all of which are covered in tattoos. Somehow I don’t find such people rather credible, nor are they anyone I want to be associated with, which is probably why I’ll never get a tattoo. But then again, I guess I’m showing my age.
Tim Bryce is a writer and management consulting located in Palm Harbor, FL, USA.
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Copyright © 2007 Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.