Ok, I have nothing against tattoos. I have many friends who have small, discreet tattoos to represent memorials, life milestones, beliefs and so on. They don't bother me at all. I, myself, will never have a tattoo because I don't like the permanence of them. My moods are changeable and periodically I throw out the old (except for heirlooms, antiques and family historical documents). There is no throwing out a tattoo that no longer pleases without pain being involved and I am not into pain.
That being said, I don't understand the segment of population that covers themselves with large, garishly colored and very prominent tattoos. They are distracting, for one thing. It's hard to focus on your conversation with a person who is head to toe a walking mural. I ran into one of them yesterday at the checkout counter at Half-Price Books. Both arms were covered with a variety of pink-hued flowers, quotations and I'm not sure what else because I was trying not to stare. Her hair was dredlocked and also colored in shades of pink to orange. There were piercings in places other than her ears. (Again, my objection is the instant mental impression that hits me of the pain involved in having these areas pierced. For those that don't know me, I've never even pierced my ears and I am definitely in the minority there.)
I am all for personal expression and whatever she wants to do with her body is her own business. But, I found myself pondering how likely she would be to ever get a job at a bank or a law office or even another bookstore, say Barnes & Noble. She was probably in her early twenties and I'm sure is very pleased with the state of her body art - but how will she feel when she's approaching 55 (a figure that is hurtling toward me at a frightening speed)?
I admire people for deciding their own paths and sticking to it, but I don't think people should get married before they're 30 because you don't have a clue who you are going to be until you reach that point and some folks could use a few more decades before taking the plunge. Maybe there should be an age restriction of 30+ for getting tattoos. I bet there would be a lot less of them if there were.
Since there isn't, thank heavens for places like Austin and employers like Half-Price Books and Whole Foods where the visual distractions of a person are pretty much overlooked during the hiring process. And, if I were starting over in my occupational path, I might look into specializing in tattoo removal. I think there is going to be a higher demand for that service in a few years.