A MinD in MoTown

September 1, 2009, 4:46 pm
Filed under: Do "yay", I am a dork, Inked

He's finishing up the tattoo, and I love this picture.

He's finishing up the tattoo, and I love this picture.

For several months now, I’ve wanted to tattoo the word “perhaps” on my left wrist. And this past Saturday, following a long and fairly crappy day at the restaurant, I finally caved and drove to the tattoo parlor, spur of the moment, to have the seven letters forever inked.

I’m almost certain it took me longer to decide on a font – “quigley wiggly” if you’re curious – than it did to actually tattoo my wrist, but when you’re having something permanently etched into your skin, there’s no reason to settle for a sub par font.
So, why “perhaps”? Not only has this forever been my favorite word*, but I personally believe it carries some deeper meaning as well.

“Perhaps” is a fancy “maybe,” and isn’t life little more than one “maybe” or another? Maybe you’ll get married, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll have kids, maybe you won’t. Maybe your dreams will come true, maybe they won’t. Maybe you’ll die tomorrow, maybe you won’t. And all of those maybes are interchangeable with its fancy synonym – perhaps. So I wanted it tattooed.

Noel as he tattoos my wrist.

Noel as he tattoos my wrist.

The tattoo artist, Noel (a dude), kept telling me I was selfish for wanting my tattoo to face the direction it does. After all, he said, wouldn’t I want others to more easily read it? But I’m the one who has to look at it for the rest of my life, no one else, and I wanted the ability to simply turn my wrist and see that one word right-side up, not upside-down.

I carefully watched as Noel tattooed each line and letter with such preciseness. It was the first time I watched myself get tattooed. The bit of pain and my slight anxiety over getting my first tattoo kept me from watching as the Penn State Nittany Lion paws were carved into my foot. And with the Beatles lyrics, well, it’s more than a bit difficult to watch the back of your neck get inked. But this one? I was able to watch and tweet, omgiamlame, the entire time and snap a few photos with my phone as well.

After 20-30 minutes, and zero pain**, there it was. “Perhaps,” all lowercase, forever on the inside of my left wrist. And although it’s a bit bolder and bigger than I had originally imagined, I absolutely adore it.


My tattoo. What do you think?

* What? You can have a favorite number, but not a favorite word? Baloney. My life is about words, so I naturally have a favorite. And yes, this makes me a total nerd.
** No lie. This is my third tattoo and only one, my first on my left foot, actually hurt.

Try explaining that to the grandkids.
February 24, 2009, 6:34 pm
Filed under: Inked, Such a quandry, What were they thinking?

Since I was young, I’ve had an affinity for tattoos. I knew that one day, without a doubt, I would get one and at 22 years old, I finally did.

Less than two years later – a few months shy of my 24th birthday with two works of ink on my body – I’m contemplating a third (though it may not happen for quite some time). And with the concept in my head, I headed over to The Google in search of a pristine tattoo photo that would capture the ideas swirling in my mind. After all, if the image will be permanently placed on some portion of my body, you damn well better believe I’ll make certain that illustration accurately reflects the tattoo’s meaning.

Somehow, however, I stumbled upon the world’s most ridiculous tattoo portraits and felt this utter urge to share those images with you fine folks.

BMEink.com is a great venue for viewing the mistakes tattoos others have chosen to eternally etch onto their skin and even get a few ideas if you’re one of those people venturing into the parlor just wanting to get inked. And it was on their site that I found these gems. My commentary is a MUST. My sincerest laughter apologies if one of these happen to be you…



 Al Bundy

Sure, “Married with Children” was quite funny, but I thought dudes primarily tuned in for Christina Applegate … not Ed O’Neill. I just wish I knew what was going through the mind of this individual when he/she decided to tattoo the face of “NO MAAM” to his/her arm (maybe it’s a leg? who knows!). Regardless, that is not a face I’d like to wake up to each morning. No thank you.




 Lil Wayne

Now, I don’t know about you, but I have always found lyrics such as, “Shawty wanna thug / Bottles in the club / Shawty wanna hump / You know I like to touch ya lovely lady lumps” terribly inspirational. And apparently, so did the individual who chose this face only a mother could love as a permanent display of his feelings. Or maybe this dude just wants to be like Lil Wayne and “make it rain on them hoes.” Who knows.





