1. Two words: vagina bats.
“Two words: vagina bats.”
2. Wrangler pockets on both butt cheeks.
“Back when I was an apprentice in Alabama a guy came in wanting Wrangler pockets on both butt cheeks. The guys at the shop didn’t want to do it so they thought it’d be funny to pass it off to me. He ended up getting the tattoo with the Wrangler patch on one side and a ring from a pack of chew on the other. It actually turned out to be one of my better early pieces and it’s still the weirdest tattoo I’ve done.”
3. ‘Bad Ass’ that faded to ‘Sad Ass.’
“5’3”, 105-pound daughter had ‘Bad Ass’ tattooed on the inside of her lip. Part of the B faded, so now her lip says ‘Sad Ass.’”
4. A picture of Jaden Smith on his upper left thigh.
“A picture of Jaden Smith on his upper left thigh.”
5. Kanye West in a thong.
“Some guy wanted Kanye West in a thong. The whole tattoo shop was laughing while I was drawing it on him for hours. I asked him what his inspiration was. He said I don’t know man I’m just a big fan….I choked on my coffee from laughing when he said that. Good times.”
6. A regulation-sized dartboard on his ass with the bullseye as his butthole.
“One day two guys come in and they’re partners. One is quite flamboyant and he requests a regulation-sized dartboard on his ass with the bullseye as his butthole. My friend’s friend to talk him out of it and let him know it will more than likely get infected. Of course he still wants it, and gets it. The bottom of the dartboard couldn’t be finished completely without dude’s nuts getting buzzed on, and I think he was done after 2 hours of line work. We set him up an appointment for 2 weeks out, but he never showed. So now there is a guy walking around out there with 3/4 of dartboard line work around his butthole.”
7. Guy wanted ‘slut’ just above his dick in quite large letters.
“Guy wanted ‘slut’ just above his dick in quite large letters. I suppose he ‘wanted girls to know what they are while sucking him off’?
Good luck to him.
Not necessarily the worst, but every artist has a collection.”
8. A barcode…and he got angry when his cell phone wouldn’t scan it.
“Guy wanted a barcode. Artist told him it wouldn’t actually work and that it’d be decorative only. Guy says okay. After it’s done guy pulls out his cell phone and tries to scan it. It doesn’t work. Guy is angry.”
9. ‘WORDS’ on a guy’s dick. He said it was so he could put words in your mouth.
“Been a tattoo artist for the last 9 years, and the one that will always stand out is tattooing ‘WORDS’ on a guy’s dick. He said it was so he could put words in your mouth.”
10. A tattoo of George W. Bush doing a kick flip over his dog with lettering that says: ‘9/11 was an inside job.’
“A tattoo of George W. Bush doing a kick flip over his dog with lettering that says: ‘9/11 was an inside job.’
Here’s the pic:
11. His brother’s date of birth…because he wasn’t old enough to get a tattoo with his own birthdate.
“I met a guy once that had a date of birth tattooed to the back of his neck, in plain view. He told me it was his brother’s date of birth. At that point, I expected the story to spin into a very heartfelt sob about a deceased family member. No…this chap couldn’t decide what ink to get. He took so long that the artist suggested his date of birth, and he agreed. However, he remembered just as he was asked what his date of birth was that he was not the legal age to get a tattoo at the time. So in a panic he gave his brother’s date of birth. Well I nearly hit the floor laughing when he told me.”
12. ‘Those two hands clapping with a necklace.’
“A tattoo artist friend had great stories. My favorite was the fellow who came in wanting ‘those two hands clapping with a necklace.’ It was a rosary prayer. He wanted a rosary prayer tattoo.”
13. Decklan’ with a little heart on a dude’s butt cheek.
“Tattoo apprentice for about a year and half here! I haven’t had as much crazy shit happen since I haven’t been in the industry as long, but a few come to mind:
When I tattooed the name ‘Decklan’ with a little heart on a dude’s butt cheek.
Tattooed ‘fucking fantastic,’ again, on a girl’s ass. IDK what it is with kids and ass tattoos these days.
And then of course a whole bunch of stupid cliché shit. Tiny minimalistic anchors? Sure. Watercolor? Of coooourse. I do a decent job and they turn out cute, but I feel like the general public don’t realize what makes a tattoo bold and stand the test of time.”
14. Two people wanted ‘Numba One Stunna’ and ‘Stunna’s Numba One’ in this horrible, self-drawn graffiti letter style.
“Had a couple. Guy wanted ‘Numba One’ on his left outside forearm and ‘Stunna’ on the other. Lady wanted ‘Stunna’s’ on her left arm and ‘Numba One’ on the other.
If you’re keeping tally, that’s ‘Numba One Stunna’ and ‘Stunna’s Numba One.’
