i started getting tattoos because i couldn’t make up my mind. i forced myself to make a choice i couldn’t take back. so, i finished my cheese sandwich and drove to the shop on adams ave. i told them i wanted sailor jerry meets jurassic park. one of the dudes kept saying how stupid it was, the others gave me high-fives.
then, there was the devil. i didn’t choose that one.
i paid $80, rolled the dice, and landed on a classic piece of flash art depicting a winking baby devil. it should have gone on my ribs, but i didn’t feel like taking off my shirt in a shop full of babes. instead it ended up smack-dab in the middle of my right arm. i named it Lucy.
it’s not that i didn’t like Lucy, in fact i loved her. it’s that i was too afraid to tell my Dad i had a devil tattoo. and eventually i’ll get married or something and not sure i want Lucy in all those photos. so, two days after Christmas i walked into the shop on adams ave and told them, “it’s time to cover up the devil.” then they put on Ozzy and went to the drawing board.
of course they asked why. “i’m gonna see my dad this summer and don’t feel like getting disowned.”
a pause, “well, what about your mom?”
“oh she’ll be there, too.” then the record stopped.
“you mean your parents are STILL together?!”
why this was so shocking to them, i’ll never know.
anyway, they asked what i thought my parent’s secret was. “good sex,” i laughed. then, after a moment, “they had a son that passed away and that’s something only they can share.” by then, the tattoo was nearly finished. the devil turned into a red rose. between the petals, i can still see Lucy’s chin.
and i thought, “ain’t that a lot like life?” you can turn almost anything shitty into something pretty damn beautiful