"Tat tat tatted up…"

Saturday I went to a tattoo party. At my aunt’s house… o_O


*sigh* Yeah, I know…

Let’s move past that first sentence, shall we? Last weekend while everyone was getting inked, the old craving for more body art resurfaced. I currently have three tattoos and want more. I feel like my body is unbalanced because I have one on my left wrist, one on my right calf/ankle area, and one on the back of my neck. I often forget about the third one as I’ve never actually seen since it’s been done. No Exorcist-esque neck swiveling happening over here. Nevertheless, I keep telling myself that I need at least two more to balance things out. Y’all know about my unhealthy fear of odd numbers that aren’t multiples of five, right?

Anyway. I resisted the urge and did not get inked on Saturday. YAY me! But then…

I logged onto Twitter the next day and one of the people I follow was twitpicing her way through her tattoo journey. A couple days after that another person I follow twitpiced her dope tattoo. Immediately upon viewing, my eye started twitching and I felt that old familiar feeling of regret creep back in. I could have just gotten inked on Saturday and that would have held me over for a while. Why did I resist?! Then I remembered that I didn’t have any idea of what I wanted to get inked on me. I’ll be damned if I pick some random flash that looked neat-o in the tattoo man’s book.

**pause for the cause** One of my pet peeves is when people get stupid shiz tattooed on them. Like random Chinese characters & things of that nature. The only boy who ever broke my heart had his name tattooed on him in Chinese. Allegedly. That mess coulda said “I like cock…as in PENIS” for all he knew. ANYWAY.

All of my tattoo rants got my friend Colleen & I discussing tattoos and how mine have meaning. She suggested that I blog about them and since I hadn’t touched this place in a while, I said “sure, why not!”

I got my first tattoo about 7 years ago when I was 21. My cousin was having a tattoo party (haha!) & I’d been debating for a few years about whether or not I would finally get a tattoo. I had a few designs in mind, but I wasn’t quite sold on the idea. After hemming and hawing for the better part of three weeks, I decided to take the plunge and just do it, as Nike says. I vascilated between about six different designs as well as where I wanted to place it. At the time, I was still in undergrad, but would soon be entering the workforce and didn’t want to put it somewhere that could be deemed unprofessional. I ended up deciding on my calf, near my ankle. I’m most likely wearing pants at any job I would get, so it would be easily hidden. For the actual design…ok y’all don’t laugh. I totally played eeny meeny miny mo. I loved all of the designs equally and knew that they would be inked upon me eventually, so that was the easiest way to make a decision, haha! As fate would have it, this ended up being my first tattoo:

It’s an Adinkra symbol which originated in West Africa, Ghana (I think) specifically. I had done quite a bit of research on the Adinkra symbols after viewing them on my African American history book in high school and then seeing one of my favorite artists with one tattooed on her (please don’t judge). I liked that they were simplistic, yet powerful images with meaning. This one means unity & democracy. It’s intertwined crocodiles sharing one stomach. For me personally, it’s a reminder that I can’t do it all alone.

My second tattoo came about hella randomly. I was vacationing with some girlfriends in Wisconsin Dells and the idea of getting tattoos came up. I was halfway on board, but hesitant because I knew I didn’t have my trusty printout of previously designated tattoos with me and would have to pick from one of the flash books at the parlour. Oy vey. On a high after winning nearly $1000 at the casino, those hesitations went right out of the window.

Tattoo Deux: electric boogaloo. This isn’t a direct representation of what it looks like because I barely remember the name of the shop where it gone done, but it’s close enough. It’s a gothic cross. Some would say it’s sacrilage to get a religion symbol tattooed upon your person with that whole body being your temple thing, BUT I disagree. I chose to get it on the back of my neck because it serves as a reminder that as I walk to through life daily, the Lord has my back. I’m not an OVERTLY religious person, but I do have respect and reverence for God. This was my way of paying tribute. It also is in one of those places where it’s not noticeable unless you’re looking for it. BONUS!

My last tattoo is probably the one I put the most thought into. I got it at a time where my life was in a sort of emotional turmoil. I was going through some things with who I thought was the love of my life. My career was non existant. My weight gain was the only consistent thing in my life. Everything seemed like it was imploding and I needed a release. The Veep had been bugging me to get a tattoo, so she and I went to this parlour that wasn’t too far from her house one night. Unfortunately for us, it was JUMPIN’ and we couldn’t get them done right then and there. We made appointments to come back the next day though.

