In Defense Of: Piercings and Tattoos

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For the love of Zeus, do not get any of these

For the love of Zeus, do not get any of these

Bwog definitely has an edgier side and likes to think we have some cool points saved up in our piggy banks. Wannabe Badass Bwogger Courtney Couillard is here to defend taking that big step of getting a tattoo or piercing—and the weird backlash that that gets at Columbia.

When I got my tattoo, I did not plan it out meticulously for months; I actually got it about a week before leaving for school. I was a nervous teenager leaving New Hampshire for New York, and I wanted something that would keep me company away from home. Tucked behind my right ear is a compass rose, which I got for my own personal reasons. However, considering I wear my hair up a lot, random strangers ask me on a daily basis what it means, why  I got it, etc. I did not know that the permanent ink would come along with endless questions from my fellow elevator riders on a daily basis.

I’ve had a girl come up to me in the dining hall and just ask, “did it hurt?” People have stared at my neck for minutes before saying anything to me. Our culture and society is obsessed with this shit. I truly believe we will be the first generation to be old and covered in tattoos. Hell, if we’re going to have a saggy butterfly on our hips, why not do it together? But it’s this pure fascination from every person I’ve met from my boss to the dining hall ladies that makes me think body modification is not this scary, alternative lifestyle any longer.

I guess I couldn’t stop this whole “rebellion” thing considering a few weeks ago I pierced my nostril. Welcome to a new string of reactions. Someone asked me if I was going to keep it like it was a stray animal. I’ve had dozens of girls tell me it looks “so cute” and how they have always wanted one. And every time I just tell them, “then do it!” Honestly, if you want to pierce the fuck out of your face, or tattoo an entire sleeve on your arm, there are hundreds of places to do it in this crazy city. You are in college, not yet in scary adulthood, so just do it.

I have never felt more adrenaline than when I got my tattoo done in a short 20 minutes. I also have never felt such ownership over something that means so much to me. Things like piercings and tattoos are not things necessarily to mull over like the items in your Forever 21 shopping bag online since September. Obviously, I encourage anyone to find a clean, reputable piercer/tattoo artist. With both a piercing and a tattoo, you will be able to see what it will look like before anything is done, so don’t worry if you think there’s no turning back the second you step into the shop. Pick something that means something to you; that’s really all that matters. Tell your parents. But in the end, if you feel inclined and want to do it, just fucking do it.

However, if you are someone who doesn’t have any interest in piercings/tattoos, I fully respect that. But please respect those of us that have them and follow these rules of conduct:

You Can/Should:

  • Tell me that you like my tattoo. It’s always reassuring that a permanent thing on your body does actually look nice.
  • Respect my body and do not try to touch it (yes, this happens).

You Shouldn’t:

  • Please don’t just stare at it like there is some second twin growing out of me.
  • Ramble for the entire elevator ride about how you’ve always wanted a nose ring, but you just don’t think you have the right nose, but you think they look SO CUTE and…
  • Ask me if it hurt. Obviously a needle digging into my skin was not the most pleasant experience.
  • Try to have me explain the significance in front of a huge group of people. For some people, the meaning behind their tattoos are personal and not always easy to explain.

The worst possible decision you could make via Shutterstock

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  1. Sara

    Fuck yes. 100% accurate and hilarious.

  2. Seriously

    Shut up! Rules of conduct? Get over yourself.

  3. genius

    this is obviously something nyu would appreciate more than columbia haterzgonhate

  4. if anyone needs recs

    Pure/Sacred down on Canal is the best for piercings and tattoos. Not cheap, but so worth it.

  5. Anonymous

    Still don't cover all the blubber from the free food

  6. Monster Island

    Tattoos are on the drunks and drug addicts.

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