Geek Culture, Writing and Other Junk from Writer C. A. Wilke
Me and My Tattoo: Popping the Cherry

Me and My Tattoo: Popping the Cherry

Continuing from last week…

Here we are. It’s Friday. Time for Evil Fire Breathing Dragon Lady and I to have our respective delicate fleshes repeatedly jabbed and poked and carved with a foreign, chromatic substance that will irrevocably incise our epidermises with the branding of an entertainment franchise. AKA… tattoo time.

So, I won’t go into a ton of detail about our day leading up to walking in the door at Om Ink Gallery. But, suffice to say that while going to the rental car place is frustrating, the people are really nice, and that one particular vehicle insurance company sucks sweaty skag butts.

Anywho… We arrived at Om in plenty of time and as we sat in the lobby waiting for our artist, the nerves started to kick in. Yes, in the first part of this story, I know I said that putting down the deposit was IT, the point of no return. Paying money for something often seems like the real commitment. But it’s not. Getting the shit actually done, is the real commitment. I mean, I could have let the money go, if I was that worried about it.

Okay, yeah no I couldn’t. I put that fucking money down and by gods I was gonna do this.

Not necessarily by choice, I was designated to go first. Damien pointed me to a little stool with an armrest and instructed me to get comfy while he set up. After a few minutes, he introduced me to his purple, home-made temporary tattoo that would act as the stencil for my design. Some quick adjustments in location and we were good to go.

“Just going to do a little poke to see how it feels,” he says.

Now, to me, “a little poke,” means an empty tattoo gun to…you know, poke the skin to see how it feels, yeah? I mean, I’m not THAT big of a wuss, but the definition of a “test” is to… you know… test it?

Nooooope! He dipped the needle and zip… did a ½-inch section of the outline. Then, without batting an eye or even asking how I was, he jumped right in. I mean, it’s fine. Mostly it was just like a scratch, so it was no big deal. Of course, mine was kinda high up on my forearm, so when he moved up into the crook of my elbow… yeah that zinged a bit.

Truthfully though, I was pretty amazed by how simply and fluidly he followed the stencil lines. Sure, he had the lines there on my arm, but I don’t think most people can trace that quickly and that accurately with a pen on paper, much less with a tattoo gun on bendible, flexible flesh. To make it more insane, the ink would blurble out a little and cover the area, yet somehow he stayed within the lines like some freak with x-ray vision or something.

The whole time, the three of us are talking away. Part of the conversation wandered to what Damien had done the night before. Apparently, he’d tattooed a woman’s armpit. Yes, he tattooed what might be THE most sensitive piece of exterior human skin. WHO THE FUCK GETS TATTOOED IN THEIR ARMPITS? This person must be a witch, unable to feel pain.

Curious, my wife asked what he was asked to tattoo. And he replied with… what else, strawberries. Because what else would someone want in their armpit besides strawberries. To make this lady even more badass, she had both armpits done at the same fucking time!!! She’s God-Damned Superman, I tell you.

And then boop! He was telling me to check it out. All the coloring and lining done. A quick check in the mirror. An even quicker touch-up and boop-boop. I was done, freshly inked with my tattoo cherry popped.

See, my description of the actually tattoo-getting is pretty short. And that is because it happened so fast. It really felt like a bing-bang-boom and it was done.

After me, the Dragon Lady seemed to go even quicker. Not much of a surprise, she’s a champ at this shit. (And by this shit I mean most everything.) She is, of course, the Evil Fire-Breathing Dragon-Lady, so I’ve learned not to question.

Once we were done, Damien let us know that if after a few weeks we noticed that we needed any touchups, he’d be happy to take care of them free-of-charge. He gave us—what I expect was—a pretty standard spiel about aftercare as well as a brochure. We were pretty steadfast in Damien’s instructions. The last thing we wanted was to screw up our first toe-dippings into tat-land. Fortunately, our tats were pretty small and didn’t require too much. Still, this is pretty much the gist…

Do not submerge under water. A shower is okay, but no swimming or baths for 8 weeks.
If it gets wet, pat it dry, do not rub.
Keep it out of direct sunlight.
No scratching, no matter how much it itches.
Keep it moisturized. Plain white, unscented lotion can work, but A/D Ointment is probably the best.
And now, my tattoo cherry is officially popped. Yeah, I gots ink, bro… And that means street cred, right? All the psychos are gonna see my ink and welcome me into their bandit ranks. Soon, I’ll rule Pandora, then it’s on to the rest of the ‘verse. Muahhahahahahhahahahaa!

Anyway. Wanna see it? Of course you do. After all this build up, how could you not, right?

So, here they are. Hers is on the left and mine is on the right.

We make a hell of a pair, right? A little bit corny and a lot bit nerdy. And that’s just the way we like it.

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