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Uvula Piercing.
June 15, 2002 7:38 AM   Subscribe

Uvula Piercing. Say "ah".
posted by srboisvert (75 comments total)

 
Yuck!
posted by eas98 at 7:47 AM on June 15, 2002


Wonder if eating hurts. Good way to loose weight.
posted by stbalbach at 7:54 AM on June 15, 2002


People scare me.
posted by rushmc at 7:55 AM on June 15, 2002


Gag reflex must make that a pretty interesting proceedure.
posted by adampsyche at 7:59 AM on June 15, 2002


Should make for interesting yodeling.
posted by jonmc at 8:02 AM on June 15, 2002


next up: gastro-intestinal piercing!

oh wait—that's a damned ulcer...
posted by bwg at 8:09 AM on June 15, 2002


Damn that's cool.
posted by dopamine at 8:10 AM on June 15, 2002


When slurping spaghetti, can you get it to go through the loop?
posted by TuffAustin at 8:10 AM on June 15, 2002


what adampsyche said, I gagged just looking at it. ouch!
posted by dabitch at 8:11 AM on June 15, 2002


I am planning on having a series of tats done on my lower GI tract - inner body tattoo, man, it is the last tat frontier.
posted by sperare at 8:14 AM on June 15, 2002


Eww.
posted by evanizer at 8:17 AM on June 15, 2002


Pain: having to throw up before the wound completely healed.
posted by percine at 8:25 AM on June 15, 2002


And here I thought that I read ovum piercings. This is better, I guess?
posted by swerdloff at 9:11 AM on June 15, 2002


Wouldn't that, I dunno, tickle?
posted by brittney at 9:16 AM on June 15, 2002


No chance I wanted to get that close to someone's mouth! So, when's that tattoo on your brain scheduled, Prince Albert? warning, link is not work safe, nor good to look at
posted by ashbury at 9:33 AM on June 15, 2002


Ahhh, ashbury, that was too much!
posted by ( .)(. ) at 9:40 AM on June 15, 2002


Ew! Wouldn't you just get food caught in it? It'd probably go all crusty and rotten.
posted by jzed at 9:42 AM on June 15, 2002


Ew! Wouldn't you just get food caught in it? It'd probably go all crusty and rotten.

not if you brush it regularly...
posted by hob at 9:51 AM on June 15, 2002


Oh please, people. These were being done ages ago by John Cobb. They're kind of dumb. Even he admitted it then. It was done pretty much as a stunt. He was known for "experimental" work.

As for gag reflex: Wouldn't you think that anybody going in for it has already worked on that and possibly doesn't have one anymore?

Pain/puking: Probably no more unpleasant than with a tongue piercing. I drank lemonade immediately after my second set. Nothing.

Eating: Yes, it will hurt. That's why you don't eat say, potato chips the day after. You wait until the swelling goes down(a few days), and then work your way up to sharp things. Enjoy all the ice cream in the meantime.

Crust: The mouth is self- and constantly cleaning. In order to get an infection in an oral piercing, you practically have to try.

The ridiculous comments in here just remind me once again why most people who ask about my piercings now get little more than a grunt or monosyllable and a rolling of eyes.
posted by Su at 9:54 AM on June 15, 2002


Aii, Su.

I have no problem with any piercings that you or anybody else has. I don't necessarily understand why some people go to such extremes, but it's none of my business, is it? No, the only thing I don't like is seeing still pictures of uvula piercings and other similar things. Seeing it live is a completely different thing for me: it's nowhere near as shocking.
posted by ashbury at 10:01 AM on June 15, 2002


Then why look, ashbury? You even looked further into looking at and posting the link to PAs.

I just don't understand why people who are grossed out by piercings go looking for more?
posted by SuzySmith at 10:13 AM on June 15, 2002


I just don't understand why people who are grossed out by piercings go looking for more?

Simple curiosity?

