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So as I was walking along Venice Beach today, I saw tons of tourists entering a myriad of tattoo/piercing shops. Seeing as most of the tourists were absolute 'tards, I can only imagine what kind of "fun" those artists deal with on a regular basis.

Anyways, what's your worst walk-in story? Whether it was an abnormally absurd request or an out of his/her mind customer tell your story here!

Edited by Jake
typo/revisions/posting from my phone sucks

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Ok I'll go....

The shop I worked at right after my apprenticeship was run by this dude that was very money motivated. Get em in get em out. Make that cake!!!

Saturdays were walk ins only! You put your name down and wait for it to be called.

I called this gentleman up. Actually he turned out to be a pushy prick. He wanted a portrait of himself!! He brought in a tiny ass picture of him FROM THE 70'S!!!!!!!! It was now like 1997!!! He wanted me to "update" his look and have him raising a black power fist. I don't do portraits now and tried to explain to him I had no business doing them back then. He wasn't hearin it and neither was my boss. Boss wanted the money and dude wanted his portrait transformation. Being a newbie and feeling the pressure from both ends, I did it. Some of the longest two hours of my life!! Haha. Did it come out good? Probably not. But I guess he got what he wanted.

I've since learned that it's ok to say NO to people. And refuse to be pressured by anyone I work for.

Are these stories we should be keepin away from people that don't tattoo?

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Awesome.

And I don't tattoo and I see no reason why it'd bother/surprise someone one who doesn't tattoo. Then again, I don't pretend to live in some fairytale land where I think there is some sacred bond between my artist, the shop, and me. We're all flawed humans and that's what makes these stories great! But hey, I'm strange and that's just me.

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Are these stories we should be keepin away from people that don't tattoo?

I don't think so. I don't think you can over educate someone on something so important.

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About a month ago I was tattooing this young lady. Tattooed her young husband several times before. Good people. So I'm tattooing her back and she's sitting in a chair. Her husband and work friend were there for support. We are all hangin out and having a good time when the friend starts babbling some numbers. I stop tattooing and look over and chuckle, "what?!". I see the look of panic in her eyes and realize she's saying a phone number. She mumbles," call my husband, call my husband". Her voice was really faint like she was a mile away. She stands up and goes into a full epileptic seizure. I put my arms under her arms to guide her down so she doesn't hit her melon on anything. She's sitting on the floor still freaking out with her back pressed up against my shins. Then I see the puddle start to form under her ass.

Somebody calls the fire dept, they do nothing, and she finally comes around. She doesn't believe us that she went into a seizure bla bla bla.

Oh yeah, what did the friend do while this was happening? She ran out the shop crying!!

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about 7 years ago, when i worked at deluxe, i was doing a kanji on this chick's lower back. she was doing ok, then got a little light-headed. so, we stopped, i let her sit down, got her some water, her friend gave her candy. waited about ten minutes, she was feeling better, chatting, color came back in her face. she seemed totally fine. so, we decide to finish up( there was literally one minute left on the tattoo.)

she takes a final swig of her water and takes two steps toward the trash can, to throw out her cup. SHE PASSES OUT STANDING UP. !!!CRACK!!! she hit the floor unconscious, no reflexes, face first. it sounded like a bat hitting a baseball. it was the scariest sound ever, and we were stunned. for a second we all just stood there with our mouths open, then the silence was broken by the chick's eerie moaning. blood was pooling out around her head and she seemed REAL confused and in a lot of pain. she was crying and not getting up.

so, i called 911, they show up pretty quick, paramedics come in and i tell them what happened. in the most non-challant way, dude glances at her, then back at me and pulls his sleeve up to show me an old armband..."hey bro, how much would it be to fix this up?". i repeated that she was bleeding and in pain and he says "she'll be ok, probably just broke her jaw." his buddy is behind us looking at flash!

so, they finally take her out on a stretcher and off to the hospital. i start cleaning up the blood, and notice her teeth left an indent in our floor. SHE HIT HARD. so, her friend is on her way out and is quietly giggling, and i ask what is so funny? she says "well, in the last week her boyfriend dumped her, her car got stolen and she got fired. she was hoping this tattoo would turn her luck around." it was the kanji for "lucky".

