March 8th, 2007

stygian spiral shallot sigil

(no subject)

"... If you're a transvestite, you get lumped into that weirdo grouping, you know? When I was in New York, there was a guy in the Bronx who was living in a cave … like you do, and he was coming out and shooting at geese and… (chuckles) a lot of weird things going on with this guy; and the police picked him up and they found a collection of women's shoes, and they thought, "Maybe he's a transvestite.” And if he is, he's a fucking weirdo transvestite! I'm much more in the executive transvestite area. Travel the world, yes, it's much more executive."
- Eddie Izzard

I have always tried to personally avoid the "executive $groupname" versus "weirdo $groupname" distinction. It's a real phenomenon, yes, but also a very subjective one. And with the fringes I hang out in, it's useful not to lose the perspective: Any given "executive" member of a subculture is still a weirdo to most people.

Be that as it may, I've been feeling a lot like an executive lately.
The author as elemental

I identify as a dragon and still maintain the widely used FAQ for people of like mind. I study magic and talk to spirits. I packed up my life and walked nearly 1000 miles of trail last summer. I'm polyamorous and have been bisexual (and still am both in theory, though in practice my commitment to kadyg comes first).

Yet despite my strange and convention-defying life, the main reaction so far to my tattoo seems to be surprise.

Apparently I come off as an executive freak -- to the point that people who thought they knew me are doing double-takes. I'm just not the sort of person who they would expect to do something as bizarre as ... you know. Label myself.

"Is that henna?" has been popular, though "Oh, that's permanent?" is another strong contender. My boss at the store was the most blunt in her admiration: "You're about the last person I'd have ever guessed would get a tattoo."

Hopefully those of you who read this journal have had a little more warning. I've mentioned it several times as being among my list of ten-year goals. On Saturday, it all fell together; the bookshop downstairs had brought in a ritual tattoo artist, and so underneath a blood moon, I had a sigil inked into my arm.

The tattoo, which you can see closer in my new user icon as well as by clicking on the picture above, is a stylized flame of my own design. I'll explain its significance in a subsequent post -- I just wanted to show it off as I check another goal off the list.