Numero tres! It’s another Adinkra symbol (one of the ones in the running during the time of tat #1). This one means God’s protection and presence. I chose to have the word ‘Faith’ put right below it as a reminder. Again, I was in turmoil and denial. I didn’t want to own up to my part in my messes. I needed a VISUAL reminder to help me recenter my focus when I started losing my faith in God. Everytime I look at this tattoo, a wave of calmness settles over me. I find myself rubbing it when I’m stressed or idly as I pray. As if it is a direct conduit to Him or sorts. 🙂

In contemplating my next tattoo(s), I only know this much to be true. It will be an Adinkra symbol & mirror image to my current tattoos. Well…minus the one on my neck. I dunno about having someone tattoo my trachea, hahaha! It will somehow go along with the theme I’ve started with my body art, universal meaning with a personal tinge. These are some that are in the running:

Symbolizes endurance

Symbolizes the power of love

Symbolizes resourcefulness

Symbolizes the supremacy of God

This one is debatable. It may look slightly familiar to you. Remember I talked about my favorite artist having an Adinkra symbol? Welp, it happens to be one Miss Janet Jackson & this is the symbol. She has it tattooed on her wrist. It was also splayed ALL OVAH her Velvet Rope album. It literally means “go back and fetch it” which metaphorically translates into looking into the past in order to get to the future. Kinda weird concept, but it speaks to me. I’m hesitant to get it though because of the ties to JJ. I remember when TVR came out I was PISSED because she took my symbol, haha. I’d seen it on the cover of my African American history book and drew it on everything I had. I kept saying I was gonna get it as a tattoo. She beat me to the punch! *shakes fist*

I should start carrying a printout of all of these designs on me at all times like I used to back in the day. That way, if the mood strikes me, I’ll be prepared to get tatted up at any time, haha! Since I apparently like to decide to get tattoos at the spur of the moment. I’m set to go on vacation to Nashville later next month & I may get the urge to get some new ink when I’m there. Better to be prepared!

My funny valentine

His birthday was yesterday…

V-Day 2009, we were still in contact and I wished him a happy day. He’d been through a rough patch the previous year with the death of his mother, so I was hoping he’d find peace, joy, love, & light on his born day. He thanked me for my sentiments, but the thanks sounded hollow. An attempt at general conversation was rebuffed and just like that he disappeared. Our season had passed and there was no use in me trying to hold onto something that was fading fast.

I called him, Cupid’s gift to me…

I haven’t thought about him since his last birthday. Deleted his number from my phone so that if I were tempted I’d be unable to call. No longer active on MySpace so there was no chance of ever contacting him via that way. Refused to add him via Facebook. Don’t even know if he has a Twitter. Don’t even wanna know if he has a Twitter.

Out with my girlfriends on Saturday night & The Veep asks us if there is one guy in our pasts that makes us think “Perhaps I should have given him one more shot…” For me, he would be the him, with conditions of course. The baby mama issue would have to be DEADED. You can be a good father w/o sliding betwixt her thighs every now & again, bruh. Communication would have to be WAY better. No arbitrary “I love yous” bandied about as if those three words do not hold the weight of the world. Clear and distinctive definitions of what we are and what is to be expected would definitely have to make an appearance as well. I mentally calculated all of these hypotheticals and was looking for ways to express them, but it was futile.

My cousin says all the time, “If ‘if’ was a fifth [of alcohol], we’d all be drunk.” All I can say is WORD. Why am I still devoting mental space to this? It’s BEEN over. There’s no hope for revival. There’s no need for revival. The only reason why he would ever need to cross my mind would be as a fond reminscence, not as an object of pining. Playing this game of what if this, that, or the other was different serves no purpose, but to make me crazy.

But in the quiet spaces. In the moments of weakness. In the nights of loneliness when the craving for human contact is palpable, I cave. I play the ‘what if’ fantasy game and change the course of history within the confines of my imagination. Create this wonderful, loving, mutually benefical world of uncontrolled happiness. Blame myself for not sticking in it long enough. Chastising myself for not burrowing in the trenches of the wreckage that was our dalliance until the bombings had passed. Romanticize the red flags.

Silly right?

Even numbers…(survey)

In procrastinating from updating my book blog (I know! :(), I’m doing this survey I swiped from someone else.

When I’m SAD I…have a routine of sorts. I sit around all sad sacky and pity myself for about 17 minutes. Then I find some ridiculously stupid thing to laugh about (usually an inside joke w/ a friend) and try to think about that until the sadness leaves. On the occasions that the sadness lingers, I’ll usually withdraw myself from society & quietly ponder the sadness.