I have tragus piercings (which I personally don't find unusual at all) but inevitably get asked "what else and where else..." questions. And I have asked the "grossed out" individuals why they want to know, to which they almost always reply: "Just curious."
(just my 2 cents)
posted by gummi at 10:30 AM on June 15, 2002


The people who choose not to get pierced also dish out their fair share of grunts, monosyllables, and a rolling of the eyes anymore. Specifically, it's because sooooo many people who are into piercings anymore have such a holier-than thou, "I'm more pierced than you" mentality. 2 of my best buddies are piercers at a well-known shop here in Columbus, and I've got to admit, I do my own share of eye-rolling when they show up with their chests and forearms pierced (I'm not making this up). Not to mention, the snobbery they display upon seeing and giggling about someone who has only 1 or 2 piercings is laughable in its own right.

In reality, it's really not that shocking anymore folks. But more importantly, people will do what people will do. I don't like piercings, but I happen to like tattoos. I have quite a few of them. I get weird looks from some people, sure, but it doesn't bug me because I was privy to those situations when I went into it. If someone wants to get their uvula pierced, well, it might be silly to me but I can understand that some others may want it done. Of course, it seems perfectly plausible that such a person may fit into the "I'm taking piercing to the final frontier" category, which I find be a proponent of the cheesy, "I'm more pierced than you" mentality. I didn't attempt to get tattoos on every nether-region of my body - I got them because I liked what they stood for and I really don't need another one any time son. I certainly don't look down on others for simply having 1 tattoo, cause for some, 1 is all you need.
posted by tiger yang at 10:32 AM on June 15, 2002


why most people who ask about my piercings now get little more than a grunt or monosyllable and a rolling of eyes.

Funny, that's exactly the reaction that people who imbed foreign objects in their flesh get from me!
posted by rushmc at 10:34 AM on June 15, 2002


What I don't understand about habitual body-piercers is how angry some claim to be about non-modified people staring at them. If a person dyes her hair blue and gets piercings in her eyebrows, nose, lips, and tongue, it seems to me that she's voluntarily given up her chance to blend in.

"I am unique! I am different! I will prove it with all these modifications! HEY! What are you looking at? Don't stare at me, you drone."

Baffling.
posted by swerve at 10:49 AM on June 15, 2002


www.MetaFark.com
posted by matteo at 10:54 AM on June 15, 2002


Uvula pierce, Ivula pierce, Wevula pierce (or so the song goes).
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 10:57 AM on June 15, 2002


Then why look, ashbury? -SuzySmith

You know, that's a good question. I don't really have an answer for you, except one that was already given: simple curiosity. It's the same reason I stare at traffic accidents, roadkill, a couple having an argument or any number of other things. They're all interesting to me, plain and simple.
posted by ashbury at 11:04 AM on June 15, 2002


After rereading my last post, it occurs to me that the examples I provided are either morbid or negative. I do not in the least believe that piercings are morbid or negative, although many people who have piercings do tend to exhibit such characteristics. Did my explanation put my foot further in my mouth?
posted by ashbury at 11:07 AM on June 15, 2002


The thrill of rebellion. Just put it on my Visa. "I wanna be unique just like everyone else!"

I would never voluntarily mark my body with anything that would make it easier for the authorities to identify me.

Please someone explain to me the difference between UNCOOL body modification (say, having plastic bags of saline installed above one's breastbone, or having the excess fat vacuumed out of one's abdomen) and COOL body modification (piercings, lip plates, neck lengthening, whatever). Is it only cool if aboriginals did it first? Is it only hip if it "challenges the Western idea of beauty"?

And how soon will it be before those ridiculous and meaningless "tribal" tattoos that were so popular among the doom-and-gloom set some years ago are seen for what they are: the aesthetic equivalent of repainting the crown moulding to match the new wallpaper? Would it be cool to get your uvula pierced so you could sport a Nike logo on it?

Sheep. Perforated, tattooed sheep.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 11:50 AM on June 15, 2002


"Hey, I've got an idea, lets all express our individuality by doing the same thing!"

"Its so tribal."

The folks I know with multiple piercings are some of the most boring people I have ever met. Same with the tattoo crowd. guess the got to get attention somehow.

My 2 cents...
posted by sharksandwich at 11:58 AM on June 15, 2002


Bitteroldpunk:

Wow, brilliant minds think alike (hee hee).

