i remember getting pierced.
there was a period of time at diamond when body modification was all the rage. we carried a number of magazines and books about tattoos, piercing and such like. many of the staff were either recovering from or planning their next tattoo or piercing.
the majority of those wanting tattoos opted for celtic knots or tribal, often they would design their own which ended up looking like a big squiggle done with a marker pen). (oh yes there was a lot of tat snobbery around – one of the chaps got a fantastic traditional rose done on his arm, the ink work was exquisite but it was dismissed by the tribal crowd because it was old fashioned).
the last tattoo i had done wasn’t the best experience i ever had. that in itself was strange as i was very excited about getting it, i really liked the design and i trusted the tattooist. somehow it wasn’t as much fun as i thought it was. it hurt. it was a bugger to look after. all in all it was a drag. the tattoo itself came out as well as i expected it to and i still like it now. i just didn’t enjoy getting it done.
so when the urge came upon me to have more ink i looked around for images that would make interesting tats. i had several pieces i quite liked; i even had a mad plan for a dragon that would go from my ankle to my shoulder (i had obviously been reading too much ‘crying freeman’).
yet as much as i looked at them i couldn’t work up the enthusiasm to get one of them done.
then it struck me like a bolt out of the blue. i would get my nipples pierced.
yeah that would be a good idea.
i asked a couple of my work colleagues who they would recommend. with their tips in place i located a place, made an appointment and booked time off work.
come the fateful day i was nervous.
i went to the piercers. it was a very hip place. very clean and very professional. so on that level i was happy. i was still nervous though.
i get called. i am shown through into a big room with a large dentist’s chair in the middle of it. this didn’t help me at all. i hate dentists. odd thoughts flew about my head. nervous and scared now.
the piercer started to chat to me, asking me why i was getting them done. i told him that i couldn’t find a tattoo i wanted so i decided to try piercing instead. he showed me his tattooed arms – both, he told me, variations on maori designs, in truth it just looked like someone had drawn lots of black triangles on his arms.
by this stage he had cleaned down the chair. got all his gear together and was just waiting on me. i took of my top and sat in the chair. it was a mild day but i was sweating like the proverbial pig. i was slick with sweat.
his first thing was to clamp the nipple, then mark them. his clamps were not sweat proof and then slid off. once. twice. three times. turned out fourth time was the charm. there i sat with a medical clamp attached to my nipple. he was taking out the needle he was going to use, i am sure there is a technical term for it, but for me it was long and sharp so needle will do. he lined it up against the mark he had made. i could feel the point jabbing into my flesh.
all i was hoping for was that i didn’t squeal like a piggy, that i didn’t cry like a baby and that i didn’t soil myself.
he pushed. i could hear the flesh ripping. the sound was worse than the pain i felt. for such a little thing it seemed to take forever for the needle to go through the nipple. a bit more pressure and he was through. a wiggle and waggle and he pulled it out and lo and behold i had a pierced nipple with a ring through it.
i had to get up and walk around the place to get my breath back. i may not have cried like a baby but i was acting like one. it gave the bloke a chance to dry the chair down from my sweat. if i had been damp with sweat before now i was positively drenched.
second one seemed to go much smoother.
the rending sound of the flesh being ripped was still horrible. it sounded like the wrenching of ripe fruit when you bite a chunk out of a peach or an apple.
he told me i would be high on endorphins later in the day.
he was wrong – i went home and slept.
i was very pleased with them, but never let anyone tell you that it doesn’t hurt.
sadly they didn’t last long, i didn’t look after them as well as i should have done and somehow i managed to keep banging the rings against things in the gym or in the warehouse. eventually they grew out.
still i can’t complain i have nice smiley nipples now and more often than not they stay erect. always a silver lining.