Bigger on the Inside: the story of a tattoo

If you’ve met me in the real world you know that I’m small and quiet. Not shy so much (anymore), not untalkative (I can talk your ear off), but loud is not a word that would be used to describe me. A bit bigger on the inside.

the only time i’m loud is when i dance
it’s the only time i don’t mind making a statement or being seen.
so when i woke up the morning after getting a gorgeous, bold, bright, colorful tattoo
i’m not going to lie, I freaked out a little.
and then I called on my aunt
you see, she has tattoos
and her daughters have tattoos
and she’s very no nonsense.
she laughed and told me I was fine
which I was
this year had a rocky start
fueled by a rocky ending to last year
and i think it all caught up with me in a moment of nagging self doubt
fueled by the world yelling at young adults for being irresponsible when they are just different
(i’m 27, do i still count as a young adult? i don’t know anymore but i’m surely not a day over 17 in my mind)

I posted a photo of it to instagram and twitter
(pictures or it didn’t happen)
the lyric
i am bigger on the inside
it’s an Amanda Palmer song
the internet is a magical place
and some times human things happen
she saw the tweet
she tweeted back “holy shit”
which i took to be good
then (i found out hours later) she posted it to facebook
and wrote about how surreal it is
(and now i’m writing about how surreal this is)
that i got a tattoo of a lyric from an unreleased song
(that you should listen to, grab some tissues)
a song, that doesn’t feel quite real to her,
because she hasn’t set it down,
made it official,
but there her words are, inked in my skin.
and something is alive and real in that.
something beautiful, enough to be believed
but i’ve heard the song enough in person and on youtube
to know that this song was something
i needed to hear
need to hear

and then,
it’s an intentional reference by her to Doctor Who
a show i enjoy immensely
i’m also small, only brushing 5′ tall
i’m much smaller on the outside you see

we are so much bigger
than another one can ever see
trying is the point of life
so don’t stop trying

promise me 

Tattoo done by Splat at High Priestess in Eugene, OR. He’s awesome!

The Thing About Things

i can carry everyone i love in one phone application
built to optimize the facetime with the ties i’m bent on making
actually i want to be alone
to mourn the loss
of what this cost
i collected you but now you are all lost

— The Thing About Things

Yesterday Amanda Palmer posted a song she’d performed for the first time last week. It hit me right in the feels and left me sobbing into my pillow. A tweeted at her:

It’s true these words. Some of them, are thoughts I’ve been struggling to coherently form. And others from the song were thoughts I’ve been needing to think. Things I didn’t know I needed. I want to tear my room apart and go over every little thing I’ve kept wondering why I’ve kept them all and cleaning out the things that aren’t real. The thing about things is that they can start meaning things no one actually said.

I could write for a long time about this entire song, but I want to really look at this one verse. It shows the triumph and the failure of being connected at all times. i can carry everyone i love in one phone application / built to optimize the facetime with the ties i’m bent on making. We’re always connected to the people we want to connect to, the people we think we might connect to, the people we wish we could connect with. Sometimes we do, sometimes we don’t. We pour our emotion into apps and hope that something human comes out. We don’t sit in silence, we flick our thumb down the screen pulling the refresh from the ether. We don’t want to miss a chance at something great and while we’re glued to a 4 inch screen the world around us keeps going.

actually i want to be alone / to mourn the loss / of what this cost. We don’t look up. At dinner we’re glued to our screens, on the bus, in between meetings. We forget to see the people next to us. The connections we’re bent on making fizzle for all our efforts. We collect our memories, our ideas, our friends, our idols in our phones, in our computers, on our TVs and Xbox’s. i collected you but now you are all lost. We put things away, each in it’s own app. Organizing as to keep connected. And in forgetting to look up, to see someone, really have that moment where you say ‘I see you’,  we’re connected yet lost. We lose.

Social media is a tool, full of potential. I’ll be the first to go off about how great it can be. I’ll also be the first to say I wish we could quit it because we’ve forgotten how to be human. So many people don’t connect their worlds across digital and physical worlds. We act as if they’re different places where we can be different things. And maybe they are, maybe sometimes it’s good to pretend so we can find out who we really are. But when we sacrifice our humanity, our connections to others, that’s where we fail. We try to keep connected, but in the barrage of media we become over saturated and we lose. For all our connections we connect less. We don’t look each other in the eye. We try to collect what we think is important and in holding on to things we don’t see what really is important.