tiger lilies


i was talking to one of my co-workers on his way out from work when he asked me about chinese new year and i had said i hadn’t celebrated it. within that 1 minute, maybe 2 minute interaction, i had told him that noodles represent longevity and oranges are popular in chinese culture because of the  benefits the peel has on the skin. i also told him about moon cakes before we decided to start talking about astrology. i knew something was fishy, seeing as he never asks me questions, but the  second i saw him that day, he had abruptly approached me with a topic. i figured the mother told him i was leaving the job which is why there was a spark of greater interest in conversation that day. the next time i see him as i walk into work, he anxiously says he’s going to be right back. as i see him run back to the house, through the window i see that he is running with a bag. i already know it’s for me. of what? i wasn’t sure, but i knew it had to do with me leaving the job.

he bought me oranges, top ramen noodles, and a silly little lemon cake in a plastic container. i received these tiger lilies as a way to represent my beauty.

throughout this thoughtful endearment, i was observing each and every item he had given me, blessed that he listened to everything i had to say in those precious moments and that he had not only remembered the symbolism, but taken time out of his day to buy these items for me. it was then that i looked up and realized he was blushing. in that moment, mental disaster strikes for me. i was so traumatized by this interaction, the whole time i was just monologue-ing to myself to not twitch. why do guys do this to me? every time i look at these flowers, i feel like i got dropped in an engagement i didn’t want but had said yes out of being nice. it’s like looking at an unwanted ring on your finger. i can’t even eat these oranges or this bowl of noodles without feeling that i am somehow committing myself to “this”, even though i know i’m not. it’s just that fear that keeps it alive. he’s a nice guy, really! we laugh a lot, we have common interests, but when people decide to cross the line between friends and something more than friends, that’s when i shut down. because although i love romance, i don’t want it as my own. i’d rather just give it away.

but, i keep them in my studio because i like flowers, so i guess i can’t complain too much…


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