I threw myself headfirst into the punk/hardcore in the mid to late eighties, replete with "distressed" clothing adorned with slogans while sporting a chin length devil lock (think early Danzig). One day it dawned on me that making yourself stand out just sets you up quite nicely for the authorities you were supposed railing against. "Blend in" became my motto. You can get a lot more done being inconspicuous, trust me. I still get a kick out of people with bumper stickers with jokes about the driver being drunk. Why not paint a huge sign on the car that says "If it's bar time and you see me driving, pull me over". Me? My byzantine Jesus Christ airfreshener and Support Your Local Police bumper sticker have gotten my by in a few situations. Really.
posted by sharksandwich at 12:08 PM on June 15, 2002


Danzig. You know, as much as I hate to admit it, that second Danzig record (Lucifuge? Lucifugue? Something like that.) was really quite good....

I'm with you on the anonymity, shark. Always wondered what those granolaheads with the Grateful Dead stickers on their VW buses were thinking....."Please bust me!", I guess.

On the other hand, it sure was fun to sport a bright blue Mohawk and a Minor Threat T-shirt when I went to pick up my stepkid from the principal's office, where he'd been sent for wearing an "offensive" T-shirt (The Nirvana "In Utero" album cover on the T-shirt was evidently deemed offensive due to the naked anatomical dummy...which was a replica of the one they had in the science lab...).

Let's face it -- it's fun to scare the squares. But it's a slick slope from there to goosestepping with the Fashion Nazis.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:48 PM on June 15, 2002


any vulva piercings to look at...?
posted by semmi at 2:28 PM on June 15, 2002


Rushmc: Funny, that's exactly the reaction that people who imbed foreign objects in their flesh get from me!
What, when they come up and ask you why you're so normal, or whatever? How often does that occur? In my experience, people with body modification by and large have developed the decency to leave others alone regarding their appearance.

Swerve: If a person dyes her hair blue and gets piercings in her eyebrows, nose, lips, and tongue, it seems to me that she's voluntarily given up her chance to blend in.

Nuh uh. This isn't a question of blending in. First of all, I don't like being looked at in general; this was before getting any of my metal. I don't have a holier-than-thou attitude in regards to my pieces. I'm tired of being asked what else I have expectantly, like I'm going to strip down and show all(for the record, everything is in my head, anyway). I'm tired of being asked by the cashier at the supermarket how I eat. I'm obviously managing it somehow. If the questions were intelligent or meaningful, and maybe not rude, I might not be so irritable.

My piercing is personal. It is not for attention. I don't like attention. It is not rebellion. I have had nothing to rebel against. My appearance otherwise(clothing, hair, etc) is pretty restrained and even bland by many people's standards. My piercings are an expression of my view of my body, and that applies to no one else, not that I could explain it to them.
There are different views of beauty in the world. I would rather see a girl with a giant blue mohawk and combat boots than some battle skank in a halter-top and those ridiculously bleached out jeans that have come into vogue recently.
If someone wants to get bags of saline stuck in her chest, she can go right ahead. I don't generally find fake boobs attractive, but frankly, that's because most of the jobs suck. If it were done well, you wouldn't know. I don't walk up to those women and ask them if their noses are real, or tell them that they've defiled their bodies by changing them. I have had total strangers approach me on the street and have the fucking audacity to tell me that I've ruined my face. I don't ask amputees how they get food to their mouths. It's common courtesy. And more importantly, it's none of my damn business.
We all look different. Degrees do not suddenly invalidated my right to be left the hell alone, or given some basic respect.

Sharksandwich: Fuck your tribes and BOP's Visa. That was cheap, and you both know it. Try again. The "tribal's" are an almost entirely separate subset of pierced/tattooed people, and you would realize that if you understood anything about them.

