I was away for the bank holiday weekend and it was one of those nice ‘bubble’ times – when I barely tweeted, didn’t read the Daily Mail Online and generally didn’t have a clue what was going on in the world of important news, or otherwise.
But when I did briefly take to my phone for a quick scroll through twitter (gotta give that thumb some exercise AND I was a bored passenger on the M4) the one subject that I kept seeing was ‘Cheryl’s tattoo’ #cherylcole #cheryltattoo #cherylsbumtattoo etc etc.
Then we flicked over to Jeremy Vine on Radio 2 who was also discussing Cheryl’s bottom tattoo and had a whole phone in going on around the subject – which especially focused on callers who bitterly regretted tattoos they’d had done years back.
Before I go any further – if you haven’t seen Cheryl’s now even more famous posterior – basically her whole lower back and entire backside is covered by a huge red rose design. I mean it is big (the tattoo, not her bottom) – and there is not a square millimetre of bare skin left. We are talking all BRIGHT RED TATTOO.
And so what? Seriously – judging by some of the reactions from entertainment sites and popular culture commentators – you’d think poor Cheryl was solely responsible for the current crisis in Syria. I honestly believe a tattoo is a very personal choice and decision and it’s no one else’s business. It’s a form of self-expression and one that I’m all for, if you’re SURE it’s what you want.
I have got two tattoos and absolutely love them. I forget they’re there to be honest but when I do catch sight of them I’m proud of how they look, why I got them, and what they stand for.
The first one I got was the words ‘Taim Laidir’ which means ‘I’m Strong’ in Irish on the inside of my wrist. I had just come out of a particularly horrible relationship that had taken all my self-confidence, and wanted an affirmation, a permanent reminder somewhere on my body that I am strong enough to NOT go through something like that again. I was chuffed to bits with it back then, and still am to this day. And I can honestly say if I am feeling low, I glance at my wrist and it gives me a little private confidence boost.
Then the tattoo bug slightly got to me and two years later, I decided I wanted another one. I wanted something else to reflect the importance of my half Irish upbringing – so after a lot of thought went for the ‘Claddagh’ design on my foot. Most Irish girls wear a Claddagh ring at some point in their lives, I still do and I love the sentiment – The Heart on the ring represents love, the Hands mean friendship and the Crown – loyalty. So I got my fabulous tattoo artist Lisa to design something that would work on my foot – and there it is! To be honest you only remember you have a foot tattoo in the summer – but I love it with flip flops and sandals.
Bizarrely when I got together with my boyfriend Jay we quickly realised that he has practically the same tattoo on his back. The difference being that his involved no careful thought, planning or meaning – I think it was more a drunken bet with his radio co-host Joel back in the 90’s. But hey, I still see it as a sign that we’re meant to be! Ha
Then a few months back I added to the words on my wrist – with a simple star. I had been through a fairly difficult time, and wanted the star as a reminder of getting through those tough times. So there it is, shining away under my positive words.
I think if Cheryl likes her tattoo and it means something to her – then what harm is she doing anyone else? We are all so quick to offer our opinions aren’t we? But I don’t think we’d take too kindly if Cheryl walked up to us in the street and told us she hated our hair or our shoes …. It’s the same thing.
I think if you are thinking of having a tattoo and are not sure – there are four rules you can set yourself. These are my tattoo rules but you’re more than welcome to take them:
1) Have the design in your head for 1 year before you do it – don’t act on impulse or simply chose something ‘standard’ out of the book
2) Don’t have it anywhere that can sag or stretch in years to come
3) Have your tattoo somewhere you can cover it up if you need or want to – I have a big watch that covers my wrist if needs be (not that I care) and a foot is easy – you have socks and shoes
4) Don’t get a partner’s name – my ex housemate did this and broke up with him a week later. Double ouch
So there you go – we are all entitled to our own opinions and that’s what makes the world an interesting place. But I am sure Cheryl and her pert little bottom are very happy together. Rose thorns an’ all.