Tattoos have always been the ultimate in badass body decoration. Whenever filmmakers want you to instantly know a character is on the cutting edge, they give them some piercings and some tattoos. Ironically, both are things that have been around for thousands of years and are about as cutting edge as eating and breathing.
But does that, and peoples’ obsessions with them, make body modifications generally nerdy? Maybe, maybe not. There certainly are a lot of nerdy tattoos out there and the Interwebs are absolutely rife with nerd tattoo blog posts.
In fact, the examples below (except for #5) were all stolen third or forth hand from other blogs. Where most blogs give you between ten and twenty-five hot girls with Boba Fett sleeves and a million different Nintendo characters, we’ve tried to distill it down to five truly nerdy tats. Tattoos which aren’t merely a full-back Next Generation cast collage or the numbers from Lost or the Triforce symbol, but something especially nerderific.
1: Nerd Pride
Of course, being purveyors of “Nerd Pride” ourselves, we’re partial to anyone who goes the distance and gets a tattoo of the phrase. And if they can make it USB compatible, all the better. Nerd on, brother, nerd on.
2: Scannable Barcode Tattoo
There’s probably more barcode tattoos out there than actual barcodes. Well, no, that’s clearly not the case. But they’re so common now they can hardly be considered nerdy. Douchey, perhaps, especially when they have words like “SLAVE” in the number field. But not really nerdy except in the sense people who get them probably think they’re über-cool when they’re totally über-not.
There are also a lot of binary tattoos out there. Those are pretty nerdy. But this guy has taken things a step further and combined binary with an actual working barcode that produces his name when scanned. That’s actually pretty cool. In a totally über-geeky sort of way. (But, dude, the connector ports have got to go). You can read more about the tat here.
3: Logan’s Run Life Clock
Sci-fi characters, props and logos tattoos are a dime a quintillion. You don’t know how many Darth Vaders, light sabers, Harry Potter lightning bolts and Enterprises I had to look at when researching this post. And yes, they’re all geeky, but pretty unimaginative.
There’s something elegantly nerdy about getting a trompe l’oie costume piece tattooed right onto your body. And what better than the life clock from Logan’s Run? Though iconic to nerds who grew up in the ’70s and ’80s, not everyone is going to get it. This makes it the perfect nerd litmus test (especially when shaking hands!) at parties. There’s probably a whole generation of normies who’d have no idea what a red crystal in the palm of you hand means. On the other hand (pun intended), you’d probably get sick of explaining it after about two months.
Plus that had to be excruciating to get done. I couldn’t have done it. The only way this could be more awesome is if they got it inked in white during their twenties and had the red filled in on their thirtieth birthday. Here’s hoping that was the case.
4: Air Quotes
Anyone who does “air quotes” enough they can legitimize having them tattooed on their fingers is a nerd. Or a frakking douche. I have a feeling this guy has no idea how much of a huge nerd he really is.
5: Courage D20
There are quite a few polyhedral die tats out there (most of them flaming) but this one is a little extra nerdy. It might actually be my favourite nerd tattoo ever. The tat’s owner explains the concept behind it thusly: Inspired in part by the quote from the X-Files episode Jose Chung’s From Outer Space, “I didn’t spend all those years playing dungeons and dragons and not learn a little something about courage!”