ink



TAGAME


Queer people love tattoos. We love wearing them on our fingers and feet, down our necks, and between our boobs. We love getting them in plant-filled studios and cozy living rooms. We love giving them to friends at the end of slumber parties, when the only glimmer of entertainment left is a pot of India ink, a needle or two, and the will to poke.

THEM


So yeah. Debra commented on the Boulet Brothers' post that she'd never let someone choose a tattoo for her and voila! this post was born. Talking about tattoos, I have several. I have six, actually. Most are always covered and some are mostly visible, and this is kind of the story behind them.


The first one is something like that first image from Gengoroh Tagame. What, you thought I'd take pics of my tattoos to show them off? Nope. Not ready for that yet. So you all get an approximate facsimile. Back to the Tagame. It's on my side and it's about 10 inches tall. The man who made it really went in on the details and I think he really liked the end result. It basically has some red and some blue and green. No more. The man's skin is my skin. The loincloth is red. The most vivid memory I have is how when he was tattooing the feet and the rope all I could think was that I felt every little prick in my nipple. It was the weirdest pain I've ever felt.  I know! The tattoo ends like three inches away from the nipple. But still.




I also have a koi on one of my shoulders. My friend Amanda did that for me, along with the one I have in the other shoulder. Amanda is a very talented tattoo artist and she has done tattooing for years. She did my friend Abandon's tattoos too. I remember that to do my koi, she came to Pittsburgh one weekend and we holed up in a room, watching tv, smoking clover cigarettes and giggling while watching MTV. It took like four hours to get it just like she wanted. I love that tattoo. I love them all, but this one, of course has a special meaning for me, given that she designed it and executed it. It's pretty, too.




I have a small tattoo in the inside of my wrist in Tibetan script. It says Karma, because I do believe in cause and effect. Throughout my life, everything I have done, every decision I have made, every situation where I have not followed my instinct (or have not really thought things through), I have seen the consequences of that action thrown my way in ways that my life has changed radically based on that seemingly simple action. I also think that we do get some of the good (and not so good) that we put out there back. I know, funny. But it is not superstition, IMHO, it is observation. I don't tend to be superstitious. So I got this small tattoo in the inside of my wrist. It's barely two inches. I remember it hurt like tiny embers from a cigarette falling on my skin. And then it was done. Few people notice it. But I look at it every day.



Oh yeah. Sanskrit. It's the coolest language. Also, I thought I needed a mantra that I could use to give me time to think things over so Karma does not come back and bites me in the ass. When thinking about this tattoo, I decided I liked the idea of having something along my arm that would remind me to think before I opened my mouth and this came along. The idea of having tattooed something in Sanskrit came to be through a friend, who once gave me a tiny figurine of Shiva (I still have it) after we saw a huge statue of the god in a museum in Cleveland. I like this mantra because basically it says I only bow to the highest power. And we all know how that goes.


On my other shoulder I have some hunk my friend Amanda kind of concocted from a composite of idealized male figures. I liked that idea of having men permanently etched on my skin. After all, I really like them.  This tattoo sits on my other shoulder and I think very few people have seen him. Short sleeve shirts usually cover most of the tattoos and only when I roll my sleeves up a little they show up. They are usually on full display when I go to the beach but by them I am wearing tiny square cuts, so there's little left to the imagination. I think those men are some kind of homoerotic memento that I enjoy having in me.



Oh, I was forgetting that on the nape of my neck, just at the top of my spine, I have a little Ohm tattooed. That's another one that goes unnoticed. it's small enough -about an inch and a half- to almost disappear and it's always covered by clothes. I guess you'd have to be looking at my back directly to see it. I got it in a whim, in a little tattoo store in Chicago one day when I was hanging around with friends and we dared each other to get a tattoo. Stupid things you do when you're with your friends hanging around on a Saturday afternoon and they have had two too many drinks. But I rather like it. I forget I have it because I obviously don't see it unless I see a reflection of my back, but I think that as a starter tattoo it was not bad. It's the sound of silence, after all.

So that's the story, morning glory, of my ink. I think that someday I'll get a sleeve to go down my shoulder to my elbow or even below. Probably on my left arm, because I'm a rightie. Yep, that's the kind of reasoning I do when thinking about tattoos. And all this because Debra said she would not let someone choose a tattoo for her. Come to think of it, neither would I.

