I do tattoos for a living. It's my main job, though I have a second and work nights too. I've been working in the industry for 7 years now, and I'm really passionate about it (I gave up a better paid accountancy job to do this instead). My work means an awful lot to me and more importantly, customer satisfaction.
But what came into the studio today was not a customer. At first seemed to be a gorilla, which had been strategically shaved so as to appear more human, only it had blonde hair dyed part-green and was far larger. Then as I'm sketching it waddles up to me, its rotund figure blocking my light like a solar eclipse and I pretended not to see it, which somehow provoked it to wave its sausage fingers (covered in chocolate, possibly shit) in front of my face, forcing me to look at it.
And god damn. This thing had a chin so fat I swore it was a goiter. It's eyes were black and soulless, shrunken in its acne riddled face as though even it's face was hungry and trying to eat itself. It was sweating profusely looking like Vaseline freckles despite it being 10c / 50f outside.
It looked at me with surprise and I knew I must have had a look of pure disgust on my face without realising. It was wearing a low cut top exposing its vast slabs of meat that at some point were supposed to be tits & jeans so tight it's cankles were squeezed out the bottom of them like cream cheese.
"I'd like you to do this for me on my thigh!"
It slapped a greasy, scrunched print out of a butterfly on my table, with remnants of lard or goose fat or whatever the fuck it had for its third breakfast in front of me, making my sketch and table oily too. It carried on, its goiter flapping wildly as it spoke-
"So I want it here, I was thinking really big and colourful, maybe the wings looping around to my butt-"
I blanked out. I was dry heaving. Fuck please no not the thigh. I tried to get the image of it out of my head while the butter barge continued, but I kept staring forward. As I looked down I saw my sketch which had taken well over 2 hours of my time for a client that afternoon, had grease stains and was wet with the hams sweat or spit.
"- so I was thinking today if you have time!"
"Ohh sorry I'm all booked today and I'm very busy in the next few weeks."
"So when's your next opening?"
"What?? But I just-"
"Sorry, very busy, no free time."
And it look down at the ground, it's buttery heart and hopes melting away, like the cheese it would stuff itself with as it posted on tumblr what an asshole I was and how 'weight bias' and thin privilege makes her a victim. A planet sized victim.
As a side note It felt great telling the revolting mound of flesh with eyes and a feeding cavity to fuck off. I had to tattoo a hams arm when I was first training because I couldn't be picky then I just needed the money. It was more like branding a cow.
And in case you've ever wondered - yes it is harder (and more vomit inducing) to tattoo a hog. Your blood is very related to what you eat, how much, and so is the health and healing speed of your skin. When a fat comes in I sigh because not only are they usually assholes who won't shut up about themselves, but their diet means the skin is so much harder to tattoo and the blood runs more because of fluid retention. Like chicken skin, and because most of them don't give a fuck about their bodies, a piece I am really proud of gets ruined or infected.
Fuck it, I know this piece is too long - thanks if you put up with it.
I hate tattooing hams.