Life has taught Chuck Hill, 68, of Gulfport, Miss., a lot of lessons, such as learning how to swallow his ego and trailer his Harley cycles to the rally from Mississippi so he can travel with his wife and her friends. But one lesson, he says, sticks out in his mind and now, also in ink on his left arm.

“You come out of your skin and out of your shell, and you do good things for people, and there it comes out,” Hill says, pointing to the snake head on his hand, its mouth open, fangs unsheathed and bloodied.

“And you know what happens after you do good things for people? They bite you on the ass.”

Hill, who has been coming to the rally since 1997, said the tattoo was only a week old. He also made clear that no recent event caused him to finally have it done. It’s simply something he’s learned repeatedly throughout his 68 years. As for the tattoo, all it took was three hours in a tattoo parlor in Gulfport — and about $500.

Contact Samuel Blackstone at