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Keep the tattoo stories coming..... I've been laughing out loud, gasping, jaw dropping, bug eyed through this whole thread. Good topic Jake and great contributions!!

I think the more both parties, tattooers and tattoo "collectors", can educate each other the better. Especially when it comes to respecting one another and the profession of tattooing!!

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OMG Mario,

that poor girl! Such a bummer for everyone, such a bummer that the paramedics sucked. Did you ever hear from any of those people ever again?

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no, i never heard anything about her! i was worried there would be a lawsuit. hope her luck turned around, though! that stuck with me, i was shaken for a couple of days. definately the worst experience i've had in a tattoo shop.

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Damn, I feel bad for people passing out. I pass out every time I have blood drawn, not from getting tattooed yet, but I'm sure I will at some point. A lot of people who pass out kinda look like they might be having a mild seizure, but in reality it's just the electricity turning back on. I had to go for a brain scan and some testing after the first time it happened to me and that's what the neurologist told me. last time I passed out I bit my tongue, nothing major, just a small bite.

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man I'm usually light-headed and in spaced out zombie mode after someone with a heavy hand like Scott tattoos me- now I'm wondering if Ima pass out one of these times! haha I hope not. how often are these occurrences considering there's already a handful of stories about it???

Anyways, that's crazy about the "electricity turning back on" thing tho calbee

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i make sure i piss and shit BEFORE every tattoo.

i didnt think scott had a crazy heavy hand. i figure it sucks for everybody on their chest/stomach/a bit of ye ol riblets

oh of course- no one wants to be that guy going to drop a deuce 10 minutes in. I figured that was standard man.

as far as scott's heavier hand... I guess it's all a matter of perspective. He's done about half my work and for some reason most of the stuff done by other people on me are smaller pieces done by artists who take their sweet ass time and are gentle. So compare those experiences to my tattoos by Scott, which hit a bunch of fun spots (chest, belly, achilles, etc,) and his amazing ability to power through work twice as fast as most other artists, and that's why I immediately think of him on the heavier hand end. or maybe he's just fucking with me cuz I'm young and not you cuz you traveled super far ;)

Fastest Tattooers

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During my apprenticeship I had to learn how to pierce. Looking back it was stupid but whatever. I did my job and did it well plus it helped me make some extra cash as I was only 18 and couch surfing. Anyways, I had to pierce this rather large girls belly button. I mean she was big. I'd say around 200lbs and was maybe 5' 6". So I explain to her that it's not a good idea to pierce her navel because it would actually be piercing her stomach (her navel was waaaaay deep in there) but she has me go on with it. Keep in mind she was a very quiet girl and was with her husband. We do the piercing no problem, I ask her if she's feeling okay because she looked alittle pale. I told her to just sit down and hang out. She insisted she was fine and they went to the front of the shop. By the time I got my gloves up and washed my hands I walk up front and see her in the waiting room looking very pale. She's sitting down and I'm like "yo girl, you alright" and she doesn't say nothing but instead starts slouching down in the chair. I realize she passed out. So I'm sitting here trying to hold her up with my knee bracing her from falling out of the chair and keep her head from rolling around and I hear this sound. She starts pissing her pants and her husband just stared at me while I'm asking him to hold her up and he wouldn't. So she pisses and pisses and pisses and its all over the fucking place and all over my shoes. Once she comes to, they tried leaving without fucking paying. She had no idea she pissed her pants and her purse was between her legs during it all and she just grabs it and walks out with pee dripping out of it. It was the worst day of my entire apprenticeship.

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when I first started tattooing a lady came to me with a terrible photo of a man- in the distance , behind a kitchen table.

She wanted a portrait of him.

Well, I did it to the best of my limited ability - which at the time was really limited.

When it was done, she looked at it in the mirror and said " I hope my husband doesn't recognize him!"

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These pass out stories are scaring the shit out of me. I've only ever passed out once, right after childbirth (which seems reasonable) but I still tend to take precautions like eating protein, being hydrated and not drinking caffeine that day. That just seems too embarrassing to risk. Those paramedics were douchebags, but what a good story!

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