I’ve been pretty busy for the last two or three days, and so I was really tempted to write a post about what I have been up to, but I just got a much better idea.
I have had the privilege of accompanying two people as they received their first tattoos at the dextrous, shifty hands of tattoo artists. My first (and I guess his first–not as important), was Zach Trepagnier on Memorial Day 2010. I was a senior in high school along with Zach, and he had a plan to get two tattoos, one on each upper arm. I can’t remember the details exactly, partly because the words were in French, but I know that his last name was featured prominently, there were three colors, and I think a fleur-de-lis was thrown on at some point. Regardless, pretty cool experience for the both of us.
It was that day when Zach gave me advice he received from his dad. Zach told me that “there are two kinds of people in this world: people with tattoos, and people who are afraid of people with tattoos.”
The second person I went with as he got his tattoo was a friend of mine in Austin. Dale and I met through YoungLife and then actually developed a friendship outside of Sunday night bro-time (imagine that?). When he had to start going to ACC we hung out a lot less, but still met up every Tuesday morning to go to Feed My People, a church based, feed-the-homeless program that started at 5:00 in the morning. One morning, as Dale came to pick me up near my dorm at 4:45, I got in the car and he was smiling big. He went by our first turn as I told him how my week had been, and I pointed out his geographic mishap. He told me we weren’t going to Feed My People. We went to a tattoo place that, to this day, I don’t know why Dale had heard of. It was shady as night and sketchy as a caricature artist. Dale’s tattoo, on the other hand, was as stalwart as they come. He decided to get the words “Opus Dei” on the veiny side of his wrist. He was disappointed when I told him I took Latin and already knew what that meant, but I told him I still thought it was an awesome idea for a tattoo. I sat near the reclining chair as Dale had the Latin for “God’s Work” tattooed on the spot where Jesus had nails hammered through his hands.
The point of these stories is that I am once again accompanying a friend as they get a tattoo, which I will take a picture of and post. I am flattered that I apparently have a nice tattoo-side manner, but going with all these people and not getting a tattoo of my own really makes me think about getting one myself. The only possible tattoo I could ever see myself getting would be a Christian tattoo, but my instinctive reason not to do so is a mixture of “they should be able to tell I’m a Christian because of my actions” and “what if this is just a phase?” Both of which are crap. Hayleigh told me that Christian tattoos are good ways to get Christian conversations going, and in fact they worked in that way on her. I don’t disbelieve in tattoos, I just question what I could possible still love thirty years from now. Besides God. That is why a Christian tattoo would be the only tattoo I would ever consider getting.
If you didn’t guess, the person I accompied to get her tattoo was Hayleigh, and I’m writing this after she has gotten it. We went to a place called “Platinum,” where the people weren’t the super nicest tattoo artists I’ve ever encountered, but they were professional and talented. They all wore scrubs which I thought was a good idea, and our guy,
Luis, was very nice. He was mid-20’s, from Columbia, had three kids, shaky English, and spelled Christian “cristiun” when was looking for a picture of the Jesus fish online. After Hayleigh paid, we waited for maybe ten minutes and then were called back by Luis. He and Hayleigh determined the exact spot and he went to work. Hayleigh was in pain. I’ve never had a tattoo, but I think I pretty well understand the pain level, and the spot where she recieved the tattoo was both sensitive and close to bone. She took it like a champ though, really, and didn’t do any dumb girly things but just gritted her teeth and nervous laughed a lot. It was done really quickly, in about twenty minutes, and I think it looks great. I think it looks really good. Hayleigh was a little worried because her mom didn’t want her getting the tattoo, so what did Hayleigh do? She got the tattoo on the day before her mom’s birthday. But, life is funny sometimes, and Ms. Dicianna probably won’t see it today, or at least that’s what we’re hoping.