BOP: There are no cool modifications. They're all essentially equal. It's people who choose to be pointlessly judgemental on questionable basis who generally talk the loudest. But you and Shark would know that, eh, having made the last four consecutive comments? And incidentally, I have almost never seen a tribal tat on anyone in the doom-and-gloom set. They're much more common on the frat boys they're ostensibly supposed to horrify. The fact someone might not have had a mod done for the (questionably) deep reasons the Aborigines do does not cancel out the possibility of doing it just because you like how it looks, particularly when there's no claim of profundity being made.
I like how some piercings look. To hell with the Aborigines. End of story.
posted by Su at 2:30 PM on June 15, 2002


those ridiculous and meaningless "tribal" tattoos that were so popular among the doom-and-gloom set some years ago

What's wrong with mere personal adornment? Why must a tattoo be meaningful? What if someone just likes how it looks?

I have a friend with a "tribal" armband tattooed around his upper arm. Look closely and the jagged bits are broken, leaning skyscrapers; at the center the curves form a peace sign with the digits "9-11" underneath. Meaningless?

Sheep. Perforated, tattooed sheep.

I think "lemmings" is the metaphor you were searching for, but it's not a particularly useful comparison either way.
posted by Mars Saxman at 2:34 PM on June 15, 2002


My byzantine Jesus Christ airfreshener and Support Your Local Police bumper sticker have gotten my by in a few situations.

that bumper sticker idea is genius.... i got pulled over 7 times last year (not for driving hazardly and i don't drink. i guess i'm out late a lot, and i live in a very conservative area of a convservative city.), and this is gonna help...
posted by lotsofno at 2:38 PM on June 15, 2002


I once read a magazine essay that discussed individuality. The example they gave was a trumpet player who had spent a great deal of his life practicing. As a result, he was a superb trumpet player. He shared his talent with others, to the delight of audiences around the US. His ability to play the trumpet set him apart from others, not his easily modified physical appearance.

By the way, I have nothing against people who have tatoos or piercings. I am often curious to know the meaning from those who are willing to share. I just think it should be done for the right reasons. If you do it to get attention, to be different or rebellious, maybe you should rethink your motives.
posted by jaden at 3:45 PM on June 15, 2002




Su said: If the questions were intelligent or meaningful, and maybe not rude, I might not be so irritable. ... My piercing is personal. It is not for attention. I don't like attention.

You get your face pierced and then expect people (human beings, the common rabble) to just take it in stride? Come on, this is people we're talking about. <g> People don't just take strange and unusual things in stride. And face it, once you get outside the confines of your own subculture, piercing is strange and unusual. You seem like an intelligent and thoughtful person; how could you not expect stares and rude questions? You'll get them until piercing goes really mainstream, and I'm talking mainstream as in when news anchors and corporate CEOs and farmers start getting their eyebrows pierced.
posted by RylandDotNet at 3:54 PM on June 15, 2002


A piercer I met at DPW swears by Apadravya Piercings(another non-work-safe link).
She said it's her duty to give as many as possible, as it greatly increases sexual pleasure for both partners.. way more than a PA. Ryland: a great t-shirt I saw yesterday said :
You laugh at me because I'm different, I laugh at you because you're all the same..
posted by Fstop at 4:04 PM on June 15, 2002


I absolutely shudder to imagine what lengths future generations are going to have to go to in order to shock and/or piss off their parents. Seems all the easy stuff is used up already.
posted by John Smallberries at 4:05 PM on June 15, 2002


Evan: Really. One example, believed to be the first of its kind. Piercing is not nearly new. You do the math.
BTW, almost every fruit or vegetable you eat is covered with E. Coli. Don't touch the doorhandles in bathrooms. Or go out in the sun. There are chemicals in your water. In the air, too. Don't let the doctor touch you with his pen. Coffee may be hot. Do not operate hair dryer in shower. Pencils are pointy. Better watch yourself, you could get hurt.
Calculated risks, every day. Just the way things work.

Ryland: I don't have any illusions about this. I can deal with the looks. I either ignore the people, or stare them down if they're being especially blatant about it. But I don't expect rudeness, and anybody who does should think about how sad that is.
When someone I don't know comes up and says something stupid and/or offensive, I'm going to express my irritation. The funny part is that they get offended if I reply with something as simple as asking why they wear the particular clothes they do. I see it as an equivalent question. It's apparently a great insult when someone asks what "else"(winkwink) I have pierce to reply with, "If you can't see it now, you're not supposed to."
posted by Su at 4:17 PM on June 15, 2002


As far as I can tell people get these things done in order that people will look at them... so why complain about all the "ewww's" when non-pierced people actually look?

