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November 06, 2014 - Image 7

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2014-11-06

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'the b

-side

The Michigan Daily I michigandaily.com I Thursday, November6,2014

THE BEST PROFESSIONAL PIERCING SHOP IN A2

When I arrive at the address
Kenny gave me, I expect to find
him sharpening hooks or assem-
bling rigging. Instead, a clean-
shaven father and his two young
sons are packing up a haunted
house Halloween
party from the pre-
vious night. Bon
Jovi's "Living on a
Prayer" belts over
the PA; a fondue
machine drizzles
chocolate in the
corner; it smells like
the pet rats caged by
the door. "T-minus
five minutes," the
father yells. I guess
I'm early.
And still slightly
worried my tat-
tered Vans are inap-
propriate. I've just
never had to con-
sider the question
before: What do you
wear to a private
body suspension of
a couple celebrating
their one-year wed-
ding anniversary, a
couple that you've
never met? (A: any-
thing but loafers).
Frankly though,
I still wouldn't even
know that hanging
yourself from hooks
pierced through
your skin is a thing
people do, if Kenny
hadn't pierced my
own ears a month
ago. Surprise Mom!

gea's established itself asa sturdy
brand every piercing-shop owner
has wet dreams about: clean, safe,
professional; high quality jewelry
and service worth the little extra
green. It's $35 for most piercings

piercing market in Washtenaw
County, and grown a loyal clien-
tele around the country and as
far as the United Kingdom.
When I stopped by the shop
on East Liberty Street in late

instructions but I couldn't keep
my eyes on his eyes.
His ears are jarring: hoops,
studs, bars, and posts; chrome
plugs in lobes stretched the size
of soda caps. This is the exact

I felt kinda rude face-gaping;
he has nice green eyes and a
scruffy dwarf beard, but also two
green jewels off a bridge pierc-
ing between them, and two more
high nostril studs below those,

bites), and a pair of cheek pierc-
ings. How does he go through
airport security?
"... You cool dude?" I blinked,
and the radio seeped back into
the shop; Evanescence - "Bring
me to life."
Before I could
answer, I looked
down at Kenny's
arm, at what I
first mistook as
alien bumps. Last
year, Kenny had
silicon implants
incised under
his left forearm
epidermis. If you
can't picture what
that even means,
the whole proce-
dure is featured
on an episode of
Pangea's weekly
web-show, The
Modified World,
hosted by owner
J.C. Potts. The
show, which gets
30,000 views on
average per epi-
sode, documents
and explores
body modifica-
tion, "the people
who do it, the
people who get it,
and why it mat-
ters," as Potts
says at the begin-
ning of each epi-
sode. The show's
also a boon to
sales and has
helped spread the
word about Pan-
gea's new online
AMS/Daily jewelry store,
which launched
this past summer
(most of the gold
is custom made by Potts).
See PANGEA, Page 3B
DESIGN BY MIRANDA RIGGS
AND CAROLYN GEARIG

TOP PHOTO: Kenny Hughes began piercing in 2001 and works at Pangea for its stringent standards. ABOVE: Josh Campbell pierces LSA sophomore Eric Hur's helix.
When you get
your ears pierced
in Ann Arbor, you
have three options: stab yourself, (half off the second if you're feel- September, the leaves were still dude I want piercing my ears. and a pointy cone called a sep-
risk diseases at the mall or go to ing frugal!), and jewelry ranges green. Inside, there's a massive He slid his business card tril on the tip, a vertical labret
Pangea - the only professional from $50 to over $2,000. With- abstract mural of Hell behind the across the glass: over a starry through the center of his lower
piercing shop in the whole city. out any serious competition, the counter where Kenny sat, big and universe, Kenny stands under lip, two pairs of studs on each
Since opening in 2002, Pan- store's consumed most of the burly. He explained aftercare the gaze of a big cat. side of his lips (often called shark

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