New Delhi: South African alternate model Brett Rogers, who will be seen hosting TLC's upcoming TV show "Food, Dudes and Tattoos", dismisses the misconceptions around tattooed people, saying that they are "generally extremely nice".
The series follows Rogers on an epic road trip as he travels across South Africa to track down most mouth-watering food establishments, the coolest micro-breweries and the edgiest tattoo parlours.
"Tattooed people across the world are generally extremely nice. Through the show, I want to show the kindness and sensitivity of tattooed people of South Africa," Rogers, who is himself heavily inked, told IANS in an interview over the phone from Johannesburg.
Rogers narrated a personal incident when he recently received harsh criticism from a stranger for his tattoos.
"There was a lady who was speaking to me for 10 minutes really aggressively about how horrible my tattoos were. Then I told her, 'Thank you for your words, but you need to understand that you are hurtful and you are insulting me'. She thought that she was a wonderful human being because she wasnÂ’t tattooed," Rogers said.
However, Rogers said that he always tries to remain "polite and generous" when people criticise him for his tattoos.
"If people are going to come to me and send awful messages to me about my appearance, that is a testament to their way of thinking. They are the ones who look terrible and nasty. So, I am always polite and generous. When they say horrible things to me, I am only polite to them," he added.
As far as the tattoo culture in South Africa is concerned, Rogers said that the country has no dearth of talented artists.
"We are a conservative country as a whole but there are great artists here. Cities like Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban in general have great artists. They are developing, their techniques are great... We have incredibly talented artists here," Rogers asserted.
Talking about the concept of the TV show, Rogers said that it involved his most favourite things -- food, alcohol and tattoos.
"The concept was brought to me. I knew everything about these three things, so my contacts in South Africa were useful. My idea was to give something useful. We have TV, which is quite aggressive, especially for tattoos, so I wanted to give something generous and beautiful to people," Rogers said, and added that he hopes that he "can express the love for my country to the people in India".
The idea behind the show, Rogers says, was to not only show the major cities like Johannesburg or Cape Town, but also the underbelly, the places that get "neglected".
"The major places we covered were Johannesburg and Cape Town and we spent our main time in Durban. But we didnÂ’t really want to spend too much time in these three places. We stopped along the way in small towns because those parts often get neglected. I have got incredible stuff in the middle of the country," Rogers said.
He also said that the show is more about the story of the "artists and the chefs".
"I think we spend so much time preventing each other from interacting. I dislike that... When people meet, they share things and only get better."
"Food, Dudes and Tattoos" will premiere in India on April 10 every Sunday on TLC.