March 2, 2011
I got my ears pierced for the first time when I was 16. Two friends and I went to the doctor’s office (which is where things like that were done in small-town 1967) and the doctor told us each that he was going to give us a shot to numb the area. Well, he didn’t. That was just so we would think the actual needle going through the earlobe was the anaesthetic shot.
We were told to bring our own earrings and they should be smooth gold balls. I wasn’t able to go shopping for my own earrings (can’t remember why, at this late date) and asked my mother to do it for me, and she paid no attention to what I’d requested and got me some cute little flower shapes instead. The doctor was dubious, but that’s all I had, so he put them in. And that, I think, is how I got my nickel allergy. My ears were crusty and oozing in no time, and I didn’t think my parents would finance another trip to the doctor (my dad had actually forbidden me to get my ears pierced because it “looked cheap”) so I had to fix the problem as best I could by taking the offending earrings out and putting, I shudder to think about this now, short lengths of nylon guitar string through the holes till they healed. Ugh.
Years later, I got a second set of ear holes, and by that time the piercing gun was all the rage (we didn’t yet know how ridiculously un-sterile those things could be) and earrings had evolved considerably, so it was possible to buy non-allergenic earrings off the rack. By the time I got the third set of ear holes done, properly, in a piercing store, the array of body jewelry available was downright amazing.
Since the first time I saw a bellybutton piercing, I’ve thought they were amazingly attractive. I just wish I wasn’t such a tubby old lady–I hate to think what a piercer would have to do to put one of those rings into my bellybutton. 🙂 The other night at the upscale mall we passed a kiosk that was just loaded with glittery, sparkly, dangly bellybutton rings and I stopped to look at them–but the kiosk girl knew just as well as I did that there wasn’t much chance of a sale there.
Still, I was curious enough to look up bellybutton rings when I got home, just to see what the prices were like. Wow, there are a lot of body-jewelry web sites out there! Ye gods, if we’d only had the internet back in 1967. 🙂 One of the sites I thought was particularly good was Fresh Trends. It’s not just for belly button rings, but that seems to be one of their specialties and the selection is amazing.
They also have a full line of tattoo aftercare products, earrings (including some cartilage-piercing earrings I’ve never seen before), rings, t-shirts, you name it. Sure wish someone would invent a time machine so I could give my teenage self some way better jewelry to start out with.