While browsing through Amazon.com for textbooks, I saw this Chinese dragon T-shirt for sale by ChoiceShirts. The odd thing is that the character on the shirt does not mean "dragon" (龍), matter of fact, I have never seen it before in my life.
The closest two characters I can find are these, which there is no connection with dragon:
From BMEzine's gallery, this is a prime example of someone who obviously did not do enough research or none at all. Not only the entire string of characters are gibberish, several characters are missing important dots,
I don't know if the person got this tattoo after watched Kung Fu too many times, where Kwai Chang Caine (David Carradine) was called "Young Grasshopper", or he has some kind of deep connection with katydids (grasshoppers). Regardless, his tattoo says he worships grasshoppers.
Here are what some of my colleagues have commented:
Brendan: "Perhaps 'hold a sacrifice to katydids?' It doesn't even sound like a plausible transliteration of anything, except maybe a really halfassed way of writing 'Jason'. (In Cantonese it's 'jai jung,' or something like that, according to Wenlin.) I dunno - maybe it sounds like something with a Japanese reading of the characters?"
Jeremy: "Sacrificial grasshopper? 'Cultists sacrificed a grasshopper on my underwear, dying it red with blood'?"
Angela: "I simply don't have a clue. Unless I'm too ignorant of the Chinese language, I believe the bottom character doesn't even exist! If I have to guess, this tattoo means 'worship a scarified/dead grasshopper'."
This tattoo was spotted at BMEzine.com. This person probably would never guessed his macho tattoo said "eunuch". For those who are not familiar with the concept or the term of "eunuch":
A eunuch is a castrated human male. The castration can be only of the testes, or also include the penis, known as a penectomy (often with a tube inserted to keep the urethra open, called a urethral rerouting). The practice was established before 700 BC and accounts of eunuchs are known throughout history.
In ancient China castration was both a traditional punishment (until the Sui Dynasty) and a means of gaining employment in the Imperial service. At the end of the Ming Dynasty there were 70,000 eunuchs (宦官huàn'guān, or 太監tàijiān) in the Imperial palace. The value of such employment—certain eunuchs gained immense power that may supersede that of the prime ministers—was such that self-castration had to be made illegal. The number of eunuchs in Imperial employ had fallen to 470 in 1912, when the employment ceased. The justification of the employment of eunuchs as high-ranking civil servants was that, since they were incapable of having children, they would not be tempted to seize power and start a dynasty.
"Here's a tattoo that a co-worker of mine got a few days ago. She claims it means 'holy strength', but she has no clue how to read or write any language other than English. Of course, it would break her little heart if I were to come back and tell her it meant 'extra butter' or something like that, since it's just two characters from the Kanji flashsheet at the tattoo/piercing studio. The tattoo artist also has no clue what they say other than the word printed below the character on each sheet. Enlighten me."
Personally, I have never seen the character in either Chinese or Japanese vocabulary. The closest candidates I can think of are the following two:
To make sure I did not overlook anything, I have also emailed my colleagues to consult this matter with them:
Eden: "Hmm that really doesn't look like any of the characters you mentioned. I've never seen it, and it doesn't come up when you do handwriting recognition for it. The left side is the another form of 示 right? Even if you try this form + 力, nothing comes up. It's either archaic Chinese, or it's just wrong ;)"
Jeremy: "Tian, I think that character means: 'I am a very stupid foreigner'. It is pronounced "alla si ge siseidi"