Actually I have a funny story on the subject -- someone I know had her tongue pierced, without the first clue as to what that implied (namely, a predilection towards giving oral sex). When she was told, she was allegedly too embarassed to leave home for two weeks.
posted by clevershark at 4:48 PM on June 15, 2002


I'm pierced and tattooed, I didn't get them so people will look at me. I got them because they are beautiful to me.

In fact, my tattoos have helped me to love my legs again. My legs do not work properly for a period of time I hated them. Every new tattoo on them, helps me in my acceptance of my body.

I'm not heavily modified, I have my ears pierced multiple times, a nostril screw and four tattoos. When I wear pants and my hair as I normally do, all you can see is my nostril screw.

I have had my hair every color of the rainbow over the years, now, it's my natural color. I get more remarks about the blonde in my hair, than I ever did about the pink, purple, etc.

I didn't get my piercings or tattoos to rebel, either. I'm not a teenage girl with a navel ring or a piece of tribal work across my low back that peeks over my low rise pants.

Instead of looking at people for what adorns their flesh, why not just look at people as people? I don't stare at those without mods, maybe I should start?

As for this:

why most people who ask about my piercings now get little more than a grunt or monosyllable and a rolling of eyes.

Funny, that's exactly the reaction that people who imbed foreign objects in their flesh get from me!


Do you think the same of women who have just one set of holes in their ears? I'd be willing to bet that you don't. Why is one set of piercings acceptable, but more than that, not?
posted by SuzySmith at 5:10 PM on June 15, 2002


What, when they come up and ask you why you're so normal, or whatever?

No, I was thinking of the ones who come off with the "cooler-than-thou" attitudes.

There is a lot to be said for maintaining all of your eccentricities and variations from the norm on the inside. Keeps people guessing.
posted by rushmc at 5:12 PM on June 15, 2002


Do you think the same of women who have just one set of holes in their ears? I'd be willing to bet that you don't.

I'm not fond of them, no (the holes, not the women), but they are a lot less obtrusive, you must admit.
posted by rushmc at 5:14 PM on June 15, 2002


When I wear pants and my hair as I normally do, all you can see is my nostril screw.

I am in no way trying to be rude or mean, SuzySmith, but that line completely caught me off-guard; I started to laugh...
posted by tenseone at 6:07 PM on June 15, 2002


Boring. Simply mind-numbingly predictable. Think about it: Where can't you hang an ordinary little ring? That shows about as much genius as a earhoop. Show me an inspiring tattoo any old day, and it'll definitely peak my interest for more than a fraction of a second. Feh!
posted by Quixoticlife at 6:44 PM on June 15, 2002


The "tribal's" are an almost entirely separate subset of pierced/tattooed people

By that very statement, you demonstrate tribalism. The body modification scene is entirely tribal: it's apparent through every post that has been made in this thread.

The me-versus-them attitude is especially prevalent in those who have made body modifications that are significantly unusual and visually apparent.

It is simply *impossible* to have a visual appearance that is non-standard and *not* stand out from the crowd -- and regardless how much one might protest that the change wasn't made to garner attention, it must have been made with that in mind, for if one truly valued anonymity, it would be impossible to take things to such an extreme.

In fact, tribalism extends to us mundanes, too. The first split is between the mundanes and the uniques (or would-be uniques). The next split is between the various factions in the uniques crowd; tats versus piercings, for instance. And within those tribes, further splits.

It's built into the human being: we're social creatures and need to define our societies. It's the root of cultures, of tribes, of countries, of competition and cooperation.

