These Colors Don’t Run

A woman at the gym grimaced at me today.  “Are those decals?”

“Hmm?” I looked down at my shoes, confused.   I started to say “They are New Balance.”

“All over you,” she said.  “Are they decals?”

And for the first time in recent memory I was silent.  I just stared at her.

“They are tattoos,” I eventually said.  I said the word very slowly.  Tat-toos.

She stared back at me.  “Real tattoos? I guess the kids like them.”

And she walked away.

The kids?  Did she mean me, as in “You crazy kids and your tattoos!” Was she going to shake her cane at me next?  Or was she talking about my kids?  I was walking hand in hand with the girls on my way out of the gym when she offered up her unsolicited opinion.

I see her pretty often at the gym.  I suppose it is a good thing I just stared in silence.  None of the clever replies that eventually occurred to me  were particularly kind.

But I can promise you this.  I will be putting my yoga mat right next to hers tomorrow morning.  And I will be wearing the shortest damn shorts I own.  She thinks I have a lot of tattoos now?  Lady ain’t seen nothing yet.

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23 responses to “These Colors Don’t Run

  1. Oh man! I am visiting Risto’s rich relatives in Martha’s Vineyard, and I have never had so many questions about my tattoos! I liked “why does it say nobody not even the rain have such small hands on your back?” I explained that it was a line from a poem, but was tempted to say like, “what? You’re kidding! How’d that get there?!” Ugh, squares…

  2. Its so hard to say something back right there in that moment because you need time to understand what just happened. Right?! By the way writing about it in your blog is a super cool thing to do. :)
    Did you come up with things to say to her if she would have made some more comments during yoga?
    So far I only get people talk about the quality of my breast milk because our baby is noticeable large. I always fantasize about saying something bad ass but I am always brain dead when the situation actually happens. :P

  3. napperscompanion

    Ha! Love it. Is that tattoo Rosie the Riveter? Peace, John

  4. Maybe because you have such great coloring in your tattoos, she was baffled by their clarity. Obvs.

  5. I LOVE “Rosie the Riveter”! Great tattoo. Better story!

    My stock response when I feel judged is : “you wanna live my life then you’d better be ready to pay my bills!” That usually shuts people up :)

  6. And I am just sure you are very concerned about her thoughts!

  7. So many questions. Is she like grandma old? Has she ever spoken to you before? And most of all, what the fuck?

  8. I will be getting my very first tattoo (at 42) next year during my girls weekend. I’m excited. TWH thinks I’m nuts. Whatever. Cozy right up next to her tomorrow & smile as brightly as you can. That oughta freak her out.

  9. Honestly Kelly…I read your posts all the time! I love your humor and your genuine honesty! I have never commented on a story before, but I have shared a lot of them. I feel compelled to comment because I want to encourage you to sit next to her on the mat. It always amazes me the comments that people will make outloud! Once I had kids, I was very aware that the public has no tact and quite frankly should mind their own business! Its one thing to ask if the tats were real, but to go beyond that- unnecessary! Women will say- “Wow, are you pregnant with twins”- and I was only 30wks with one baby. I worked at a bank when pregnant with my first child- a man actually offered to “go out to his car, get some gloves, and reach up there and pull that baby out!” Um…whoa!!!!! Who says that?!?! Go ahead and sit next to that woman- and then teach her that some things are better left unsaid! Thanks for sharing your heart!

    • People say the craziest things! Thank you for your comment! I did sit near her and there wasn’t a peep from the peanut gallery! Nice to hear from you, America.

  10. So what you are saying is you drew them on LOL? I had my tattoo enlarged and made more colourful I guess about two years ago now. It’s pretty big, but because it only goes partially around my waist, but is mostly on my back, I don’t see it all the time. Sometimes I catch people staring and I think that I must have something stuck to my bum or something, and then I remember. No one’s ever accosted me like you were though. The lady’s just jealous. She wants your legs. :)

  11. Ooo she better watch out if you get too close. I hear tattoos are contagious.

  12. Ah, yes, when my dad started talking to DH’s groomsman’s wife (at our wedding) who was in his words, “All tattooed up like an urchin and I found out she’s a New York lawyer!” His mind could not fathom it.

    And each time I put a fake tattoo on the kids and “pop” sees it, he says, “As long as they don’t get real ones when they’re older.” *sigh* And I wonder, “Or???”

    When my daughter is 16 or 18 or so, I’d love to get matching tattoos with her. Wonder where I got that idea? :) DH is SO not a fan of this idea.

  13. I want a tat, but my husband thinks they’re ugly. Sigh.

  14. hahaha. . .love it!! Rock those tats girl!!

Gimme some love!! Please?

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