Marked woman

One of the coolest things about the KC Tri was getting to wear these very sharp numbers and the TriTats logo — a fun departure from sleepily scrawled magic marker numbers.

Sean Jackson of TriTats got me my temporary tattoo numbers, gave me a short history of the company, and applied his own KC Tri race number to show me how it's done. (He warned me about forgetting to peel off the plastic, which makes the tattoo unusable after water hits it. He did not suppose he needed to warn me about knocking the tattoo into a nearby open standing body of water, aka the toilet, which also renders the tat unusable. Thanks for setting me up with the replacement age group tat, Sean; you rock.)

Anyway, if you manage not to defile your TriTat, there's nothing to it: peel, make sure you don't have it reversed or upside down, stick, hold with a moistened paper towel, and you're marked like a pro. They come off in a fast scrub-down with baby oil (I took off the numbers but left my TriTats logo on for an extra day. It made me happy).

You'll see these on athletes at the Hy-Vee Triathlon in Des Moines, and I hope, in a lot of other races as sponsors pick up on how great this is: (a) athletes get an awesome-looking number; (b) photographers get a clean identifier even if the bib is torn off or turned backward, (c) athletes are willing human billboards for the sponsor.

Also, even though I would gladly wear my actual age, I think it's smart that this tat uses the lowest number from the age group: