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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Mom, Can I Get One of My Toes Removed?

Once again, the weekend approacheth and what’s a modern girl to do when she wants a heads-up on possible events, a gal fresh out of tea leaves and chicken entrails?

Why, consult her iPod, of course!

O Magic and Tiny Song Box! As is both well-documented (by this blog) and barely-tolerated (by anyone even remotely aware of it), what does my morning’s commute say about my weekend?

The Wizard by Black Sabbath
Amos Moses by Jerry Reed
Disaster Button by Snow Patrol
All Alone by Gorillaz
Funky So-and-So by Sugarman 3 and Co.
Too Fake by Hockey
Dance for Me by Southern Culture on the Skids

What’s it all mean? Don’t know! This week has been difficult, physically, emotionally, and I seem to be out of my own ideas.

I did have one idea though…

I'll elaborate.

Back when Australia was drifting away from the continent and my dance card was full, having your ears pierced even once was crazy, rebellious stuff.

But within just a couple of years of my having graduated high school, the soft pink ears of girls and boys across the country were being pierced repeatedly, loops and loops of defiance; and every group of kids since then has added to the loopage until now we are running out of places to pierce. Ears? HA! Forget about ears. What’s it like, being so hopelessly old-fashioned? We’ve now got in public what you used to have to pay a carnie to see: pierced noses, eyebrows, lips, nipples, and belly buttons, not to mention the piercing of parts sure to ruin your good undies.

My son asked, in 10th grade, if he could get his ears pierced.

“No,” I said.

I’ve found that children enjoy quick, decisive answers.

“How about a tattoo then? Can I get a tattoo?”

“No,” I said.

“Come on! Why not? It’ll say “Mom”, I promise!”

Awwww. What a good boy. His freshly-pubescent forearm will be permanently marked “Mother”.

“Dylan, when you are 18, you are free to do as you like, although I’ll ask that you wait until you’re out of college. Once you’re out of college, go crazy.”

“Mom, everyone has one!”

“Yeah, everyone and their grandma. Maybe by the time you’re out of school the cool thing will be to have never had a tattoo, to be a clean slate. Besides, what do you have to commemorate with permanent ink? You have great skin. Why mess it up?”

“How about a Mohawk? Can I get a blue Mohawk?”

“Sure. Knock yourself out. If you don’t like it, you can always shave your head.”

He didn’t, of course, get that blue Mohawk, although everyone on the lacrosse team that year dyed their hair platinum blonde.

What the heck. Hair grows.

There are an awful lot of ways be different/be like everyone else these days. Never mind the tattoos and the piercings. There are studs as well, little knobs at the temples, sharp things sticking out of lowers lips, large Ubangi-style corks in tautly stretched earlobes, contact lenses made to look like cats or goats eyes…

So what’s next?

I’m gonna go out on a limb here and make a prediction.

This prediction, by the way, is only valid in the U.S. and is not to be used for the purposes of gambling.

In keeping with how we generally behave, the U.S. will go in two wildly disparate directions: 1. the trend will swing to the point where super-conservative dress will become fashionable. No piercings, tattoos. Even jewelry will be eschewed so as to make it easier for one generation to truly differentiate itself from the previous; or 2. – and this is my personal favorite – we will embrace selective amputation. People eager to express themselves will have the first knuckle/nail of select fingers removed, opening up whole new areas of exploration in the insults-via-hand-gestures realm.

Missing a knuckle or two will eventually become, of course, the tribal-tattooed bicep/rose-on-the-breast tattoo of that generation; and the next generation’s rebels will be forced to move on to having their nostrils flared or their skulls replaced with glass, maybe something that lights up when there’s a thought…

Now THAT’S a thought.


♥ Braja said...

Selective amputation? Why, I can see them lining up now....and inside, I'm a sad clown.

Gigi said...

Ahhh Pearl - didn't you know? Women are already having surgery on their toes just so they can wear certain shoes!

Pearl said...

Braja, I can see it, too, but I see it as just ridiculous...

Gigi, really?! For shoes. Hmmm. I enjoy shoes, but I also really like feet. I have a friend who thinks feet are ugly, but I've always enjoyed them. Practical li'l buggers..

Steam Me Up, Kid said...

I sincerely agree about the conservative swing. I predict nerd fashion/hair. Like, the nerdier you look, the more of a risk taker you are. Hair parted down the middle, freshly ironed slacks, argyle sweater vests, thick horn rimmed glasses...

I'm hopeful. I like nerds.

Lee the Hot Flash Queen said...

Selective amputation...interesting. I just pulled dog goo out of my hair...what the heck??

Pearl said...

Steam Me Up, I sincerely believe that as well. The nerds are a clandestine and sneaky little bunch, and I'm hoping my mad ability to spell and vast knowledge of old Rush lyrics protects me when the time comes!

Lee, I'm not sure what to make of that, either. Hold on -- I'll be right there.

De Campo said...

I've always wanted to get "regret" tattooed across my stomach in big fancy old English whatever.

Tamsin said...

I married a nerd with lego hair. Best decision ever :)

Pearl said...

de Campo, I used to have a friend who had a tattoo on his belly that said "This Side Up".
I was careful to never ask him about it. :-)

Tamsin, some of my very best boyfriends have been nerds. Nerds take care of business (and have all the good electronic equipment)!

Venom said...

@a4 my daughter asked to get her belly button pierced, along with her BFF. I said no, Kylie did indeed pierce her bellybutton and so did another girl along with them - Kylie's mom posed as girl
#2's mom so that she could get it done. (NOT sure how the other mom felt about that).

