I think tattoos are cool.  Call me silly or impressionable but I’m fairly impressed by those who permanently mark themselves with a symbol of their youth or family or humor.  It’s the ultimate form of commitment in many ways.  It can also be dreadfully stupid, as I’ve seen with many tattoos.  Especially the one I saw yesterday.

I had a customer come into my store.  She works at the mall and her store is one that encourages employees to wear alternative outfits, show off a lot of personality and a little skin (I’ll let you guess the store).  Her shirt was ill-fitting and exposed a small portion of her chest.  Not a lot thankfully, just enough to see her tattoo.

It was a picture of the main characters from King of the Hill.  Honestly.  And it wasn’t small.  All said and done, it took up most of her chest.  A whole chest-load of King of the Hill.  Four ugly Texans on pasty white skin.

I had to wonder if the tattoo was a joke, perhaps a heavy dose of sarcasm.  The problem with that idea is that the target’s King of the Hill.  There’s nothing to satirize about that show, except maybe how boring or bland it is.   But somehow that humor and irony doesn’t play really well in tattoo-form.  So this girl had none of that, just a tattoo with the characters from King of the Hill.  It will be peeking from underneath her wedding gown, it’ll be the first thing her babies see and something that a coroner will have to note many, many years from now.  Yikes, that’s morbid but you get the idea: tattoos stick with you forever.  I guess it was then when that fact became clear.

I want a tattoo.  I actually have a certain one in mind.  But seeing that example made me reassess my plan.  I want a tattoo to reflect who I was in my youth.  One day, when I’m old and Republican* I want to admire my tattoo and remember the times when I was youthful and carefree, when I could take a joke and was full of good-humor.  To mark myself with characters from a show just doesn’t appeal to me.  Fifty years from now, after The Great Robot Wars, no one will remember King of the Hill.  But this girl will so good for her.

I should thank her.  She made me realize some things, like how permanent tattoos are and how considerate I should be when getting one.  She also made me realize that King of the Hill is still on the air.  Way to go Mike Judge.

* and obviously senile