I think I'll quit rambling now. Hope it makes sense to someone...
posted by five fresh fish at 6:52 PM on June 15, 2002


Yeah, fff, it does. I agree entirely, and am reminded of that Emo Phillips gag (the only amusing thing I associate with him) :

I was walking across a bridge one day, and I saw a man standing on the edge, about to jump off. So I ran over and said "Stop! don't do it!" "Why shouldn't I?" he said. I said, "Well, there's so much to live for!" He said, "Like what?" I said, "Well...are you religious or atheist?" He said, "Religious." I said, "Me too! Are you christian or buddhist?" He said, "Christian." I said, "Me too! Are you catholic or protestant?" He said, "Protestant." I said, "Me too! Are you episcopalian or baptist?" He said, "Baptist!" I said,"Wow! Me too! Are you baptist church of god or baptist church of the lord?" He said, "Baptist church of god!" I said, "Me too! Are you original baptist church of god, or are you reformed baptist church of god?" He said,"Reformed Baptist church of god!" I said, "Me too! Are you reformed baptist church of god, reformation of 1879, or reformed baptist church of god, reformation of 1915?" He said, "Reformed baptist church of god, reformation of 1915!" I said, "Die, heretic scum", and pushed him off.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:02 PM on June 15, 2002


It's built into the human being: we're social creatures and need to define our societies.

Not me. I'm a tribe of one.

Besides which, the truly weird don't need to cultivate eccentricities. Some of the freakiest looking people I've met have been the most utterly boring and vice versa.

As his majesty Bo Diddley says, "You Can't Judge a book By the Cover...."
posted by jonmc at 7:02 PM on June 15, 2002


Is there a tension in this debate between 2 reasons for being pierced? On the one hand the piercings that have some use (tongue stud, clit hood, etc) and the purely esthetic piercings?
posted by davidgentle at 7:08 PM on June 15, 2002


You laugh at me because I'm different, I laugh at you because you're all the same.

The fact that this is a mass-produced t-shirt says it all...


I once read a magazine essay that discussed individuality. The example they gave was a trumpet player who had spent a great deal of his life practicing. As a result, he was a superb trumpet player. He shared his talent with others, to the delight of audiences around the US. His ability to play the trumpet set him apart from others, not his easily modified physical appearance.


Amen, Jaden.
posted by Espoo2 at 7:12 PM on June 15, 2002


No, I think the tension here are between the people who are attaching waay too much cultural significance to the adolescent practice of puncturing themselves and the rest of us. If one wants to puncture themselves (or tattoo themselves, or cut themselves with razors, or flog themselves with chains, or wear a hairshirt), go right ahead. But step off the sanctimonious soapbox and stop pretending it goes any deeper than the tattoo needle or the piercing gun sinks into the epidermis. In any culture there's a median level of acceptability, and in modern America this pretty much still stops at pierced ears. Go beyond that level and you're going to get noticed as aberrant. The reaction to your aberrance may not necessarily be a negative one, but it will still be a reaction. It's disingenuous to pretend that you're not expecting it (or perhaps desiring the attention on some psychological level).

And it's also dishonest to pretend that sticking holes through sensitive parts of your body is safe. It's not. the risk may be low, depending on what you've decided to wound, but there's still a risk. You're creating a wound which the body tries to heal, whether it's your earlobes or, G-d forbid, your glans. This is not something that should be taken lightly.

Calculated risks, every day. Just the way things work.

Sorry, but your logic is faulty. Yes, we take many calculated risks. Eating is a calculated risk, but it is also necessary for survival. Popping a hole through your face is not (though if it seems like it is, you might have a problem). And all food is not covered with E.coli. If yours is, I'd start getting it from a different market.
posted by evanizer at 7:32 PM on June 15, 2002


Su said: I can deal with the looks. I either ignore the people, or stare them down if they're being especially blatant about it. But I don't expect rudeness, and anybody who does should think about how sad that is.

It seems strange to me that you differentiate between passive rudeness and overt rudeness. Someone staring at you is just as rude (IMHO) as asking you a stupid and impertinent question. However, my point still stands. Any piercing more flamboyant than a simple earring is going to be stared at and questioned, if only from simple monkey curiosity. Rudeness it may be, but that's the way people are, it's basic simian programming to persecute the other apes with gross differences in appearance. If you don't like to be stared at or questioned, don't get the piercing. As evanizer said, it's disingenuous to pretend that you're not expecting it. Expecting it, hell, you're counting on it. Sticking pieces of metal in your flesh, no matter how you've convinced yourself to do it, is an act of victimless insanity, and unsophisticated people are going to flick shit at you for it.
posted by RylandDotNet at 8:05 PM on June 15, 2002


Tattoos and piercings in 2002 = mullets in 1992.
posted by TimeFactor at 8:35 PM on June 15, 2002


Hey TimeFactor, Let's leave the mullet's out of this shall we?
posted by jonmc at 9:01 PM on June 15, 2002


Is there any body part that someone doesn't have pierced these days?
posted by SisterHavana at 9:16 PM on June 15, 2002


Huzzah for punching holes in your body for fashion.

