Tattoos and Waterparks
I took a family trip recently with my girlfriend, her daughter and our son; her mother, sister and her sister’s twin daughters came as well (thankfully they were in a separate car). I cannot properly convey in the short space of this article how miserable that car ride was. Between a 6 year old girl who absolutely would not shut her mouth long enough to think about the things she said, to a one year old boy who never stopped crying…ever! The former of the two was constantly talking and asking questions (the obvious being, “are we almost there?”), while the boy was just plain pissed off; at the girl for talking so much I suppose.
Anyhow, back to the actual story. I’m pretty heavily tattooed, a result of always having been just a tad bit outside the norm of society as well as an occupational hazard from my time spent in the Marine Corps. It’s a bit of a visual contradiction; tattoos aside I’m clean cut, well groomed and quite preppy. Couple this with my tattoos and I’ve been known to get strange looks from the older crowd. Not exactly fear, but not quite friendly either; perhaps cautious curiosity. It’s as if they weren’t sure whether I should be at the golf course with fraternity brothers or raping children at the local school. (As a side note, in reality I love doing one of those activities.)
Now skip ahead to New Braunfels, Texas at a local hotel just before we head out to Schlitterbaun water park, where I am no longer in fraternity worthy pastel shorts and polo’s, but in swim shorts and ‘wife beater’. People are no longer torn on what to think of me; now I am in their eyes a thug. You might as well put a gun in my hand and a colored bandana hanging out of my back pocket because, “Someone about to get capped mutha fucka!”
I never had been one to believe in the race card. Every time I heard a black person say the phrase, “It’s cuz I’m black!” I would roll my eyes and think to myself, you were probably doing something stupid that drew attention. But here I am, a white boy from the suburbs who went to boarding school and fought for my country, getting stared at like some freak-show, meth addicted biker. I guess stereo-types and first impressions are hard to break, especially with the older generations. I assure you people, I have done no jail time…ok, much jail time (unpaid tickets are a bitch). I’ve been in the occasional fight, kicked some ass, was a heavy drinker for many years (straight whiskey on the rocks for you nosy people), I smoke, I dip and I don’t have much of a verbal filter. All that being said, I’m also a tad O.C.D., have terrible social anxiety which causes me to fucking hate people, I’m educated, well cultured, have travelled extensively, have great manners to the point of being superstitious, I love to read, write, paint, draw and learn. This isn’t a dating profile I promise; it’s just my sorry attempt to make a point that society in general is ignorant, or in my terms…fucking retarded. Just because I look the way I do doesn’t mean I’m some moron who couldn’t tell his ass from his head if he had to pick it out of a line-up. And by the way, it goes both ways; just because someone is Asian doesn’t mean…wait, which ones are the Asians? They’re the ones with oil right?
My point is if you ever see a guy with a whole bunch of tattoos, military haircut, two kids and a ski mask on, don’t assume I’m robbing the place, maybe I’m practicing for my ski trip to the Swiss Alps. Ask me first before calling the police and maybe…just maybe I’ll reward you by explaining that Switzerland isn’t the city in Wisconsin that makes all the cheese, but in actuality another country. Yes America, there are countries other than just Mexico and Canada.