The two most beautiful words in the English language are, without a doubt, “free pizza.” The question you have to ask yourself is just how far are you willing to go in order to receive free pizza. Would you get a pizza themed tattoo if it guaranteed you a free slice of pizza every day for the rest of your life?
If you live in Houston you have an opportunity to do just that this weekend. Pi Pizza Truck is working alongside with Gabriel Massey of Scorpion Studios to offer up a slew of pizza themed tattoos that will guarantee the owner of the tattoo a life filled with free pizza.
Anthony Calleo, the owner of Pi Pizza Truck, thought up the promotion as a way to thank his loyal customers on the first anniversary of the truck.
“I’ve been in pizza a long time and pizza and tattoos just seem to go together in my head,” Calleo said. “Making it that first year on the streets with the truck was such a struggle and such an accomplishment for me personally. The amount of support we got and the customers we met humbled me so much, I wanted to do something to say thanks for helping me keep my dream going. This seemed like a fun way to do that and promote the brand at the same time.”
Massey has been tattooing Calleo for years and he helped design some of the graphics used by Pi Pizza Truck so it was only natural that he was the one to help bring Calleo’s idea to life.
“We have been collaborating ever since the beginning of the truck,” Massey said. “He approached me about six months before the event and said ‘I want to do some type of promotion where we do some pizza tattoos and whoever gets tattooed gets free pizza for life.’ That is genius. I’d love to draw some tattoos, it’ll be fun and we’ll make a whole thing of it.”
Massey could have taken the easy way out and just given everyone a boring slice of pizza tattoo and no one would complain since they were getting free pizza. But what fun would that be?
“That’s the challenge, right? There’s only so much you can do with a triangle,” Massey said. “My love is traditional tattooing. That’s what I like to do, that’s where my heart is, that’s what my passion is. I really wanted this year’s tattoos to be tattoos that I would get, you know? The reaper, the panther (with pizza) is more along the lines of what I think a cool tattoo is.”
The promotion was such a hit that after a second year on the streets Calleo decided to double down on the promotion; this year the sought after tattoos will be given by Massey on Friday and Saturday for prices ranging from $60 to $200. If you are a pizza lover the tattoo will easily pay for itself, after 28 slices even the most expensive design will be paid off in delicious pizza.
“Twenty-two people got tattooed last year for the promotion and on average I do about two tattoo comps per week,” Calleo said. “In the beginning it was a bit more frequent, maybe 4-8 a week and then it averaged out. I made the terms of the deal. If they want to come cash in everyday that’s a hell of a compliment as far as I’m concerned.”
When the promotion was over last year people kept clamoring for it to come back, hence it’s return. Yet with all of the pizza tattoo love there are two people who have yet to get pizza tattoos, Calleo and Massey.
“I’m supposed to get one,” Calleo said. “Was supposed to last year and time got away. I’m supposed to do Gabe’s and then I get mine – his idea, not mine. It’s hilarious because I’ve never done a tattoo in my life.”
Massey sounds determined to make sure that Calleo doesn’t forget the deal this year.
“One of the designs is a caricature of Anthony,” Massey said. “It’s a skull with flames, he wears glasses and this little bike messenger cap. So I’m going to put that tattoo on him and he’s going to put one of my tattoos on me. I have to let him do one of those small simple designs on me. I’m going to have to make it really simple and really small.”
Calleo loves how the promotion took off and is holding out hopes that some other restaurant owner copies his idea.
“Me personally, I love burritos,” Calleo said. “If a solid burrito place I loved did something like this – I’d be the first in line.”
If you are in the area and want to eat free pizza for the rest of your days head over to Scorpion Studios Friday and Saturday where Massey will be tattooing from 10 a.m. until his hand falls off.