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In Defense of Anal Tattoos and Maria Louise Del Rosario

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I have a tattoo, but not on my anus. Maria Louise Del Rosario has a tattoo on her anus. Two, as it turns out, though one is apparently over the other, so perhaps that only counts as one. I'm not really sure.

Ms. Del Rosario seems to have made an indelible impression as the Girl with the Anal Tattoo. Pictures of her bikini-clad and suggestive of being in-tattoo-flagrante have made the rounds of the Interwebs.

But why are we so taken by her choice of tattoo placement? Is it because we cringe at the presumed pain and feel like we have to share our collective "ouch" in a social media reflex? Is it because we all still like to say "anus" (it is a fun word), kind of an ode to our inner 12-year-old? Or is it because (for some) the anus still remains one of the last sexual roads less often traveled?

Whatever. Frankly, I'm a little envious of Maria's comfort with who she is, what she's done, and where she's done it. Not only is she talking about her anus out loud; she's talking about what she's done with it. Who else do you know who's done that, and in the media, no less? Most of the people I know would rather fake an appendectomy than admit to having to go poop.

Admit it: You've judged her. All right, I'll admit it. I did -- at first. I judged her and thought to myself, "Who in the world would tattoo themselves there and then actually let themselves be talked about as having done it?"

Maria Louise Del Rosario, apparently, and I say: You go, girl! Inhibitions, insecurities, and self-consciousness rob too many of us of the joy of living fully and doing what we want, whether or not what we want includes inking up an orifice.

If you had no inhibitions, no insecurities, no fears of being judged, would you live differently or do something differently?

I'm not saying you'd rush out and get an anal tattoo, but if you're like so many of us, at least something would probably be a little different.

So maybe instead of putting the Scarlet Letter "A" on Maria, we should applaud her for living her life not caring what "we" think but about what she wants.

"We" can be so quick to judge (and I'm amongst the "we"). But what are we judging? She did what she wanted, and it didn't hurt anyone else. Why judge? Disagree, sure. Not understand, fine. But why do we care enough to make it viral? Are we envious, if not of the act then of the abandon?

I'll confess to being uncertain, based on the little I've read, about exactly why she's chosen to get and share the getting of the tattoo(s). One article quotes Maria as saying her past suffering "gave me a free pass to live however I want and have fun." Suffering aside (and in no way do I mean to diminish suffering), it's life and the pursuit of happiness that give us the permission to live how we want and have fun. Why do we need to suffer to have a free pass? We don't.

So go on and get an anal tattoo -- or skydive, or quit your job, or write that book, or have sex with a stranger, or stay home from work to spend time with your kids, or dip your sushi in chocolate. Do what makes you feel good, and live how you want, so long as you won't regret doing it or feeling good about it. Why let anyone hate on your happy if it doesn't hurt them? It's your happy, after all.

As for me, I don't want an anal tattoo, but I say we ought to appreciate Maria, not mock her, for doing what she wanted, even (or maybe especially) if we don't understand it.

What do you think?