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Wednesday, September 06, 2006

a tit for tatt

it was only a matter of time. the hipsters, they are breeding. not only are the hipsters breeding, but they are going out of their way to tell us about it, to offer advice, to lend a parenting hand. here is a little something you won't find in T Berry Brazelton's library: Mommy Has Tattoos. a sign of the apocalypse? probably not. a little weird and kinda vaguely irritating? yup.

this all comes from a website announcing the publication of the book "Mommy Has a Tattoo" and the "Tattoo Coloring Book" (which encourages your 5 year old to get a head start in considering which tattoo would be best for her: angel-slut wings on her shoulder blades or some maori symbol, the meaning of which she will never quite get straight, on the inside of her ankle). more:

Our story is simple. About 3 years ago... on the street corners, playgrounds, parks, and beaches of Manhattan & Brooklyn... we saw a new breed of tattooed, *down to earth* parents! Our best friends, co-workers, and closest family were among these tattooed parents. They were still cool... still fun... and (of course) still tattooed!!! [their emphasis, not mine]
OMG!! tattoos are so totally down to earth. and if you have a tattoo you can have a kid and still be cool at the same time! phew, i was worried that not having a tattoo made me uptight and adding a kid to that made me hopelessly anal and lame. thank god, there is still time for me to attain cool down to earthness in spite of my daughter. i mean, lord knows there aren't any douchebags with tattoos out there.

i certainly have no problem with tatts. i even love saying "tatts" as frequently as possible. i just can't wrap my mind around the idea of altering my body in some way that is -- without the aid of lasers and piles of money -- permanent. i myself am uninked, but have toyed with the idea of tattooing my daughter's name/initials/birthdate somewhere on my ass or something. i may wait until we have another kid and get a combo deal, one on each cheek.

more from the website:

Meet James! He's the loveable [sic.] character at the heart of this charming story. James is afraid of his new tattooed neighbor... The Tattooed Man, until he discovers that his Mommy has a tattoo, too!
of course what the book doesn't mention is that mommy got the tattoo while on a three-day tequila-and-MDMA bender in TJ with her sorority sisters from San Diego State University. and that mommy's tatto looks like this (warning: not remotely safe for work. or your sanity.).
In one afternoon James learns that tattoos aren't scary... that his new neighbor is quite nice (so is his dog!), and that sometimes laughing is the very best thing!
keep laughing, young james, it's the only thing that will stave off the crying. also, is it just me or does it sound like the dog is tattooed too?

anyway. not sure what my point is here. i seem to recall an excellent "Life in Hell" cartoon from about 5 or 6 years ago -- two old fogies are sitting in a nursing home looking at each other. they're heavily inked and pierced. one says to the other "so i see you were stupid in the '90s too."

at least they'll have company. david brooks, who is not my favorite new york times columnist (that high honor goes to the most excellent Dan Barry), writes in his aug 27 column, Nonconformity is Skin Deep, that The Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology reports that about 24 percent of Americans between the ages of 18 and 50 have at least one tattoo, up from about 15 percent in 2003. thirty-six percent of those between 18 and 29 have a tattoo.

"The only person without one of those Pacific Northwest Indian tribal graphics scrawled across his shoulder will be a lone 13-year-old skater scoffing at all the bourgeois tattoo fogies," he writes with his characteristic bile. but something interesting happens. he concludes by making an actual point about "the most delightful thing about the whole tattoo fad":

A cadre of fashion-forward types thought they were doing something to separate themselves from the vanilla middle classes but are now discovering that the signs etched into their skins are absolutely mainstream. They are at the beach looking across the acres of similar markings and learning there is nothing more conformist than displays of individuality, nothing more risk-free than rebellion, nothing more conservative than youth culture.

Another generation of hipsters, laid low by the ironies of consumerism.

5 Comments:

Anonymous laurie said...

one of my husband's clients, a bizarre guy who signs all emails "OK KMC" and drives a pimp car and sometimes wears spats, gave us a book called Baby's First Tattoo before my twins were born. it's not about mommy tattoos, but it's a funny book.

9/06/2006 2:32 PM  
Blogger mr. nice guy said...

oh, hell yeah. i am totally all for babies getting tattoos, especially if i get to decide what it is. mwahahah aAH AHa hah aHAh AHa HA!!!!

9/06/2006 3:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you ever gotten the feeling, just once in your life, that you're really a judgmental asshole?

5/03/2009 1:55 AM  
Blogger mr. nice guy said...

omg, yes! ALL THE TIME. thanks for using a few minutes of your life to ask me, anonymous, IF THAT'S YOUR REAL NAME.

5/03/2009 10:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, i dont really see where you are going with this.... its pretty scatterbrained and pretty much a random burn on anyone with tattoos.... and as much as you may say you dont dislike people with tattoos, that is not the message you are sendign with this.... im not sure why im commenting on this. I just came accross it while looking for tattoo stuff. Butt honestly it irritated me. as you could have guessed i have tattoos. and i am proud to say i put alot of time and thought into them, as well as artwork and a purpose that directly connects to something important in my life that i want to commemorate.

and about being olded and tatted..... who are you trying to impress at that age anyway.... you are old, likely wrinkly and decrepid.... at least I will have some interesting stories to tell! unlike you who will just be a crabby old bag complaining about how the world is changing slightly faster then you can handle...

-Grant

1/06/2010 11:08 PM  

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