Mike Tyson was one of the fiercest boxers of his time and remains one of the greatest in the boxing world. However, he has a unique recognition attributed to his face tattoo, which many do not know the meaning of its origin.
In an interview with Graham Bensinger, Mike revealed how he got it, mentioning that initially, he wanted hearts on his face. He said, ‘I just thought it was a cool tattoo. I was going to get a bunch of hearts and stuff. That would have been really stupid.’
He further explained the encounter with the tattoo artist, Victor Perez: ‘I was going to be the man of hearts, baby. I was very close. Victor Perez, the tattoo artist, said, “I ain’t doing that. I can’t do that.” I said, “What do you think I should get? Because I was confused.” Victor Perez, being a good guy, said, “Come back in a couple of days. I’m going to try and design something.”‘
“After waiting for a couple of days, Perez called and said, ‘Mike, I’ve got some tribal stuff.’ Tyson was intrigued and agreed: ‘Woah, put another one over there. This is cool, I like this.’ So, the tattoo artist inked it on my face.’
Tyson recounted the reactions he received: ‘I thought it was so hot. I would be in these dens, these clubs, and strip places sometimes, and all the girls said, “Oh, you are very exotic. Where are you from? Where did your family come from? Why did you put this tattoo on your face?” They said I looked like some tribesman or something. I ran into some chicks that happened to be from the Maori tribe, and they said, “Hey, you’ve got some of my tribe on your face,” and the lady pulled her pants down and she has this tattoo on her butt.’
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Read on Lehren – The Story Behind Mike Tyson’s Face Tattoo, Initially He Wanted Hearts On His Face