BrainBank: HTML Tattoo

Today I was looking online at wrist tattoos when I came across someone with html markup on both of their wrists. One wrist said <love> while the other one said </hate>. The way HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) is written there is an open tag and close tag. The open tag labels what a particular section is. This label is important when dealing with CSS (Cascading Stylesheet) so that styling can be applied to the correct section. Open tags are written like this: <header>. To close the header tag, a slash mark is placed right before the word in the tag like so </header>.

This tattoo exemplifies the same basic idea; however, unlike real html, the closing tag uses a different word from the open tag. This tattoo to me implies that the content of <love> changes into hate by the time the section closes. Closing the section with </hate> instead of </love> also implies that the love feeling that the person has is synonymous with hate. With many relationships, everything starts out happy, for the most part. Infatuation seems to be love. Even in relationships where love exists, problems don’t seem to show their face until much later. Certain problems between people, unfortunately, cannot be resolved. This results in people resenting one another. One can go from loving someone more than anything to hating them more than anything. That intense feeling has shifted from positive to negative.

While I think the concept of this tattoo is very creative, I was confused as to why someone would permanently scribe this message on his body. It seems to be quite a depressing concept. It’s as if it’s saying it is inevitable for love to eventually turn to hate. Why a person would want to look at themselves and be reminded of that every day, I am not entirely sure.

While my explanation makes perfect sense, it is not what the person with the tattoo meant. The concept of the tattoo was to begin love and end hate. The person with the tattoo is a web developer with a free spirit, so this tattoo describes him well. Knowing the background of the person and realizing the intent gives the tattoo much more meaning. I have a different respect for it. It seems much more powerful. I like how he incorporated what he loves with a strong message.


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