I confess. I don’t entirely understand the allure of tattoos.
There are some adornments and accessories I can get behind. A simple stud in a nostril can transform a woman from unnoticed by me to powerfully desired by me. Tasteful earrings can draw my eyes to the back of a woman’s neck, her shoulder, her ear, in a way that’s sensual and subtle. There’s something sexy, if presumptively slutty, about a tongue stud. (It invites anyone who sees it to imagine its wearer with a cock in her or his mouth.)
Tattoos rarely have this effect on me.
That’s not to say I object to them. I don’t. I don’t have a blanket position on them one way or the other.
I’ve seen tattoos that were totally hot, and I’ve seen tattoos that made me want to vomit.
If you’ve read more than a post or two here, you know that I’m kind of a word guy. Words are, as I’ve written, my currency. They’re the lens through which I most powerfully experience the world, and, even when I have bodily experiences, it’s often my attempt to put them into words that makes them real to me.
So it’s not surprising that it’s word tattoos that most often turn me on. A delicate word or phrase on the underside of a wrist? Showing strength and vulnerability at once? Yum. A powerful verse from a poem, story, or book, on a shoulder, back, or forearm? Hot.
But what about non-verbal tattoos?
The ones that do anything for me are simple, spare – barbed wire around an ankle, a rose between the shoulder blades. The elaborate, multicolored, swirling tramp stamp? The detailed (or simple) panther head, dominating a back? The pastiche of colors, designs, images, all distracting me from the look and feel of your skin, your flesh? Not so much.
It’s not, as I said, that they turn me off. They just are a distraction, not an affirmative plus.
What do you think?
Postscript, 7.5 years later (2020-07-23): Um. I got a tattoo.