Me, I've yet to find fault with the default number of holes in my body.
posted by NortonDC at 10:33 PM on June 15, 2002


i must admit, the final result of the scarification process can look pretty intriguing .
posted by o2b at 10:47 PM on June 15, 2002


Someone staring at you is just as rude (IMHO) as asking you a stupid and impertinent question.

Never, never move to Korea, RylandDotNet. Trust me on this one. After years here, I still cringe a little inside every time I leave the house, 'cause I feel the same way about it, and I get stared at constantly, being the large, goateed, blue-eyed foreigner colossus that I am.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:48 PM on June 15, 2002


Someone staring at you is just as rude (IMHO) as asking you a stupid and impertinent question.

Mommmmmmm, he's looking at meeeeee....
posted by kindall at 10:59 PM on June 15, 2002


Heh.

I got the standard earlobe punctures when I was around thirteen.

I basically never wear anything in them. No, they haven't closed up. When I feel like wearing earrings, I wear magnetic ones or clipons.

All this fuss, sheesh. You wanna talk about staring? Think about someone whose whole head has endured massive severe burns, that'll get ya some stares...

(still thinking about that thread from the other day)
posted by beth at 12:00 AM on June 16, 2002


BTW, is asking stupid questions de facto rude? I mean, it might just be an expression of stupidity rather than outright desire to offend. You can't expect people to know that asking people with tongue studs how they eat is offensive.
posted by Charmian at 1:13 AM on June 16, 2002


BTW, is asking stupid questions de facto rude?

When I'm asked how my nose ring (a small silver stud) stays in when I blow my nose; I consider that a stupid question.
posted by gummi at 2:30 AM on June 16, 2002


and rude.
posted by gummi at 2:31 AM on June 16, 2002


everyone's favorite stupid/rude question: "did that hurt?"

of course it did, you fuckhead. stop bothering me and my labret.
posted by patricking at 2:51 AM on June 16, 2002


FFF: It is simply *impossible* to have a visual appearance that is non-standard and *not* stand out from the crowd -- and regardless how much one might protest that the change wasn't made to garner attention, it must have been made with that in mind, for if one truly valued anonymity, it would be impossible to take things to such an extreme.

Uh, no. Remind me when I said anything about anonymity. I want to be left the hell alone. Very different concept.

Sticking pieces of metal in your flesh, no matter how you've convinced yourself to do it, is an act of victimless insanity

Wait...WHAT?!?
I officially give up on this. This is ridiculous.
posted by Su at 2:52 AM on June 16, 2002


If you want to be left the hell alone, you wouldn't have modified your appearance such that you stand out in a crowd like a sunflower in a wheat field.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:04 AM on June 16, 2002


five fresh fish said:
By that very statement, you demonstrate tribalism. The body modification scene is entirely tribal: it's apparent through every post that has been made in this thread.

Actually, it's far more apparent in the assumptions people seem to make about it. I'm not convinced such a tribe even exists - if it does, it doesn't seem to include most of the people I know who have had such changes made. The idea that any body modification must be intended as some expression of uniqueness or as an act of rebellion is something I only hear from people who are offended by these practices or fail to understand them.

The me-versus-them attitude is especially prevalent in those who have made body modifications that are significantly unusual and visually apparent.

Most likely because they are tired of being asked the same gawky ignorant questions.

evanizer said:
No, I think the tension here are between the people who are attaching waay too much cultural significance to the adolescent practice of puncturing themselves and the rest of us.

And yet you are the one who can't resist tossing in "adolescent". You have it backwards: it's tension between people who attach way too much cultural significance to other people's body modifications, and those of "the rest of us" who are bothered enough by that kind of silliness to speak up.

