DISCLAIMER: If you are Chinese and read this, do not take offense. I have included some things in here that help the reader understand the magnitude of the situation, and also mind you, I was with 4 Filipinos, and they had the same problems as I did. I love all people, and I embrace all cultures. I just have a serious issue with people thinking I am not intelligent, and trying to ride me for money.
So, with that being said, I was feeling frisky on Saturday, and I decided it was time to get my new tattoo that I had picked out.... No bigger than a dollar coin, and in blue, white, and black.
I was with my friends Renei, Don, Kevin, and Mary Ann, and they were all very excited for me and were happy to be there with me to get my new ink job. As they searched around the shop, sat on the couches, and looked through artists portfolio's, I waited patiently to talk to the lady at the counter.
This mid 50's Chinese lady (and I am not being racist or prejudiced, this whole situation just erks me a bit, and she happened to be Chinese is all) had some kind of welding helmet on of sorts, a rubber apron, and not one noticeable tattoo on her, was running the front desk. I finally got her attention, and I told her what I wanted.
THE CRAZY BITCH QUOTED ME $220!!!! OMFG! Right?
The first words out of my mouth were, "You're serious?"
She replies: "Yes, see, becaw dis a pafek suckle, see? Ottiss only ha one chance to make dis pafek suckle, and de long ottiss mess it up and you have no pafek suckle on body fo lest of rife." (yes, I am doing dialect now)
Me: "You're serious?"
Crazy Chinese Tattoo Lady: "Yes, you only get pafek suckle hee (here), and das why we chodge $220 dolla."
Me: "And, the color of course, that's what you think should charge more for as well?" (At this point, I really want to know the reasoning behind the bullshit)
Crazy Chinese Tattoo Lady: "No, weely juss da pafek suckle. You no get pafek suckle anywhale. We pafek suckle here, is hod find goo ottiss who can do."
Me: "Well that's rediculously overpriced, and I think I will take my business elsewhere."
Crazy Chinese Tattoo Lady: "You no get pafek suckle anywhale else."
Me: "Um, yes I can, and I will get it somewhere else, and I know for sure they are not going to rip me off at an asking price of $220. I can go to St. Louis or Memphis to get this same tattoo for about $60. And I am sure I can go to any other tattoo shop here in San Jose or even in San Francisco for about the same."
Crazy Chinese Tattoo Lady: "No whale chodge fo lat plice, you won't get pafek suckle."
Me: "Um, whatever. I think your pricing is ridiculous, and you can screw some idiot out of $220 some other time. I'm not retarded, and I know thew tattoo industry. (To my friends) Let's bounce, I'm done with this bullshit."
Another reason for my distemperment-perfect circle my ass! Any tattoo artist worth their salt should and would not be afraid of a freaking circle. That's why they made fancy outline machines with fancy tracing paper and other such neato novelty items for tattoo artists to help with their trade. I have never in my whole adulthood of having multiple tattoos, ever heard such a ginormous, unmeasurable amount of bullshit in my life!
Now, at this point, I really feel the fire and smoke coming out from my ears. My friends with me had about the same reaction of shock and awe and not to mention the audacity of this woman.
So I took it upon myself to yell at Kevin to find where his artist had moved along to.
We find Humble Beginnings in Jozay (my loving term for San Jose). Not necessarily what I would name a tattoo parlor, because it sounds more like a rehab center, but oh well. We walk in, and theatmosphere is ten times better than Da Wei. It's brighter, you can actually see artists working on people, and they actually have their work made into posters on the wall, as well as albums easily accessible on the counter and in a good presentation also. The previous shop had posters of ink magazines on the walls, and no real artwork from the tattooists. I should have taken pictures to have you all get a good idea of what this whole experience was like.
I meet the artist, and of course, he could not fit me in. In my previous experiences with tattoos, you could just walk in, pick out what you want, get inked, and go home. But apparently here in California, you must make an appointment. This appointment thing bothers me since I usually get tattoos spur of the moment, but usually knowing what I want. I want it, and I want it now, because I am ready now. That kind of thing, you know?
Reluctantly, I made a deposit of $40, an appointment for Saturday at 4:30, and guess what he price-quoted? $80! I'll take it! You know why? I want this tattoo done in California, and I am willing to make one last inflated purchase for the cost of living here, that's why. So, after work Saturday, I will jet on over, get my ink done, and be fulfilled. I will definitely post pics for everyone.