Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Tattoos, love 'em or hate 'em?

Up until I was 40 I had only one tattoo, A small one on my left upper arm. It is Masonic and for various reasons I am unable to tell you the tale as to its existence on my arm on a public blog.

Being in business since being very young and eventually the Chairman of a parent company with plenty of employees meant that for years I couldn't be seen to have tattoos or pierced ears. After selling up I rebelled and had two large upper arm tattoos, I ditched my Versace Suits and Gucci shoes for a Vest, shorts and leather flip flops, left the big car in the drive and rode my motorcycle everywhere. What a sense of freedom. 

My other two tattoos both have meanings, one is of St George, the patron saint of England. My late mother was born on St Georges day and so I wanted to pay homage in some way to her.

My other tattoo has a long story but is basically 4 Ace playing cards. Instead of the traditional suits, Hearts, spades etc. I have the ace of spades and then 3 corporate logos, The first is the Rolex crown, The second is the prancing horse of Ferrari and the last is the Omega symbol. (you can't see that in the pic)

The ace of spades signified that in my early life I always had to have an ace up my sleeve, I lost mum when I was ten and I left home very early and started my adult life living in the back of a Mk2 Escort van for a few months. 

If you have read one of my previous posts you will see that for many years the lure of a certain Rolex and certain Ferrari fuelled my ambition. On reaching my goals I realised that whilst material possessions were nice to have, my health and happiness were more important. On retiring I bought a less "in your face" watch, an Omega, still a classic timepiece with a similar price tag to a Rolex but much more subtle. It marked an end to my days living on nervous energy in the business world, an end to jousting with the Inland Revenue, The HSE and every other government body that exists to make life hell for business. Omega is the last letter in the Greek alphabet and so is the last letter in that chapter of my life. So that is the explanation of my tattoos. 

Personally I like them, My sister says that I look like a thug now! I don't think so, they mean something to me, they are part of my story. They are only visible in summer if I wear a vest top.

What do you think?


  1. I'm a tattoo guy myself, I have half sleeves on both my arms. I never get a tattoo for the heck of it. Each piece on my arm has a story or meaning. I think it comes off more appealing when you do have reasoning for your ink.. other than "well I always wanted to get something done" lol

  2. Steve, I'm a fan of tatts, but they must be well thought out. Must mean something more than a whim, I think they should tie/blend well togeher if in close proximity of one another.
    I have one tatt...have always wanted more, but other things came in first.

    Steve, good post.

  3. Interesting site. The tat for your mother is nice. And the other does not has meaning to you and that does matter. Steve I tried printing the poem about the bird and my printer wanted to print a book. Would it be too much for for to send it to me via e-mail. My Loving Aunt could really use it right now. Thank you WW

  4. Thanks all for passing through.

    Charlie + Chessie - Agreed, I think if they need to have a meaning too rather than just be a decoration.

    Webster (Kevin) Thanks for the comments, I've emailed you the poem as requested.

  5. I am somewhere in between on tattoos! I have one.. and it always surprises people... I am pretty much a 'little house on the prairie gal' at heart! But, I do have a rebellious side..a small one! and so I have a small tattoo! It is a small rose on my ankle..I got it after my young husband (we were 21) and I came through our first crisis, his first affair! He went to Kuwait I got a tattoo,that symbolized me! The color is peach which Is NO-ones favorite represented no -one on purpose! it was a reminder that I could be OK! no matter what! I would like another one..but will probably wait until the kids are older!:)

  6. Hi Debbie, Join the club of "Ink with a meaning" welcome! I'm sure when the time is right you'll have a design in mind that tells your story.

  7. I'm a fan of the best friend (mentioned often on my blog), Tracy, her oldest son has a tattoo shop in Alaska. I got my 2nd tattoo from him...he did one "special" for his Mom and I, then threw away the drawing and promised that no one else would have one like ours. Her's is on her calf and mine is on the inside of my right forearm. We love them.

  8. That's cool MHL. I think they should be one off designs like yours. I wouldn't like to pick one from a catalogue. I designed all mine.

    So In summary: I think we've established between us all that ink is cool if it's personal and has a meaning.

  9. okok my kinda subject
    Tats I Loove them, I kave 7 lol