Monday, February 15, 2016

Mermaids and Flying Panthers



My friend Allison Ray Benevides and her husband Rob own this amazing tattoo place in San Diego called Flying Panther. I drove down on Saturday afternoon and into a world that I really have never experienced.





So much beautiful art on the walls and on the bodies of those working. Here's Sue:



Do you feel a little shaky? Do you have a presentiment?

Art by Rob Benevides


Do you remember what I was going to do by my 50th birthday?



That's me and Allison. I can assure you that I had already downed not one but two shots of straight vodka and thus look a bit bleary, but in real life, I swear my head isn't that big nor hers that small.

Why the vodka?



Whose arm is Sue gripping?

Take a break, Sue says, it hurts the most when you're close to the artery.




So, yes. I finally got my mermaid tattoo. That smile is a gritty one because it hurt a bit, but I did a whole lot of deep breathing, reminded myself of three childbirths and that time in ninth grade when I had a whole lot of packing in my nose after surgery and had to have it pulled out, and then -- to tell you the truth -- the pain felt sort of exhilarating.  I understand that there's a rushy kind of feeling while being tattooed and afterward, and it's distinct from the buzz of alcohol. I felt it.

Lest you think I've gone completely mad given the circumstances, I'll remind you that I'm 52 years old and have wanted to do this well before I was firmly middle-aged. So, I'm only partly a cliche. Still, it's a radical departure from the me that is me. Next thing you know, I'll be running in the Los Angeles marathon, swearing off pastries, vaping weed and avidly reading those books about the different shades of grey.

Well, maybe all of it except the marathon.




52 comments:

  1. Wow! You did it! Do you love it? Here's to rockin' middle age!

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  2. Madonna Mermaid. You beautiful woman! You did it!

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    Replies
    1. You would have loved this place, Mary -- there were Marys everywhere and Mexican goddesses and Guadeloupes. It was utterly wonderful.

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  3. I have three tattoos and they all hurt like hell. Congrats, it's beautiful!

    You don't have to run a marathon, you can walk it. Just saying:)

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    Replies
    1. I have no desire to run or walk a marathon. And where are your tattoos?

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  4. If I knew how to add an emoticon to my comment, it would be a huge smile!!

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  5. OH HOLY SMOKES SHE'S BEAUTIFUL! This just makes me smile all over.

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  6. Replies
    1. Well, hello Blue Gal! I'm glad you stopped by, and thank you!

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  7. Very nice design, it's lovely. Did they tell you to keep sunscreen on it? They'll fade faster if you don't and that would be sad.

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    Replies
    1. They did not tell me about sunscreen, but it's on the underside of my arm so not too exposed to sun, anyway.

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  8. Congrats! So happy I get to see you and your mermaid soon!

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  9. I'm thinking yes to everything except swearing off pastries. That will never happen.

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    Replies
    1. Ha Ha. I will never swear off pastries. Nor will I run a marathon or read THOSE BOOKS.

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  10. Ohh..where is the color? I love all of those bright colored designs.

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    Replies
    1. Ohh.. sorry to disappoint! I didn't want a colored tattoo.

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  11. Awesome! Did you design it or did someone do it for you?

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    Replies
    1. My friend Susan Arena, an artist, drew it for me many years ago.

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  12. Congratulations! She is beautiful and strong, just like you

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  13. Love, love, love. It does hurt like hell, but at least it's beautiful, and it was done by someone you trust. Gorgeous.

    (Does this mean your boys will be expecting to get tattoos soon, too? ;-) )

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    Replies
    1. Ha! I have informed my boys that there will be no neck or face tattoos and all other parts of the body will have to be tattooed with their own money, AFTER they've reimbursed me for any future college costs. :)

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  14. Wow, oh wow. Icon extraordinaire and adventure in the bargain. Marathon? There's so much else to do. Just saying. May we continue to surprise ourselves, well, at least may you. xo

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    Replies
    1. I agree, Marylinn. I'd rather climb Machu Picchu.

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  15. This is just the most fabulous thing! You did it! I'm so freakin impressed and she looks beautiful and wise. She is a fine opening for your next act. It's going to be extraordinary. It already is.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Angella. I like the idea of beginning the next act. I hadn't thought of it that way and am happy to do so!

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  16. I love it. And you. And love mine. All three after forty. And post Zoey. And come on, do a marathon with me. Maybe not the LA but another. Us almost firmly planted in middle age, tattooed ladies,would have a blast. How about a 5k to start? Love you friend.

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    Replies
    1. Well you sure were an inspiration because you, like me, are not the typical tattooed hipster lady! I think we're soul sisters in so many ways, Heather -- except for the marathon thing. And the 5K thing.

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  17. Holy Mother Of God! That is amazing. I wish I could know how you feel when you wake up tomorrow.

    PS: Every time you go to one of those conferences, I want you to pull up your sleeves so they can all see you...and Sophie. Amazing!

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    Replies
    1. Liv, I woke up on Sunday morning and felt fine! It doesn't hurt at all and is only a tad bit itchy. As for conferences, I'm on sabbatical. :}

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  18. It was an honor to be your hostess! So much fun. Love you! xo

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    Replies
    1. I loved hanging with you and so appreciate you holding my hand throughout, Allison. I feel a bit like you're my little sister. xoxxo

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  19. Beautiful! Am very impressed at your bravery tho will assume the pastries and 50 shades remain in their respective corners.

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    Replies
    1. I will most certainly continue with the pastries -- the 50 shades will remain mysterious.

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  20. I'm glad you did this! Good for you! And the design is really nice. It's a great tattoo.

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  21. That's is just fantastic! This just makes me smile smile smile...

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  22. Your tattoo is beautiful! Nothing cliche about it. The Flying Panther looks like an art gallery, they should charge admission to look around.

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  23. Deeply impressed, Elizabeth. Mermaidisyou! Now I've got to go see The Flying Panther.

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  24. I am so excited for you, Elizabeth! It is wonderful, beautiful! And it's not even all red and irritated looking. Tou are my heroine! I just so love you!

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  25. Wow, I'm really impressed by your determination. Your tatoo is wonderful and you are proof that is nothing about age! It's great thing to be adult - you can do everything you want.

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  26. Tattoos, yes!!! I have several and yes, they hurt but in a good way.

    XXXX Beth

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  27. Tattoos, yes!!! I have several and yes, they hurt but in a good way.

    XXXX Beth

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  28. You are brave and bold and beautiful and I love it so much! I could not possibly love it more!

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