To Ink or Not to Ink


I’ve played around with the idea of getting a tattoo for the last twenty years, and so far I haven’t taken the plunge.  I’m thinking at this point it isn’t going to happen, but I can’t deny I still think about it.

Of course the biggest question is design.  It’s summertime, and it doesn’t take long to notice there are a lot of bad tattoos out there.  I call them “mall tattoos.”  Occasionally I’ll see one that fits the person, is well done, and isn’t randomly slapped on some body part. 

At this point I’m looking over different designs of cycling related tats since cycling really is a constant love of mine.  I found this blog slideshow and was somewhat amazed at the body of work.  So far, the closest I’ve come is the temporary tattoo I picked up last year at LIVESTRONG.

 

So, let’s hear it.  Are you inked or not, and thoughts on cycling tattoos?  Comments please!

-Karen

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About Karen

Mid-life female amateur athlete focused on cyclocross, mountain biking, and road cycling. Always looking to see what is around the next bend in the road.

13 responses to “To Ink or Not to Ink”

  1. Fixup says :

    The majority of tattoos are either shite, unexceptional, unorignal, or uninteresting to me…

    Check out some of these though…

    Also, Bike Snob’s blog post on tattoos was pretty good – plenty of lame tattoos on there…

  2. Karen says :

    I tend to agree with you, which is why I haven’t gotten one….*yet*….or maybe not at all. I’ve spent a long time on this fence, and I’ll quote the Bike Snob link you provided, as he summed up my feelings about it quite nicely in his post…
    “Indeed, it is a bold rider who inks his or her love of cycling permanently on him- or herself. Even the most dedicated cyclist’s tastes can be mercurial–eBay is littered with titanium frames which were purchased in the ’90s as “the last bike I’ll ever need.” As such, getting a bike tattoo is nearly as risky as getting a tattoo of a partner’s name or a favorite band.”
    I’m definietly not against tattoos, and there are some out there that I think look pretty great. But most–not. Maybe too much committment for me.

  3. Fixup says :

    I’m in the same boat as you. I really want a tattoo, but I can’t design one that I want on my body forever.

  4. Leah says :

    Ditto. I like the idea of a tattoo, but can’t imagine loving it in 20 years.

  5. backamp says :

    I agree with the previous commenters, you have to consider what will last. The Livestrong text will be outdated far too soon.

    Maybe something bike-y but abstract bike-y, that won’t be so transient.

    (In the same boat)

  6. Karen says :

    This boat is bigger than I thought 🙂 Looks like I’ve found a common thread here. It’s true, logos, designs, artwork have such a trendy element these days.

  7. Marcela says :

    Hey Karen,

    So I read this blog… and well what can I say… I don’t have any ink in my body but at times I also play with the idea of getting one. However, I think it should be related to something very important in your life or that marks an event in your life. The Livestrong… well at this point (and you might kill me for typing this) is way too commercial… I am sort of tire of Lance Armstrong and seeing him as a “celebrity”… feel like his sold himself… Anyways… if you get a tattoo you please show it to me 🙂

  8. Karen says :

    Thanks for commenting Marcela! I promise if I get one I’ll show it to you. And don’t worry–as much as I’m into the LIVESTRONG stuff I’m not permanently putting the logo on my body!

  9. Rik says :

    While I agree with most everyone about cycling tattoos, I have to say that I have a number of tattoos. All of them were well thought out and mean something to me, whether it be a certain event that took place in my life, or an interest that I had at the time, or a design that reminds me of someone or something special to me.
    A good piece of advice for those who are thinking about some permanent ink, stay away from the latest fads and trends. Those are the tattoos that you want removed in a few years. If your going to get something permanently attached to your body, get something that means something to you.

  10. All Seasons Cyclist says :

    I normally hate tattoos. HOWEVER, last year I saw a photo of someone who had a tattoo on the inner part of their right calf that looked like a greasy chain mark — I am still thinking about getting one like that! It fits my personality (or lack thereof).

  11. funkbunny77 says :

    So funny … I just sent my tattoo artist some concept ideas in hopes my artist has time when she’s doing a guest spot out on Long Island.

    I believe tattoos should compliment where they ate placed … They aren’t bumper stickers! One needs to think seriously about what they are doing and why before making the leap. Interview potential artists about their work, philosophy, and specialty styles.

    As a working professional, I also need to be able to cover my work as needed. 🙂

    Good luck. I waited 20 years to get my first tattoo. No regrets!

  12. Jonathan says :

    Looks like you made the right call going with the temporary rather than the permanent 🙂

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