Jan. 18 2012 06:23 PM

How the 'most poetic of road signs' ended up on this guy's arm

justinhudnalltattoo
Justin Hudnall's street-sign inspired tat

Justin Hudnall had just driven 18 straight hours to the South by Southwest music festival to write about local label Volar Records when he passed the sign.

“I recognized this fishhook roundabout as the most poetic of road signs the moment I saw it,” explains Hudnall, a local scribe who serves as the executive director of San Diego arts organization So Say We All. “Granted, I was already in an abstract mindset.”

The fishhook roundabout instructs drivers that they can continue on in any direction except backward. “At the time I had just been ejected from an embarrassingly toxic relationship,” he recalls. “I remember thinking the fishhook would make a good shorthand reminder for people in recovery. It could be the Prince symbol of the self-help world.”

Four days later, Hudnall—who, in the tradition of the sprawling Austin music fest, had been drinking since arriving in Texas—went to a big backyard punk-rock show, where he blacked out.

“At some point late that night, I came to while riding a giant mustache see-saw. What I managed to piece together was that I had wandered away from the party and into the Red Devil Tattoo Parlor, where a 17-year-old runaway had permanently inked the fishhook on the inside of my left forearm. He was good for a kid, and I still think it's the most poetic of road signs.”


Calendar

  • Visit one of the 70 participating restaurants, bars, coffeehouses and nightclubs in town on this night and 25 to 50 percent of sales will go to local HIV/AIDS services and prevention programs. 
  • Anthony Bernal and Chris Ward, who are vying to replace Todd Gloria on the San Diego City Council, will discuss urban issues, such as parking, homelessness and new developments
  • The new exhibition designed by Dave Ghilarducci is made from hundreds of rolls of packing tape and bound together by layers of plastic shrink-wrap. Visitors can navigate their way through cocoon-like passageways...
  • The renowned Mexican black and white photographer presents an exhibition exploring the principal themes within three groups: "Bestiarium"," Fantastic Women" and "Silent Natures."
  • Presented by Pacific Arts Movement, the sixth annual mini film fest features 14 film programs from 10 countries that includes everything from docs to romantic tearjerkers. See website for full lineup and...
  • The San Diego County Bike Coalition hosts this monthly bike-in happy hour event to get biking residents involved in their communities and discuss bike projects planned for that specific community
  • Debunk some of the stereotypes surrounding cannibalism at this new exhibition that takes a hands-on approach to the subject. Includes video games and interactive activities where patrons will have to decide...
  • So Say We All's monthly storytelling night features stories about those jobs we took because we had to take a job. Featured readers include Allison Gauss, Annmarie Houghtailing, Cecile Estelle, and more
  • Artists from the all-abstracts group show will talk about their work and techniques. Artists include Edwin Nutting, Danielle Nelisse, Leah Pantea, Lenore Simon, and more
See all events on Thursday, Apr 28