Monday, February 28, 2011

Tit for Tat

Recently I was contacted by a woman named Linda, who sent me this message: "Is it bad luck to have your husband's name tattooed on your body? I would be interested in your insights on this matter.” Now, I have never answered a reader’s questions before. But since I really am an authority on everything, I thought, what the heck.

Well Linda, if you need an opinion on matters of the heart and body art, you have come to the right place. I am not sure if luck has anything to do with it. I think you should be asking yourself if it is really a good idea. There is a good chance a spouse’s name will change, especially considering the high divorce rate among carnival workers. With that being said, I know that it is hard to talk people out of doing seriously deluded things once they have their mind made up.

I would recommend testing the relationship with a rub-on tattoo first. If the union lasts longer than the rub-on art then you’re golden. Ok, well maybe not. But, at least you have a good idea of tattoo size and placement.

Now let’s skip to the part where the relationship goes south. I have never met anyone who has gotten a spouse’s name tattooed on their body where the relationship didn’t end up in the crapper. So what do you do after the fact? How do you salvage your body art? How do you salvage your dignity? There are several things you can do.

You could go the traditional route and have the name tattooed over with an elaborate tiger or dragon or mermaid.

You could find a new spouse with the same name as your ex.

You could find a song with the name in it and write the lyrics around the tattoo. Names that work well with this method are: Sarah, Gloria, Lola, and Carrie. Names that do not work well are Habib, Juan-Carlos, William Robert Petit III, or Lashonda.

Add words after the tattoo, like “May they rest in peace” or “Clips his toenails in bed” or “Has a hairy back,” etc.

It can be covered up with a big band-aid or a cast.

Have the tattoo artist make a censored bar to hide it.

Think product placement. Advertisers want new outlets for their products: "Ben" can become "Ben & Jerry’s." "Tim" can become "Timex." "Joe" can turn into "Joe’s Crab Shack," etc.

Get up every morning and scribble the name out with a sharpie.

Create a diversion by writing something around the tattoo. "Sue" can become “Dr. Suess,” for example. When people ask about your smokin’ tattoo, tell them he was your favorite doctor.

Take the spouse’s name and invent a word. Say your ex is named "Stan," change it to Flackistance. Come up with a bizarre definition and use it as a talking point to meet new people.

So Linda, I have given you several useful tips, but what if you have your spouse’s face tattooed on your body? Add horns and a mustache, of course.

What if you have “Mom” tattooed on your body and you break up? Well, this is more common than you think. First off, if you are breaking up with your mom you have more issues than even I can help you with (cue banjos). Just stick to unfriending her on facebook.

So there you have it. Live and let live. Love and don’t commit to a tattoo. Just get a T-shirt that says “I’m with stupid.” Or, carry around a vial of blood or a lock of hair, those things can be used much more effectively.

Come back next time when I answer the question, “How do I train my husband to put on pants and stop eating macaroni from a pan held over the sink?”