Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copy left
You can read our best books
GColinThornton would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Ikebana

By GColinThornton All Rights Reserved ©

Humor

Chapter 1

The phone rang at about ten in the morning.

My girlfriend, Alison: “Lesley and I are going to Ikebana show tonight at the Japanese Cultural Centre. Can you join us?”

Even though I was swamped at work with a looming deadline, I agreed. “Meet you there at 7,” I said, full of confidence.

Alison was a new woman in my life and I wanted to impress her with my cosmopolitan savoir faire. Of course I loved Japanese culture  – I still do – Hokusai prints of Mt. Fuji, Haikus by Basho, flying grass calligraphy, Zen brush-and-ink paintings – and Ikebana, the fine art of flower arranging. I was an art school grad, an urban sophisticate, a metrosexual years before the term had been coined.

Immediately after hanging up the phone I realized that I had twelve hours of work ahead of me and only eight hours to do it. Plus, I needed another 30 minutes more to clean up and drive across the city to the cultural centre. So I loaded up on coffee, got my papers in order, sharpened my razor, filled my glue pot and worked for eight hours without so much as a two minute biology break in the little boys’ room down the hall. Amazing how deadlines and a goal can focus one’s attention.

Even though I raced through my project, skipped lunch and dinner, and broke a dozen traffic laws between Parkdale and Don Mills, I arrived (heavy sigh goes here) late. The park bench in the garden where we’d agreed to meet was empty.

Plan B: Go inside and find them.

The room was packed. Women wearing beautiful gowns embroidered with dragons and goldfish, peonies and bamboo, clouds and waterfalls. Men in impeccable blue pin-stripped suits with crisp white shirts, shiny shoes and silk ties. Obviously I was underdressed for the room, but my t-shirt was clean and my hi-tops were new, so I wandered into the crowd to mingle and enjoy the show. Alison and Lesley were in there somewhere; surely, we’d meet.

For reasons that I cannot explain, I find the odd combinations in Ikebana – colour, texture and composition – completely fascinating: A branch of cherry blossoms reaching into space from a cloud of white baby’s breath; one pink lily bursting out of a tangle of ribbon rushes; three plums, a rosebud and a twisted gnarl of driftwood; a single hosta leaf, deeply veined and wrinkled, wrapped around a long arching branch stripped bare save for a single orange crabapple dangling from the tip; a sprig of red Japanese Maple rising from a mound of moss sprinkled with blueberries. Perhaps Ikebana can only be experienced visually, and attempting to explain it verbally is futile.

It wasn’t too long before I noticed that people were drinking and eating – saki, sushi, fresh fruit and vegetables. The aromas reminded me that I hadn’t eaten since breakfast – fourteen hours earlier. Unfortunately, like my search for Alison and Lesley, my hunt for a waiter with a tray of food or drink was fruitless. Every time I saw someone pop a teriyaki shrimp or a bacon-wrapped lychee into their mouth my stomach growled in protest. 

Finally, I saw a platter of fruit on a table under a fan of palm fronds. I snapped off a few red, thumb-sized bananas and peeled one. Two bites into my second banana, the crowd parted and suddenly I was face to face with Alison and Lesley. Perfect!

Much to my surprise, Alison’s eyes were not glowing with love and affection, but horror and disbelief. They looked at me, at the bananas in my hands, at the table behind me, back at me, back to the table...

After a few seconds of stunned silence they both screamed, as if they had just seen Freddy Kreuger pop out of the attic closet. The crowd went silent. Every head in the room swivelled in slow motion to look at me. You could have heard a baby blink.

I swallowed the last of my banana.

Then, simultaneously, as if they had rehearsed it a hundred times, Alison and Lesley burst out in hysterical laughter, joined a few seconds later by many of the guests; leaving me, facing the crowd, clutching my bananas, alone, silent and confused.

Apparently, I was eating First Prize.

(She married me anyway.)

— THE END —


Colin Thornton
click@nbnet.nb.ca
(506)533-8003


Write a Review Did you enjoy my story? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, GColinThornton
Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

christylynnr5: This book was absolutely amazing. It had romance, comedy, and mystery. Sid is a girl that pretends to be a boy and goes to an all boys school. Of course there is going to be romance. There's comedy in the story because Sid's character is carefree and has no filter making her bluntness and sarcasm...

gilbertgg: Not a bad book, but the editing needs to be stepped up a bit. The plot seems to work and kept me entertained, though.

yogashri asyosa: i liked the way the story revolves. it was interesting with Sara and Allie. i would have thought bring Max in the POV of Sara could have been elaborate so the drama could have been even thickyes there is few grammar errors but i was able to make it up !! Had a good time reading !!

Jaslyn: I loved reading this so much!! The transformation of Nina's self-esteem was incredible to read, and while I was rooting for Parker halfway through, I was very satisfied when Harrison and Nina finally got everything straight. The side characters were adorable - I especially loved Anna, Richel, Mic...

Alex Rushmer: I just want to say that the writing in this is amazing! I read the first couple chapters and was absolutely drawn in by it, The way you use first person in this story is extremely engaging and does wonders with your character development. I immediately had a picture of the characters and plotline...

Taryn Odoms: this is a vey good book so far i came from wattpad and I'm thankful that you showed me this site.the thing says my reveiw is to short but I don't know what else to write but that this book is so good.👌😂👌😂😂😂😂😂👌😂😂😂👌👉👌👌👌👌👌👌❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤

CurlyRed: I read this entire book in just under 4 hours I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! i found myself emotionally attached to the characters and making personal connections that i had never experienced before while reading a book! I was constantly wanting to read more, every chapter left me on a cliff hanger tha...

bethnaloza: Good book... bad grammar though it gets a little annoying though but otherwise it's good..I stayed up like almost 4am for this damn book!!!It's good and frickn *JehshhsDjjdjxjxmsdbhsjDhsjkakanabshjsjssA

mcase: I really enjoyed this story. Felt drawn to Cami as a genuine person. Great characters with funny honest perspective. Many subplots made this continually interesting. I was never bored and thought the overall plot was intriguing. I do wish that some elements had been excluded, such as some extrane...

More Recommendations

veeranng: This has become one of my best novels of all time...This story has the right amount of humour...I was hooked to it from the start and i was not able to keep my phone down for like entire 4 hours...The characters are all so adorable and relatable...The plot and the dialogues are just fantastic...I...

Roxie: This was a very well thought out story and I greatly enjoyed it! I don't usually go for these kinds of stories because of clichés and what not, nut this was great. There were a few typos and grammatical errors, but that is to be expected. While I knew the overall end of the story It was engaging ...

romboili000: No a fence to the people who wrote those reviews but u are being to judgmental for a few silly little mistakes anyway I really like your story maybe go back and try to fix those mistakes but also please do not give up I really liked your story. And I know you can get far with it so yeah.

Destiny Lee: This is amazing. It's totally realistic - cool girls have flaws, too, okay?? Totally awkward girl picks up her mom's old bass from her garage, messes around, and realizes, hey, maybe I can move on after all. She has moments where everything's hopeless for her, after all, an alcoholic dad and a fl...

rak9485: I just finished with ch 24 n the story cut off at the end of the chapter please tell me there is more to this story I need to know the ending like if they end up together. do they have sex or not? do they date? is she to afraid to b in a relationship after Tyler.