When I was a wee lad growing up in the intellectual and cultural desert of Plano, texas (population: shitheads) there wasn’t much that made me happy. I wasn’t on the football team, I wasnt rich, I didn’t hunt and I read a lot of books. In Texas this means you have to get into a lot of fistfights, so I did. It wasn’t fun. Not much was. Before I discovered punk rock my very first taste of a life outside the dreary mainstream was Iron Maiden. They were amazing! The music was epic, soaring and majestic, they sang about satan and spooky stuff just like every other metal band, but they also sang about being a world war two fighter ace, a reincarnated pharo, HP Lovecraft and the Rime of the Ancient mariner, this was amazing stuff to a budding 14-year-old! It was clear that they were not pretending to be ‘evil’, they mostly talked about soccer in interviews and made fun of their own terrifying mascot, “Eddie“. When Powerslave was released in 1984 I wore out 3 different cassette tapes and 2 walkmen with my constant rotation of it. I grew my hair long, I scrimped and saved to buy an Iron Maiden t-shirt (it was too small, i wore it anyway). In short, they were a huge part of my growing up. Even as I got into more ‘serious’ music like Minor Threat and Agnostic front there was always a copy of Piece of Mind or the Number of the Beast near at hand. I can (and will) sing the entire Run to the Hills from memory at full Dickensian volume.
Eventually I got out of texas and things got better, my obsessive love affair with Iron Maiden ended, but like a first girlfriend or Citizen Kanes Rosebud there will always be fond memories of the one thing in the world that made a mopey teen with scraggly feathered hair and a denim jacket happy.
Strangely enough in my 14 years of tattooing I had never done a tattoo of Iron Maidens iconic mascot, Id seen quite a few (mostly bad) Eddies out there, but the stars never aligned to bring one of these customers to me. Til now.
To round out my day we finished my sweet lil Caras peony tattoo on the back of her neck. After 3 laser treatments her old work had faded enough to go over with this gigantic blossom. It took two sessions since the pain was pretty serious, still she took it like a champ and will have a finished tattoo for the wedding IN LESS THAN A MONTH!
For anyone who doesn’t already know, Cara is no fucking joke when it comes to getting tattooed. She has, in 3 short years, amassed more and better tattoos than me in al my 20+ years of getting tattooed. If you count the lasering I’m having done I am actually going backwards! She has been thoughtful and insistent on quality work. I thought Cara was the most beautiful girl in the world when i met her with a single tiny tribal tattoo on her neck, now she isn’t just beautiful, she is beautiful and covered with gorgeous tattoos, in short AMAZING!