Monthly Archives: October 2013

Z is for Zero Regrets

Every day in October I will be rocking an A To Z Blog Challenge about my terribly terrific tattoos. Every day a new letter. Today is October 31 and the letter of the day is Z.

Z is for Zero Regrets.

And there you go. 26 posts in 31 days about 24 tattoos. I’ve gotten good tattoos, and I’ve gotten bad tattoos. I’ve had songs written about my tattoos. I’ve had tattoos appear in magazines and books. In the case of the Unicorn humping the Dolphin tattoo I’ve appeared on countless “Best” AND “Worst” tattoo roundups on the web. But I wouldn’t change a thing. As I’ve said many times in this blog – “You get the tattoo you deserve.” So I’ll wear all mine with pride, til the day I die. Then my skin will go to Glenn Hidalgo. No regrets.

a-bad-tattoo-13

Y is for You’ll Always Be Corndawg to Me

Every day in October I will be rocking an A To Z Blog Challenge about my terribly terrific tattoos. Every day a new letter. Today is October 30 and the letter of the day is Y.

Y is for You’ll Always Be Corndawg To Me.

Jonny Fritz is one of my favorite people in the whole wide world. I like him so much I once let him ride Bronxy, my Hot-Pink Ducati. He’s also one of my favorite singers, favorite songwriters, favorite dancers, favorite leather workers, favorite air brush artists, favorite film scorers, favorite motorcyclists, favorite long distance runners, and favorite friends. Did I mention the singing and the songwriting?

He used to go by the name Jonny Corndawg. People thought that meant he was a silly singer. Sure, he’s fun, but also all sorts of serious. So he decided to change his stage name back to his given name, Jonny Fritz.

The night he played his first show as Jonny Fritz I went and got this tattoo. Just to let him know, “You’ll Always Be Corn Dawg to Me!”

CORNDOG.TATweb

GOODBYE SUMMER Music Video
Features Lots of Great Dancin! Directed By The Incomparable Sean Dunne

Here’s a 15 minute documentary about Jonny back he was CornDawgin’ It Across the Country.
Also Directed By The Incomparable Sean Dunne

Stray Dawg from Sean Dunne on Vimeo.

Many thanks to the irrepressible spirit and lovely lens of Deneka Peniston for the tattoo pics!

X is for an X Yankee Fan.

Every day in October I will be rocking an A To Z Blog Challenge about my terribly terrific tattoos. Every day a new letter. Today is October 29 and the letter of the day is X.

X is for an X Yankee Fan.

I grew up in Boston. Loved the Red Sox. But it was an abusive relationship. They kept hurting me. Real bad. They would flub a season, then get into contention again and find a new way to fail, the sports team equivalent of an abusive spouse bringing home flowers and promising they had changed. The 1986 World Series was the proverbial last straw. It’s what made me want to tie the whole team to the bed and set it on fire. The Red Sox were one out away from beating the perenially hapless NY Mets in Game 6 and winning their first World Series since 1986. Then this happened. The worst collapse in the history of the World Series.

Bill Buckner was run out of town. Every Red Sox fan in the whole of New England fell into a deep funk. Most are still there, even with the success they have seen in the last decade. At that point I was 13 years old but I already knew I was going to move to New York City. I figured the most treasonous thing I could do to that shit-hole of a city would be to become a New York City baseball fan. The Mets were out of the question, because well, they were the Mets. So it was the Yankees for me. The Evil Empire. I arrived in NYC at the right time to be a Yankee Fan. Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Jorge Posada all wormed our way into the big apple in the same season.

In 2003 I quit drinking, and that really propelled my fandom. I knew I was going to have a ton of extra time and cash on my hands, so I fix both problems by becoming a Yankee Season Ticket holder. This was at a time when there was a WAITING LIST to buy season tickets. Now you can’t even give tickets away for most games, but at that point Yankee tickets were still a big F’in deal. I was able to wiggle around the waiting list though because I asked for tix in the ALCOHOL FREEE section. Yup, once upon a time, the Yankees had two ENTIRE SECTIONS that were off limits for alcohol. A sort of “family friendly” section if you will. Of course there was no waiting list for those.

I kept those seats until the real Yankee Stadium closed. And even had them for the first two seasons at the new monstrosity. But by then I had lost my lustre for a full season so I was sharing with Beach and Skillman. At the beginning of the first year in the new stadium – we made a pact – if the Yankees win the World Series we are all going to get Yankee Tattoos. and if the Series is won by walk home homer by A-Rod we would also get his number, 13 tattooed.

Well they won the world Series that season, and it felt great. Sure they had a team of overpriced free agents that complemented their home grown talents, two of which, Jeter and Rivera, are first ballot Hall of Famers, and that was also a breakout year for Robinson Cano. Point being, with the exception of Johnny Damon, it felt like a Yankee team.

