the evolution of the fish ribbon idea

The other day, as I was stuck in traffic, I began thinking some more about possible alternatives to those now pervasive, uber-obnoxious, SUV-coating, magnetic “Support Our Troops” ribbons. As I was sitting there, thinking about the shape of these glowing, self-awarded “I’m a Patriot, and You’re Not” seals, it occurred to me that they were pretty much the same shape as fish, coming to a blunt end on one side and fanning out at the other, like a tail. That thought then led me to consider the intersection between the well-known Darwin fish, the Jesus fish that spawned it, and these new “I’m More Patriotic than You” magnetic ribbons… So, this is the idea that I ended up with – a magnetic ribbon in support of not the troops, but evolutionary biologists.

The idea still isn’t done, but I’d like to keep exploring it. In fact, I’m looking into the costs of producing a few hundred, once we get a design nailed down… So, here are my questions for you.

If you’re a designer or illustrator, would you be willing to invest some time in helping me to refine the idea? And, if you’re not a creative type, I’m curious to know whether or not you’d be willing to spend about $7 to buy one of these things. (I haven’t done all of the math yet, but my hope is that we can cover the costs at about $7.)

One last thing, I want to know if there’s anything like this already on the market. I just did a quick search and I wasn’t able to find anything, but that doesn’t mean that someone hasn’t already thought of it. If you’ve seen something along these lines, let me know.

As for the words on the ribbon, feel free to explore the possibilities in the comments section. The ribbon could easily say anything from “Support Evolution” to “I Support the Teaching of Facts: evolution is real,” to just a plain old “Evolution is Real,” or something like that.

I think that this could be a very cool project as it plays on both the popular “Support the Troops” nonsense (I say it’s nonsense because everyone supports the troops) and the rising tide of (“evolution isn’t real”) religious fundamentalism in this country… Perhaps nothing will come of it, but I’d at least like to think about the possibilities… Give me your thoughts.

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  1. Posted February 5, 2005 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    I like your idea, but since we’re brainstorming at the moment, here’s an alternative that came to mind.

    What about simplifying it just a bit to something more basic (and possibly more marketable), like: Support The Facts

    This goes off on somewhat of a tangent, but could possibly be embraced by a much larger market.

  2. Posted February 5, 2005 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    This reminds me so much of Matt’s ‘Don’t blame me, I voted for Jesus!’ bumper sticker. It was a stronger concept back in the Clinton years but it would look superb on a ribbon.

  3. Hammond
    Posted February 5, 2005 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    I would gladly pay $10 if it included a life-sized cardboard cut-out of the beloved John Ritter. I can’t seem to find one anywhere.

  4. mark
    Posted February 6, 2005 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I need to follow up on the Ritter thing. I think that this project is probably more worthy of my time though. I really want to come up with an alternate ribbon design and have it made… Speaking of which, these are really good ideas. Keep ’em coming.

  5. Larry
    Posted February 10, 2005 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    How about a We’re the problem ribbon..

    Or a magenetic Tombstone that says little Eichmans (we derserved it)

  6. Posted February 15, 2005 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    mark, some ribbon stickers are selling on

  7. Anonymatt
    Posted February 25, 2005 at 7:13 am | Permalink


    Are you for real or for spam? I’ve followed two of your links and they seem to go to commercial sites in Germany.

  8. mark
    Posted February 25, 2005 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    He’s spam. I’ll delete him. Sorry, Matt.

  9. Anonymatt
    Posted February 25, 2005 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    At least Igor was polite.

  10. mark
    Posted February 25, 2005 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    Yes, I will miss him.

  11. brett
    Posted February 25, 2005 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    mark, you deleted igor’s post before i had a chance to read it.
    I’m sad. He seemed nice. And I’ve always wanted to go to germany.

  12. Jim
    Posted September 25, 2005 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    Another ribbon design you may like:
    Click on it to link to a site with more designs, and a design-your-own-ribbon option.

  13. mark
    Posted September 25, 2005 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

    I find myself completely devoid of ideas right now, Jim, but thank you for the link. Under normal circumstances, I’d be all over it.

  14. dsalter
    Posted December 4, 2005 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    great idea! I have been thinking about alternatives for the ribbons but this is a new twist.

    my idea was a picture of a plain white ribbon with the words: “this ribbon represents nothing!” or: “my kids went to the store and all i got was this stupid ribbon!”

  15. mark
    Posted December 4, 2005 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    If you do a site search for “ribbons” you’ll probably find other posts. I know that I’ve written about various ribbon ideas on at least half a dozen occasions… I’ve got a lot of other ideas too, but I just haven’t had time to work on them, like a fake article on a Ribbon Killer, who ties down his victims with patriotic ribbons, or a story about an illegal warehouse worker who’s crushed to death by a large box of “Support Corporate Rights” ribbons.

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