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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

   More on the tattoo

Many thanks for the comments and such on my last post! (Wow, maybe I'm on the road to actually being active here again.) Since it was requested, here's a little info on the koi's significance to me.

There is a folk tale from Japan and China (slightly different incarnations in each, but with a pretty obviously common origin) about how if a carp swims all the way up the Yellow River in China and passes through the "Dragon's Gate," it will be transformed into a dragon and will ascend to a higher state of being. (Find one retelling of this story here.) The story is an allegory for a couple different things. Historically, it once represented how, in China, even a person born to a common family could attain a position of high power in the government through a lot of study and hard work (for several centuries in China, government positions were appointed based on how well you did on a series of exams, which anyone could take). Spiritually, it represents the Hindu and Buddhist cycle of reincarnation, wherein if you build up good karma through your actions in this life, your next life will be better than your previous one. Finally, on a very generic level, it's a cultural story that we're all told, no matter who or where we are: if we strive to work hard and improve ourselves, we will be rewarded (by wealth, status, happiness, or whatever appeals to us individually). Obviously I'm a big fan of East Asian culture and philosophy, so this design represents both the thought behind the myth and my affinity for the regional philosophy in general.

Also, I seem to have a thing for koi and fish in general. That sounds weird, I know, but they keep coming up in my various creative endeavors; the two-man acoustic cover band that my brother and I will someday do stuff with is called Dead Fish Symposium, and my hypothetical non-traditional instrument project is called Fishkilter, so it's something of a motif. Besides, koi are really darned beautiful.

The koi is just the beginning of a bigger design that my artist and I have planned; it'll involve several stages of progression from koi to dragon and will involve other symbolic elements found in the story. The whole thing'll be a "sleeve" style design, taking up my entire left arm. So, yep, the koi is on my left forearm. And yes, I just had it done on Saturday night, so it's still healing, and I need to apply a special petrolatum-based lotion twice or three times a day. It'll be getting to the peeling stage pretty soon, I figure, and it ought to heal completely within another two weeks.

Anyway, that's all I've got on that. Again, I'm glad that you guys like the design - I know I'm really thrilled with it, and I'm proud to have it be a permanent part of me.

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Sunday, January 6, 2008

Two words:

Thoroughly. Debauched.

Yes, it's what you think it is. Yes, it hurt a fair bit. No, I don't drink, and yes, I've been thinking about this for a very long time.

My artist was Ron at Slave to the Needle in Seattle. Mad, mad props to him for making it look so damned good.

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Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year's Eve, all.

I'm working most of the day, but the evening looks to be good.

Here's to the upcoming year. Keep on rockin' it hardcore.

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

   Long time, no see!

Since the beginning of the semester, I have: cooked many successful dinners, had an existential crisis, changed my major to Classical Studies, learned to read in ancient Greek, started running a D&D campaign, learned to play a complete song on my acoustic guitar, bought and worn a suit, baked two pies, built a bookshelf out of boards and cinderblocks, watched Star Trek, and gone to a Buddhist temple.

I call it productive.

I'm going LARPing again this weekend (have I really been doing this for over a year?), and next Wednesday, I'm driving home for Thanksgiving. I haven't had a huge amount of free time, but I've been writing a lot and doing some serious worldbuilding for my D&D game (in addition to that, I'm playing a chain-smoking ex-cop in my friend's cyberpunk GURPS game).

I'm going to a peace march this afternoon, since my school is right next to the capitol building. It'll be the second one I've ever participated in, so I'm very excited.

That's all the news that's terribly important. I hope everyone is having a good autumn!

Love and peace all around.

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