The Trouble With My Tattoos


(This is not my arm.)

The trouble with my tattoos is that I never know if it’s ok to show them or not. What I mean is, I never know what to wear–especially in the summertime. I personally don’t give a shit about showing my tattoos to the world, but there are times when I have been “told” it’s better to wear something with sleeves, to cover them up for a couple of reasons. The first reason is usually not to “offend” anyone and this warning usually comes before a fancy event like a wedding or high end party or one of my daughter’s school event. The second reason I’ve been advised to cover my tattoos on certain occasions is to not draw any unwanted attention to myself. The third reason is, that my tattoos are colorful, beautiful and unique, which makes me quite recognizable. In other words, by covering my beautiful tattoos, I can “disguise” myself.

During the cooler seasons, (New York actually gets to experience the four seasons; I love New York!) it’s usually not a problem because long sleeve sweaters, jeans and even mini dresses with tights hide my tattoos–not that I care if they didn’t, but in the summertime, and New York summers can be brutally hot, I never know what to wear. Today, for instance, I’m going to meet someone for the first time. Someone I don’t want to meet, but I have to because of The Scandal. I don’t know if I should just throw on a sundress and say “fuck you, I have tattoos” through my attire, or play the masochist and wear something that covers them up. Just being outside at 10 AM, I can already tell it’s going to be one of those hot, humid, sticky, uncomfortable days here in Brooklyn and I’m really thinking “sundress”. This is who I am. If you are an incredibly ugly person whose face is offensive to some people, do you cover it with a paper bag? No, because in the tattoo judger’s eyes, God gave you that face and there’s nothing you can do about it. But tattoos, tattoos, you see, are a choice. I chose to do this to my body. And my tattoos aren’t ugly or perverted or offensive in any way. I get lots of compliments on them, actually, so I don’t get the whole judgement issue. It’s my body. I can do whatever I want to it. Right? I mean, it’s not like I’m going to walk into this place wearing a tube top and hot pants. Just a simple shirt dress or a pretty maxi dress with nice shoes, my hair and makeup done and looking otherwise lovely. Except for the tattoos.

I don’t judge people who don’t have tattoos, so why do I have to worry about people who judge me by mine?


One thought on “The Trouble With My Tattoos

  1. Tattoos are not just subjective are they, so often they evoke such a visceral response either way in people…I take pleasure in both the awed and shocked. It took over 25 years for me to get my 2nd tattoo (my gravatar of which I am inordinately proud), others came more quickly than that thereafter. I think I like the fact that there’s a story behind each one, even if it’s become a crappy one, and that makes “us” 3 dimensional and maybe that’s the visceral line in the sand for some. Love yer work (and yer art). Respect REDdog


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