Gina provided me the following commentary to accompany the tattoo:
Thanks to Gina for sharing one of her amazing tattoos with us here at Tattoosday!
"Sharing tattoos in this public forum is a little strange for me. I used to keep my tattoos covered when visiting family or working, and have only recently felt comfortable in the office at my current job letting them show. I tell my friends when I am going to get something new done, and I show them pictures afterward. However, I rarely, if ever, talk about the reason behind the tattoos.
I get tattoos for very personal reasons and the tattoos are for me, not for others. Strangers in public will often ask me about my tattoos or even go as far as touching my arm, moving my hair, or pulling up my shirt sleeve to see my work. What shocks me is that they often do not see anything wrong with their behavior. How often do people walk up behind strangers and rub their arms or ask them intensely personal questions? Someone once actually lifted my friend's skirt to see the tattoo on her thigh that stuck out some below her hemline. It would seem to go
without saying that what is beneath her skirt is not public. A tattoo is not public.
Sometimes when people ask me what a particular tattoo means, I ask them what they think it means. Usually people are able to put together a string of adjectives to which I respond, "That sounds pretty good to me."
I got this tattoo in September 2007 by Chad Koeplinger at Tattoo Paradise in Washington, DC. Chad is from my hometown of Saginaw, Michigan, and we grew up with the same people. I find this important. I kind of believe people who have a lot of tattoos are damaged in some way, and Chad, being from Saginaw, kind of gets my damage with no explanation. In 2006, I got a piece by Chad on the outside of my right arm, a fully-rigged ship, and then this piece, a gypsy, is on the inside of the same arm. To me, the pieces are related. They both represent people. This gypsy represents a particular person but can stand in for many as I have been lucky to have been surrounded by many strong women in my life. When I ask people what they think a gypsy means, aside from the occasional "stealing babies" comment, I often get strong-willed, mischievous, and free-spirited. To which I respond: "Yes, that sounds pretty good."
Please head over to BillyBlog to read one of Gina's poems.