But after the season things went south. Fast. George Steinbrenner’s health rapidly declined and he was barely able to make his victory lap around the Stadium in a golf cart on opening day. His doofus sons Hal and Hank were left in charge and that’s when things really started to unravel. First of all, after the first year glow faded, it was obvious. The new Yankee Stadium sucks. The Yankees got outdone by the Mets there big time. And to fund that stadium they priced so many of the best seats for Wall Street Criminals that they now sit empty during the games. This has got to be a big hit to the morale of the players, not to mention an embarrassment for everyone watching on TV.

But what really put an end to me caring bout the Yankees, and also led to an apathy about baseball in general, was the Derek Jeter contract negotiations at the end of the 2010 season. Love or hate the Yankees, it’ hard to find people with negative things to say about Derek Jeter. He’s always been a hard working, clutch hitting, classy ball player. And a leader in the locker room. After Don Mattingly retired in 1995 the Yankees went without a captain until the appointed Jeter to the role in 2003. That was a big deal.

So when his contract was up for renewal in 2009 he was looking for a big fat juicy one. One like they gave to A-Rod and seemingly every free agent who was ever available. Didn’t seem like much to ask. In the George Steinbrenner Era, they would have had fierce negotiations behind closed doors and would have hammered out a deal. And Derek would have stepped in front of a microphone and delivered a speech about how wonderful it was to be a Yankee.

Instead thew Steinbrenners gave GM Brian Cashman the green light to dog Jeter in the NY Sports media – and he did. And it made me realize that the era had ended. George Steinbrenner may have been an asshole, but he was an entertaining asshole, and he CARED about his team WINNING, at almost any cost. George was gone, and he wasn’t coming back. And his kids most certainly were’t going. Nothing last forever… Except for these stupid fucking tattoos.

Too bad it wasn't the lick em / stick em kind.

Too bad it wasn’t the lick em / stick em kind.

But it’s OK, because I watch a real man’s sport now.

LET’S GO RANGERS!!!

Many thanks to the irrepressible spirit and lovely lens of Deneka Peniston for the tattoo pics!

W is for WWE SUPERSTAR CM Punk

Every day in October I will be rocking an A To Z Blog Challenge about my terribly terrific tattoos. Every day a new letter. Today is October 22 and the letter of the day is R.

W is for WWE’s “Best In The World” CM Punk

I’ve been in love with professional wrestling for my entire life. Or at least since my grandfather turned me on to it when I was eight years old. I was apoplectic when Killer Khan launched a knee drop off the top rope and broke Andre the Giants leg. I cried tears of grief when Superstar Billy Graham showed up on my TV and smashed Bob Backlund’s WWF Heavyweight Championship Belt. And I cried tears of joy when Kerry Von Erich pinned Ric Flair via backslide at Texas Stadium to win the NWA World Heavyweight Belt in front of almost 50,000 people at the show to honor his recently deceased brother David Von Erich.

As a kid I was lucky enough to get to see a lot of pro wrestling. Starting at 10 years old, my mom would just drop me off at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium for wrestling shows. It was a different era back then. The WWE would come around a couple times a year but the real thrills came when the indie league ICW would roll into town with all the territorial workers. Guys who I wasn’t able to see on TV and only knew from obsessively reading the classic Bill Apter magazines Pro Wrestling Illustrated, The Wrestler, and Inside Wrestling. I’m still gripped by fond and vivid memories of being scared shitless by Abdullah the Butcher, Bruiser Brody and Kamala. The Satanic Kevin Sullivan and his disciple frightened me at the same time I was getting a first-hand lesson in puberty when turned onto, and by, his scantily clad vixen of a sidekick “The Fallen Angel”.

Progression is the only constant of life. Girls, jobs, apartments, friends, fads, glint… they all come and go. The only three constant loves of my life have been pussy, rock n roll, and pro wrestling. Not always in that order. I’ve always followed WWE but after the attitude era, my focus has been mainly on the indies. The smaller DIY organizations that run in bingo halls, elks lodges, and high school gyms. ECW turned me on to those. Sometime in 1996 I came home late one saturday night from the Wetlands and started channel surfing. When the channel flickered and stopped on a badly lit pro wrestling event it halted me in my tracks. It was Tommy Dreamer and the Sandman versus Stevie Richards and Brian Lee from Ultimate Jeapordy 1996. The guys were brawling on the floor and then ended up fighting up on top of the concession stand. Hot dogging it on top of the hot dogs. That was my introduction to ECW. A whole new technicolor chapter in the already colorful world of professional wrestling. ECW! ECW! ECW!

