Sunday, May 12, 2013

Getting Tattoos & Getting Philosophical

Read this article recently, where an employer apparently encouraged people to get tattoos. Not just any old tattoos, though. They rewarded company branding.

I've written a little about tattoos but not sure I ever really stated when it was a good or bad idea to get one or what types are okay vs. not okay. Here goes:

NEVER get a tattoo of the company you work for if you're not an owner. If you're not the owner, you could very well get fired or quit later on in disgust. The job situation could easily change and you could go from viewing it as a little slice of Heaven to tolerable or in my husband's case, a very nasty form of Hell.

Now you could also lose your business but at least if you're an owner, it probably had more of an impact in your life and might be a reminder to you of something you did well or a mistake you don't want to repeat.

I also never got a tattoo of my sorority letters or the name. If you really want to after you've gotten through the pledge period, I could understand doing that. However, that doesn't mean you can't still get kicked out at some point. Remember, it did happen to that bitch whose father draws Spider-Man.

I have no clue how it works once you've graduated college and are out living in life but I'm sure if someone became the next Casey Anthony or Ted Bundy, a national fraternity or sorority would want to take membership away from that person lest (s)he "damaged the brand" for future potential new members or the members who still had to represent the group in a college setting. No one I know has become notorious so not sure how that works but it's worth asking yourself that question before you consider getting your letters tattooed on yourself.

I guess I've also got an issue with getting something so permanent like a tattoo for something I don't have an ownership stake in. These days, I'm just not motivated to work as hard for anyone besides myself. My closest friends or people I respect would probably be next & then there's everyone else. Considering what I've seen & heard about in the corporate world these days and being who I am, is it any wonder I feel that way? Wouldn't YOU be on the defensive constantly if everyone made you feel like you didn't deserve a fair shot b/c they were jealous of your accomplishments or skills? I responded to one job ad I saw recently & read it to my husband, who said I sounded "angry" in there.

I've gotten that reaction from others when I responded to ads. Gee if you were an out of the box person & had been subjected to the endless parade of bullshit I have, might that make you not have an emotional investment in anyone?

Might that make you conclude that you are going to have to figure out your own hustle since no one who could pay you is actually going to respect or trust you?

So, if you're going to get a tattoo get something that has personal meaning for you. Fuck what anyone else has to say about it!

I also don't like the idea of branding myself with a company or an organization; my own mother says that one job she has only offers advancement if you're willing to get the organization's name tattooed on yourself (figuratively, at least). She says she's not that dedicated to it!

The whole tattoo thing makes me question if more companies are going to demand that next for just getting a job there. If some posters are asking for pictures via LinkedIn profiles and to see all your social media passwords while making you take these fake behavioral assessments, is tattooing the organization's name on your body (or perhaps even on your butt) really that far behind? Plenty of employers already demand employees not to have a private life or a point of view.

I've gotten to that distrustful point when it comes to paying day jobs. You also get a very different perspective of the world when you lose close family members belonging to your generation at a very young age.

That different perspective brings me to some philosophical points.

One thing I've realized recently is that I'm losing my past & maybe it's not such a bad thing. I'm not "the ugly girl" and haven't been considered uncool in ages. I also have people in my life who don't seem like they're going to be jealous of me as I move up in the world. They have their own success & don't seem to begrudge me of having any. I also feel like I can respect those people I have allowed in (which isn't a large number since I've always been a private person; I also freely admit to not being the easiest person to have a friendship with). Sometimes, you also realize that particular people are in your life for a reason.

I feel like I'm going to lose more pieces of my past as time goes on. I found out news about my former friend who showed her ass at my sister's wedding that made me feel perfectly fine with having cut ties. History does not trump survival & being better in your life. You can't keep people around who bring you down, begrudge you of good things or want you to be ashamed of who you are.

At first, I felt kind of bad about it. I'm not in my childhood town or anyplace where I went to school. NYC is where my adult life is; you could probably say my college years is where my life began since that's when I got to choose where I went, my friends, my clothes, who I dated & be my full self. As pieces of my past fall away, it makes life today more cemented & permanent. It also makes regression impossible & me more steadfast about not moving backwards. It's much harder to go backwards if you don't live in your childhood town and your oldest friend from childhood is a distant memory. My former friend might as well be dead with the personality change she's had.

A big concern with doing things is still being the same person I always was; I think I still am. I'm still as much a rabble rouser as I ever was. I'm still unconventional & opening my big mouth when I feel the motivation. No one hearing about stuff I'm doing has ever been shocked by it since I always was a driven, ambitious person who was going to do something significant & unusual. My challenge is going to be figuring out how I can embrace who I am today (particularly with being an industry branded "hottie") without forgetting what it was like to be who I was in the past.

That's something I wonder: How do you let the past fall away enough so you can move on & embrace the success you get in today's time but not lose the values/experiences that make you not be the worst of the "successful" class you now belong to? And is it a bad thing if you let go of some of that past trauma if doing so will make you more successful?

Personally, I don't think this letting go of the past is a bad thing. Some people didn't have great pasts & psychologically, it's probably far better to let it fall away than act like you're still something you aren't.

To end this on a less tragic note, another observation: if you don't have a celibate marriage, don't get a wooden bed frame for your marital bed. I discovered that we may find ourselves with a damaged bed frame in the near future & I have a feeling it's the result of our combined sex drive.

It occurred to me that you don't see beds in college dorms with wooden bed frames. My beds in my dorm rooms didn't have that. Nope, they had metal frames. I figure it's because the people putting in the beds figured sex happens often on college campuses so they may as well be prepared. Otherwise, they'd have to buy new bed frames all the time since students & their sex partners would break them from so much use.

Let's be honest: that's one reason people go to college in the first place, especially if they go to school far away from their parent's house. It's the first time in life you can have sex without worrying about your parents catching you or anything you buy to prepare for it. You can get what you need without them having to go with you or find out (since the college can't talk about such things with your parents due to HIPPA laws; nor can your doctor even if the doctor's their best friend). If you move away from home for this, your parents have to let go and learn to trust you to be an adult; they simply have no choice if your school is lots of hours away & they don't have unlimited money to drop in unannounced. My mother assumed I did all sorts of stuff in college but my life wasn't nearly as exciting as she thought it was. Regardless, I do think getting to have sex without all this parental control & having to hide things from them is probably one motivating factor in going to school far away from one's childhood home.

Maybe if you've got a sex drive, you should get a bed frame with reinforced steel. I don't know.

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