In this horrible self-drawn graffiti letter style.
And they were white college kids.
Other artist in the shop that night, deadpan, goes, ‘What if one of you drops to Numba Two?’
They did not end up getting tattooed that night.”
15. The words ‘Jeffrey Dahmer’ in shitty scratchy writing on a girl’s neck for her 18th birthday.
“Several years ago, I tattooed the words ‘Jeffrey Dahmer’ in shitty scratchy writing on a girl’s neck for her 18th birthday. She had been coming into the shop a lot with her friends as they got tattooed and talking about it. She had the letter drawn up and everything. The answer was always the same. ‘No fucking way.’ When she finally turned 18 she came in with a few friends and asked again. I told her politely to fuck off with her shenanigans. A few minutes later her friend told her he could just tattoo it with the ‘gun’ he got off eBay at home. I made the hard choice to do the tattoo to insure that it wouldn’t get infected or be all scarred up if she ever decided to have it removed.
It’s been circulating around the Internet for several years. I still feel shitty about it, and hope she got it removed.”
16. Girlfriend’s mom walks in and told me she wanted a giraffe on her panty line, then proceeded to tell me it’s because they have 10-inch tongue.
“Coworker wanted his wife’s name on his neck. He was a tattoo artist himself and knew what would happen. She served him papers 3 weeks later.
Girlfriend’s mom walks in and told me she wanted a giraffe on her panty line, then proceeded to tell me it’s because they have 10-inch tongues. When I pulled out a razor to shave the area for the tattoo she told me it wasn’t necessary. At that point, I went and got another tattoo artist.
I have Batgirl on my leg because I wanted a tattoo and there was a comic book on the floor at the time. I mean, it’s a good tattoo, I just have never given a crap about comic books. I knew this at the time and didn’t care. Still don’t.”
17. I tattooed ‘Demontray’ on the same lady twice.
“Actual tattoo artist for 6 years, piercer for 13, so I’ve been in shops for awhile. My personal sigh story is a lady who came in wanting her bfs name on her ass. I always try to talk them out of names, but at the end of the day I like paying my bills on time so if I can’t talk them out of it I will generally do it over having them walk. (unless it’s on a face/neck/hand and they don’t have visible tattoos already.)
So I can’t talk her out of it, or into a reasonably small size so it’ll be easier to cover if things go south. His name was Demontray. But we do the tattoo and over the course of it she explains that he’s in prison and she is waiting for him to get out. I do a good job and keep my mouth shut, people make lots of choices that I wouldn’t.
Three months later the same lady comes back and I’m thinking Oh shit, now we have to cover it. Nope. Demontray is mad because he can’t see the tattoo when she visits and he wants her to get another one that he can see. So this time she actually listens to me and we did a second Demontray tattoo on her chest, but this one was small with flowers and she will be able to smack a rose over it later if she needs to…
They didn’t have conjugal visits, so she could only show him the picture of the tattoo. You’re not allowed to drop trou in visitation.
18. Bowser with sunglasses riding a surf board with a big pot leaf and a crucifix on the background. And Bowser had his sunglasses pulled down a bit and throwing a peace sign…and playing a double-neck guitar with music notes flying out of it.
“Buddy wanted Bowser with sunglasses riding a surf board with a big pot leaf and a crucifix on the background. And bowser had his sunglasses pulled down a bit and throwing a peace sign…and playing a double-neck guitar with music notes flying out of it. With a banner saying ‘Happy Birthday, Rick.’”
19. I tattooed the words ‘PUT IT IN’ in a nice bold legible font, around the asshole…of a 60+ year-old woman.
“Tattoo artist/owner for 15/5 years. I tattooed the words ‘PUT IT IN’ in a nice bold legible font, around the asshole…of a 60+ year-old woman. It was about 10 years ago. She came in with her daughter who I tattooed regularly and her daughter’s girlfriend I tattooed a few times. I assumed one of them wanted to get tattooed or schedule. I was excited as fuck to tattoo this chill ass old lady though. Until we started talking about what was wanted. I was just so taken back by it that I barely remember the conversation before and during the tattoo. Bits and pieces are there. Usually I can tell you tons about my client when they are out of my chair and its years later. Especially memorable ones like that. I know I asked her at least 30 times if she was sure this is what she wanted and blah blah. So we went into my room, we each had our own room to tattoo in, and she pulls her shirt up and her pants down and she’s almost covered in tattoos. I remember thinking, she knows what she wants. Done.
I have tattooed various weird things on various weird places. At one point, I worked at a pretty rough and not very welcoming to outsider’s kind of shop. And the requests were almost always very wtf. I have tattooed just about everything you can and can’t think of over the past bunch of years.
