This One Time

Posted in Uncategorized on January 5th, 2009 by eddie

So this girl came in today.

All my stories start like that. Like that girl in American Pie. This one time, at band camp…

This one time, when this girl came in…

Mom says I need a hobby. I say hobbies are for people who are terrified of empty time. Also, I can just watch her do stuff and feel just as tired as if I’d done it.

So this one time. Yesterday. This girl came in. The name on her release form was Renata Grene, but when she was lying down on the table with her breasts in her hands—which seems modest to the girls who do it but really isn’t, I mean, it’s way hotter than if they just didn’t care who saw—she told me: “It’s Wren. Like the bird, not like -and Stimpy. Renata’s too long for me. I’m…not that big a girl.”

She wasn’t. It’s not that she was super-skinny like Steph or whatever. She had a round belly and big shoulders and her hands were totally inadequate when it came to covering up her breasts, but she was so short, like maybe five foot, and so all of that body still seemed small on her, even though it wasn’t, really. That doesn’t make sense, but I keep trying to remember her, and it keeps slipping away. Her name, her smallness, and the tattoo she wanted me to get rid of.

Wren’s tattoo was weird. I’ll say that upfront. It wasn’t good at all—not that the business I get is generally the work of Rembrandts of the needle. But this wasn’t just ugly, it was violent and jagged, just a bunch of black lines criss-crossing over her ribs, like a streetmap, I guess. The lines were sloppy, like gashes. There were bits of writing but they were blurry and sloppy, too, I couldn’t read any of it. The middle of the street-lines was just under her heart, spidering out over her stomach. The last bit circled around her belly button like a roundabout. It was ugly as shit but I couldn’t stop staring at it. It was so black and so stark on her, so big and flamboyant—usually if you get art that size it means you either have something big to say or you’re trying to hide that you’ve got nothing to say. She didn’t seem like either type.

I said: “Where’d you get this done, Wren? We should put him on our Do Not Take Checks From This Man list.”

And she just started crying. She let her breasts go and covered her face and sobbed. Said she’d never had a tattoo in her life, she just woke up one morning and it was there, she didn’t know what was wrong with her, she’d been to doctors and they didn’t know either, and it wouldn’t go away. Well, I thought. Don’t Take Checks From This Man, But Definitely Get Drugs From Him. Poor kid must have been out of her mind to not even remember getting such a hatchet-job.

She kept saying: Just get it off me. Like it was a spider.

So I fired up the machine. It’s funny, I never think about it, but really tattoo removal is like magic. What happens when you get a tattoo is that the ink is injected in between layers of skin. The skin heals around it, but the ink stays liquid in there, warm, like blood, so when it’s done you’re walking around with a big snaking river of ink inside you, almost like it’s alive, negotiating with scar tissue every day to stay in the shape of an eagle or Hello Kitty or a damned butterfly. It’s freaky. Part of you is made of ink. And what UV therapy does is pulverize the ink molecules so that the scar tissue is all that’s left, nearly invisible. The body absorbs the broken ink, and you’re still part-ink for awhile, but no one can see it. It doesn’t even hurt. I just turn on my magic machine and you’re all right again.

But not Wren. I don’t know if that girl is ever gonna be all right again. When the beam hit her she screamed like nothing I’ve ever heard. We put on a topical anesthetic but light therapy isn’t supposed to hurt anymore than a little sunburn—at worst it’s an eyebrow waxing. But she screamed like I was stabbing her. But hey, whatever, some people have sensitive skin. We’ve got stronger sedatives, we’re not cruel.

But even when she’s calm, the tattoo won’t come off. It doesn’t even fade. Deep and black and sharp, just like before. And I told you how it works—there’s no way it should have no effect. But it didn’t.

I’ll have the UV machine checked out next week. All I can do. But I don’t think it’s the machine. It made quick work of an Old English PAINSLUT on this guy’s shoulder that morning. Sounds stupid, but I think the tat just didn’t want to come off. Part of her is made of ink. I had her make another appointment—there are other things we can try, though considering how she reacted to the “painless” option I’m not too thrilled with her chances. But I told her it’s not so bad, she can cover it up, hell, it’s interesting, anyway.

I didn’t want Wren to leave. That’s the truth. Unless the machine’s fucked, she’s stuck with that thing on her stomach. I told her to make a follow-up with Steph because I wanted to be sure I had her phone number.

I am kind of an asshole sometimes.

Happy Holidays

Posted in Uncategorized on December 21st, 2008 by eddie

Sometimes I think it’s ridiculous that we have a Christmas special. Like anyone’s going to buy a gift certificate for their loved one that essentially says: sweetie, get that shit burned off.

Stay Out of My Room, Too

Posted in Uncategorized on December 12th, 2008 by eddie

Mom. Stop reading this. Mind your business.

Dinner’s in the oven.

