by syaffolee

An Opinion on Body Art

So I’m thinking about reading a dark fantasy book, but I’m waffling due to the size of the thing. And what do I do? Visit the author’s website and find that fans actually mail her pictures of their tattoos inspired by her novels. Sort of creepy. And before anyone else mentions it–yes, it’s just as creepy when someone tattoos Elvish on their arms. (And yes, it was made up by a dead linguist, but geez, it was made-up.) It’s not really the tattooing that gets me–after all, people can do whatever they want with their bodies–but the branding. It’s the equivalent of branding yourself with someone else’s name, as if you no longer belong to yourself, like a cow seared with some ranch hand’s mark.

Of course, nowadays there’s laser surgery and tattoos may just as well be another form of costuming. Like wearing a t-shirt with some corporate logo. But at least that’s less painful.