Recommended wine for today’s entry: DaVinci Chianti. We’re trying a new pizza place/taphouse tonight, and they have this chianti on the menu. It sounds look a good pairing with pizza. Wine News gave it an 89, with this description, “Bright aromas of cherry and pencil show excellent balance. Sweet-tart flavors of black cherry, nutmeg and minerals. Wood tannins mark the close.” OK, I’m going to hope that the aroma of pencil eludes me, but otherwise sounds great. A couple regular people recommended it with pizza in their reviews, too.
I am willing to bet that none of you had quite as … um … interesting a Saturday as I did.
You see, in a weak moment, we agreed to let our 17-year-old get her belly button pierced. (She plans to go to law school, and if being manipulative is an asset in that endeavor, I would recommend all you lawyers out there start wining and dining this child now.)
She is a master. This time she used one of her best techniques: The Barrage of Ridiculous Requests.
It went a lot like this:
Can I go to Florida for Spring Break with all my teeny bikini wearing friends?
Can I get a tattoo?
Can I go to a party? At a house that a bunch of 20-year-old guys rent? It’s safe, it’s above a skate shop.
Can I get my cartilage pierced?
Can I get my belly button pierced?
Can I … (I’m sure the next request was probably going to be get married to a 50-year-old Parisian and move to the south of France, but here I cut her off.)
After No. No. No. NO!, we caved. The belly button was the least offensive of the alternatives. Acquiescing will buy us about 3 days of peace. At best.
So today, instead of watching college basketball like I usually do on my impressively productive Saturdays, off we went to the “body art” facility.
I was trying to listen to the Kentucky-Tennessee game on the radio (I’m glad I wasn’t watching, in retrospect), but my normally unflappable daughter was a bit nervous. She was babbling about how she wanted me to watch him do the piercing, to make sure it’s in the right place.
But I have never looked at a pierced belly button, so I have absolutely NO idea what it is supposed to look like. I told her that and she responded with, “How can you live in this world and not know what a pierced belly button looks like?”
Easy. I’m old.
Well, she eventually decided against depending on my input because suddenly she remembered that I had singlehandedly screwed up her ear-piercing experience. Apparently it was my responsibility to look and see if the proposed holes were even and I sucked at that call and caused her permanent disfigurement. Huh.
Well, I made it VERY clear that I was not watching ANYTHING today. I reminded her that I nearly fainted when I got my flu shot. She said she was sick of everything being about me.
Rather than react, I turned the game up quite loud.
After a few minutes of silence, she turned down the radio and said, “Don’t freak out when you see this place.”
“Yeah, I’ve been there with my friends before. There are three people who work there: a guy named Psycho, who is like 30 but has a long, gray beard and partially shaved head; a woman who does the tattoos, and a guy who speaks so slowly that you want to hit him in the back to get it out faster.”
I knew if I reacted, she’d say I was judgmental. So I didn’t fall for it. Instead, I said, “So, which one are you going to allow to gore a hole in your midsection?”
Psycho. Of course.
“Oh, and there’s a chart of the prices for everything. Don’t freak when you see it.”
“Why? Is it really expensive?”
“Um, no, it’s not that … it’s just that they offer piercings of places you wouldn’t normally want to see in writing.”
Well, I actually am glad she gave me that heads-up, because I would very likely have turned to the chart as a way of distracting myself from the sights and sounds surrounding me. Like the guy with so many piercings that it would seem that his Mountain Dew would go in the mouth and then squirt all over the floor from various apertures. Or the really good-looking guy who marred a perfectly good face by hanging a giant chandelier from his left nostril. And there was a truly androgynous human getting a huge tattoo of a red, cartoony songbird. The tattoo drill or whatever they use sounds like someone is being tasered. Yes, the body art place has its own character.
So I’m glad that I didn’t distract myself from reality by reading aloud from the price chart, because there are words on there that I would NEVER utter, even to my doctor.
When it was my daughter’s turn, we went up on this platform and she was instructed to sit in a chair that I am pretty sure was used in the making of SAW 3. She sat, and Psycho, who looked very much like Charlie Daniels, ran through instructions about the care and cleaning of the impending wound. I was reassured by his experience — he said he’s done more than 5,000 such procedures — and was trusting his knowledge and expertise. But then he said that people who think that they have to constantly turn the new earring (belly ring?) to prevent the ring from growing into and fusing with the skin have obviously never taken physics.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t think Newton’s law or any other of the common tenets of physics involve the growth patterns of skin or tissue and surrounding metals.
So maybe he wasn’t Einstein, but he was, as promised, fast and gentle. She grabbed my hand and squished it pretty hard, but she didn’t make a sound. I would like to say she didn’t flinch, but I don’t know what her face looked like, because I was busy counting how many silver cars went by outside the front window.
Next year’s flu shot? Sure, I’ll still hyperventilate. After all, it’s apparently all about me.