Yes, In Fact You Are A Number

Posted in Uncategorized on November 21st, 2008 by eddie

If I see one more fucking barcode on some douchebag’s hipster neck, I’m gonna break something.

Solace, Quantum of

Posted in Uncategorized on November 18th, 2008 by eddie

No tits.

I did get to hear about the flensings, though. I guess her mom is from New Zealand and some crazy hippie (I’m disappointed she named her kid Stephanie and not Sunshine or Arwen), so when she was thirteen they flew out to Auckland to have this guy fully cut her neck up as a coming of age ritual. I mean, flensing is hardcore. They cut long strips of skin away and let it heal, then cut deeper until those marks are never, ever coming out. Then they might put a little dye in there. Steph’s are black. It took months, and her mom just worked remotely and rented an apartment and took her to get flensed every couple of weeks, praying and fasting with her, making jewelry and running around the sheep fields naked to commune with the gods.

Steph says she’s glad it happened, that she doesn’t know anyone else who was so damn sure when they stopped being a kid and started being a grown up. She felt weird about the marks at school for awhile, but Steph can put a hole in the office wall with her fist, and has, so I figure she got by ok.

I wish we could hook our Moms up.

Not Stirred.

Posted in Uncategorized on November 17th, 2008 by eddie

I got Steph to let me take her to the new Bond flick. I don’t actually want to see that movie, because I can tell from the previews it’s all about him crying over the girl from the first movie, and that’s just a little too pathetically whatever for me right now, but if it means getting Steph in the dark, I’ll sit through it.

I’m not actually desperate. Stephanie will never let me so much as look at her tits. I guess that makes her safe. Which probably makes me safe to her, which is probably why I won’t get to look at her tits.

Buck up, Bond.

Daddy Issues

Posted in Uncategorized on November 6th, 2008 by eddie

So my dad died a million years ago. I barely remember him. Mostly it was just me and mom and the smithy in the yard.

But my mom kept his ashes in this Waterford crystal urn on the dining room table, which is freaking morbid, if you ask me, because, you know, you can see through crystal, and people-ashes aren’t like fireplace ashes, there’s chunks of bone and crap in there too. So I got to look at my dad’s grey matter for years while I ate my green beans. What. the. fuck.

Yesterday my mom calls me up and drags my ass down to the flats and fucking full-on dumps the crystal into the river. We both just stand there for awhile, watching him float away.

After awhile I say: why did I have to be there for this?

And she says: you want something for lunch?

Tokyo Smash

Posted in Uncategorized on November 1st, 2008 by eddie

I’d say my customers, sorry, patients, are about 70% male. More likely to do something stupid? More likely to regret it? No idea. But this girl came in today with…I don’t even know. It was grotesque. Hello Kitty sucking off Godzilla with the Tokyo skyline burning behind them. On her stomach. I bet that was fun for some guy.

It was kind of fun for me.

Truth is, I haven’t had a girlfriend in two years. After Clare–my ex-wife, for the 3 folks playing at home–left, I just sort of bounced around the local parlors. An inker here, a tramp-stamp aficionado there. It was easy, like going to Burger King. My way right away. But Clare got all fucked up a couple of years ago, painkillers and fruity rum drinks, (she was always like that, all hardcore lawyer pantsuit stuff but sucking down bowls of fruity bullshit that ends in -tini and isn’t a fucking martini) and came over to my house falling all over herself, with this really cute haircut.

Yeah, so I’m an idiot. See the front page of this fucking site. But I missed her, and she was willing, and she didn’t say she was sorry in the morning or anything. She made me breakfast. And I never heard from her again. So there hasn’t been anyone. I guess I’m still waiting for the rum to kick in again and pitch her up against my door.

Or for Stephanie to let me lick her flensings. Hear that, Steph?

That’s what I thought.

Rum is for assholes. Scotch. Yeah.

Danger, Will Robinson

Posted in Uncategorized on October 25th, 2008 by eddie

Steph, I’m not getting my comments. Is there something other than Wordpress we could use?

I <3 Mom

Posted in Uncategorized on October 16th, 2008 by eddie

Two “Moms” and a “Ricky + Jenny Forever” today. I swear to fucking god.

Speaking of Moms. Mine wants to move in with me. She broke a hip a couple of years back, staining the back deck. My mom is an idiot like that. She never stops building shit, or sanding it, or fixing it. She was born with a lever up her ass. Once when I was like, nine, she got this whole blacksmithing forge thing set up in the back yard and made fireplace pokers to sell to tourists. She gave up after a summer, but the forge is still back there, all covered with ragweed and raspberry vines now. I keep offering to break it down and sell it for parts, but she says she’s gonna go back into the poker business someday. Whatever, she’s like eighty.

Point is, she was staining the new deck she fucking built, right, and slipped and broke her hip. She’s walking, now, with a cane, but that took awhile. So she wants to sell the house and move in with me.

I told her I didn’t have room for the forge.