The (Nipple) Ring
By Walter Ang
November 2003 issue
MTV INK Magazine
I don't know when it was exactly that I decided I would get a nipple ring. But when I finally got my head to agree with my heart, I spent a few days scouring the internet to research body piercing. I figured if I was going to get it done, I'd better know what the hell I was getting into!
I got loads and loads of information and used my super editing skills to trim it down to a four pager summary. Prepared with my research, I proceeded to find an appropriate piercing parlor where I could have my procedure performed. (Don't you just love alliteration!?)
A friend tipped me off to a tattoo/piercing parlor in a Makati mall. I went to do a visual inspection, or more commonly termed in the Philippines as "ocular." It seemed clean enough. They had a Certificate from the Sanitation Department on the wall, which what I thought was a good thing. I asked a couple of questions and got suitable answers. It also helped that there were a lot of people getting tattooed that day and I could see the piercers in action. I decided I would return the following week to get the procedure done.
But first I had to find a ring. It was not an easy task! There are basically two types, rings and barbells. Most of the barbells I found were either too long or too thick, and I settled on an aptly sized stainless steel surgical ring. The stainless surgical steel sounds so ooh-la-la, but it serves a very important purpose. My research indicates that other metals (like silver and gold) will tarnish and the thought of me getting silver poisoning is definitely not ooh-la-la.
The day of the pierce (Wince rating: 3 out of 5. But you know you want to read on.)
I recruited my friend Donna to go hold my hand in case anything untoward happened. It didn't hurt when the needle went in. It hurt a little when it was coming out the other side. What hurt the most was when he was pulling the needle out while inserting the ring! It felt like a giant lead pipe was being dragged through my chest!
The embarrassing part is that after the ring was in place and just before the piercer screwed the bearing in, I started trembling and before I knew it, my whole head went numb, I couldn't hear anything and I had this overwhelming sensation of wanting to sleep.
It was so trippy! I had never fainted in my entire life before and the funny thing was, I had three different thoughts running through my mind simultaneously.
Thought # 1: Oh my God, I must not faint! I must not faint! It's not macho! It's so wussy!
Thought # 2: I *must* pay close attention and remember what fainting feels like so I can write about it in the future. I am a writer, after all.
Thought # 3: Oh boy! I'm going to faint! I have to tell them before I pass ouuuuuu . . .
A few minutes later When I came to, I could smell ammonia and felt a hand supporting my chin. And yes, my friend was holding my hand, bless her.
One final sweep of the piercer's hand screwed in the bearing to hold the ring in place. All done!
They let me keep the needle that was used to pierce me. How cool! It's like bringing home your own appendix after they take it out!
I walk around the mall with my two hands holding the front of my shirt away from my chest. I'm sure I looked like a total doofus, but my whole pec left was hurting so much. Even the wind made me cringe.
I call my med student friend to ask why I fainted. He thinks it's because I was probably holding my breath too long from the pain and my body compensated by making me hyperventilate and faint. I suspect what he really wanted to say was, "The reason you fainted is simply because you're a wimpy geek!"
I am afraid to even take a shower. What if I faint when the water hits my ring?! What if I faint and fall on the cold tile floor and hit my head and die!?!
I show my coworkers in the office. They all scream. Even the guys.
The following morning
I receive a text message from one of my officemates. "Sobrang ayaw ko sya. d ko makalimutan noh. ASAR ka talaga. U shldnt have showd me dat. Now i can't get it off my mind!"
A few minutes later, I get another text message from the same person. "NAIINIS AKO SA IYO!!!!! Naalala ko ung nipple mo. BWISIT KA!!!"
A few days later (Gross rating: 5 out of 5. You have been warned.)
There are mornings when I wake up and there are white crusty thingies around the holes where the ring goes through.
On some mornings, pus comes out of both holes. Blech! I have to squeeze my tit to get most of it out. Double blech! I warned you!
My nipple and areola were tender for about a week after the piercing. But after that it was pretty okay. Now that months have passed, icky stuff doesn't come out of the holes anymore and the ring doesn't hurt at all. In fact, when properly ? err, handled, the pleasurable sensations are more than doubled compared to my pre-ring days. Wink wink, nudge nudge.
When people ask me when I'm going to get my other nipple pierced, I say, "Fainting once in my life is enough. Thank you."