When it comes to getting tattooed, 99.9% of my work is extremely thought out and very much planned. However, like many collectors, I have a handful of tattoos that I got on a whim during Friday the 13th events. Friday the 13th is an international holiday in the tattoo world, with shops around the globe offering discounted, pre-drawn flash tattoos. The price of a Friday the 13th tattoo ranges depending on the shop, artist or the piece, however, generally they're anywhere from $13 to $100 before tip. Friday the 13th flash sheets also vary, sometimes sticking within the theme of the month they fall on others staying within the realm of bad luck talismans—black cats, horseshoes, monkey paws, etc.
And while I by no means find fault with artists hosting these events, as they're a great way to bring new business to a shop, I wished I thought through some of my decisions and turned down a nearly free tattoo.
My first Friday the 13th tattoo was done in February of 2014 and at that time, I was a baby collector with a few big pieces but mostly empty space on my arms, torso and legs. I got a small envelope tattoo on my ankle, which fit the theme of Valentine's Day. I chose this tattoo because I'd wanted a similar design to represent a childhood friend and to this day, the tattoo still has a lot of meaning to me.
Later on down the line, I got two more Friday the 13th tattoos on the other sides of my ankles, which in all aren't half bad. One is of a rose silhouette with a crescent moon and as a huge Sailor Moon fan, I'm all about it. Then my last (and final) Friday the 13th tattoo is two avocado halves, which tends to raise some eyebrows. Sure, being a white girl living in Brooklyn and having an avocado tattoo is pretty cliche, but what's wrong with that? I've never been the kind of person who tries to be cool by rejecting mainstream culture—I proudly watch The Bachelor every Monday night and Taylor Swift songs aren't half bad.
But, while I don't have any super serious regrets about my tattoos and I was able to slow my roll before things got out of control, I do wish I'd thought a bit more about my real estate. Although the ankles aren't "prime real estate" per say and as a lover of blackwork, they'd be easy coverups, they're not tattoos that I love. And at the end of the day, shouldn't we love all of our tattoos because they'll be on our bodies for life?
I know that I'm coming at this situation from a perspective of being okay when it comes to my tattoo choices and I definitely acknowledge that there are plenty of people who are far worse off that I. But at the same time, I wish I could say that I stand behind all of my tattoo decisions and didn't just get a tattoo because it was cheap. Working at Inked has taught me that anything is possible when it comes to getting amazing tattoos and there's nothing wrong with waiting when you're still very young. Some of the best collections are from people who waited into their thirties and forties to get tattooed, who are able financially to travel to the best of the best artists.
I know that I still have many years ahead of me when it comes to getting great tattoos and in terms of space, I'm probably only 30% covered. But, I hope that like me, others out there are able to realize that they might not love the tattoo they got at 19 when they're 25 and planning out a leg sleeve.