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My French Life: French scientists and tattoos…

Well those cunning scientists have been at it again. I read in the newspaper that a recent study in France took place involving standing outside 21 French bars, over four Saturday nights in an area of Brittany known for its high rate of alcoholism. They asked people to take a breathalyser test as they exited and then counted the number of tattoos and piercings they had and this proves, yes they say proves, that people with body art are prone to drink more.

Is it only me who thinks that concluding people who have tattoos or piercings drink more alcohol than people who don’t based on such a probing study is slightly odd and more than a little tending towards stereotyping people? Of course I have not read the full scientific report – its just my opinion but this study does follow earlier studies that concluded that people with tattoos and piercings were also more prone to unsafe sex and fighting.

I can assure you that where I live in the middle-of-nowhere in rural northern France, there are no tattoo parlours to be seen and you’d have to drive fast for at least 45 minutes to come across a town big enough to offer such a service, so sighting of a tattoo is rare. Piercings are I think still unheard of here That’s something you do the ear of a cow, a sheep or a pig. And yet… if you stood outside any bar here late on a Saturday night and breathalysed those staggering out – your conclusions would undoubtedly be – people without tattoos or piercings drink more!

The scientists say that they conducted their studies on a Saturday night. I wonder if that is important to the study. Perhaps their conclusion could have been people with tattoos and piercings go out more on a Saturday night in France than those without?

On the other hand, perhaps you could draw the conclusion that those in bigger towns with access to piercing and tattooing services drink in the bars and then get the work on their bodies done when they’ve had a few too many…

Definitely I think I may have missed a calling in my life – a drawer of conclusions from scientific studies. I reckon I could give them a run for their money.

If you’re interested. I have no tattoos or piercing, believe me there isn’t enough alcohol in the world that would induce me to let people stick needles in me unless it’s for a genuine medical requirement!

A bientattoo
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