It’s a Choice… and not a smart one
(One of the 83 quick and practical life & work lessons from Sh*t Sandwich: Quick & Practical Success Lessons for Practically Anyone.)
Nothing Says “Don’t Promote Me” Like a Neck Tattoo
Hey Buttercup, I’m sorry if this lesson offends you, but there are realities about business that you need to understand today… before it’s too late. (Also, just because I’m explaining how it all works, doesn’t mean I agree with it.)
Nothing says I’ve reached the pinnacle of my chosen vocation like a permanent ink drawing on one’s face or neck.
Now, before you assume that I am just some elitist prude or someone who is too old to appreciate the younger generation’s respect and even love for body art, I have to confess that I have tattoos. In fact – until I got them removed a few years ago via some very painful laser treatments – I even had tattoos on my forearms.
Forearm tattoos (acquired while proudly serving in the US Marines) left me with two choices when I rejoined the civilian ranks: I could (A) work forever in positions of manual labor; or (B) wear long-sleeve shirts and see how far my abilities and drive could take me.
While I chose option (B), it is important to note that I was living in Phoenix, Arizona at the time, so I often looked like a complete dolt in mid-summer wearing a long-sleeve Oxford. And, while I no longer have to wear long-sleeve shirts, I still have three remaining Marine Corps tattoos, though they are easily covered by your average polo shirt.
By the way, I didn’t say you couldn’t make money if you decorate your throat with India ink murals. There are plenty of entertainers and athletes who’ve already disproven this theory. That said; you have to agree that they’ve clearly reached their pinnacle of success. These (mostly) guys need to pray that they invest their earnings wisely, as they won’t likely become CEOs of anyone else’s company once they leave their current professions.
The neck tattoo definitely makes a statement. Fair or unfair, to potential employers it says “I’m not real smart when it comes to life choices.”
Interestingly, it didn’t take long, but the neck tattoo has become as passé as droopy drawers, Mohawk haircuts and saying “winning!” The only difference between the neck tattoo and those other idiotic attempts at cool is you can get a belt, let your hair grow out, or simply stop saying “winning!” Clearly, this is not the case for those with ink above the collar.
The lesson here: If you want success today and tomorrow, think before you ink.