Friday, May 6, 2011

The Evolution of the Douchebag Tattoo

Chris’ mom claimed that anyone with 3 or more tattoos was a sexual deviant. By definition, Chris and her husband were sexual deviants. According to my observations, anyone with one tattoo is a douchebag. By definition, I’m a douchebag.

While wading in the extensive pool at the Grand Hyatt in Maui last week, I had lots of time to observe women and men in various stages of undress, with various tattoos. It was a moneyed bunch and tended to skew on the “older” side - 35 to 55 - so most tattoos were run of the mill tramp stamps for women and bicep tattoos for the fellas. A few hipster women and men – the new yuppies – were covered, branding them as members of the creative class, the ruling class. In this scenario, the tattoo becomes “work,” a digestible euphemism.

In my UV protection swim shirt, Target floppy hat and white sunglasses, it was clear that the first wave of douchebag tattoos for women – the tramp stamp – had not evolved. Generation of women were still adorning butterflies, angels and various winged entities on their lower back and as long as alcohol is served and tattoo shops stay open on the weekend until 2 am, the tramp stamp will survive.

However, I’m not comfortable commenting on tattoo trends among women because I tend to consider myself a women sympathizer, who knows at least 3 alternative spellings of the word women – womyn, wimmin and wymyn - and probably wrote a paper at the age of 21 that used the word herstory over the traditional history. I’m way more comfortable being a dick to men. You know, men on men. It’s easier and I very knowledgeable of the breed.

As I waded in the pool, I realized that my tattoo – a large carrot on the outer calf of my left leg - was the first douchebag spot of tattoos for men. I looked around and men in the general vicinity of my age, who showed a propensity for tattoos, sported some elongated symbol/object that stretched up their outer calf. It became clear - it was the tramp stamp equivalent of guys. This wasn’t a huge revelation because I was a trendsetter in the arena of douchebaggery. Remember, I was wearing a swim shirt.

Once I eliminated the older set and their calf tattoos, I looked at the younger guys, with their muscles, pretty girlfriends/old ladies and good looks. In envy and jealousy, I was harder on them, meticulously scouring their tanned bodies for a trend. I didn’t have to look long.

Like the late 80s/early 90s tattoo trend of tribal bands, barbwire, dragons, suns and graphic designs, the local and haole men of Hawaii adorned some sort of tribal tattoo pattern that ran from their shoulder to their forearm. Since we were in Hawaii, it was assumed that every one of these patterns had some sort of historical meaning. Meaning or not, they were everywhere, given the fact that these fellas preferred tank tops over elbow length polos.

Treading water in the deep end, I crowned the one arm tribal tattoo as the new douchebag tattoo. I was a bit sad that my carrot on the outer calf was no longer relevant, but I found solace that I was douchebag when douchebag was cool.


  1. the Grand Hyatt... that place kicks ass...

    i've had conversations recently about this subject... because long, long ago (besides sexual deviancy) tattoos suggested you were probably in a biker gang or an ex-con...

    but now-a-days, there is little stigma associated with them... you likely will have a boss with one... nobody judges that you HAVE a tattoo, just WHAT KIND you have

    having a carrot tattoo is pretty cool if you're a vegan... it gives you carte blanche to fuck with carnivores
    however, if you then become a carnivore, it only serves as a reminder to the people you harassed what dick you were on tour

  2. A song about a douchebag:
    When you get to the site, look to the right and click on song #1, "Barbed Wire Tattoo." Enjoy...