Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Tattoo Stiggy

Sometimes they just write themselves...

I literally just sat down and was going to either write something about the deaf woman answering our phones at work or about parking, when I overheard the name Stiglitz on Jeopardy!

It's a name I grew up with but heard more often as "Tattoo Stiggy." And off to Google I went to find a picture of Walter Stiglitz for you fine folks. Imagine my amusement when Google Instant offered "Tattoo Stiggy" up as an answer to a question formed only in my brain... I didn't realize he was famous enough for Google Instant. :)

And here he is circa 1980, in the living room of his house in my hometown:

photo credit: John Wyatt

Stiggy was covered in tattoos when single ones were rare. I knew he was in the Guinness Book of World Records at some point in time for having the most tattoos, but only just discovered that he has 5,555. Apparently, his last one is on his behind, as in, "The End." Actually, it may be "had 5,555" -- I have no idea if he's still alive or not.

And now I'm bummed that I never went to his shop. Or received a tattoo from him. I still want one and I still can't commit to one. I figure by the time I commit, I'll have far fewer years to live with it. But in the meantime, it would've been cool to receive my first tattoo in a small shop from a famous human canvas in my little town...

And since the 80s were not the Aughts, my mom would've had a stroke if I had. :)


Steve said...

Well if stiggy is still alive and able to read this I'm sure such nice words would bring a tear to his eyes. I too wish that I went into his shop, but by the time I gained the courage, his shop was no more. I am proud to say that I'm part if the tattoo club, I only have one and I do have plans for more but right now is not the time.

Just remember u are never to old to get inked but you ageing only ends once and before u know it your bucket never emptied!

Tara said...

AJ, If you find him I will go with you and get a tatt from N.P.'s famous Stiggy! It would be awesome!

Kathy said...

I believe that Stig has been ofted. The counting of tats for Guiness took place at the venerable Italian American Club...the very one frequented by mom and dad. Another bit of Stig trivia, he married a girl I went to St. Joe's and NPHS with. Ah, small town NJ...ya' can't beat it!!!!

MARIA said...

Stiggy's sister, Jean, helped me take care of my mother for nearly 10 years.
I knew all about the fam on a daily basis. He was pictured with many famous people. The photo is from a book of pix by my friend John Wyatt. John visited Stiggy during is illness, and was a good friend to him.

Maria Mijares

AJ said...

Oh, good call, Maria -- I should've credited the photog. Will do now!

Haha said...

It would be a gift at this point!!! (P.S. Tara would NEVER get one!! She's too chicken!!!)

Tina Neoushoff said...

Hello. My father is Tattoo Stiggy, I say "is" because even though he passed on December 18th 2008, he "is" still my father. :)
He would get such a kick out of this sight, these posts. The fact that you can type in "Tattoo Stiggy" and his pic would pop up. He would so get a kick out of all this. :) I wish he were here to see it, but. . .I know he is watching. Strong willed, strong spirit and so much love. I miss him dearly.
Thankfully, I was able to get 4 tattoos by my father before he passed. My youngest son is so much like my dad, born 2 weeks before his death, he has my father's eyes, funny personality and great character.

My dad was in the Guiness Book of World Records for having the most tattoos, back in the 80's. Since then, a man from PA has taken that record.

Thanks again for this great article and words and comments people left on here. My dad was a wonderful, wonderful man, who loved his family dearly and loved tattoos just as much. :)


Tina Neoushoff said...

My name is Tina, Tattoo Stiggy is my father. Unfortunately, he did pass away on December 18, 2008.
He would so get a kick out of this page. He would love it that I could type in "Tattoo Stiggy" and images of him would come up.
My father was in the Guiness Book of World Records for the having the most individual tattoos back in the 80's. Since that time, a man from PA has taken the title.
My dad, Walter, was a wonderul, wonderful man. Very caring, loving and loved his family dearly. He also had a great love for Tattoos and antiques, which if you visited his tattoo shop, you would have seen. :)
My youngest son, who's middle name is Walter, is very similar to my father. He was born 2 weeks before my dad passed away. He has his eyes, his love for trains and his funny personality. My dad was big kid and he loved every second of that.
I miss him dearly and love him so much.

it is great to see this page and the comments about him. Again, he would so get kick out of all this.


AJ said...

Hello, Tina! I'm glad you stumbled on this and think your dad would be tickled by it. I've posted both of your comments because they contain some different information. Hope that's ok. :)

AJ said...

PS -- I'm sorry about your dad's passing. I know how special dads are and how much it hurts when they're gone. I'm glad you have such great memories and a son to share them with. :)

Tina Neoushoff said...

That's fine, thank you. I did not think the first one went through. :)
Thanks sincerely.

AJ said...

Happens to folks all the time. :)

Book Loves of the World said...

hello im amy tattoo stiggy's grand baby well one of them my pop pop was and is the best man I have ever known. And my aunt tina is right he wiold love that you can type tattoo stiggy and get stuff about him I happened to find you blog when I typed in tattoo stiggy so thank you for that.

Amy Lynn

Anthony Rizzo said...

I tried to get you to get one a long time ago, remember?

It's Rizzo

Is that really you one the other side of this?

I still wear the one your father gave me proudly on my back as I have for 20 years now. I was very sad to hear of his passing.

Keep in touch!
And how is Jen doing?

Tina Neoushoff said...

Rizzo, I am just seeing this now. I didn't check back here since my last comment. Yes, it's me. Yes, i remember, I have seven now and want mire. Thank you for your kind words. I have a facebook page dedicated to him. Tattoo Stiggy forever.

Jen is good, married and happy!

G Fitzgerald said...

I had a summer job in the adjacent space in the building Stiggy had his parlor in. The building was owned by two brothers that ran their floor covering business as the building's major occupant. This was in the early 80s in North Plainfield. I can remember unloading the work vans in the afternoons as Stiggy would ride his beach cruiser bike around the side streets in preparation for either his annual ride in, or his triumphant return to the 4th of July parade in neighboring Plainfield. I can definitely remember him peddling that bike in full tattooed glory wearing nothing but his speedo in the Bicentennial parade in 76. It was one of my most surreal memories of that time period and that historic summer.

AJ said...

Hahaha. I was seven in 1976 and I'm confident my father covered my eyes as Stiggy rode by in the parade! Thanks for commenting!