Skin Deep 252

Skin Deep 252 23 June 2015 252

I’m big on judging books by their covers. What’s the point of having a cover if it’s not to form a brief opinion on what’s inside? If you don’t think judging a book by how others have chosen to decide to portray it—why have a cover in the first place? I don’t know if it’s a learned behaviour that I (we) don’t do this with people. Maybe it’s because I (we) know people are not books. Not products to make an instant choice over but sentient beings I (we) can choose to interact with or not regardless of how they look. That is what (we) think, right?

Anyway, I got to talking with somebody a while back and during our conversation, I happened to mention that I liked Taylor Swift. While that’s probably not the first thing you would expect to come out of my mouth, it’s a solid truth. She’s the real deal. She also went up the ladder 50 rungs for me when she pulled all of her music from digital streaming services and told them they couldn’t have her music at the royalty rate they were offering.

Fact: she is worth more than that. There are lessons to be learned here.

The next phase of the conversation was my ‘revelation’ that I really wasn’t super keen on ‘new school’ tattoos. I can dissect them and appreciate good work, of course I can, but I don’t ‘like’ them as part of the art form. For some reason, this appeared to be more offensive than the Taylor Swift admission because surely I should ‘like everything about tattooing’.

I can see how it might be tempting to think that way but that’s not really how things work in life. There are plenty of writers on hand who do appreciate what it has to offer and on those grounds, it passes by my desk very quickly to somebody who can treat it with the respect it deserves.

When you point at everything, you point at nothing (sorry if I’ve used that phrase before but it’s unbelievably true), but it’s a sad truth about life that when you announce you have an ‘interest in tattoos’, a sweeping thought pattern is made in which you must automatically like everything about it. Every single little thing without exclusion.

That’s what people do, because most people can’t be bothered to think for more than five seconds about what they’re thinking about.

In tattooing, it’s really not a great idea to judge that book by its cover. Not even a tiny bit because tattooed people are definitely not books, but there are an awful lot of people out there who can’t seem to tell the difference.

Some advice. If ever you find yourself in the position of being painted into a corner out there in the world, rock slowly from side to side and begin your mantra: “We were both young when I first saw you…”


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