We have tattoos. A lot of tattoos.
We get tattoos for different reasons, and they are all personal. Really at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter. I know people that get tattoo’s because they have something they want to remember ( Friend passing, Child born, girlfriend) but, I also know people who get tatted because they wanted free hot dogs for life. or because rick and Morty is a rad show.
Tattoos in the industry is a throwback to where the industry comes from. Twenty years ago most cooks were ex-cons, drunks, floaters, or people who couldn’t do much else. You had tattoos because you existed on the fringe of society and you had something to say, or you wanted people to view you as strong.
Tattoos are accepted in our part of the world. I’ve worked with people with tons of face tattoos. People who have had a rough past (think white lightning bolts and king crowns) and also people who just want Morton’s salt girl on their arm. A lot of those guys were awesome at their job. That’s what matters here.
Tattoos say a lot of things, including, don’t fuck with me. You work next to a guy with a cobra on his neck and you’re gonna think twice about touching his stuff. It’s a way of saying “don’t fuck with me.” and in a strange way, it shows a dedication to the craft. It shows your commitment to the craft.
I know a lot of people in the industry that have industry tattoos. A lot of pineapples, a lot of bacon, a lot of food related items (knives, forks, spoons, that sort of thing), plate settings. It doesn’t make a lot of sense. Being in this industry is special. There are different rules and it feels like you live in a completely different world than everyone else. Don’t get me wrong there are also just a lot of tattoos. A lot of them don’t have anything to do with the industry.
There are different rules here. It feels like you live in a completely different world than everyone else. In a way, we do. My tattoos have landed me jobs, they show that I’m not fucking around. I don’t know any other industry that’s so close to the mainstream and also so foreign. People hate how we look but love how we cook.
Our tattoos are for us. It’s part of our culture. and I know a lot if industry kids that will never get a tattoo, let alone one of cabbage. Tattoos are so much more of a personal thing than a standard thing, but restaurants are a place where you don’t get punished for them and they aren’t demonized.
*I have incredible luck and a ton of my friends have let me post their tattoos here. They should all be tagged and if anyone else wants to show off just message me. I just wanted to show the incredible diversity with industry tattoos. we have literally just a strip of bacon, to flames on one foot, symbolizing one foot in the fire. Thank you for everyone that has let me post their pictures!