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Tatted Up

There’s more to tattoos than the ink on the body

Photo by Chase Whorton

   Ever thought about getting a tattoo? Think once, think twice, think three times, and make sure you have your idea nailed down to a tee. Remember, once it’s on, it’s on, with almost no hope of it coming back off for good.
    More people than you would think have been inked here at South. Only three were reached, but these three hold quite the stories behind them, such as why, where, when, and how.
    John Blank, senior, has recently gotten a cross inked on his back with barbed wire wrapped all around it. The bottom of the cross reaches halfway down his spine and the two arms go to his shoulder blades. Inscribed within the top of the tattoo, Blank is written to show his own permanent love for his family.
    “Self-fulfillment caused my want for my tattoo. It was always a dream I had, but I had to wait till 18 because my parents did not approve,” Blank said.
    Getting a tattoo is a long process. You need to be 18 or older, or have parental consent. Ink is inserted into the dermis layer of your skin to change the pigment of it, leaving a nearly permanent mark.
    Some people want full body tattoos, full arm tattoos, or even just a simple flower on your foot. But remember; think before you act, because having regrets about a tattoo would be miserable.
     But some come with different meanings for family, such as Josie Ellerman, junior. Josie received three ‘black-eyed susans,’ which actually appear to look like sunflowers on her left shoulder blade.
    Ellerman got the tattoo early August of 2011 with her mom, and her dad has still not been notified of the ink.
    “I got it because my grandma died and her name was Susan, and it helps remind me of my love for her, and the times we had together,” Ellerman said. “On a scale of 1-10, and 10 being giving birth, I would say the pain level was a seven because it was right on my shoulder blade.”
    That is just one other thing to think long and hard about, the pain level, but for some, including Austin Miller, sophomore, pain was the least of his worries.
    “I didn’t care about the pain, just the fact that I wanted it to look exactly how I wanted,” Miller said.
    He based his cross tattoo, very similar to Blank’s, off religion.
    “When I see it in the mirror, it reminds me of my love for God, and to follow his plan every day of my life,” Miller said.
    Whether it is family, religion, sports or anything else, remember: ink is permanent.