Hail Corporate is our series where we check out body art that honor the company’s that make the world go round. This week we’re getting down with tattoo tributes to the most American motorcycle manufacturer of all, Harley-Davidson. Be sure to hit up our other articles about Cadillacs, Coke, Dunkin’ Donuts, Mountain Dew, the NBA, and Taco Bell.
Get out of here with your crotch-rockets, mopeds, and dirt bikes, because there's only one type of two-wheeled American muscle that truly deserves tattoo tributes — Harleys. If you’ve never ridden a Harley-Davidson, let’s just say that you’re missing out. Aside from getting tattoos, driving down a long stretch of highway on one of these bad boys is one of the most poignant gestures of freedom a person can make. Just hearing a Harley rumble to life is enough to inspire you want to go out and get the manufacturer’s insignia tattooed in flames across one of your biceps.
Have you ever been to a biker rally? Sporting a Harley is a sure fire way to earn some street cred at one of these debauched gatherings of motorcycle enthusiasts. Let me just put it this way: one time, my biker-loving mother dragged me to one of these events, and I witnessed two topless women, hands tied behind their backs, trying to bite the tips off of mustard-covered hot dogs hanging from fishing poles as they sped by on refurbished vintage softails. The crowd cheered them on as if they were heroes. In my impressionable teenage eyes and those of all the other grizzled spectators nearby, it was a thing of beauty, and we owed it all to Harley-Davidson.
Harleys are superior rides for a number of reasons, other than the fact that they tend to attract shirtless women. They look totally badass, are extremely well-built, and, best of all, ride like a dream. They are fantastic for traveling cross-country. Their heavy frames and powerful motors make for a unique driving experience, sending you hurtling down long stretches of highway with the constant thrum of thunder between your thighs.
Harleys, more so than any other brand of motorcycles, are emblematic of the American way of life. They’re manufactured in the heart of the Rust Belt, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, after all, and because of their long legacy — surviving even the Great Depression — they’ve become synonymous with values we hold dear in this country, like ingenuity, hard work, and hauling ass. In short, having a Harley-Davidson tattoo shows that you know how to lean into life’s curves, even on the roughest of roads.
To see more excellent tattoos, perhaps even a few more hogs, cruise on by these tattooists’ Instagram. Should you want to show your love of Harley-Davidson, have one of them design a portrait of your favorite set of wheels or the Harley emblem underneath a bald eagle for you.