That event inspired me to start watching ECW regularly and to start attending indie matches in the tri-state area. I’ve been to well over a hundred of them since. I’ve seen crazy athleticism and aerial maneuvers. I’ve seen Jimmy Snuka have to do his Superfly leap off the 2nd rope so he wouldn’t hit his he’d on the drop ceiling of a VFW hall on Long Island. I’ve seen a 60 year old man brawl with a man half his age in a match that saw the two of them so tangled up in barbed write they had to literally be cut loose. Ive seen guys get slammed through flaming folding tables and I’ve seen two “brothers” in a Taipei Death Match. That’s where they tape their fist, cover them in glue, then dip them in broken glass, and then fight. Yeah. I’ve seen a lot of crazy shit.

But on my first trip see the somewhat nascent promotion Ring Of Honor at the Pennsylvania National Guard Armory on December 27, 2003 I saw something special. Ring of Honor had flown over a group of stars from all Japan Pro Wrestling to put on a star studded card. That day me and Backyard Bill made the trek to Philly, but not before stopping at Classic Pistol in Southampton, PA to shoot some guns, of course.

That day featured Japanese wrestling legend The Great Muta. It also featured future top TNA stars Christopher Daniels and AJ Styles who I had been reading about on the wrestling websites and was excited to see. I also caught the elbow pad of Satoshi Kojima when he threw it into the crowd. I still have that elbow pad and often times wear it to matches and / or when watching a big Pay Per View event at home.

But the special part of the night to me was seeing CM Punk wrestle. Punk was tag teaming with Colt Cabana and taking on Tomoaki Honma and Kazushi Miyamoto. It’s usually pretty easy to tell the pros from the rookies at an indie show. But even on a card stacked with talent, CM Punk rose head, shoulders and tattoos above the rest of the wrestlers that night. He had a good look and physique for a pro wrestler, and just the right amount of swagger. He moved around the ring like a veteran and he gave as good as he got from his dastardly japanese opponents. Seeing the Japanese wrestlers live is a whole different ballgame. They are known for working a “stiff” style in Japan which is a lot rougher than American and Mexican Pro Wrestling – lots of forearms to the head, chops to the chest and kicks to the legs and torsos that leave the recipients skin reddened and bruised. But Punk took all they had to give and dished it out in spades. He and Cabana each earned the respect of the crowd that night, and even more impressively, won the respect of their Japanese opponents. I was impressed, and knew I would be watching and be wowed by this guy for years to come.

I followed his career over the next few years in Ring Of Honor. Then in the summer of 2005 he got called up to the big leagues and signed with WWE. It was a long and stormy run there, with Punk being bounced around between WWE’s “minor league” of Ohio Valley wrestling and the WWE’s rekindled ECW, which really served as their third tier TV show behind the twin titans of RAW and Smackdown. Sure, he won the ECW title and also briefly held the World Heavyweight Championship. But many of his fans and wrestling insiders felt he was being underutilized. It’s often been said that WWE CEO Vince McMahon doesn’t like to see characters that he didn’t create and develop hold top spots in the company. This sure seemed to be what was going on with Punk and towards the end of his 5 year deal, he started making noise behind the scenes about not being happy in the WWE and that he wouldn’t be renewing his contract.

Tons of speculation was going around as to whether he would or wouldn’t re-sign and that led to Punk getting what he wanted. The WWE execs chose to let him go on RAW and give him a live mic, to air his grievances unscripted. CM Punk went on to break character and give a 6 minute tirade about what it was that he didn’t like about the WWE, ripping into Vince McMahon, his daughter and heir to the throne Stephanie McMahon and her husband Paul LeVesque, aka WWE Superstar HHH. Punk’s promo sent a shock wave through the wrestling world. He said everything wrestling fans had been thinking for years. That Vince and co. are out of touch and don’t know or care what the fans want. It turned the wrestling world on it’s head galvanized a fan base that felt like it had been let down by the company, myself included.

I had long since stopped watching the WWE product. But I still read wrestling websites incessantly and listed to hours of audio content every week on PWInsider.com. I would listen to what basically amounted to pro Wrestling Talk Radio and read the website recaps to keep up with what was going on, and then would download or seek on YouTube the parts of the shows that I wanted to see.

But after Punk’s infamous promo, so many fans came flooding back to the the product. CM Punk had single handedly elevated WWE’s flagship show, Monday Night Raw, back to the MUST-SEE status it enjoyed during it’s “Attitude Era.” The ratings were better than they had been in years. And Vince McMahon listened to the fans this time. They signed Punk to a new long term deal, presumably for tons of dough and he defeated Vince McMahon’s golden boy John Cena in Punk’s hometown of Chicago on July 17th, 2011. Punk eventually went on to hold the belt for 434 days, an eternity in today’s WWE and the longest title reign since Hulk Hogan held it for 1,474 days from 1984-1988.

CM Punk reinvigorated the love of professional wrestling in a whole generation of fans who had almost given up on it. And he did it with a combination of hard work, determination, being true to himself, speaking his mind and simply not giving a fuck. He made the rest of us feel like we could make a difference and turn our own situations around. Because we can. He made us feel like we mattered. Because we do.