When I’m HAPPY I…am probably one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet.

When I’m HUNGRY I…starve myself. Haha. Just kidding. Obviously. (keeping this answer because it fits, haha)

When I’m TIRED I…am a real crankypants. I get snappish and my fuse is shorter than usual.

When I’m HOMESICK I…move back home apparently, haha. On the two occasions that I have gotten homesick (@ NIU & in Cali…sorta), I solved it by just coming back home.

When I’m GIGGLY I…have this ridiculously, dumb laugh that just will NOT stop.

When I’m ANGRY I…cry. It’s the usually my first reaction. Then I either get stonily silent or irritatingly loud.

When I’m SCARED I…put up a facade w/ false bravado. I don’t like to let it be known I’m scared, so I act like I’m really brave & confident.

"Text me on my cell phone…"

Warning: This is going to be random, disjointed, and very tangental. I have a ton of stuff on my mind and need to empty it out some.

* I really like that A.Sleaze/Beyowulf “Put It It a Love Song” jawn. The beat gets me to stompin’ & actin’ a fool when it comes on. The title of this blog is a line from the song that bothers me though. What the heck else is he gon’ text you on Licia?! You still got a two-way hangin’ round that we don’t know about? Yeah, um…sorry for that random rant. Back to the song…and my immense amounts of love for it. I can’t wait for the video. It looks interesting from the pics I’ve seen.

* Speaking of Alicia Keys, um…when did she decide to stop singing? On The Element of Boredom Freedom, she whispers, whines, and wails her way through tracks. No ma’am. I would like an order of The Diary of Alicia Keys-A.Keys ASAP. Hell I’d even take overrated Songs in A Minor-A.Keys over this current incarnation. Guess you lose your voice when you’re screwing muppets.

* I think I may be letting myself get talked into going to a singles mixer on Saturday. In Schaumburg of all places. Where’s that spoon fo ryou to gag me with?! For those who aren’t familiar with the Chicagoland area, I’ll just say Schaumburg is THE LAST place I’d ever go “wookin’ pa nub”. The people who inhabit that area are just not my cuppa scotch. Mmmm scotch… What was I saying? Ah yes…that mixer. Part of me thinks it’ll be a funny experience and may even lead to blog fodder. A bigger part of me is saying, “Dude…SCHAUM.BURG. NO WAY!” We’ll see.

* I have had “Jam” by Michael Jackson stuck in my head this morning. Lasterday I downloaded the audio from “This Is It” and listened to it all day at work. Then in the evening, I had a hilarious phone call w/ my friend The Nurse that lead to me singing the song at least 25 times at random intervals. Does anyone know what he’s actually saying in that song? I promise, between him & Janet, there should be a class in Jacksonese. I’d get a PhD in Jacksonese if it were offered.

* Speaking of PhDs (seamless segues FTW), I think I want to go back to school again…for real this time. Being honest with myself (and y’all), I only attended classes @ Keller because they were free. I had no interest in Public Administration or Human Resource Management. I want to study in one of three areas: education (so I can FINALLY teach), social work (so I can FINALLY help someone with my work), or linguistics (because I’m SUCH a word nerd). I live in one of the best cities for education, in my opinion, so it’s just a matter of me doing some research to see which of them best suits my needs. I have to think about things like cost, location, class hours, etc. It’s gonna suck because with my current schedule it’ll probably take me nearly as long to obtain my Master’s as it did my Bachelor’s. Come 2011, I’m have my behind in somebody’s school making my way to earning another degree. 🙂

*Speaking of money…again with the smooth segues, I think I’m going to be moving back home for a while after my lease is up. Well, I shouldn’t say back home as my childhood is LONG gone, but I’ll probably move in with my mom for a few months. I need to get my finances in order and the peanuts I am currently making are not stretching as far as I need them to. I got a slight increase when I started my new job, but thanks to their insurance premiums being WAY higher than my old one’s + the added expense of riding the train daily, that increase is nearly non-existant. :-/ I was talking to my mom about this and she offered her place up. Now, being completely honest with myself (and y’all), I dunno how well this will work out. My mom and I’s relationship has a weird dynamic at most times. So I’m also looking into alternate plans for this time period. I just need a lil bit o’ time to get some things in order w/o having to pay (as much) rent.

Aight, lemme get back to what they pay me to do here…