I just don’t get it. Piercings and tattoos. About the only time you saw tattoos fifty or sixty years ago was on sailors, Marines and biker gang members. Piercings were strictly on the pages of National Geographic from New Guinea and Africa. Now, however, you can’t go anywhere without seeing these “cultural decorations.”
Tattoos have been a popular, and often required custom of Pacific islanders and other remote cultures. Piercings likewise, except for earrings on women everywhere. But now it seems that we have a subculture in America that believes tattoos and piercings are de rigueur (necessary according to fashion). Really? A police officer I know refers to the tattoos on the lower backs of women as “tramp stamps.” Now, why would he say a thing like that?
Piercings are in the same category, but need separate sociological investigation. Quills and twigs, feathers and tusks have pierced the cheeks, lips, and noses of aboriginal cultures since these people were first discovered. Our American children apparently believe that a nose stud somehow makes them more attractive. Isn’t that more of a south Asian tradition? I just saw a young man and lady with matching nose rings, like you see in a pig or cow. I guess it means, “I really, really love you!” And, while we’re on that subject, a tongue stud supposedly makes one more skilled at pleasing the likes of Bill Clinton. Why advertise that?
I’ve seen two young men who have gone the unique path of stretching their ear lobes with discs. Now, yes, that truly makes them unique if nothing else about them does. You don’t have to be handsome, or have a brilliant mind, or be a computer whiz or outstanding athlete. Just put those discs in your earlobes and you’ll be attractive as a mate for all those women out there. Well, at least SOME of those women out there. Maybe the ones with that lower back tattoo.
Now, I read a lot of National Geographics when I was growing up, and I have a suggestion for those upcoming young Americans who really desire to be unique and “special.” Go for the Ubangi look! That’s the African tribe that stretches their lips with discs. Some can get to dessert plate size! Really impressive, and man do the Ubangi women go for them. Or, how about stretching the neck with brass rings, like the Karen Tribe of Burma? Just gorgeous! Let’s do it!
Wait; let’s do something more in keeping with our own traditions here in this country. Let’s go back to our Native Americans for some tips. Yes, I’m talking about the Flathead Indians. Now, there was a unique tribe. They considered a very flat forehead as “cool.” As infants, the mothers slowly compressed the forehead with a flat piece of wood, usually attached to the top of the papoose backpack board.
In keeping with our acceptance of (Communist) China, and embracing their culture, let’s bind some feet, too. That will surely be a hit with the fashion set. You know, small feet are really attractive, and the women can’t run as fast, either. So, you see, there are lots of new (old) things that we can try to make us stand out in a crowd; things that will set you apart from everyone else and make YOU special!