Today’s topic is tattoos. I had originally planned to write about the importance and value of family medical histories, but that was before I stumbled upon this post by Tori at the “of personal value” blog.
Tori notes that most of us sport scars and marks from a lifetime of bicycle mishaps, falls and surgeries. Many more of us carry intentionally inflicted indelible mementoes of our past on our arms, backs, buttocks and anyplace else reachable by the tattooist’s needle.
I thought of this as I watched a basketball game recently. One of the players had an oddly retro look and I couldn’t quite figure out why. Eventually, it came to me – he was tattoo-free, at least the parts of him that were visible were.
This is a seismic shift from my youth when just about the only folks who owned up to being tattooed were those who shared the common bond of once having served our nation in time of war but who had obviously succumbed to the effects of hard liquor during a hard-earned ribald night of liberty.
In my college and young adult days, it was not unusual to see a young woman adorned with a delicately crafted rose or butterfly, on her ankle, lower back or breast.
Today, tattoos are pretty much accepted at all levels of polite society. If you’re like me, however, you might wonder how that Gothic tattooed and pierced look will appear in, say, another 20-30 years.
After you’ve considered how scars and tattoos and the like fit into your own family’s history, you might check out a few of the links in Tori’s blog, like this look at the cultural history of the tattoo or this story about an Australian man who found a way to save his dad’s tattoos after his death. Before reading this post, I didn’t realize that some library books are actually bound in human skin. An interesting twist to the whole tattoo issue is that of copyright. This post covers that angle from a British point of view.