I've had a couple of conversations lately on body piercing. It's strange that really before four years ago I didn't have any real knowledge about the subject aside from the fact that Stephanie had a few, but I didn't. Actually I pierced my own ear once when I was a kid, for an hour or so, because everyone was doing it, but that doesn't really count.
It bummed me out when I had to take out my industrial, but the others have been pretty solid, despite some migration issues. I think it's likely that I'll eventually put another hole(s) in my ear, but I'll probably start with a single ring around where the back hole of the industrial was and see how that goes.
A lot of people have the misconception that people get piercings for attention, but I think that's pretty stupid. The motivation may differ, but ultimately people do it because they like the way it feels and/or looks. I think it's rare that anyone truly cares that much how other people perceive it.
I would go further to say that some people do it to mark some event in their life or change the way they feel about a body part. I know there are a lot of tattoo stories that certainly fall in that category as well. My first ones were symbolic of my need to take care of body, and they constantly reminded me of it. I've read stories of people who got nose rings because they had a big nose or nipple rings because they had small breasts. People don't need a reason, but there frequently is.