As I’ve gotten older and established myself more within the industry, I try very hard not to do stupid, vile, or ignorant tattoos. A lot of the ones I did years ago wouldn’t get done today. I have a lot more respect for the art and the clients and the canvas than that. But I still like to have some obscure fun tattoos to do.”
20. Alpaca plumb troll.
“I’d been inking for about five years when this guy swaggered into the shop. I say swaggered because I could tell he’d had a bit to drink that night. Enough to make him feel cocky but not enough to be completely out of it, which automatically would have gotten him kicked out of my chair. I’m not going to deal with people so drunk they aren’t in control and no one needs 10 am buyer’s remorse. Not for something like a tattoo.
So he comes in and I can tell he’s new. So I direct him to my book of options but he doesn’t even look at it. Just sits in my chair and says ‘I want you to draw a troll. He should be fishing using one of those plumbs to balance the line.’ ‘So you want a net?’ ‘What?’ ‘A net. A trolling net for fishing?’ ‘Ha! Is that where it comes from? Fuck no, man. I want a troll. Big green under the bridge troll! And make sure he’s got a plumb. That’s really important. I want it on my arm.’
I roll my eyes but start sketching a few things out. I’m halfway through outlining something and I say ‘so what type of fish is this troll catching?’ ‘Fish? Fuck no, man. He’s catching an alpaca!’ ‘An alpaca?’ ‘Fuck yeah.’ ‘In the water.’ ‘Now you’ve got it!’ ‘With his fishing pole?’ ‘Don’t forget the plumb!’ ‘How could I?’
So I sketch it out and the guy’s like going bonkers over it. He loves it. And I start it up and go for an hour and get a third of the way through before we stop.
‘What are you doing?’ He asks ‘Stopping man. Large tattoos have to go in pieces. It’ll be better for you.’ The guy slaps down $2,000 in cash and says ‘keep going.’ I stare at it. I stare at him. I keep going. ‘And don’t forget the plumb!’ He says.
So three hours later and this guy hasn’t so much as whimpered on the chair but I’m finally done. The weirdest tattoo I’d ever done but my god was it a masterpiece. The troll was an ugly pale green. The alpaca a fluffy off-white, fur glistening in the water. And the plumb. Well, who could forget a thing like that.
And he thanks me and walks out the door and I stop him on the street because I can’t let it go. I can’t. ‘Hey, dude. What’s up with the tattoo?’ And he looks at me with these instantly sober eyes and says ‘so I never forget.’ ‘Forget what?’ I ask. ‘That “alpaca plumb troll” is an anagram of “Paul Blart Mall Cop.”’”
21. How a man burned his cheating fiancée.
“A couple comes into the shop I worked at a few years back, and they tell us they want to get each other’s on their shoulder blades. Not really a big deal in this line of work, it’s by far one of the most requested types of tattoos; and although we spent a good 15 or 20 mins trying to talk them out of it, they were very adamant that that’s what they wanted.
-Apparently, they were getting married the following week, as well as each being deployed to different places the week after that. She to Korea, He to Afghanistan; but I digress-
So while they mosey around the shop, looking at some of the flash on the wall and waiting for an artist to become available; we notice that they’re whispering to each other, specifically him repeatedly saying ‘are you sure? I mean like are you really sure about this?’ and it seemed they were having a change of heart, possibly choosing actual matching designs as opposed to each other’s names…oh…oh, my Reddit friends, how wrong of an assumption that was.
After the artist that was to work on them cleaned up his station and came out to talk to them, that’s when she dropped the bomb…
‘I want to get his name FIRST AND LAST in old English, ACROSS MY BACK.’
Our jaws dropped.
We all (3 or 4 of us) were utterly taken back by these words that had just resonated in the air; shook our heads and asked her to repeat what she just said…surely nobody could be that stupid.
Again, that was a very wrong assumption to make.
So, without much more hesitation, mainly because ‘OK, you asked for it’ the artist got the design ready (13” across in two lines, this was a fucking MONSTER of a name) and got down to business; all the while the fiancé, watched with a face, which I can only describe as a calm, but pleased, disbelief…around 4 hours later, the tattoo was done; but the shop was closing. The fiancé had to schedule his for two days later. So that’s what he did.
But lo, when he came in two days later, her name is not what he requested.
No, he said he would rather have a Grim Reaper…as he knew, the whole time, that his soon-to-be wife, had been cheating on him with his brother; and decided to confront her with this knowledge only after they got home from her getting his full name tattooed across her back in huge, bold, uncoverable, black letters. Wedding called off. Shipped halfway across the globe. Good luck lady, I can only imagine what you would’ve said now, thinking about that seemingly simple question…‘are you sure?’”