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Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Updated: March 3, 7:03 AM ET
They're so vain

Professional athletes have long been castigated for their egotism. From Allen Iverson (who didn't need practice) to Terrell Owens ("I love me some me!") to LeBron James (The Decision), it's clear many see themselves as Gods among men. Well, now David Beckham has taken things a step further -- actually imagining himself as God. Jesus, to be exact. In ink. On his chest.

Yes, Becks has a new tattoo. His entire left pectoral is covered by a drawing of Jesus being helped out of a tomb by three cherubs. In an interview posted to his Facebook page, ole' Golden Balls explained the meaning behind the new body art:

"It's Jesus being carried by three cherubs," he says. "... My thought of it is ... at some point my boys are gonna need to look after me, and that's what they're doing in the picture."

Of course, Beckham isn't the first athlete with a religious tattoo (it's not even Becks' first religious ink ... he sports his wife Victoria as an angel on his arm and crosses on his back and neck). Nor is he the first to fancy seeing himself ... on himself.

Bulls big man Carlos Boozer has a tattoo of himself on his arm, standing beneath the Alaskan mountains of his hometown, while Ray Lewis sports a calf tat of himself in uniform below the words "Pure Thoroughbred."

Like Beckham, former Marquette guard Dominic James combined his love for God with his love for himself, with a tattoo of his own image under the words "God-Given Talent." And Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson is really into Chris Johnson -- he's got a massive (nearly life-size) tattoo of his own face on his left arm.

As far as I know, Alex Rodriguez doesn't haven't any tattoos of himself (shall we call Cameron Diaz to double-check?) but he does reportedly have two portraits above his bed that depict him as a centaur -- half man, half horse. I'll let you figure out which half is which.

Sounds as though these guys are just a tat or two away from Charlie Sheen levels of egotism. In recent interviews, quotes from the "Two and a Half Men" star have made him the gold standard of self-worship. Whether he's "bi-winning" (winning both here and there) or getting tired of pretending his life isn't "perfect and bitchin'," Sheen is redefining what it means to be self-assured. If Beckham, A-Rod and the rest of the guys want to keep up, they'll need to step it up.

Might I suggest a face tattoo of their face? I think that'd do it.