can you say that?

the answer is “no”…

…for a number of reasons.

what’s funny is, on more than one occasion, i come up with only four or five things for the given topic and struggle to make a sixth…in this case i had a problem whittling it down to six. it’s been a while since i did a tattoo shop etiquette sixer, and since i was a bit overdue (and we’re slow as hell today) i figured i’d go over some stuff a lot of customers says, but probably shouldn’t:

i’m a virgin – unless you’ve never been fucked, it’s not true. this might be your first tattoo, so just say it if you feel the urge…but don’t use the term “virgin”. none of us think it’s cute…unless by “cute” you mean “mildly annoying”.

my friend said… or well, i read online… – just stop. unless your friend is a tattoo artists, or at the very least works in a shop, their opinion on this is pretty fucking irrelevant. oh, they have quite a few tattoos? that’s awesome…i’ve owned a home for almost twenty years – it doesn’t mean i know how to fucking build one! owning something (and you never own ANYTHING like you own a tattoo) doesn’t make you an expert with it – it just means you own one.

i just want something cool… – super. a cartoon penguin? maybe a koozie with my initials on it? or an ice sculpture of bea arthur? “cool” is a subjective term, and what i think is cool doesn’t matter – we have to see your tattoo tonight; but you have to see it EVERY night. it’s more important that you think it’s cool than it is for us to think it’s cool. and if you expect us to tell you what’s cool, you ain’t cool, you’re chilly – and chilly ain’t never been cool.

you’re the artist – for the record no tattoo artist isn’t aware of his job title. that’s usually the “bless your heart” (southern folk get that) of the debate on tattoo design. it’s basically giving it up to this stranger to put something you that’ll be there when you meet jesus (and i don’t mean the guy that does the yard across the street, although he’s pretty cool). if you don’t like your design, say something…if the artist can’t do what you like, get another artist – not every artist is for every client. but just giving up with a dismissive “well, you’re the artist…” in my eyes is the you failing the “speak now or forever hold your peace” part of the conversation. don’t like your new tattoo? shut the fuck up – you had a chance to vote against it, and you abstained. snooze and lose.

it’s for me – no shit. i would hope. it’s ON you, it needs to be FOR you. that being said, there’s a reason why t-shirts aren’t printed upside down so YOU can read it…because that’s ass fuck retarded. so don’t get “breathe” or “believe” or whatever fucking inspirational design you want on your wrist upside fucking down just so YOU can read it. if you can’t remember to breathe you deserve to die. despite what religious types will tell you, darwin had a point on that one. this phrase just makes you seem high maintenance to me, but not as much as when you say…

it’s permanent – again, no shit! we know the finality of what we do. we take that seriously. you don’t need to remind us this ain’t done with sharpie – our business expenses at the end of the year MORE than remind us of that! again, this is usually used at the go-to line for being high maintenance, usually dropped around the third or fourth design revision that’s been requested…

…and you wonder why we drink or smoke (or both) after work.

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