My wrestling character Shemeikka has a finisher move called Terminator 2. Terminator 2 is my favorite movie, but the name of the move actually derives from the time I still played rugby. My teammate once said that we should all have some sort of nicknames.
He then picked a name for each of us, and when it was his turn to be named, he chose himself the name Terminator 2. When I asked why Terminator 2, he replied well, it’s better than the first one. I remember thinking to myself this must be the funniest thing I’ve ever heard – a joke so genius it doesn’t even make sense anymore!
Later, when I had to pick a name for my finisher, I decided it has to be Terminator 2. Since then, Terminator has become a big part of my performance, bigger than I even thought in the beginning. Only few people have actually noticed that I have a Terminator-themed tattoo as well, even though you could imagine that it would be the first association people would make.
I had been thinking of a Terminator-themed tattoo for a long time. As I saw a drawing by Dimitri from Tattoo Twins that portrayed Arnold Schwarzenegger, I knew I had found a guy who could tattoo the Endoskeleton as well.
I could say that I’m a fan of Arnold Schwarzenegger at some level, even though I’m not a person who would worship someone as their ultimate idol. I just like Arnold’s movies, that’s all, and especially in my childhood years I saw him as a real superhero. Sometimes I’ve been thinking that if someone asked me the meaning of this tattoo, I could answer that Terminator and I have something in common: we are both humans and vulnerable from the outside, but indestructible from the inside.
Unfortunately, it would be complete bullshit – the only reason I have this tattoo is that it just happens to be damn cool!
The Turtles piece was tattooed by a friend of mine. When I saw the draft for the first time, I thought that the tattoo would include only the head of Leonardo without the roses and all that stuff. As the tattooist started and slammed the entire stencil on my arm, I just thought okay, this is actually better this way! Before that, I had thought I’d never get roses or leaves or anything like that tattooed on my skin, but they really look good on this one.
I like this tattoo especially because it’s both colorful and funny. Of course, I could’ve chosen a cool, realistic version, but I really like the fact that this tattoo looks a bit goofy. Other people have found this tattoo very delightful, and of course I find it delightful as well. Still, I have to admit that although the result is great, the tattooing itself was a painful experience. It must’ve been the longest four hours of my life!
I had the idea of tattooing my family coat of arms already when I was in middle school. I think the whole idea of a family coat of arms tattoo is legit, and besides, the Shemeikka’s coat of arms looks great, too. The tattoo isn’t identical to the original coat of arms, though, since the tattooist wanted to alter this a bit.
Even though I wanted to tattoo my family coat of arms, I don’t feel that I’d had some special bond to my kin, nor that I would be super proud to be a Shemeikka. If I’m walking on the street and meet other Shemeikkas, I don’t just automatically go to them and be like “hey, we’re all Shemeikkas, we’re on the same side, you know”. For me, this tattoo is above all a symbol of everything I’ve done and achieved as Shemeikka.
The Gremlins tattoo is my latest. I’ve always liked especially the Gremlins character called Gizmo, and at first, my intention was to get a tattoo of him. I knew Dimitri from Tattoo Twins was going to visit Finland soon, so I contacted him and asked about the idea.
We tried to think over how my idea could be carried out, but somehow we just didn’t find any good solution and I couldn’t find any good reference photo either. Then I started to think about Gremlins 2, its leader antagonist Mohawk and his black and white fur. I asked Dimitri whether Mohawk could be easier to adapt as a tattoo. It worked better instantly, and Dimitri even found a perfect reference photo for the tattoo.
Usually people don’t inquire about the meaning of my tattoos, but for some reason, this Gremlins tattoo always seems to raise questions. Well, there’s no deep explanation, the idea just happened to be good, and the tattoo artist was good as well. In a way, this has become my favorite tattoo.
There are many tattooed pro wrestlers, but I don’t see tattoos and wrestling being connected to each other. Actually, it’s almost the opposite. Many pro wrestlers dream about a career in the USA, for example, and earlier tattoos might even have been a disadvantage since they could limit the possibilities of your character choice. Nowadays that kind of barriers have mostly disappeared, though, and you can see many kinds of people within the ring in today’s wrestling.
Sometimes I’ve been playing with the idea that one day when I quit wrestling, I might get a tattoo to remind me of my career. However, if I’d get a tattoo related to my own character, it would be at most the mask of Shemeikka – it would be rather idiotic to tattoo some sort of self-portrait, haha!
On the other hand, I might get a tattoo of my main opponent Viktor Tykki, since he has been such an important part of my own wrestling career as well. I guess that without him, I wouldn’t be where I am now.
Still, I don’t want to get any wrestling-related tattoo until I’ve quit wrestling for good. At this point in my career, it would be quite strange if Shemeikka had a tattoo of his own mask or his worst enemy!