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Economic Stimulus Plan: Sit Under a Tree and Smell the Flowers

Posted by travissheridan on May 6, 2009

Try to follow this line of logic: I did a Rogue Show this year…people came out to support…I used (some of) the proceeds to get a new tattoo…I estimate the economic impact of my Rogue performance to be approximately $5921.16…I’m cool with that.

People came to see my show, they bought a drink or dinner, maybe bought a new article of clothing, hired a babysitter, saw more than one show, recommended a restaurant to a friend. Servers used the tips earned to buy groceries or something else. Performers (like me) spent their money in the neighborhood, bough luxury items like a tattoo (and an iPhone), bought one or two rounds of drinks for supporter, etc. Keeping the money in the community can really pay off.

In 2008 I picked up a copy of The Undercurrent and saw a beautiful piece of art on the cover. It was a piece entitled “Ferdinand” and was done by Fresno artist Susan Gutierrez. I loved the piece so much that I kept the March 2008 issue for quite some time. I knew that I wanted that art on my body…

So I decided that the proceeds from my Rogue performance was going to help fund the “permanent” purchase of some local art. On Saturday, April 18, 2009 I wandered into Tower Tattoos and it came to pass.

Below is a photo diary of the process:

The canvas (my right calf)
I wanted to find a place that followed the “mullet philosophy” of business in the front and party in the back. The right calf location was perfect because it allowed me to sport the tat while wearing shorts, but did not impact my professional image at work.

The doctor will see you now
This is when my breath quickened. I am sure glad I didn’t see stirrups. I liked all the protective plastic. Make me feel safe…but it also reminded me of that scene form ET when everything was under quarantine.

Color selection (it’s cool to incorporate my favorite colors)
I wanted to stay true to the original color scheme, but wanted to personalize it a bit also. I left a lot of the “choice” up to Lisa…she’s a good tattoo artist, btw.

Game face (hey, it hurt)
Did not cry…it was kinda funny, because sometimes it tickled and sometimes it hurt. Joy (pump it up…pump it up)…and pain (keep it goin’…keep it goin’ now)…you now the rest

Lisa, my artist, was really cool
I had to keep telling Lisa that it was a bull and not a cow. She kept calling it a “cow head”…geez.

Now she is starting to color it in
Ok. At this point I needed to call in some back up. I knew that there were “tweeeple” out there who could help. I gave a shout out on Twitter requesting a flask of goodness. Friends are great. Kiel (@archop) responded with a offer of Tequila, Rum or Johnny Walker…my answer: “Yes”

Kiel saves the day
When he first showed me the flask, I thought to myself, “I won’t need all of that…”

Lisa is still going to town and I slowing feeling less pain
Forget that foolish thought I had of not needing/wanting the entire flask…

6 ounces of Johnny Walker + Kiel talking design stuff = happyland

Got it under wraps
Two hours later and the piece is finished. Lisa did a great job. I spent the evening wiping blood off my leg. I forgot to tell Lisa that I suffered from hemophilia…(just kidding).

Finished product (touch up in a couple of weeks)
So here it is. Beth (my great lady) does not know did it…she knew I was planning it. I can’t wait to show her this evening. I told her that I picked up a new piece of local art…hehehe

So, why Ferdinand…
It was one of my favorite stories as a kid. I’ve include the Disney production for your reference. You see, I identified with Ferdinand. I did not like to conform to social stereotypes and I was always a bit more introspective. The interesting thing about Ferdinand is that is might and strength that people saw in him was a classic example of the fundamental attribution error. He accidently sat on a Bee, it stung him, and he ran about snorting and tearing through things. People observed this behavior and attributed it to Ferdinand’s personality (not to situational factors (stung in the ass by a bee)). People always remarked at how polite and mature I was as a child. They attributed it to my personality and, over time, it did become much more of my true self. But a the time, I was reacting to my situation: abusive home, immature parenting, expected to “be a big boy,” etc. Nobody ever realized that what I really wanted to do was sit under a tree and just smell the flowers…

I am taking more time for myself now. I really enjoy the numerous trees under which I get to sit. And,I am quick to identify behaviors that are the result of begin stung in the ass by that damn bee


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