Who would ever guess that colorful gladioluses could give birth to uncontested discrimination in high places?

You see, I always allowed space for growing at least one row of glads each year to add color and fun to my garden. I was not alone in my love for glads, however, since they were equally loved by the frequently large black-and-yellow bumblebees.

Glads were the friends that not only provided them with sweet nectar but also offered a secure and comfortable resting place deep within the beautiful blossoms. Sometimes the tired bees would elect to spend the night in this comfortable and fragrant bedroom rather than returning to wherever bumblebees retire at night.

I frequently shared my flowers with fellow workers on the 24th floor of the Church Office Building. One morning as I entered the elevator leading to my office, my arms were laden with flowers. I warmed to the compliments I was receiving on their beauty.

Meanwhile, the warmth and bustle of new surroundings had awakened a Mr. Bumble from his comfortable resting place in a blossom. Startled by all the commotion, he noisily emerged with his motor running, wings fanning frantically to loft himself, ominously buzzing loudly and darting frantically around our heads in the limited air space.

Did I mention the elevator was crowded? A lot of passengers thought it was much too crowded for this extra passenger. Discrimination reared its ugly head in that small assembly that morning and Mr. Bee was voted off the elevator at the very first stop. I don't know where he went from there, but he was a long way from home and carried an impression of an unfriendly reception.

So much for pretty flowers and poor fellowship.

Wayne B. Lynn is a retired director of church curriculum and avid gardener who lives in Centerville.