A Response to Tattoo-hating Joe Teo Kok Seah on Straits Times – from a Young Singaporean

I refer to this article (titled Stem spread of tattooing trend in Singapore) Joe Teo Kok Seah wrote on 12 December. (I’m sorry I was overseas.)

First of all, what is the whole point of this random af article? Is this an advanced Christmas gift to your narrow minded comrades? Or was there a tattoo fest coming up, idgi, did everyone get the memo? ???????

Second of all, let me quote Joe.

In many public places, we often come across adolescents proudly displaying their tattoos.

Look at these adolescents.

In the past, tattoos were associated with triads, gangsters and shady characters. They normally belonged to the underclass and outcasts. This is why society in general is disapproving of them.

You do realise you mentioned “in the past”. Why did you switch to present tense thereafter? By saying that the society in general is disapproving of them, you are just referring to you, yourself and your fellow narrow-minded comrades – which, for the record, do not stand for the “society in general”.

Let me just skip the whole part on “a tattooed individual is not a bad person” talk because it’s almost 2017, we are all pretty done with this bullshit. I am convinced everyone now knows, regardlessly, and still hates on tattooed people, because they can.

Also, we should take good care of our bodies. Sadly, this advice is not heeded by many in the young generation.


You know what else we should be? We should not be judgmental individuals but LOOK AT YOU JOE, LOOK AT YOU. Sadly, your article is proof that such advice isn’t heeded by many people like yourself. So hold that finger to your mouth and hush, baby, just hush. If you can’t heed an advice so basic, don’t expect someone else to heed an advice coming from yourself.

You know what else should be temporary? You. You can take your temporary stickers to the back and stick them onto yourself.


Tattooed people are committed individuals.

Because we aren’t afraid of making a decision and sticking to it for LIFE. Let’s not forget that people over the age of 22 still do tattoos. People at 40s still walk into the parlour and get tattoos. So which part of a “later in life” are you talking about? Just because you can’t be committed doesn’t mean everyone else is going to regret their decisions.


Tattooed people are life-loving.

Because we LOVE and embrace art. We express our lives with art. We literally wear our hearts on our sleeves. We don’t conceal.


Tattooed people aren’t afraid.

We aren’t afraid of showing who we are. We aren’t afraid of making decisions. We know judgmental people like you exist but we still go ahead with it – we know we’ll be judged but we don’t care. We aren’t afraid of people who are actually afraid of coming out and being who they are.


Old tattooed people look badass.

“Don’t get tattoos because when you’re old, your tattoo wrinkles and it’ll look ugly.”

UGLY?????? WHAT UGLY? See this: What Do Tattoos Look Like When You Get Older? Ridiculously Badass, As Demonstrated By These Tattooed Seniors



Dear Joe,

I hope you got the memo that it’s already end of 2016. We’re moving on. Times are changing. Stick to ur bullsh and I pray for your grandkids. I hope they grow up loving life, doing what they love and most importantly, grow up being loved for being themselves. I hope you’ll embrace them for who they are. Tattoos are literally only skin-deep. I hope as it goes on you’ll understand that life isn’t just about tattoos. Go find something else to hate on. Like a child rapist or something.


I’m done


  1. Hihi,

    Got redirected here through tinder–>Instagram –>blog

    Evidently I think you’re cute.

    I also agree with all the points you listed here. If I may, I would just like to point out that “regardlessly” is not a word and “regardless” would suffice.

    Keep writing! Good stuff 🙂



  2. Oh yes do pardon me. Regardlessly is a word (thanks!), but it struck me because it didn’t seem like the right one in that context. Anyhow, like me when you see me on tinder :p



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