July 19, 2009
Learning about Ourselves and Our Mothers - in a Tattoo Shop!
NPR features author Jancee Dunn speaking about her new book Why is My Mother Getting a Tattoo?
"We were all finishing up dessert and then my mother made this crazy announcement," Dunn tells [NPR's] Liane Hansen. "She said, 'I'm getting a tattoo and nobody can talk me out of it. I've already decided.'"
Longtime Rolling Stone journalist, MTV veejay and author for numerous other publications, Dunn introduces us to an intergenerational dance of voices between mother and daughter.
As written on her blog, [i]n her early forties, Jancee Dunn began to wonder why she still felt like a 13-year-old around her family. Talking to her friends, she found the same was true for them—despite successful jobs, marriages, and families of their own. Do we ever really grow up, she wonders? Why is the slow, sticky process of prying ourselves free from our parents and childhoods so difficult? In Why Is My Mother Getting a Tattoo?, Dunn examines the phenomenon, with scenes ranging from a "haunted Savannah" tour gone wrong to a visit to a tattoo parlor with her sixty-ish mother, who is dying to get a raven inked on her wrist. Finally, Dunn and her sisters arrange a visit to the house where they grew up, a bittersweet but comic experience that answers her questions and puts her at peace with her parents—until the next tattoo parlor visit, at least.
Kickback this summer and enjoy the read!