@ 15, my beautiful girl asked if she could (along with her BFF) get a small happy face tattooed on her shoulder blade - I said no. She said, Kylie's getting one! (Kylie did not.)

@16 my she-child asked to have her lip pierced - I said HELL No.

She's about to turn 17 - I hope she doesn't ask to cut something off....

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

I'm, personally, guessing that the next vogue thing with be cybernetic implants.

@eloh said...

Two of my four children have tattoos. I don't want to see them and could not tell you what they are .. though I know they are very big ones.

I told them I didn't spend years rubbing baby oil on their skin to have them mark it up.

And if they end of part of a lampshade... well just remember that I told 'em so.

Charlotte Ann said...

When the movie stars start having their tattooes removed, you know it's "out". Just takes while for the out crowd (out of Hollywood) to catch on!
When daughter was younger, she and a friend put one of those stick on tattooes on their lower leg, strolled in and showed me and I'm hysterically screaming so loud that I couldn't hear her telling me it was a stick on!

Linda said...

My younger son(who works in the video game industry) has several tattoos, my elder son, one- that I know of.

They were adults, I wouldn't have done it, but... one does have a practical application. Younger son sometimes grows his buzz cut out into a mohawk, and he had two dotted lines tattooed on his head for shaving guidelines.

Jocelyn said...

I got thrown in this post when your answer to the ear piercing question was "No!"

It's almost like I don't know you at all, Pearl.

But the selective amputation? Plant that idea in one of my community college classrooms, and it'll catch on. EEEK.

Jayne Martin said...

Wow. What's with these kids today? I didn't start wanting a tattoo until I was 60. By then I figured I'd earned those nice puckered lips on my ass.

kimber p said...

its funny all of the stuff we do just to fit in or be unique (make up our minds, why don't we?)
we're all a bunch of weirdos, whether we want to admit it or not... :)

Under the Influence said...

Oh man - I think I want to keep all my digits.

The Retired One said...

Hey, in some cultures this isn't as far fetched as it sounds...remember the oriental "feet binding" so that their feet are tiny (and crippled, but hey it was beauty in their culture!) and then there was clitoris amputation also...totally gruesome.
I hope our culture does not go in that direction and picks the conservative route!!
I will go to all their yard sales and buy up the jewelry they refuse to wear. I like that idea!

Douglas said...

I don't know about that glass skull thing, especially the one with the lighting option. It would only light up when I passed by a pretty girl. I don't think I should give away those thoughts. Too old.

Pearl said...

Venom, they just can’t wait to alter what you gave them, can they?!

Mjenks, rats. I can’t believe I didn’t think of that…

@eloh. :-D Big smiley face at ya, because that’s what I was thinking about the Boy’s skin…

Charlotte Ann, I think that’s hilarious! And yes, pretty soon the “stars” will go unmarked and everyone will save up the money to have theirs removed as well.

Linda, the Mohawk lines? Love it. That IS practical.

Jocelyn, I’m here to surprise you! He actually does have pierced ears now. Did it at 22, I think it was, and I bought him a pair of super-tiny diamond earrings. :-D

Jayne, and at that point, you certainly DID earn that right! Honestly, I have nothing against tattoos, particularly those that have symbolic meaning. But the tattoo of Mighty Mouse holding a pair of drumsticks? Kinda cool at 19 – kinda pathetic at just about every age after that…

Kimber, I saw a bumper sticker the other day that said “all the weirdos make this a beautiful world”. :-D

Under the Influence, I have no plans to get rid of mine, either!

The Retired One, where humans are concerned the sky – and the gutter – is the limit.

Pearl said...

Douglas, a dimmer switch, maybe?! :-D

Carol said...

If peopled start lobbing off bits & pieces of their bodies just imagine what other countries will think of us?? Maybe they would stop trying to attack us because we would look like complete morons and figure there is some bad disease over here and they should stay away... (where the hell did that train of thought come from any how?)

lisleman said...

Your thought might not be too far off since some the piercing done ruins body parts. I had heard that dentist make good money repairing broken teeth from pierced tongues.

I dislike the tattoo idea. Most of these kids can see past next weekend. How the hell are they going to know what tattoo they will still like years from now??
Brain damage - check out this clip

Janie at Sounding Forth said...

Holy crap, Pearl. What if you're right?

mapstew said...

See, I got my first tattoo at the age of 45! So now when the girls ask, "Da, can I get inked?" I say "Yeah, but ya just gots to wait 'til you are the same age as I was when I got my first tattoo, innit?"


Cairo Typ0 said...

Selective amputation? Stop giving people ideas! If this becomes popular I'm coming back here and blaming you! LOL

Christine Gram said...

I'm taking advantage of my punks very ripe years. When they've asked me for pierced ears or if they could get a tattoo, I say sure! And then tell them in great detail exactly what piercing or tattooing entails. They give me the "you horrible mother! I can't believe you would let us be subjected to such a torture" look. Problem solved.

Jess said...

Yeah, that whole amputation thing is beyond me. I love my piercings, tattoos and all that jazz...but hells to the naw on removing body parts.

I was wondering what I was going to forbade my child(ren) from doing...I imagined it would be something like this:

"Mom, can I get a tail?"

"WTF KID! A tail?!? I birthed you just fine the way you are! Why the hell would you want to add something?!?"


Pat said...

Sitting around the dinner table, I often used to tell my 3 sons that I hoped they would never get any piercing or tattoo, but if they felt compelled to get one of them, then get a piercing, not a tattoo, because a tattoo never goes away, but a piercing can sort of close up. I am here to report that none of them has ever gotten either one of those, and they are 27, 29 and 31...and they all have good jobs, are very responsible and great husbands and dads. Woohoo!