TL;DR - Having Tattoos in Korea

Uploaded by simonandmartinabonus on 26.06.2012

theobamathellama askes
What is the the Korean perspective on tattoos?
I know that Koreans are quite conservative
And I know that you both have tattoos
so can you tell us some reactions you've gotten?
Especially in terms of finding a job as a teacher
So I would say that tattoos aren't that popular in Korea
You might see them on some people look a little
There's a coffee shop beside our apartment
in which there are bunch of guys
and they have full tattoos in sleeves on both arms
and they drive really nice cars
like you see them parked around
And it seems like their only job
is like seat outside the coffee shop and smoke and drink coffee all day
and give you like dirty cut eye when you walk by
and they have really suspiciously hot girlfriends
and they are not that hot themselves
So... whatever that job is I want..
it seems pretty awesome
What the heck!!
You have a tattoo and have a super hot girl that walks around
No!! I mean like they looks like what all they do is like
smoke and drink coffee
not that I want to smoke, you know what?
I take my question back
You better take that back
I would like to do that ...
I would like to do over
Now it's not just unsavory looking people like Simon
who has tattoos..that's right I'm talking about you
You will see a lot of artist, people on bands if you go to HongDae
They might have tattoos
and you might see like people who does b-boy dancing
which I call them..
They do the b-boy dancing
I don't know what to call you
Could you tell me what you professional term name is?
B .. BOY..Z
Is it a S or a Z?
I can make anything uncool
so... I don't think you should challenge me on this
But the reason why you are not gonna see a lot of people with tattoos
because actually tattoo in Korea in illegal
Supposedly illegal
Like what I mean is you can find them
but we have a tattoo artist that we go to in Korea
But the first time when we went to them
we had to like call them and they would only meet us
and bring us to the tattoo place
There is like a secret password like
The Russia is looking very cold today
and they would say
Would you like a submarine
and I would say
Only cold cuts and three cheeses
and then they let you in
Actually that part didn't happen
Should have happened though
Supposedly in Korea who are legally to give tattoos are doctors
It's for cosmetic purposes only
we are not talking about like art in you arms
The only times that like tattoos are common in Korea
are when women get eyeliner permanently tattooed on their eyelids
which to me
sound a lot scarier than drawing on my arm
It's funny because when I had my feet tattoos updated
teachers were like shocked
like "Didn't that hurt?"
like...You have a tattoo on you eye ...
like 50 years old
It's a lot more intimidating
no..It's done by doctors..It's cosmetic
like ....That's scary..!!
Doesn't matter whose doing it
They are drawing on your eyelid!
with a needle.....scary..
Now, it's not like as taboo as, same example in Japan
where you try to go to a public bath house
it specifically says
No tattoos are allowed
Even though you have a tiny little butterfly on your ankle...
that's probably to do with the Yakuza and all that stuff
In Korea, I still go to the public bath and Jimjilbangs
where you are totally naked
Everyone sees my tattoos and no ones like
"You can't come in here"
So it's not THAT conservative
but you are not gonna see tons of Korean people
running around with tattoos
And whether if they are seating in a coffee shops all day
and give you stinky eye
They don't give me stink eye
Is that because I'm a girl???
I don't believe so...
Oh...It make all sense now
When you come to teaching in Korea
specifically getting a job
if you have tattoos or showing tattoos on the job
It's probably better if you not to show them..
Not to really talk about it
It's not that someone is going to fire you for
or who knows maybe they will..
but still it's not something that is looked upon like
"Hey cool~ you've gotta show it to the kids~"
You still want to keep it hidden
So when I got my tattoo touched up in Korea
I really didn't want to wear my long sleeves short over it
so I went up asking co-teachers about the policy is
if I should keep it hidden or if I could show it
because kinda felt itchy and I had to put on cream
But they went up saying..
you must keep it hidden
Don't let the principal see it
especially don't let the principal see it
and don't let the students see it either
And it was especially rough during the summer time
when I taught a basketball camp and when I was sweating so hard
I just wanted to wear jersey
but I had to wear one of those
long Ah-joom-ma arm sleeves
so I could keep my arm hidden
so no one can see my tattoo
it was not pleasant
you successfully went through that whole time without a single student seeing it
very true
good for you
how about a high-five mister?
Totally missed..
I was going to Boom shakalaka
As for me I had long hair
no one could see my tattoo on my neck
When I cut my hair
I just didn't bother to hide it
It's a little difficult to hide your neck when there's nothing to hide it anymore
Unless like
"Hey guys ~~~"
And most people didn't even notice it,
they thought it was fake at first
and when people did notice it
they were like surprised
So I just kept covered as best as possible
my foot tattoos I tried to wear like little socks over them
so it wasn't really a big deal
but it was kind of the same thing when they said you know
"Don't make it show... don't let the principal really see it "
So.... I guess the teachers dress up conservatively any ways
You shouldn't be walking around exposing your tattoos
That's true..
I hope we answered your questions..
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