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Margaret Cho Forced to Cover Up Her Nude Tattooed Body at Clothing-Optional Korean Spa

USMagazine, Wednesday, March 27, 2013, 6:30am (PDT)
  • Are Margaret Cho's tattoos taboo? In a blog post on Jezebel, the comedienne sounds off on allegedly being discriminated against by other Korean women at a Los Angeles spa. While others were allowed to walk around naked, she was told to cover up her tattoos because she was upsetting other customers.

    "Perhaps I do get stared at a lot because I am a heavily tattooed woman, but I am also a Korean woman, and I feel I have the right to be naked in the Korean spa with other Korean women," she writes. 

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    But the 44-year-old fashion designer was asked by staff to wear a robe. When Cho dropped her famous name, she writes, "[A staff member] apologized even more profusely and tried to explain that in Korean culture, tattoos are very taboo and my body was upsetting everyone there."

    Though Cho complied and wore the robe for the rest of her spa treatments, she says she was "still being given heavy-duty Korean woman stink eye."

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    After paying, she complained about the way she was treated. "I told them that Korean culture is one thing, but this place is in Los Angeles," Cho writes. "We are not in Korea right now. This is America. And it's not like I enjoyed looking at their bodies that much. These were all women of various sizes and shapes and some, like me, bore the marks of a difficult life. My tattoos represent much of the pain and suffering I have endured. They are part of me, just like my scars, my fat, my eternal struggle with gravity. None of our bodies are 'perfect.'"

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    "Their intolerance viewing my nakedness -- as if it was some kind of an assault on their senses, like my ass was a weapon -- made me furious in a way I can't really even express with words," Cho shares. "I deserve to be naked if I want to."

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