Lizard Man

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Lizard Man

Eric Sprague, 28, speaks with a surgically forked tongue, his forehead is ridged with Teflon implants, his teeth are filed into points and his skin is covered with tattooed green scales.

A decade ago, the philosophy student decided he wanted to become a lizard. He is on leave from his PhD programme at the University of Albany, New York State, and is touring with the wonderful Jim Rose Circus Sideshow, where he pierces his cheeks with needles, breathes fire and swallows swords. He has spent more than 400 hours under the tattooist's needle, and plans another 200. If the technology advances enough to allow a tail made of real tissue, he will have one fitted.

His girlfriend in Texas is covering herself with tattoos depicting urban legends. One of his favourites is the fake scars she has etched into the small of her back where her kidneys were "stolen" while she was asleep.

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