God, family and tattoos

my tattoos, often people ask me what they mean and where i got them, so here goes.

i have a rose on the top of my wrist with the word "family" beneath it, that one is pretty self explanatory. i got in San Juan, Puerto Rico at a parlor on the beach. the dude tattooing me knew as much English as i do Spanish, that equates to "no" and "hi". SWEET! the thing that i failed to take into consideration was that i had been outside at the beach all day, didn't think that maybe i was sun burned. when his gloved hand hit my skin and pulled back i almost jumped out of the chair!

on my left wrist is written purity and on my right wrist is written truth. both of which pertain to God. got them at East End Demographics.

on my right arm is a 1957 Chevy Bel Air Hardtop, light green paint with a white top. side note: the artist who did this tattoo is named Sara "Monster" Kennedy and she has become on of my good friends. when i first met Sara she had her arms folded and she was leaned back in her chair glaring me down. i think that she thought i was looking for tribal work or something. so when she started the peice i was asking a great deal of questions. one of which was, "how much did that gun (i was refering to the tattoo machine she had in her hand) cost you?" she stopped what she was doing, looked up at me and said, "that was a free bee and i'll remember that your IGNORANT to all this. ITS NOT A GUN!" she said sternly. "its a machine!" from then on i have always had a greater respect for the craft of tattooing and the artists. and i must say that i think Sara could beat me up if she wanted to. this was my dad's first car. i really enjoy getting tattoos that symbolize things or people, this is the perfect symbol for him. my dad has been in the automotive business since he was 17 years old in Santa Ana California. he started out doing oil changes and basic tune ups on cars. this is what, i believe, started the love affair he still carries to this day. my father is an awesome man. he has a handle bar mustache. drives a 1969 Volkswagen Baja Bug to this day and loves life. he is one of the oldest kids you'll ever meet!

above the rose and below the bird is written "no compromise". i got this tattoo shortly after Gen Now summer camp last year. the theme of last years camp was "no compromise". coincidence, i think not. this one is more of a reflection of my view on life and more importantly my view on God and Christianity. no grey area, none! that's how i desire to live my life in every way.

above that is the bird. its a sparrow with "est 1983" written beneath it. that's the year that i was born. i got that tattoo at Philadelphia Eddies in Philly. the area is called South street and its awesome, had a great time out there.

on the inside of my forearm is the a-typical "praying hands", written beneath of it is "forgiven". once again that is rather self explanatory.

above that is written "just restin my eyes". this one pays homage to my Grandpa Gibbons who passed away the summer of 2002. every time that we would come over to my Grandparent's house and get ready to back out to lunch or wherever, he would sit down and fall right asleep! i'm talking within 15 seconds the man was out. but when you stirred him he would lift his hat and reply, "i was 'just restin my eyes.'" whats funny about that is my dad recalls all his growing up he would do the same thing. thinking of a tattoo for him proved to be a little challenging. he served during the WWII, landed on D-Day, fought all the way through Europe for 3 straight years, then came home, got a job and started the family. yet, he did not identify with the Army. so i got what reminded me most of him, "just resting my eyes."

on my right bicep i have a tall ship because i served 4 years in the USN.

on the inside of my right bicep i have a rose that say "mom". because i love my mommy! say something!!!!

on the back of my arm, my tricep, have a 1911 model Colt .45 with a silver (grey) oak leaf on the pistol grip. these were the side arms issued to all officers during WWII. my grandpa, Jack Jones, was that officer. we called him PoPo, long story behind that one. he served in the Army for 20 years and retired a Lt.Col. he passed away a few years ago. it was an odd time for me personally. i remember talking with my dad and trying to decide whether i should go visit him while he was alive or wait and go to his funeral, i choose to visit him in the hospital. there were two very distinct features about him that i will always remember. he had piercing blue eyes and a full head of hair. so i flew out to California with the direct intent on seeing him, and i did. it was brief but very good. i prayed with him and spoke for a few minutes then left. after i got back to base (this is while i was in the Navy) that day my dad called me and informed me that PoPo had passed away. looking back on it now i wonder if God kept him here so i could see him one last time.

on my right shoulder i have a wasp but not just any wasp, its Fifenella. it was originally designed by Walt Disney for the Women Air Service Pilots, WASP. my grandma Gibbons was a pilot during WWII. she stayed state side, as most did. what she would do is pick up the plane at the factory in say, Kansas and fly it either the west or east coast. her favorite plane to fly was the AT-6 Texan, it was the fighter of the day. she told me that one of the most nerve wracking times she ever had flying is when she was towing tank targets behind her, that tanks were shooting at! she is still alive and well in Santa Ana California. in July she'll be 87.

written across my chest is "set free" because i am set free from all sin. read the book of Romans.

on my left rib cage, the whole thing, is a spin off of the "rock of ages" work. its a cross on rocks with water around it. beneath of it is written "grace". i need to finish it but i'm scared of the pain. it hurts, a lot!

and lastly (for now) on my upper back is a trinity knot with the words faith, hope and love around it. i started it in Chicago Il. and finished in Clairmonte California.

so you see my tattoos are not an opportunity at rebellion or of anything malicious but simply the story of my God and my family.

hope you enjoyed.

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