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

Bissan El Hassan: I was a big fan of Nadine Abu Treef on wattpad and when I knew that she published her stories on Inkitt I was so happy because her stories need to be publishedas for this story it's one of the best and I would definitely buy it once the author complete it the writing skills are very good and so i...

CETurner: I really enjoyed reading your story and it pulled me back to my own first love. I love your characters and especially Scar with her noisy head and unbounded imagination. She is awkward and unsure yet she goes forward bravely. I also fell in love with her leading man and her best friend. The story...

jacquelinedepedro: I can really see in my mind the small lake community, the colorful boats, the cottages, the lake, the tiny shops in town - an entire gamut of images made real to me by the author. I can feel how they feel, taste what they taste, smell what they smell - all marks of a good writer👍. A romantic at h...

Viarmic File: The flow of the story is great and the time of reading is worth it, even the wait ;)

Jesse Mae: The book could use a little editing but it was nothing the interfered with the enjoyment of the book. This was one of the best that I have read in a long time. The book was really good and kept you wanting more. I truly loved this book.

Kylie McLemore: I love this book! It is one of my go-to's. This story is such a cute one that it just makes me giddy when I read it.

Madhavi Soni: Just read and love it. Would recommend to friends. Keep it up😍👍👍👍👌👌

Ice Winifredd: This was amazing! The characters, the plot, the writing. Seriously had me entertained these past couple of days! Adorable, funny, adventurous, and I highly recommended read on my profile! Once again, bravo! You're got some major talent!

I.want.stories: I started this book yesterday and finished reading it today..... It was that interesting 😁😁Love the plot and the characters Had a blast reading this bookHope other books of yours are funny, sarcastic and just plain amazing like this one 😁😈😊😊

More Recommendations

Betsy Nickerson: I loved this story...could hardly put it down...cant wait to read more of the authors stories!!!!

Bright_as_the_stars: Being instantly thrown into drama, romance, and crazy friendship goals, this is a read that will keep you up at night, that'll make you scream in excitement - and clench your hair in frustration. The writing is clean and easy to read while also dabbling in colourful descriptions, and the charact...

TomWark: Good girl meets bad boy - a familiar genre but done in a highly original and believable way. Gripping from start to finish - one of those page-turners you don't want to 'put down' or turn away from. Enthralling. Lovely!

Calliope Carman: Thank you. I uh I used to write, like a whole whole lot,But i uh, I somehow forgot.How to write. How to play with words.I lost my inspiration and my desire to write.I just, don’t know how.It pains me, a lot. But somehow, after reading your stories, i feel betterI honestly really love, the way you...

Deleted User: Great story I loved it

Aishwarya pillai: It was AWESOME STORY I LOVED it definitely gonna READ AGAINALSO THIS MADE ME TEMPTING.....😈😍😍😍😍😍😍😗😗😗😗😗😗😗😙😙😙😙😙😙😙😘😘😘😘😘😚

{{ contest.story_page_sticky_bar_text }} Be the first to recommend this story.

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.