‘Ol Dirty Bastard

I suppose if you strangely insist on getting a tattoo of ‘Ol Dirty Bastard, your armpit seems like a wise placement decision. I cannot imagine that felt too hot getting tattoed though. I hope homedude wasn’t ticklish.






Pee-wee Herman

I wish I could tell you that this was an odd find, but alas, it was not. Pee-wee Herman must be a rather popular tattoo choice as this image was just one of several on the single Web site I perused for crazy portraits. And while Pee-wee was most definitely a significant figure in most of our childhood days, you simply have to look past the character and remember you just put Paul Reubens, a man arrested for public masturbation, on your arm. That should be a fun story for the kiddos.



 The Joker

Undoubtedly, this is masterfully done. The tattoo artist did a fabulous job, without question. But … really?! I can’t help but wonder if this man decided to tattoo half of his upper body with this face because of the Batman villain or Heath Ledger. I suppose that question could be asked of the dozens of individuals I found online with this tattoo. Yep, dozens. Nutty. 




Yes, another Batman character, but this one is from the good ole’ Michael Keaton days. What on earth prompted someone to request Catwoman is way beyond my realm of thought – unless she’s the woman on the corner with a bazillion kittens who lives alone and quietly weeps about her life every night – but at least this person chose Michelle Pfeiffer over Halle Berry (don’t argue with me people, we all know old school Catwoman was 10x better than the newer version).




Dwight Schrute

By now, if you’re a regular reader of A MinD in MoTown – so all three of you – you realize my slight disdain love for The Office, thus I simply had to comment on this colorful tattoo. I can admit it’s very well done – kudos to the artist – but Dwight is, well, a moron. I may not be a fan of the show, yet I’ve watched enough to realize this tidbit and the reasoning behind anyone choosing this portrayal as a permanent bodily emblem is far outside any comprehension whatsoever.



There are so many more tattoos I could share with you – someone’s “Bills” (that’d be Murray and Cosby), the Gerber Baby, way too many Eddie Munsters, some Mr. Bean, the ink-version of Scarlett Johansson, a bottle of Heinz 57 ketchupNapoleon Dynamite, Corey Feldman (why oh why!?), and one titled “Einstein Jesus” – but that’s simply going to take far more time and effort than I’m willing to put forward at the moment (so click the links).

…Did I mention the full-back advertisement for The Shawshank Redemption? No? Oops.

I suppose these tattoos truly prove the options are endless when permanently etching an image onto your skin. And while these were all created with amazing accuracy and detail – no lie, almost all of them are rather beautiful – I still cannot help but ask “why?” for each. I just hope the proud owner’s of these works of art aren’t banging their heads against the wall, questioning their own motives 50 years from now when armpiece Rodney Dangerfield has even more wrinkles.

All inked up.
February 9, 2009, 3:49 pm
Filed under: Inked, The world revolves around me

E.P. from Stylish Handwriting requested that I post a photo of my newest tattoo because she has yet to see it. I got it back in November, so those of you following me via Twitter have likely already seen this, but … well, that’s just too damn bad.

"There's nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be." The Beatles

"There's nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be." The Beatles

Definitely just pulled up my hair and asked a coworker to take a photo of the back of my neck. Yep, I’m classy.

Editor: “Wow. What did I just walk into?”

Ha. Oops! Anywho, for those inquiring minds, this was my second tattoo, and was entirely done on a whim. I had been thinking about getting another one for quite some time – they’re addictive, honest – and on a quiet newsroom Friday, I walked half a block to the nearest tattoo parlor, Anything’s Possible, and inquired about prices. Two hours later – because I had to finish my “work day” first, of course – I had that on the back of my neck. Schweeeet. (P.S. It’s not crooked. It’s just the photo and my poor posture making it look that way.)

My first tattoo was done at Art of the Ages in State College, Pa. (which doesn’t have a Web site (weird!), but is where Penn State is located) on a weekend trip there to visit friends, September 2007.

Penn State paws. Yep, I'm that awesome.

Penn State paws. Yep, I'm that awesome.

I currently have $130 worth of ink on my body with plans for a few more, although I prefer locations where they can easily be hidden, hence my foot and the back of my neck (my hair is halfway down my back and I wear A LOT of collared shirts). I’m looking to go more cliche with the next two – a shamrock (I am Irish indeed) and some stars – but there’s a lot of meaning to the specific designs I’d like for those.

For now, I’m broke and simply drooling over the artwork of others. C’est dommage.

…I showed you mine, now show me yours.