XOXO




Comments

  1. Personally I don’t have any tattoos, as you know. I’m not one to wear much in the way of jewelry. No piercings either.

    However, I have seen your art and it looks good on you. I don’t think we’ve ever discussed the origins. But every picture has a story. And your life is full of stories.

    XOXO 👨‍❤️‍💋‍👨

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thnx, bae. Yep, I do have stories....

      XOXO

      Delete
  2. I, too, have six, and they can only be seen if I choose to show them off, and mostly, when weather permits, I do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think it's the best way to have them. We choose when and to whom we show them because they're basically ours. Tattoos are much more visible nowadays, but still, I think it's cooler to just show a peek now and then.

      XOXO

      Delete
  3. I personally don't mind tattoos, and don't have any. On other people i don't mind them if small. I despise them when they get to big and people are covered in them. These two beats I know are out of control. On back, neck whole sleeve chest and now starting a few on legs. They tell me it's addictive. I never have gotten them in fear of what happens when your old and the skin breaks down and wrinkles.? It will look worst. These bears have no doubt derailed work, but when old one will never know what it is. The lad has told me I should get a small angel and devil ,one each shoulder, since I can be good and evil. But i won't do it. And he wants a huge back tattoo and part of his arm. While I wouldn't dump him...that ass!!!!! I do thing will would change my attraction to him. Very few men with alot of tats have managed to turn me on. I don't know where my aversion to them comes from. It yet another of my Dowager Countess aides. But if their oral skills are good I maybe could over look things'lol lol lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha oh, the Dowager Countess can be merciless. And I get that some people really don't care about tattoos. I do find some men with some kinds of tattoos attractive, though. I think it enhances them. The idea of the devil/angel tattoos is super interesting, especially coming from someone who knows you, though.

      XOXO

      Delete
  4. I'm glad my comment inspired this post! I love tattoos (I have two). And I also love seeing other people's tats and hearing the story behind them. Yours are delightful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. haha it did! Thanks!
      And I love them too! People have done their tats for a myriad of reasons and they all have a story to tell.

      XOXO

      Delete
  5. Well another thing Maddie and I have in common. This gay doesn't have them, doesn't want them and doesn't like most tattoos. I find it detracts from a guy's looks but at the same time I believe in a person's freedom to have them if they want them. Some small ones in the right spot look cool. To me it just reminds me of using markers on myself as a kid, looks dirty to me, I have issues I know... lol.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL well, yeah. If you go to a cheap tattoo artist, you'll get your sharpie art. Some people have incredibly beautiful tattoos but they ARE expensive. And now that you mention it, I do like a specific kind of man with tattoos. I think it may be that I secretly like bad boys...

      XOXO

      Delete
  6. I myself don't like them actually :) It is not that I overly mind them on others (although I do think tons of people look stupid with them) they are just not for me. That hunk tattoo of yours certainly looks tasty.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like tattoos on some people, too. And I don't think face or neck tattoos are very attractive. I do like it when gay men have homoerotic themes tattooed on them, though. It suggests exciting sex.

      XOXO

      Delete
  7. I'm a virgin (as far as ink goes). I have only seen one guy who I thought was sexy as hell being enhanced by a single tattoo on the inside of his upper arm. I think the trick is knowing when to stop. This makes me think of the old joke about the guy who had a tat on his penis; "Shorty's Truck Stop Chattanooga Tennessee". lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! Knowing when to stop is essential. Like Maddie said, it can get addictive.
      And I have heard that joke about the dick tattoo too! LOL

      XOXO

      Delete
  8. I don't wear jewelry, or have tats, or piercings. not my thing. I also have 98% of my original parts (no plastic). to each his/her own.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good for you!
      I'm very gay so I do have piercings and like jewelry and have tats for everybody who does not have them. LOL
      Yep, you're right. To each their own.

      XOXO

      Delete
  9. I like tats as long as the tattee has shown some sent of artistic taste. Those who tattoo arms and legs with a hodgepodge of images show me they have no idea who they are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, of course. Otherwise the tattoo will look like the marker drawings Steven was talking about. I think a theme or some kind of link between the tattoos is essential for them to be aesthetically pleasing.

      XOXO

      Delete

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