But step off the sanctimonious soapbox and stop pretending it goes any deeper than the tattoo needle or the piercing gun sinks into the epidermis.

Would that be the same sanctimonious soapbox from which you are currently holding forth? Who, in this thread, has made any such claims about any kind of body modification?

Sorry, but your logic is faulty. Yes, we take many calculated risks. Eating is a calculated risk, but it is also necessary for survival.

And your argument is even faultier. What does survival have to do with it? If you try to claim that you take only those risks which are necessary for survival, then I submit that you are either lying or misunderstanding the activities you undertake.

Do you invoke this same moral tone against, say, skiers? Hikers? People who jump on trampolines, or have swimming pools in their back yards? Do you make sure to walk to the store instead of driving?

RylandDotNet said:
If you don't like to be stared at or questioned, don't get the piercing. As evanizer said, it's disingenuous to pretend that you're not expecting it. Expecting it, hell, you're counting on it.

Once again, the assumption that getting a piercing is somehow about making a statement and shocking people. Once again, this assumption is - so far as I can tell - imposed completely from outside. Nobody I know has ever listed "shocking the masses" as a reason for getting a piercing.
posted by Mars Saxman at 10:37 AM on June 16, 2002


My byzantine Jesus Christ airfreshener and Support Your Local Police bumper sticker have gotten my by in a few situations.

According to a ganja merchant I know, an I'm A Volunteer Fireman and a D.A.R.E. are the two best bumperstickers to have--it's a free pass on the first DUI.
posted by y2karl at 1:06 PM on June 16, 2002


Once again, the assumption that getting a piercing is somehow about making a statement and shocking people. Once again, this assumption is - so far as I can tell - imposed completely from outside. Nobody I know has ever listed "shocking the masses" as a reason for getting a piercing.

Same with tattoos. I would imagine that most people get them because they like them. Sure, you're going to get attention and silly questions (like 'What's that?'), but it comes with the territory. Let it slide, or offer to let the starer take a photo since it lasts longer that way.

I live in a country that's still pretty conservative, and the worst thing isn't people staring, it's people assuming you: a) must be wild and promiscuous so they can grab you and be disgusting, and/or b) couldn't hold down a job / have a good job / read / listen to music that doesn't involve heavy use of the distortion pedal.
posted by jetgrrl at 9:39 PM on June 16, 2002


I don't care for either piercing or tatoos. Nobody pierced anything more than an earlobe when I was a kid. At least, not intentionally. I did know a biker chick with a tatoo - a Harley emblem and the words "Born to Ride" in a Germanic looking print. It was a great conversation starter.

Unlike a tatoo, with a piercing, at least you can detach the hardware. Tatoos are permanent, but constantly evolving. Sometimes, a few artfully placed hairs will sprout through them, and skin sag gives them a nice surrealistic, Dali-esque quality.
posted by groundhog at 7:37 AM on June 17, 2002


According to a ganja merchant I know, an I'm A Volunteer Fireman and a D.A.R.E. are the two best bumperstickers to have--it's a free pass on the first DUI.

Especially if they are on the back of a Volvo. Funny isn't it, how people are judged by their appearance....

It is not rebellion. I have had nothing to rebel against.

Maybe that's the problem right there.

Instead of looking at people for what adorns their flesh, why not just look at people as people?

Clothing and jewelry are semiotically charged, especially when protruding from a previously unperforated area. Saying, "Oh, it isn't about what other people think" is too easy, because if you really didn't care what other people thought then you wouldn't care about getting piercing in the first place since it's someone else's idea. Wouldn't it be worse if it DIDN'T make a statement? What a waste of time and effort.

I absolutely shudder to imagine what lengths future generations are going to have to go to in order to shock and/or piss off their parents. Seems all the easy stuff is used up already.

That's easy -- they'll go to church, vote Republican, and listen to country music.

Why must a tattoo be meaningful?
Because symbols convey meaning and tattoos are symbols. Because they mean something whether you want them to or not.

And if I'd meant lemmings, I'd have said lemmings.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 10:30 AM on June 17, 2002


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