Listen to COMING UP ROSES by Elliott Smith.
Y3: I have to ask you about your tattoo of Ferdinand.
ES: Oh yeah, a children's story.
Y3: I grew up on that story. The bull who was too gentle and content to attain fame in the bullfighting ring like his friends, and chose instead to while his days away in a field, smelling the flowers. It's a great dichotomy, this powerful beast who doesn't want to use his power.
ES: Yeah. I'd like to say I got the tattoo because of the story. I do like the story, and that's one reason. But my initial plan was just to get a tattoo of a bull, and I like Ferdinand better than I like the Schlitz Malt Liquor.
Y3: It's almost analogous of you and your life. I noticed it on your arm and went, "Oh my god, that's Ferdinand." That is just the most perfect tattoo. It's the first tattoo I ever saw in my lifetime that I would get.
ES: I haven't ever regretted it. It seems to make more sense with my life over time. Somebody came up to me two months ago at a restaurant and said she had something to show me. She pulled up her sleeve and she had the same tattoo. I don't think she got it because I had it, I think she just had it for a long time. I got mine in Portland, like eight years ago.
Y3: Do you have any other tattoos?
ES: I have a tattoo of Texas inside the KC And The Sunshine Band sun on my other arm. That one's older.
Photo: All is forgiven (6).