Dear Ms. Cyrus,
It has recently come to my attention that you are auctioning off what is essentially my dream opportunity.
Though I aspire to many things in life, with this recent news, you have put forth the possibility of something I never knew I wanted, and now I can think of nothing else. When you talk to people who exhibit supreme dedication—clergymen, astronauts, and the like—they often speak of the moment when they realized that nothing else in life mattered. They woke up one morning, discovered their life's true purpose, and from that point forward, their entire existence became focused on the pursuit of a singular goal.
You have given me that moment.
Of course, I am referring to your contest with the grand prize of having the honor of having you designing the winner's tattoo.
Though there is nothing I want more in this cold, harsh world than for my favorite pop songstress to design my ink, we find ourselves at an impasse. This road block has come between us in the form of the proposed $10,000 charitable donation price tag. The problem, you see, is that you want $10,000, and I don't have $10,000. Believe me, Miley, I would move Heaven and Earth for the chance to have your brainchild permanently drawn onto my body, but I cannot give you that which I do not have. I do not have $10,000. Factoring in my remaining student loans, impending holiday debt, and outstanding credit card bills, I would estimate my net worth at approximately that absolute figure, but with a pesky negative sign preceding it.
No, I have no money, but I come to you today as a guy standing (digitally) in front of a girl, asking her to design a tattoo for him free of charge. Preferably a tramp stamp.
I understand that legions of your fans are probably contacting you with the same request. I suspect one of your interns is in a Los Angeles Starbucks right now reading through solicitations for your body art and mournfully walking through all of the decisions she made that led to this moment with that iced pumpkin spice latte. You are having a cultural moment, and as such, it is no surprise that people would line up to have you do something for which you have absolutely no qualifications. The onus, then, is on me to prove that I am your ideal guinea pig. Allow me to make the argument why I am the ideal candidate to receive your tattoo.
1. I am a loyal fan.
No. I have never been to one of your concerts. No, I've never seen an episode of Hannah Montana. No, I don't run a Twitter account that exists only to cyberbully people who I perceive to have wronged you (yet).
There are fans out there who are more intense than I am, I'll give you that. I have threatened to stab Lorde's rotting corpse, but that was because of a personal disagreement between us that had nothing to do with you. But, I think it is important to understand fandom in perspective. Many of your self-proclaimed biggest fans likely have divided loyalties. They probably know the words to Katy Perry songs, Ariana Grande songs, and Charlie XCX songs, and shrilly sing them in the shower with equal energy.
Gun to my head, the most Katy Perry I could give you is, "Baby you're a firework / blah-blah-blah something worth." As far as the other two, I know about Ariana because she's banging Big Sean, and I know about Charlie because she was on our last cover. Due to how out of touch I am with pop music, you can rest assured that I will remain a loyal fan even when the popular tides turn against you. And they will turn against you.
You may ask how I came to be familiar with your work if I am as out of touch as I claim. Great question! I became familiar with Bangerz because my younger sister left the CD in my car. Yes, my car plays CDs and only CDs. And more times than I would admit at a sports bar, my vehicle has played your CD. I would imagine that some of your fans don't even know what CDs are. Though having a CD player in my car certainly doesn't give me a competitive edge with the ladies, I think that it should give me a competitive edge in this contest.
2. I am a great collaborator.
Let me be clear: you are in charge here. I am not saying that I should have any input over what ends up on my body. The deal is that you are the artist and I the canvas. However, I know that you are no stranger to collaboration. And judging by your—dare I say , sublime?—work with Nelly and Big Sean, it is clear that a high-caliber collaborator pushes you to excel. Though I know you are an excellent lyricist on your own, would you have been able to conjure up the poetic genius of "Party ain't nothing but a party / when you party everyday, it ain't nothin' but a party, yeah" without Big Sean on the track? I should think not.
After doing a little research on your personal life, I have prepared a few mock-ups. Please, consider these only suggestions, rough sketches to get the gears of your genius turning. See below:
Fig. 1: Calvin Peeing on Robin Thicke
Fig. 2: Calvin Peeing on Selena Gomez
Fig. 3: Calvin Peeing on Calvin Peeing on Calvin Peeing [etc.]
This last piece, I think, may resonate with you due to the mind-expanding drugs you're purported to be experimenting with and the existentially complicated themes that the tattoo of these "Calvins" endlessly urinating and being urinated upon evokes. Does this not speak clearly and succinctly to the tragic nature of the human condition? Does this not draw upon the same existential themes you evoked in the song "#getitright" when you sang, "This is the worst coming out of me / When I came, felt like I could die / And it sends chills up my spine." I digress ...
Of course, I am open to any ideas you may have, even ones that don't involve Calvin peeing on something. Some other tattoo ideas that get me very excited include the Looney Tunes (particularly Yosemite Sam and the Tasmanian Devil, and both in the same tattoo would be super dope), the men of Duck Dynasty arrayed as though they were the faces on Mt. Rushmore, and a barbed wire Confederate Flag in the shape of bow just above my butt crack (ironic, of course). But again, these are just ideas, and I am open to providing as much or as little input as you see fit.
3. I Will Never Remove It
Many of your fans are children. Nothing against them; slightly before you were a child, I was a child once myself. But now, Miley, I am a grown-ass man. As such, I am prepared to make real, legally-binding commitments. I am old enough to die for my country. I am old enough that the lady bagging my groceries sometimes calls me "sir." I am old enough to open up a toxic mortgage that I can't possibly pay off. I am old enough to make all sorts of ill-advised decisions, and as such I am prepared to make you an ill-advised promise, should you come on board as my tattoo designer.
I am prepared to sign a legally binding document that says I will never remove this tattoo.
I am sure that many of your fans would come to view getting your tattoo as a mistake of youth. Just like that tattoo of a dolphin jumping over a sun that my aunt got on her ankle, these fans would grow to see your tattoo as something to regret and later have lasered away after they go to college, work for the radio station, and start boning a guy named Aiden with dope hair.
Miley, I'm not some teen who is going to turn my back on you after their cousin takes them to Coachella for the first time. I am willing to make a bet on you. I've seen your Backyard Sessions. I know that you have the potential to graduate from pop stardom into a singer-songwriter-y middle age that at worst will resemble the career of Sarah McLachlan and at best could rival Stevie Nicks. God knows Ariana Grande doesn't have that kind of juice; she will be remembered as the girl who hooked up with the rapper who broke up with the girl on "Glee." If your pop career ever falters, you can just claim you're going back to your country roots "like your Daddy taught you" and be the best selling country artist since Taylor Swift stopped using banjo loops in her break-up songs.
I believe in you Miley. And because I know that you'll be around for the long haul, I promise you that my tattoo will as well.
Miley. I can't offer you the most attractive body on which to ink that tattoo. I can't give you any money. In fact, I would love it if you could reimburse me for the Lyft to whatever shitty ass Sunset Strip tattoo parlor we're going to in order to get this done right. What I can promise you is that you will leave having made a man's life that much better, and I'll leave with a really weird story to tell everyone I have sex with for the rest of my life.
Thank You For Your Time and Consideration,
Brenden Gallagher will actually get this tattoo if Miley is down. Join him on Twitter @muddycreekU, and help bring the message to @MileyCyrus.