Archive for July 7, 2011

“Got to get tough”

Posted in Articles on July 7, 2011 by oldcountrystrong

With America (and many in the gym) getting over it’s hangover from celebrating its birthday on July 4 maybe it was just my imagination but I feel I got asked the same question several times this week. “Hey Nicky, is that a tattoo on your wrist and do you and Z both have the same tattoo?”

Now the first thing that usually goes into my head when I get asked this is “The tattoo is on my wrist…how did you not see it?” but I let the asshole in me subside and respond yes, it is a tattoo. Of course the follow up question is either “Doesn’t Z have that tattoo too?” or “What is it? A brick wall?” My answer to the first question is “Yes and JJ has the tattoo also.” My answer to the second question is one word which cannot be explained in one word, “Family”

If you did not already know, the Filer family loves movies, fantasy, video games, and comic books. We have LOTR jackets from the 70’s, elvish written on the inside of our weddings rings, wedding music derived from video games, the Filers are a bunch of athletic dorks (which is awkward because as one of my good friends once stated “You aren’t supposed to get the dork genes and jock genes”).

Growing up there was one comic book which I loved more than any other, GI Joe.

Now the 80’s cartoon was awesome don’t get me wrong, but the comics are the fucking shit. I own every GI Joe comic (again see the prior dork admission) and maybe the biggest badass in comic history is Snake Eyes. If you watched the prior clip that is how the comic book Snake Eyes rolls, a silent fucking ninja commando. Snakes Eyes is a member of the Arashikage ninja clan. here is a picture of him with his Sword Brother Storm Shadow.

That clan symbol looks familiar. Growing up, I said the only tattoo I would ever get would have to be that because Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow had it. Well there came a rough and turbulent time in Filer family and I get a call from Z that the brothers needed to get a tattoo. I reiterated my tattoo stance and Z called my bluff and said that would be fine. So we went and got tatted up, not because we were drunk or because Z needed a new tattoo; no we got a comic book ninja clan tattoo for our “clan” because it symbolizes the bond our “family” shares.

Was there a point to this origin story? Maybe, maybe not. But I believe that people can draw strength from symbols, be it your family tattoo, your gym colors, a cross, or the flag. And that strength will get you through the challenges you face in life; be it in the gym, the office, anywhere. I also believe that my tattoo is bad ass, for what it’s worth.

Posted by Nickay