My daughter has two tattoos (to my knowledge) and I will speak to how I found out about the first of those in a bit. First I would like to express my opinion on tattoos in general. While I find the art work to be amazing in and of itself, that artwork is only amazing for so long. It doesn’t take long for the ink to begin to fade or blend into the surrounding skin which kinda makes the tattoo fold back upon itself. Age seems to be the real enemy of tattoos, a once proud Eagle becomes a faded chicken, a navy ship becomes a large blob, a once ornate tramp stamp becomes a Rorschach inkblot test drawing. And this cannot be undone. Yea you can tattoo over an existing tattoo, yes you can have it “redefined,” or recolored, and you can even have them removed. Yes there is a process for that, but other than knowing that a process exists, I have no further useful information on the subject of tattoo removal.
I have never seen a tattoo on a beautiful woman make her more beautiful. Nor have I seen a tattoo on an unattractive woman that made her look lovely. Likewise about tattoos on men, I have never seen one that I felt enhanced his looks or distracted from his looks, though I will be honest and say that I pay less attention to tattoos on men than I pay attention to tattoos on women. I will also say this about tattoos, more is not necessarily better. A single tattoo can have a more dramatic impact than a bunch of disjointed ones. And just because a group of tattoos tells “a story,” doesn’t make it better. Also I will never get the concept of the tattoo’d person, where their entire body is a continuous tattoo.
I understand that getting a tattoo is a matter of personal choice, I understand it is the individual’s right to adorn their body in a way that is suitable to them. I also understand that once a person becomes an adult, it is not my right to try and impose my will and values on them, especially if they are paying for it themselves. These are the exact reasons I didn’t go snakeshit crazy when my daughter told me she had a tattoo. Did I approve, not necessarily, did we have words – nope. Was I surprised, your damn right I was. Now on to my daughters’ tattoos.
My daughter got her 1st tattoo sometime during the first half of her freshman year at Mary Washington College. How do I know it was during the 1st half, well my daughter didn’t tell me about it until the 2nd half of the year, so I must assume it happened during those first couple of months in college. Prior to this first tattoo, my daughter and I never had the “tattoo” conversation. It never dawned on me that it would be necessary. Neither my wife nor I have any tattoos, and to my knowledge my wife never has even considered getting one. I can say that for about 17 seconds I at least considered the possibility.
The day I found about Allison’s tattoo was dark and ugly. It was kinda rainy, it was chilly, and the traffic down to Fredericksburg was crappy. And while Steph and I hadn’t seen the kid in a month or so, I want to think it was some sort of holiday or special occasion that brought us there that Sunday. We were sitting at the bar in Outbacks waiting for a table, per usual we were treating Allison to lunch. Allison and her mom were in a deep hidden conversation, it has conspiratory in nature. Steph was sitting next to me, and Allison on the other side of her. They were huddled together, and while I wasn’t playing close attention, it wouldn’t have mattered had I been, I wouldn’t have heard a word of their conversation.
At some point Steph and Allison changed seats. Now Allison was sitting next to me, and she had that patented poop eating grin on her face and in quite the bubbly manner said “Dad, I have to tell you something.” Immediately did the turtle thing, because I knew that most likely I wasn’t going to be happy with the outcome of the conversation. I had a multitude of thoughts went thru my mind in the moment she made her statement and most were not good. But I looked to her and said okay?!
Allison said “Dad, I got a tattoo!”
To which I immediately responded, “YOU WHAT!?
Allison looked me in the eye still grinning and said, “Dad I got a tattoo.”
Shaking my head I said, “Why?”
Allison said, “Cause I wanted to”
To which I responded, “What? Where?”
Allison said “I got the Chinese sign for wisdom, at the base of my spine. Just above my butt crack” (btw this is the area where my daughter had fractured a vertebra playing Lacrosse not that long ago)
I looked at her and said, “Isn’t a tattoo of the sign of wisdom, an oxymoron?” I continued, “Allison I have been to some of the world’s nastiest places, Tijuana Mexico, Blood Alley in Palma de Mallorca, the dark alleys of Naples, I was drunk as a skunk and I never got a tattoo!”
Allison looked me dead in the eye and said, “Dad I was sober.”
That statement stopped me in my tracks, I had no witty comeback, it really was the end of the conversation.
I did have a single follow-up question, I asked her how long she has had this tattoo, to which she replied, a couple of months, mom knew, to which I asked why am I just finding out, to which Allison replied we didn’t think you would react well.
LMAO well they were kinda right, I didn’t like it, but she paid for it, and she was over 18.”
I leaned over gave her a kiss, and said okay. And as a family we had a wonderful meal.
So ends the story of how I found out about Allison’s 1st tattoo.
Thank you for taking the time to join me for this story. As always your thoughts and comments are welcome. Please take care, Bill