Having a Beard & Ratty Tattoos Doesn’t Make You Interesting, It Makes You a Poser

Your style is boring. It is so boring. And it’s not even trendy anymore. The beard, bacon, tattoo, craft beer starter pack peaked in 2013, so why is it still a thing? Why can I leave my home on any given day and see at least six variations on Ricki Hall?

You might as well strap on a fanny-pack while you’re at it.

Let’s face it, tattoos will never go out of style. Nor should they. But they were specifically the big thing of 2012 and 2013. It was like a school of octopi rode the wave of US pop culture and left a flood of ink in its path. I mean, hey, remember Rick Genest? (You probably don’t.)

At this point, it’s almost a guarantee that every westerner reading this either knows or knows of someone with cheaply done knuckle tats, a dirty beard they claim to wash with special oils, and a hairstyle that’ll be viewed as questionable in 5 years time. Every so often you’ll sign into Facebook and there will be a picture of that one idiot guy or bland, benign girl from High School–who would have otherwise been excluded from your feed if not for Zuckerberg’s popularity algorithm–covered head to toe in tattoos, with millions of comments beneath their photo. Now, I know what you’re thinking. “Hey, maybe that person just really likes tats and never expressed it before. Maybe if you’d bothered to talk to them, you’d know that ink is their passion!” No.

This is what we call a poser. In the age of faux-sincerity and hyper positivity in regards to everything, this label has swiftly drifted over the collective head of our generation. Rather than questioning the motives of any single person, decisions are met with thunderous applause. There’s no moment of pause where an individual is dealt with the question, “So, uh, you covered your face, neck, and chest in ratty tattoos, huh? What now?”

I’ll tell you ‘what now.’ If they’re skinny, they become a model for the summer. If they’re fat, they do a shoot with an amateur photographer trying to promote a Facebook page with under 300 likes. Then, once the ‘look at me’ high wears down, they return to work–probably microwaving Egg McMuffins–with a spiderweb tattoo over their sternum. What does it even mean?

When paying attention, it’s not hard to distinguish who is doing or saying a certain thing for ‘likes’, ‘follows’, or any other equivalent to a pat on the back. It’s a desperate cry for individuality that is taken to great lengths. We impose insecurity and a fear of loneliness onto ourselves and expect an unlimited stream of non-committal strangers to solve it by tapping at their phones. “Tell me I’m attractive, make me feel special, validate my worth.” That is all of us to some extent. It’s part of the human condition. But what you’re seeing now is an excess of that, and poserdom being rewarded as a result. All it takes is a messy set of facial hair and a collection of Sriracha shirts to build a following that will, given the state of fashion, dwindle to dust in due time.

So to return to the question, “What does it even mean?” It means our generation, like every generation, is insecure and full of people making poorly thought out choices. They’re just easier to identify now.


About Jayme Karales

Jayme Karales is a writer, filmmaker, actor, and comedian. He is the founder of Clash Media, the director of Practice Makes Perfect, and currently stars in the UnHollywood original series The Hutchcast. His writing has been published by Thought Catalog, The Rebel, Before Sunrise Press, Your Daily Subvert, Moon Project, and others. Follow @JaymeKarales on Twitter.

4 Responses

  1. Jason

    I totally agree with you. I do find it annoying too that most women I want to date only go for guys with beards and tattoos. It’s materialistic and fake. One girl I was with stopped talking to me because her friend told her she doesn’t think she should be with me because I don’t have tattoos or a full beard. I was pretty floored at how stupid that was.

  2. John Does

    Guys, dont hate, just join them, of course the question is initially, have you the ability to grow a beard or will it just turn out like poor looking bum fluff. Put down those Gilette Mach 3 razors or whatever the clean cut guy uses these days, let it grow man, you never know the new look might hide that double chin or it may even make the girls swoon, what have you got to lose apart from your pro state, clean cut, butter wouldnt melt image. Grow some balls and grow a beard!!

    Now on the tattoo front, whats with all the hate? Are other peoples tattoos doing you any actual harm? Are they so offensive that you cover the eyes of your own children. Is it jealousy that others are brave enough to be different? I dont have a tattoo but I dont mind others getting them, they’re like just a hobby for some people, they collect tattoos in the same way as you probably collect stamps or aeroplane models when your mother lends you a few dollars. Let them do what they want, i think its great, the less this country is unlike North Korea the better, where men cannot have beards and cannot have ink unless Kim Jong-Un says so.

    The world is full of hundreds of opinions about every topic under the sun. But one thing holds true, we will all be pushing up daisy’s at the end of it all. life is short, just a blink let people do whatever the they want to do, your even wasting time worrying too much about other people, go away and live

  3. Dave Beavers

    What if you were tattooed and bearded well before the hipster trend? Are they posing as us or are we the original poser’s and it seems that everyone is a poser before they are pro

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