My friend Fozzo is an unemployed investment fund manager. One bright sunny afternoon we found ourselves standing in his backyard with our hands on our hips looking at his latest purchase. His young teenage daughters had badgered him enough to buy a fluffy puppy off a website. The little puppy danced around on the lawn in front of us.
“Does he have a name?”
“Yep, the girls have named him Truffle.”
“Cute. What is he?”
“He’s a Shitzu cross Toy Poodle.”
“That makes him a Shitpoo. What’s he do?”
“Nuthin’. He cost me two thousand dollars.”
Aside from the purchase of a Shitpoo for two thousand dollars (which would perform as well as any dog pound pup) one of the greatest random acts of pointlessness to infect popular culture in recent years is the tattoo. Tattoos were once the preserve of bike gangs, sailors and half the population Brisbane’s southern suburbs but have managed to trickle up until they now seem to be a ubiquitous part of urban individuals under the age of 40. The problem with tattoos or body art is that it never really accomplishes what it sets out to achieve.
My seven and eight year old boys love to stick fake tattoos all down their arms, put on their Rabbitohs jerseys and follow me around the local shopping mall. Their sleeve work does not make them look like the big bad rugby league players they are trying to emulate. It only serves to make them look cute …and they hate looking cute.
Rough-head rugby league players look like rough-head rugby league players with or without the addition of some form of body art. If you don’t already look like a rough-head rugby league player then throwing some body art into the mix is not going to change that. If you are not already interesting, groovy or sexy then a having a tribal motif or some random Chinese character you liked the look of that turned out to be the symbol for duck fat, special school or colostomy bag permanently placed on the back of your neck is not going to change that either. It might only serve to underscore the fact.
Having said all that, I will also acknowledge that many attractive young country girls who might be contemplating permanently marking their bodies might not be trying to achieve anything other than to make themselves appear more attractive. This is a difficult situation since the attractive young country girl is quite likely to road test a fake tattoo on her pert young breast and find it all quite fetching. There is no point telling the attractive young country girl that it won’t look like that forever.
Tattoo ink does not stay in place; it smears and fades under the skin and all body art must lose its fine linear detail. If you add to this the ins and outs of personal development and the ageing process then who knows how a tattoo will end up. A friend of mine who lives in Port Macquarie had the word “Shangri-La” tattooed around her belly button because she thought it would look sexy. Now twenty years on and three children later, “Shangri-La” now looks more like “Shlonga”; which isn’t sexy. Although, to be fair, when she uses her thumb and forefingers to stretch out the skin around her belly button you can see that it still spells “Shangri-La”…but it still isn’t sexy.
The attractive young country girl needs to see how the tribal motive at the base of her spine will gradually creep down between her sagging bum cheeks. She needs to see how the white dove with the olive twig in its beak sailing across her shoulder will stretch and smear until it looks like a pelican smoking a cigar. She will need to see how the little bunny rabbit on her stomach will, with time and children, begin to resemble that furry patch of road kill you zoomed over on the Barwon Highway last week.
No, there is no point in our attractive young country girl seeing a fake tattoo on her pert young breasts. Our attractive young country girl needs to be haunted by the ghost of her body future and invite her mum over for the afternoon and see what that fake tattoo looks like on a pair of saggy old boobs. With the added benefit of having her mum in her ear during the whole process, we should all stand back and see what decision she makes now.
If on the other hand, the attractive young country girl invites her mum over for the afternoon only to find her saggy old boobs already adorned with roses or fairies or winged horses then the unmitigated horror of that discovery might be enough to bring her to her senses and explain why mum never went to the beach. In this instance, the attractive young country girl should make her mum a cup of tea, give her a biscuit and put her back in her car. It’s a long drive home to Tamworth.
As mentioned, the sophisticated country girl will also not find any satisfaction in owning a new breed dog such as a Shitpoo, a Doodle or a Cocktese (which is a Cocker Spaniel cross Maltese Terrier …in case you were wondering) therefore the sophisticated country girl has the foresight not to place permanent marks on her body that will instantly define her age and generation.
No, rather than finding herself, in the years to come, lined up outside a laser removal studio in Tamworth, our sophisticated young country girl will more than likely find herself owning the laser removal studio, busily making bookings for her clients, while throwing a doggy treat to her rescue greyhound.
NB. Every day after his early morning surf and cappuccino in the sun, Fozzo likes to take Truffle the Shitpoo to the park for a walk. Unfortunately, on one bright sunny morning Truffle was set upon and torn apart by a rescue greyhound who had never quite come to terms with the “Blood Lust is Unacceptable” chapter of the rehabilitation program. Poor Fozzo had come to identify too closely with Truffle and had to go on a course of Xanax to get over it.
The real cost of embracing pointlessness is not the substantial upfront fees it is the price you pay when you need to detach yourself.