Saturday, May 9, 2009

Alan and I are very curious about this Madsteel woman's tattoos:

We have no idea what those six characters across the top of her back mean.

The same person also posted many of her photos in, like this one:

What does 喜 and 壽 have to do with Madsteel?

The most interesting ones are on her feet:

I don't think 鉄狂 has any significance in Chinese. (If she had 鉄拳 from the video game Tekken tattooed on her hands, that would be awesome.)

Alan's guess is that it could be "railway fan" or "railway maniac" in Japanese. Railway workers call them "foamers" (those guys that know the names and car types of every single piece of railcar traveling over the rails and Details magazine recently had an article about these railway fans.)

Remember the movie Trainspotting? In Japanese, railway is 鉄道 and 狂い is a common suffix for a maniacal fan of something, so 鉄道狂い could be shortened to 鉄狂.

Judging from the name of the poster, we guess her feet tattoo are supposed to be a sort of
translation of "Madsteel" but if so, shouldn't it be in the order 狂鉄? Notice this young lady has the same two characters tattooed on both feet, but in opposite order.

Also, is only iron and steel should be .

Interestingly enough, there is a Japanese punk song by バミューダ バガボンド (Bermuda Vagabond) with the same title.


  1. First time commenting here.
    If I might add, the construction 鉄道狂い (tetsudou-kurui), while possible, is rather unusual - many Japanese mostly use 鉄道マニア (tetsudou-mania), 鉄道ファン (tetsudou-fan), 鉄道オタク with the variant 鉄道ヲタク plus the abbreviations 鉄オタ/鉄ヲタ (tetsudou-otaku, tetsudou-ota) to describe "railway maniacs" nowadays.

  2. P.S. While on a hunt to actually find 狂鉄 being used on the web I've encountered a Japanese shop selling Native American goods with the name 狂鉄馬 (literally "Mad/Crazy Iron Horse"?) - while giving the English version of the name as "Crazy Horse"...

  3. Maybe she wanted to tattoo Metalfreak?

  4. I can recognize "心" and "迄" from the first pic.

  5. 1st one : no idea
    2nd : 甥, maybe
    3rd : 誠
    4th : 心
    5th : 迄
    6th : I don't know, 櫣?? 蓮??

    there's also a "?の理由" at the right side

  6. The third character from left (at the right hand side of the big cross) is 心

  7. Got all the characters from bme's website:

    1st character = 我, wo, I or me, written incorrectly.

    2nd character = 携, xie, means "to carry"

    3rd character = 誠, cheng, meanings: honest, loyal, sincere, or really

    4th character = 心, xin, means "heart; mind."

    5th character = 迄, qi, meaning "up to; till"

    6th character = 墓, mu, meaning "grave".

  8. "I carry my honest heart up to the grave"

    I don't know its grammatical situation, but it seems like the person is lamenting over her lost innocence or, the times of our world where honesty doesn't pay off.

  9. I am continually amazed at the lack of thought and research people put in to their tattoos.

  10. "I carry my honest heart up to the grave"


    "I carry my honest heart till i die"

    If Ulas is right about what the person is try to carry on her back. However, neither the grammar nor meaning is right with those characters.

    1.Never use "I" if you want to say something for yourself in tat, we know that you already It's redundant and lame

    2.In most situations, when there is an Preposition such as "at ,in, on, to,for, till" that connect the verb with time and space, you omit either the verb or the preposition in Chinese. In this sentence, you take away "carry".

    3.迄 does mean "till" but it is only to connect the time from the past till NOW not the future.

    4.墓 yes it's grave and just a grave, more likely it means tomb stone in English. In Chinese although it has a similar concept of bringing something to the grave it usually means something negative.

    I'm not an eloquence person in Chinese but if I wanna say something like that i would put it 誠心永遠 or 心誠至死 something like that.

    On the other hand, 鉄狂 or 狂鉄 actually is really cool. It can carry the meaning of mad iron or madsteel if she prefers. It sounds like some Kong Fu comic character.

  11. Like I said, I don't know Chinese grammar, that was only my assumptions of what this person would like to have written on her. She apparently doesn't know Chinese, neither do I, hence my guess. Even if I would not have a tatoo in a language I don't speak (or any tattoo at all) I can still assume about a person's logic behind having that tattoo, right?