When Elliza met up with George at the coffee shop, she found him doodling on napkins.
“What’re you doing?”
George was startled and looked up. “Oh, sorry. Did you say something?”
His question made Eliza frown. “What are you doing?” she demanded.
“I’m designing my flag,” smiled George.
“Say that again?”
“I am designing my flag.”
Eliza sat down across the table and examined his creations. “Why do you need a flag?”
“Why wouldn’t I? It’s something that symbolizes me. It gives me something to rally around. Something to pass down for future generations. Something to drape over my coffin at my funeral.”
Eliza raised an eyebrow. “That really doesn’t answer my question.”
“Hundreds of years ago, families had a coat of arms. Scottish clans still have tartans. Ours is a disconnected and fractured world. I realize I can’t fix all of it, but I can make a flag,” beamed George.
“What does that even mean?”
“It represents me. Bigger than me, even. It becomes my standard, my beacon call to the world,” proclaimed George.
“What’s next, a national anthem?”
Eliza shook her head. She looked at his flags. “Why green, yellow and black?”
George pulled the napkins away from her. “If you must know, they’re important symbols. That’s one of the five vexillological rules of making a flag.”
“There are rules?”
“Only if you want to make a good flag.”
“Alright, humour me,” said Eliza. She crossed her arms and slumped back in her seat. “What do they represent?”
“If you must know, green and gold are my university colours. Gold and black are the colours of my favorite sports team.”
“That kinda makes sense. What about stars? Are you gonna have stars?”
“Nah,” said George. “Rule number one for designing a flag: keep it simple.”
“According to who?”
“The North American Vexillological Association, of course.”
Eliza rolled her eyes. “Of course. Are you actually gonna get this made or are you just bored?”
“Absolutely. I can picture it flying over my house. It’s gonna be beautiful.”
Eliza stared at George’s radiant face as he spoke. She rested her chin in her hands and sighed.
“What? You think I’m crazy?” he asked.
“Worse,” said Eliza. “I’m starting to want my own flag.”