Keke Palmer is not one to let other people get in his way being her most authentic self, and that certainly won’t change now that she’s 30.
In celebration of her 30th birthday on Aug. 26, the actor posted a series of sexy greased-up photos of her wearing a sassy black unitard. She captioned the photos with a hashtag “#DurrtyThirty” and a message of gratitude for another year around the sun. (See the pictures here.)
But gratitude wasn’t the only message Palmer sent. The cut of her bathing suit revealed a tattoo that was right under the butt. At first glance, you can make out letters and numbers in italics, but you’ll have to zoom in to get a better look at what it says: January 21, 1994.
Yes, the same Darius Jackson that came under fire earlier this summer after shaming Palmer for wearing a dress that showed off her “ass cheeks” at an Usher concert.
“It’s the outfit, you’re a mom,” Jackson wrote in a quote-tweet response to a video of Palmer enjoying herself on the show. After facing backlash for passing judgment, Jackson only doubled down, writing in a second tweet, “We live in a generation where a man of the family doesn’t want his kids’ wife and mother to show booty cheeks. to please others and he is told how much a hater he is. Both tweets have since been removed from X (the fka Twitter platform).
After the drama, Palmer shared even more photos of herself in the offending dress, captioning, “I wish I’d taken more photos, but we were too late!”
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Rumors of a possible split followed, although neither side directly commented on the state of affairs. However, just two days after Jackson shared his (bad) opinion, his Instagram was removed from all mentions of Palmer and both parties unfollowed each other.
What does it all mean? Is the tattoo a new piece, meant to be a reminder that the actor’s “ass cheeks” are hers and she’ll do whatever she wants with them?
Honestly, if she and Jackson to have reconciled, which may be the case given the couple’s recent IG Live, in which Palmer referred to Jackson as her “partner in crime”, the tattoo is quite iconic. Because in order to be seen, Palmer has to show her butt to the public, despite her partner’s previous objections. She also uses her butt as a canvas to show the world that she’s behind her man, haters be damned. A murder.
Or, you know. They may be apart, the tattoo may be old, and “partner” may mean nothing but co-parenting partners.
This all remains to be seen. And, especially given Keke Palmer’s desire for privacy when it comes to her personal life, it’s a very real possibility that the star will never give us the closure we need. Sometimes a tattoo says more than a thousand words. But sometimes we are left with more questions than answers.