Now that it’s summertime, I see a lot more tattoos around town. Many of them are the usual motifs: skulls, flames, flaming skulls, roses, roses and skulls, miscellaneous “tribal”, kanji (various), and dolphin (no flaming dolphins yet), but I’ve also seen what seems to be a relatively new genre of tattoo: the extended text block. I’m always curious as to what these say, but I seldom have the opportunity to actually read them, since I’m usually not inclined to stop strangers in the street so I can examine their legs, backs, or myriad other parts.

I suppose these represent some sort of development of tattoo technology, since the tight resolution of fine text was probably impractical using earlier methods, given the body’s tendency to diffuse pigments with age. Perhaps it’s nanotechnology, or ink-beads, or something! I don’t know anything about tattoos!

And as for the quotation depicted in the comic, I chose the poem “First Fig” by Edna St. Vincent Millay, from A Few Figs From Thistles. It seemed like a good tattoo for a fictional saucy lady, although if it were me I’d probably not put the phrase “burns at both ends” too near my bottom.

Oh, and this just in… while I haven’t seen any Flaming Dolphin tattoos out there, a quick internet search turns up this image, which seems to imply that such a thing is a possibility. Note also the “triple threat” nature of the design: 1) Flaming 2) Dolphin 3) “Tribal” Motif! This seems to be one of many tattoo stencil designs (presumably for airbrush tattoos) available at, where you can acquire the “Professional Look.” Maybe it’s all the clown imagery, the odd bare-bones site design, or the fact that Lorie has been binge-watching the X-Files this week, but something about this site makes me feel like it’s a front for some sort of diabolical something. But what?