There was a brief time in my life when I truly considered the permanent mark of a tattoo. It was in the early-nineties and funnily enough was connected to the aforementioned Cecelia Altamirano (né Wingate).
I used to hang with Cecelia when she’d come down to visit from Canada and run with a bunch of boys that were cute, slightly dangerous and altogether screwed up. I dated one of them. The leader of the pack was a tattoo artist. It was with him that I had asked to come up with a design, too personal to write about and altogether too embarrassing to admit. But even back then there was hesitation in my commitment. Personally I think tattoos look amazing on gorgeous, unmarked, alabaster skin. I don’t posses that kind of epidermis. Mine is marked with the non-invention of sunblock circa ’70s and ’80s and the heavy usage of Coppertone in my teens. So I pulled the plug on the whole tattoo thing before pulling down my pants.
I now have a handful of friends who spend any and all of their disposable income removing the “great ideas” of their unencumbered days and desperate to have their skin not marked by their immaturity.
I count myself lucky not having to ask the question Why? while standing in front of a mirror seeing the youthful face of a dead grandmother on my hip. Or a butterfly suspended in motion under my underwear. But that’s just me.
I’d rather the conversation piece be something I can put on and take off at my discretion.