Tattoo or not to Tattoo: The body as canvas

| July 23, 2011

I find myself engrossed with tattoos these days – I see it everywhere I go; on the subway, the bus, sidewalks, magazines, television…everywhere – and I sigh.  I want one, and I am entranced. Why do they do it? Why tattoo ALL over your body?

Is it celebration? Is it art? Is it sacrilege? So many debates rage – it’s a freedom of expression they say…a way to commemorate the dead, express my love, my rage, my lust, my hurt, my sorrow…

I heard someone say the other day that once he had had his tattoo he figured he would never quite be naked again – profound…!

I have always wondered about tats, having grown up in a crime and gang ridden area, where marking yourself with tattoos meant that you were buying into gang culture – good folks did not do things like that! And also there is scholarly research on the phenomena where people who feel they have no other place to voice themselves, do so by means of tattoos – as this seems a viable and oft time public place of display.

So, then- do I get the tattoo? What does it say about me? What does it say for me? What does it say about me…?