CM Punk: This tattoo’s for you!!!

Best In The World!!

Best In The World!!

Many thanks to the irrepressible spirit and lovely lens of Deneka Peniston for the tattoo pics!

V is for….

Every day in October I will be rocking an A To Z Blog Challenge about my terribly terrific tattoos. Every day a new letter. Today is October 26 and the letter of the day is V.

V is for… Vacancy and Void

Vacancy. With each tattoo I create less of it. Void is important though. Gotta give a little contrast. I don’t intend to cover every inch of my body. But will probably end up with ink on most of it. People with few or no tattoos like to ask people with a lot of tattoos how many they have. People with a lot of tattoos never know. But as Bruce likes to tell people when they ask the answer is 1. They are just pieces of one big tattoo. Or eventually they will be. I wonder what my last tattoo will be. I’ll probably never know. I doubt I’ll ever consciously stop getting tattooed. So I guess my last one will just be the last one I get before I die.

U is for a Unicorn. Humpin’ A Dolphin, Humpin’ A Dolphin!

Every day in October I will be rocking an A To Z Blog Challenge about my terribly terrific tattoos. Every day a new letter. Today is October 25 and the letter of the day is U.

U is for Uniporn.  The story of the Dolphin and the Unicorn.

One day I was sitting in my office and I thought to myself “You know what would be cool, a picture of a unicorn humping a dolphin.”  So I sent off an email to my Rocks Off designer extraordinaire, Glenn Hidalgo, that said “Glenn, I need a picture of a unicorn humping a dolphin in front of a rainbow, and it has to look all care bears style.”  A couple of weeks later the line art came.  A week after that this fully realized beauty:

unicornlogo

I was stunned.  It was perfect.  But of course I had no use for it.  I just printed it up and hung it on my refrigerator and home.  Every day it would make me smile.  It wasn’t til about 8 months later that it dawned one me – WHAT A GREAT IDEA FOR A TATTOO!  So I went and got it done, naturally.

DSC00747 2

A week later my friend Phil emailed me and said “Hey I just started a new band called Children of the Unicorn .  Let me know if you have any gigs for us.”  I emailed the pic of the tattoo back to him and that ended up being the band’s album cover, and Phil asked me to join the band.  So I did.  He already had the band together – so I just played cowbell and tambourine, and generally added a heavy dose of awesomeness to our shows.

 

The tattoo was getting great reactions.  So naturally I had to turn the image into a t-shirt.  So we did.  On pink shirts for boys, and on blue shirts for the girls. It quickly became our best selling shirt.  YOU SHOULD TOTALLY BUY ONE BY CLICKING HERE.

pdolphinshirtmen

 

And then came the song.  My buddy David Blend hit me up and said “If I write a song about why a Unicorn would want to hump a Dolphin, could you find someone to record it?”  I said sure, but asked  what made him think of it.  And he revealed his bigger plan for it to be an ad for a tattoo shop I own in Tucson, Arizona.  The Magic Fun Store.  Corn Mo recorded the song.  B.A. Miale made the video.  And the rest is viral marketing history.

 

It didn’t stop there. The English are big fans of Uniporn. Last year the Uniporn made a surprise appearance on the Graham Norton show. Which apparently is a talk show where the guests get drunk. Sounds like fun! This particular episode featured Mark Wahlberg, Minnie Driver, and some British dude talking about tattoos. Mahky Mahk talks about getting his removed – because he’s a faygo. Then Graham shows them some pictures of “questionable” tattoos and gets their reactions. Skip ahead to the 3:00 mark to get to the good part.

A couple of months ago, I got contacted by the producers of RudeTube, a British television program that collects and shows funny videos from the internet. For people who don’t know how to use the internet, I presume. They loved the Song and video and sent a crew to my house to interview me and B.A. who made the video. That went a little something like this:

But my all time favorite piece about the tattoo came from a hot chick. Well, she was hot. Not anymore. A few years ago I was watching the Comedy Central Roast of David Hasselhoff and a relatively unknown comedienne named Whitney Cummings tore the house down with jokes like “Pamela Anderson’s here. Pam you’ve slept with Bret Michaels, Tommy Lee and Kid Rock. Why don’t you save yourself some time and drink a vat of Magic Johnson’s blood.” Pure class. I was immediately smitten. The next morning I looked her up online and went to her website. I started reading her blog, clicked to the the next page, and there was my arm, staring back at me. She was less than complimentary. But at least she was funny. I wish she was still funny. Oh well. Princess complex, indeed.

http://whitneycummings.tumblr.com/post/830425335/i-love-tattoos-obsessed-id-get-one-if-i-wasnt

Oh, and then there’s this asshole.  No, I don’t know him.

Duuuuuude.

Duuuuuude.