I wear the Minnesota necklace that my friend Sommer got me almost every day. I often get compliments on it, and I say I wear it because I am too chicken to get a tattoo.
I guess I can't say that anymore.
Last week, my friend Nora came up with an idea. Like many I know, she had been turning over Mitch McConnell's words about removing Elizabeth Warren from Senate chambers in her head — "She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted." And, I think like me, the ultimate irony was that, in meaning to demean Warren, those words gave her so much strength. Words have so very much power.
So, though in her words "I never thought I would get a quote from Mitch McConnell put on my body," she kept on thinking of it as a tattoo. And then she created an event for some of her friends. Wouldn't it be cool if several of her friends headed out and got the same tattoo together, and donated the proceeds to Women Winning?
And so she posted an event on Facebook. And I was like "hmm, maybe," because those thoughts had been going through my head too. I've never wanted to get a tattoo before. I thought they were fine for other people, but definitely not for me. But I couldn't stop thinking about it, so "interested" got changed to "going."
And then the post went totally viral, and all of a sudden a million people were interested. The event was supposed to start at 3 yesterday, and when I got there little before I was #45 on the list. So I headed over to make sure Beatrix was ok at circus, then headed back. By then, there were almost 300 people on the list (no, they did not make it through them al. I think they did about 100, which is amazing. Three tattoo artists, donating their time, were hauling ass at working through tattoos, while doing each one well and making people feel relaxed and confident.
The evening was incredible, if controlled chaos! I got to spend a couple of hours with wonderful women who were knitting, and reading, and hanging out, and writing postcards to Trump. Some were getting their umpteenth tattoo. Many, like me, were getting their first. I only knew Nora and Kate going in, but as I sat there, I felt surrounded by support.
After a couple of hours my number came up, and Kyle did my tattoo. I was both freaked out and determined by that point, but it went fine. Kyle was great and reassuring, the 3 ladies who were waiting on the bench nearby were wonderfully reassuring. I don't know that I would have gotten one without the event, but I am glad I did.
The most bad-ass thing I have done in my life is to watch my mother die. The second most bad-ass thing I have done is to give birth to Beatrix. But this is the third most bad-ass, and I wear it with pride.
Some links to stories:
http://www.mprnews.org/story/2017/02/22/she-persisted-tattoos (written by the awesome Tracy Mumford)
http://www.startribune.com/more-than-100-women-pack-mpls-tattoo-shop-to-get-inked-with-nevertheless-she-persisted/414494043/#7 (don't read the comments. really)