Although I have some rather grand and complex ideas on how we might approach our worldwide social and environmental crisis, it all kind of hinges on getting people more involved. To do that I think it would be a good idea if we all decided to become more visible to one another. Just as a Christian proudly displays a cross or fish symbol we need to display something that tells the bystander that we have anxieties; “hey! I am concerned for the welfare of mankind and of the planet.” Of course we all have different concerns and pet issues that we want resolved but they are all part of the same worldwide dilemma so why should we not use the same symbol of identification and show mutual support.

If we are looking for a symbol, I would suggest the color of fired terra-cotta pottery. . The name is perfect as it translates as “burnt earth”; which seems appropriate enough, considering that our earth is burning up in the process of our activities; even if global warming is but one symptom of our diverse problems. A simple medallion or a patch of cloth would suffice. It could also be a neckerchief, scarf, or necktie – even a handkerchief. The options are extensive – mugs, socks, toques etc. A very diverse uniform indeed! I love the idea of a contrasting terra cotta colored shirt pocket for men, as who doesn’t need an extra pocket for comb or sunglasses? I have actually done this on one dark grey shirt. The contrasting but complementary terracotta pocket looks great, but of course no one has any idea as to its intent yet.

If we should decide to adopt this terracotta colored symbol to show our solidary and worldwide comradery, we would now all have our subtle but distinct ‘uniform’; we can perhaps approach one another and gain an insight into our shared anxieties and get suggestions for remedial action. I cannot promise you will meet the girl or boy of your dreams simply because they were wearing a terra cotta ID, but who know? It is a better approach than the old line “Hey what’s your sign?”

I have about 20 kilos of clay in the basement and access to some terra cotta colored cloth. Does anyone know how to turn it into something we can use?

Have a look at for a better idea of how this might all work.


MRF – civis mundi sum

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