Monday, August 26, 2013



Whenever I see a person with a tattoo, I get intrigued.

Why do people have tattoos made on their body?

Why do some beautiful persons stain and blemish their soft flawless skin?

Why do they go through the expensive and painful process of inking?

What is the reason people want to have a tattoo? 

In order to understand this mystery I decided to go into the basics of human behavior.

Tell me: “Why do you behave in the way you do?”

You behave in a certain way to satisfy your needs at that point of time.

In fact, all your behaviour is governed by your intrinsic motivation to satisfy your needs.

Yes, your needs influence your behaviour

The process of human behavior can be summarized in four steps:

1. A need is aroused within you

2. You behave in a way to satisfy the need

3. The need is satisfied

4. You relax

So, what do you think are the “needs” that motivate a person to have a tattoo?

Do you have a tattoo?


Do tell us: What was the “need” you wanted to satisfy by having a tattoo?

Was it the need for thrill and adventure?

Did you have a tattoo to satisfy your need to seek attention?

Or is your tattoo your way of expressing your sense of rebellion in order to satisfy your needs for freedom or self-expression?

Did you have a tattoo due to peer pressure to satisfy your need to belong or conformance or identification with a group?

Historically, tattoos were used to brand slaves – so maybe you wanted to be “branded” as someone’s “slave” so you got that person’s name tattooed on your body.

Is that the reason you got your lover’s name tattooed on your body – to fulfill your need to show off your love or your need to be dominated.

Did you want to display to the world that you “belong” to your lover and you are his “slave” and vice versa?

What will happen if you break up with your lover whose name is tattooed on your body?

Someone once told me that people have secret tattoos in hidden places on the body which no one can see – like at the base of the spine on the lower back just above the derriere.

It is a mystery as to why people have such tattoos, but obviously they are satisfying some need – maybe some need for secrecy or sensuality or exclusivity.

They say that tattoos are expensive, painful and permanent.

I also heard that tattoo removal is even more expensive and painful.

I read an article once that in many cases tattoo removal may be ineffective.

They say that it is impossible to actually remove a tattoo – you can lighten it, nothing more.

And you may never get back the flawless skin that you had before you got the tattoo done. If your skin is sensitive, it may get damaged or discoloured forever.

I am sure that before a person decides to have a tattoo done on their body, they know all these implications.

But their “need” is so strong and overpowering that it motivates them to go ahead and satisfy their need by getting a tattoo.

Like I said earlier, historically, tattoos were used to brand slaves

In ancient times, tattoos were used as a mode of communication between spies.

Once upon a time, members of some mafia used to wear symbolic tattoos to identify as members of a certain crime syndicate.

Seamen and sailors came back with tattoos, a tradition that would soon become associated with men of the sea.

But all this happened in ancient times.

I wonder why so many people have tattoos in this modern age.

If you have a tattoo, or intend getting a tattoo, maybe you can answer this question and tell us:

Why do you have a tattoo?”

Copyright © Vikram Karve 2013
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2013 all rights reserved

Did you like reading this story?
I am sure you will like all the 27 stories in my book  COCKTAIL an anthology of Short Fiction.
To order your COCKTAIL please click any of the links below:

If you prefer reading ebooks on Kindle or your ebook reader, please order Cocktail E-book by clicking the links below:

Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll
If your are a Foodie you will like my book of Food Adventures APPETITE FOR A STROLL. Do order a copy from FLIPKART:

About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal:
Professional Profile Vikram Karve:
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog:
Twitter: @vikramkarve
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
Post a Comment