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Making Their Mark

May 15, 1997

It sounds like a song Jimmy Buffett might sing: You're sailing along, then out of nowhere, you wind up with a tattoo or a body piercing.

Seem unlikely? What if you did it for charity?

Recently, 20 people showed up for tattoos and piercings at a fund-raiser for the Eli House, a shelter for abused and neglected children and their mothers in Anaheim.

Fees usually paid to the 10 artists at Outer Limits Tattoo & Piercing Parlor in Anaheim were given to support family services at the home. About $3,000 was raised.

More than 1,000 people each year have received help from this privately funded shelter since 1986. It offers parenting and self-esteem workshops, counseling and job-search resources in the hopes of breaking the cycle of abuse many families experience.

The home has been recognized by Presidents George Bush (in 1991) and Bill Clinton (1994) for community service. Supporters teach classes, repair the seven-bedroom home and donate items to the Eli Thrift Store, at 4530 E. Chapman Ave., Orange.

For more information, call (714) 997-2410.

To "skin virgins" who have gone under the needle, Kari Barba, who has owned Outer Limits since 1983, offers the following suggestions:

* Keep bandages on overnight.

* Wash your tattoo with soap and water.

* Keep your skin moist, but not wet, with hand lotion.

* Stay out of the sun, chlorine or salt water.

Oh, and admire yourself. You look so much cooler now.

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