I've got the V-DAY Blues, but it ain't what you think.

Many of you don't know that I moonlight a few times a year as a floral designer. Once upon a time, little collegiate Gillian wanted to better understand how one could transition the retail portion of the cut flower industry to some more sustainable practices--of course this is not the area where the worst pollution and waste is created but accessible enough for this wide-eyed, broke twenty-something to try to make a difference. (She also had some rather concealed dreams of owning a flower shop cafe and needed a bit of hands-on research.) She worked at a few different flower shops on Long Island and finally settled on one very special shop, right here in hippity hoppity Harvard Square: Brattle Square Florist. It reminded her fantastically of the very opening scene in My Fair Lady, when the marketplace workers start pulling the canvas cloths from atop the flower tables in a sweeping motion, unveiling the rows upon rows of endless blooms that had napped right there in the streets the night before. ::sigh::

 


#immakingthisforsomeoneelse #thornsgiving #whistlewhileyouwork

 

Cut to five years later, when it is blindingly obvious that, though it was looking good for a moment in the middle there, I never made a difference if you measure between the beginning and the present (though not the end). It's a tough reality to face, and the thought ages my soul in a way that I'm afraid I might have to get used to--worse yet, that I already have.

I am the first to celebrate the diversity of people and culture upon this globe spinning through space, but there are certainly times when change is required and reasons for which we have to be able to see past ourselves and our pleasures to work together as a human race to keep this planet a habitable place for more than ourselves. Literally any holiday or success can be celebrated in a more sustainable fashion, yet, more often than not, we see excessive waste and wastefulness surrounding these Hallmark holidays. We are conditioned by culture to think nothing of it, and any thoughts to the contrary are often met with a defensive "what! so we shouldn't be able to celebrate?" or "what about our fun?!" or even a silence that screams "those thoughts are unwelcome here."

I stand here manipulating flowers into bouquets and vases, so that the purples and blues balance out the yellows and greens, so that the textures are complementary and heights, even, that the blossoms rest just so against one another so as to appear fragile yet strong, quiet yet inspirational. They are flexible and openly share their true colors. They accept one another without a fight, though they come from very different and diverse backgrounds. They are often flawed yet beautiful just the same. They are stunning alone and impressive together.

You see, flowers are easy, but people,...I don't want to believe that people are impossible, but they definitely won't be so simple.

A TOAST to continuing to try to make the right difference.

Comments

Wow, you and your website and your whole Honey Foot is love, love love magic!!! Can't wait to see you in a few hours and thanks for looping me into your sweetness for the activist goodness in all of our hive minded hearts run wild!
 

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