Editor’s note: Welcome to the latest series on LAS. Every tattoo has a story and we want to hear yours. Send submissions to [email protected]
What do lacrosse and tattoos have in common? Most notably, both give us a surge of adrenaline and endorphins, something normal living doesn’t typically deliver in the quantities we desire. And of course, they both hurt. But as the saying goes, no pain-no gain. Tattoos have been around far longer than lacrosse though – just ask Ötzi the Iceman.
Between Europe and Asia, tattoos have been a part of human culture for over 50 centuries. It was only since their recent use in Polynesia that they have gained prevalance in western society. So what makes a tattoo so great in our minds today? Well, I recently got a tattoo (below), and man is it an experience. I have a couple now on both sides of my left ankle (also shown below) which are older but still symbolic to me.
The latest is the biggest one though, and dare I say most significant – because it is of the great state that I live in and have an ever growing respect for. It is definitely similar to the green heart in Oregon bumper stickers, with a little bit of a personal twist. But part of what makes those stickers so amazing, in my opinion, is how many of them you see, how many people love Oregon enough to show it like that. I do a reasonable amount of traveling, and have never seen such a united showing of a people’s love for the place they live and thrive. Not that I would know, but I don’t imagine you see a lot of Rhode Island stickers on the cars out there (though I would love to be proved wrong on this one…)
Oregon represents a foundation for all of my life in so many ways, including lacrosse. It is clear that it’s a foundation most of us are actively proud of and I decided to take it a step further and forever proclaim my participation in and love for this great piece of land.
To get into the philosophy of tattoos in general, I’ve thought for some time now that tattoos are a snapshot in time of what you feel without the knowledge of the future. They are like a tangible memory of what you were or what you thought, regardless of whether you regret it now or hold it as the best decision of your life. Though as my mom says, ‘can’t you just remember that without tarnishing your body?‘ Well yea, and we all could have all written poetry instead of playing contact sports, right? There is a significance attached to something that causes pain or euphoria, or better yet both. These are states of mind that cannot be attained through rational living. I truly believe there is a common thread between the desire to engage in the great game of lacrosse and to permanently and painfully mark your body in an artistic, sentimental way. I’ve seen many a lax player with sweet ink on the field and I won’t pretend that I didn’t consider how mine would look under a jersey! There is a story behind every tattoo and I’d like to think there is also a deeper meaning for us when it comes to getting inked.
W1LDF1RE’s other body art:
“I have a bit of ink and NOT ONE is a lax tattoo. I don’t know whether that makes me cool or lame. I guess it depends on your perspective. I did, however, get a really angry goldfish tattoo’d on my forearm when I was living in Australia and I was in Australia to play lacrosse, so I guess that counts? Probably not, but I’m just going to keep telling myself that it does.” -Connor Wilson
Now I challenge you, Lax Nation, to show me your ink and tell me why its on you forever! Share your stories with us and send an email to [email protected]