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Smells like Chinese food.

Around January of 2002, I started thinking about getting branded. I did the usual submersion into the BME galleries, and I also

read the FAQ on branding and scarification a few times. I mentioned the

idea to my wife. She did not like the thought, but she replied "it's your body, go for it". Now it was time to come up with a design, and decide where I wanted it. I already knew I wanted it on my forearm. Everyone

should be able to see it on my arm, and my desire was to have it seen, not hide it. The design part of this project changed a few

times. All the designs I came up with were simple and slightly linear, and that seemed the best design solution for the placement

area. Now I just needed to find an artist to do the procedure, and get an idea of the cost. As luck would have it, there is a great shop not too far from me: Obscurities. Allen Falkner is the owner and the artist who would

burn my arm. I sent him a message one day asking if he minded "talking shop" online. He replied saying he would, but not if he was

out at a bar or something like that, you know, fun time. Anyway, I asked him about branding and pricing and such. He told me to

send him a full size design so he could give me an accurate price. So I did, and told him it would be a little while before I would be

getting it done since I was broke at the time. Time went by, and the design changed a few times. I decided I would get the brand as a present for myself when I graduate from

college. I have been attending the University of Texas at Arlington since 1995. I have been working on my B.S. in Architecture the

whole time. Work full time and school part time is not an easy thing to pull off. I will receive my degree at the end of the summer in

2003, but my ceremony was already held in May, since they don't have a summer one. I received gifts and money from relatives and

friends for graduating, and I decided that part of it would go to my brand. I went to Obscurities and talked with Allen and Shan about the brand and placement. Both were very helpful and knowledgeable of

the procedure. I told them I would be back in a couple of weeks to get it done, and that I would message Allen with a date to do it. I

went home and finalized the design, giving it some last minute tweaks. Now I just wait. The date was set, and I was ready. The whole day of, all I could think about was the brand. Every time it came to mind I would get

super nervous and anxious. The way to the shop was that total feeling the entire drive. By the time I walked in the door, all my nerves

had calmed and I felt relaxed. Allen came out and told me he had spaced out and forgot, but he did have the supplies. He told me it

would be a minute while he prepared the pieces of metal. My wife came with me just incase I needed a driver afterwards since this

experience was new to me. While waiting, I talked to Shan about the pain factor. He told me it was almost painless, and I was in for a

big surprise. Allen was ready to start, and so was I. One of their tattoo artists, Mike, shaved my arm and applied the pattern. Allen showed me

a spot on his arm where he had branded himself a few times showing people that the procedure was rather painless. He told me I

seemed fine, and he didn't feel he needed to demonstrate. Allen gave me a stool to sit on, and had me out my arm across the

piercing seat. He situated himself by placing his elbow on the seat and practice striking on my arm. Once he was ready, Shan

started the torch and began heating up the metal. He started on the circular part of the design. Every time he would strike, my mind

wanted to make me flinch, but I wouldn't let it. I know I flinched my eyes, but my arm stayed rather still. The procedure took about ten

minutes and twenty strikes. When I came out, my wife told me she had to go outside because it stunk real bad. Her olfactory sense always works

double time. I payed and then noticed Shan bending down to sniff my arm. His comment - "Smells like Chinese food, you should

make her smell it". He wanted me to put my wife in a choke hold so she would have to smell. I teased her a couple of times with my

arm. She was grossed out by the experience. This is what it

looked like a couple of hours afterwards. Allen told me just to keep it clean and wear long sleeve shirts since I work in a cabinet shop (for now), and don't use any lotions

or savvs or anything on it. After that, we went home. I didn't touch it for a week. I decided I would peel off the scabs at least once. I didn't soak my arm or anything, I just sat in the

living room peeling off scabs. Now that was painful. I have never had scabs that wanted to stay on as bad as these. The part closest

to my elbow took longer to re-scab than the other parts because the skin moves more there. I found this out the hard way. Right now it has been three weeks, and most of the scabs are gone. It looks pink and flaky. Parts of the scar dent in and others

bump out. My wife still thinks it is nasty, and she freaks out when she accidentally runs her hand over it. I love it and find myself

staring at it. I plan on getting the other arm done, but I am not sure if I want to mirror the design or make a new one. I will wait some

more.

Details

submitted by: Anonymous
on: 23 June 2003
in Scarification

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Artist: Allen+Falkner
Studio: Obscurities
Location: Dallas%2C+TX

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