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Infinite Variety?

What's this all about?
How many people can we get to wear a customer name badge on November 14th 2009?

Why not?
It's an art event, it's social comment, it's a fun day ~ it might even turn into a party!

If it's art, who's the artist?
I am ~ and you are ~ we all are.
Celebrate the Infinite Variety of customers ~ and servers!

The boring explanation
(feel free to ignore it)

We live in an increasingly commoditised and commercialised world ~ I shop, therefore I am?

Corporations believe it improves the shopping experience if all their assistants and 'customer care' workers sport matching uniforms and name badges.

So why do we still feel alienated? Why does being able to read the name of the server with the compulsory smile render them even more anonymous and impersonal?
Frequently Asked Questions

Nobody has asked me any questions yet, frequently or otherwise. These might save you the trouble:

The Green Badge of Dullage
Want to design your own badge?
Go ahead; it's all about individuality. Choose the irony of wearing the 'standard' badge or make your own. Click here for the badges page.

I'm shy, hairy melon, I'm shy
Don't want people knowing your name?
You can still take part. Use a false name. Use mine. Or 'Angharad'. I'd prefer a world of individuals to a world of Dais, but go for it.

Mind your language
This should be a global event, so I've started adding badges and maybe whole pages in other tongues.
If you want to help with translation, that would be great! Contact me.

Infinite Variety
(situationist art happening
for shoppers the world over)

" nor custom stale her infinite variety"
(W Shakespeare: Antony & Cleopatra)

We hand over our cash and take our goods, like we might from a machine. How many of us stop to chat, to hear the stories they could tell?

And they don't even get to know our names, like we know theirs.

Even if we do say "Hi, Angharad" or "Thanks, Ralph, for the dress/mortgage/cheese", we are no more than one of the sea of faces that swims by, day after monotonous day.

It's time to change all that.

Let's try to make at least one day a more memorable and enjoyable one for shoppers and assistants alike.

Call it performance art, call it being a looney, but I've been shopping wearing a badge like the one shown here for some time now. Care to join me?

Maybe meet your fellow badgers for a drink afterwards? Why not organise a party in your neighbourhood?
How do we get folks involved?
You tell me. Read the stuff on here, download or make badges, sign up on facebook, invite all your friends, tell the press and anything else you can think of.
Send any suggestions or comments to

Whose idea was this?
It's the brainchild of Dai Lowe: dilettante, occasional artist, waster.
Click here for my website

(Thanks to Jenners of Edinburgh for the shoppy background)
Register as a participant on facebook ~ CLICK HERE
Make sure you click 'Invite people to come' and select ALL your facebook friends!


If you're interested and want to contact me directly about it,
contribute ideas, be on my facebook list or just be kept up to date,
do write to me at

Oh, and keep an eye on the Bloggy Diary Thing.

Otherwise ~ watch this space.

(Last updated 5th September 2009, 12:00)
Dedicated to Angharad Especially Michell for her 5th birthday