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Apr 10

My Original East Van Cross thanks to @GastownTattoo

Posted on Tuesday, April 10, 2012 in Pictures

That was a nice way to spend a Good Friday; and I am sure I will rot for this one, as the Catholic guilt pours though the veins of a very sore arm.!

Maybe today proved that I am in a mid-life crisis – I don’t know.  I don’t think so though.  I realize for most of my “un-inked” friends and family,  it appears that I have completely lost it.  At almost 46 I decide to go from no tattoos a month ago, to two as of this past Friday.  What the hell is going on?!?!?

Well, I don’t now if I really know.  Like I said after my first one, I waited 25 years to do this and I am now at a time in my life where the permanence of the tattoo and the messages that they convey, are totally fine with me.  In fact they make me feel complete, as corny as that may sound. 

I chose my designs.  I knew, and know, what I was doing.  I picked two tattoos so far that I would have never picked 25 years ago, but two that I know I will still love 25 years from now. 

That is pretty important as when I think about the things I wanted tattooed when still in university, and I have told numerous people this; “If I had I done the stuff I had wanted to do then; I would probably have had twenty tattoos today, and probably have eighteen of them that I regretted! “

If there is one thing I did right, it was waiting until I was older and getting something that was not so much in the moment, but rather a part of my life now and going forward.  Permanence scared me into a “smarter” decision.

My first tattoo was “Kootenayborn”.  I am sure you can guess what part of the province of BC that I might be from by that… “Kootenayborn” has been my online name and identity for the almost 15 years of online life; starting with ebay, and now being used on most social mediums that I am on from Flickr, Twitter to Youtube and etc… I have even gone as far as registering, .ca, and .net.  

This to me was a great way to start the tattoo adventure.

I picked the Russian font style – Kremlin Advisor Display Kaps by Bolt Cutter as this ties into the Russian heritage of my Mom’s side of the family.  This tattoo really means something to me; and quite frankly, it is “me”.

The second tattoo that I just did was a tribute to my immediate family.  My wife was born and raised in East Van, my kids were born, and are being raised in East Van, I have lived almost 20 years in East Van, and will probably not be leaving East Van anytime soon.  East Van reminds me a lot of Trail, the city in the Kootenay’s where I was born.  Ethnic and working class.  Not the glamorous folks, but the real folks.  Not the richest in dollars, but the richest in life.  The kind of people that I grew up with.  The kind of people I admire and the kind of people I like to be with.  Some of my best and dearest friends are East Vanner’s!

The cross and East Van are obviously not original in concept.  I am sure most reading are familiar with the East Van cross.  I have always liked it, but it did not mean anything deep to me.  I wanted something original and something that was mine.  I drew my cross and East Van on a napkin (pictured below) when on holidays.  The cross, although not truly Catholic, is what I liked in a cross and is what I wanted to use to show my faith.  The East Van, in the Russian font, is used for reasons described above – family…  This was my tribute to my family and to my home.

I think Garret at Gastown Tattoo Parlor did a great job and I am really happy with my designs and my choices.  I guess I should give Garret a little credit. He did a pretty good job making my chicken scratch look pretty cool!

Two down and a few more to go ;-)

Ciao for now @kootenayborn




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