In my quest to do something different on the weekend, rather than just eat (which we did anyway, thus somewhat defeating the purpose), I ended up planning to go to Hong Kong’s first tattoo convention. I guess the point of going would be to get inked, but I just wanted to check out the different artists in Hong Kong. In that, it turned out to be a slight disappointment because I was a bit intimidated to go up and ask questions – possibly because the ones I wanted to ask questions to were busy tattooing.

It surprised me that they got a fair amount of action at the event. Clearly, there is a counter-culture which is only slightly evident in the streets. Having a tattoo is taboo in Hong Kong because it is associated with the triads, though there are more young people getting into it for style. From the convention, though,  there were more people than I thought. And they were all dressed in head-to-toe black and generally goth, making us four complete misfits  that kept collapsing into giggles of self-consciousness.

The other attraction at the convention was a live music line-up. I have no idea what band we watched but it was a drummer and guitarist doing heavy metal. I say “heavy metal” with relative confidence because my friend condescendingly  informed me that it was “hard rock” and then failed to explain the difference. I did some googling in the train and it seems even the fans are confused. I’m going with heavy metal and the promise to eye-roll anyone who tries to get supercilious about this stuff. Anyway, I’ve never been a fan of heavy metal, having only a few songs that were loaded on my phone by V that I actually like, but I enjoyed the four songs this band played. I can see the attraction the music although it was loud.

Everyone listening to the music – except us – looked the part, dressed as they were in varying versions of gothwear. However, while there were some hoots and clapping, people were mostly stiff. I thought about how in India people might be dressed in a plain old tee or even salwar kameez but be totally rocking to the music. One of the reasons I refuse to go to concerts here although some good bands do pass through.

It was cool to see the people at the convention though, who were so clearly chilled out (even though not chilled out enough to really rock to the music) and alternative to the mainstream. Although it was supposed to be an above 18 only event, there were kids running about, and even one baby that didn’t look more than a month old.  These were the kids of the participating tattooists for whom all this is just blase stuff.

Came away totally tempted to embellish my existing tattoo – something I’ve wanted to do in a while, and I know what I want to do with it as well. Now to drum up the cash.