Friday, September 28, 2007
Launching into another big week
launchI-Reporters cover a lot of interesting stories each week, and they're often quite fascinating themselves. They can teach you a lot about things you would never think about.

Consider the story of Elizabeth May of Merritt Island, Florida, who sent in some pictures of the Delta II rocket launching from nearby Kennedy Space Center. She has aerospace experience from the U.S. Air Force and other organizations, so she has an insider perspective on the "space coast" and its "launch culture." People who live there see every launch and even hear the occasional sonic boom. There may be nowhere else on earth quite like this portion of Florida.

"You become a fan of the launches," May said. "You enjoy learning about what type of vehicle is going up, and who's launching it."

She showed us a different angle on the basic story of this rocket carrying the Dawn spacecraft into space, which one might say is a fitting "launch" into another big week. Over the past few days we saw stories both serious and silly, and we can't wait to see what's still in store.

As always, check out the latest rundown of the Week in I-Report, or take a moment and send an I-Report of your own. Post a comment below if you have any thoughts.
The body as a canvas
Marisa DiMattia's recently asked readers to submit photos of their tattoos and tell us a little about them. As I looked through the responses and talked to some of the I-Reporters, a few common threads emerged.

Some tattoos commemorate a lost friend or family member, others are personal expressions, but all have some meaning to the person who has them.

Casey Goldsmith honors her dog with a portrait on her leg. Craig Graves included his friend's initials into his shoulder tattoo. Marisa DiMattia (pictured), who says her tattoos are "art for art's sake," incorporates ancient Greek patterns into her pieces as a tribute to her heritage.

Second, almost all the tattoos were well-planned in advance.

"Since they're permanent, I don't want anything spur of the moment," said Angie Royal of Fayetteville, North Carolina, who has 11 tattoos.

"I wouldn't put anything on me that I wouldn't be proud to wear when I'm 60," said Casa Wilson of Watertown Massachusetts.

And people don't stop at just one tattoo. Kris Nequin of Chicago, Illinois, has eight. Tobias Lofton of Kansas City, Missouri, and Craig Graves of Ames, Iowa, have one each, but both plan on getting more.

"They are kind of addicting," Graves said.

Unfortunately, we weren't able to include all of the photos and stories that were submitted this time, but that doesn't mean we can't use the others in the future.

Author's note: I don't have any tattoos... yet.

How do you feel about tattoos? Love 'em? Hate 'em? Indifferent? Leave a comment below or submit an I-Report about your own body art.
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