Trying to make love blossom by putting her face on a rose10 november 2013, 11:41
We all know that a sure-fire way to make a woman happy is to give her flowers.
My friend Jesse Foster is taking this patented approach a step further.
He and his partner Sergei Golenyayev can offer you roses with your beloved's face on them.
The way I figure it, if plain old roses make a lady happy, how much happier will she be if you give her roses with her face on them? Especially if that face is as pretty as those of many Kazakh, Russian and other women in Kazakhstan.
I didn't know Jesse until recently, although when he contacted me, I was immediately impressed that he had the same last name as mine. That's why I also took a shine to Peter Foster, the president of Air Astana. And why I'm sure I'd like Sir Norman Foster, the world-renowned British architect who designed the Pyramid and Khan Shatyr.
If Jesse hadn't been named Foster, I might not have agreed to meet with him.
When he introduced himself in an unsolicited email, it was all very conspiratorial, you see.
“I'd like to bring you something,” is all he wrote.
“And what might that be?” I thought. “Wonder what kind of con he's running.”
I was thinking maybe this transplant from Denver, Colorado, was trying to sell me chocolate-flavored hookah tobacco or some such.
What he actually showed me was a pink rose with my picture on it – the same photo that sits atop my column in Tengrinews. You know, the dashing image that many women swoon over.
Jesse had shrewdly calculated that my vanity would succumb to his underhanded sales pitch. He was right.
The former English teacher at the QSI international school had guessed correctly that I'd want to write about his novel vocation – no fool he!
Journalists are always looking for the new, unusual and different. Jesse's flower business fit the bill: It was certainly different.
The next step was deciding how to write the piece. At first I thought about doing a straightforward feature story about why he got into the business and how it works.
Then I thought: “This product is so appealing to women that no matter what kind of approach I take, my story's gonna help Jesse. But if I take a really imaginative approach, I can cash in, too. Not with money. With dates.”
Now if you're going to shoot for a date, why not a beauty queen, right?
So I told Jesse and Sergei I wanted them to print photos of two beauty queens on roses, and we'd let the ladies know about it in this column. If they became intrigued enough to want to know what kind of guy would be so brassy – or so stupid – to take such an innovative tack to getting a date, well, who was I to argue with them?
The girls I chose were Evgeniya Klishina and Aigerim Kozhakanova.
Beauty queens Aigerim Kozhakanova and Evgeniya Klishina on a rose petal. Photo by Kabira Foster
Evgeniya, a stunning blonde, represented Kazakhstan in the Miss World pageant a year ago, where she was named Miss Bikini, she also came in third in the Miss Asia Pacific contest.
The longtime model is also smart: She's a pediatrician.
Aigerim is representing Kazakhstan in this month's Miss Universe pageant.
The student at Eurasian National University, who has gorgeous green eyes, was this year's Miss Almaty.
It wasn't difficult for Jesse and Sergei to find photos of Evgeniya and Aigerim to print on the roses. Their photos are all over the Internet with news stories about their modeling careers and pageant victories.
I was curious how you could print someone's photo – or anything else – on the fragile surface of a rose.
So I asked Jesse to let me watch the printing process.
The first step was his wife Kabira etching Evgeniya and Aigerim's images onto a small metal plate.
Jesse and Sergei then placed the plate on a small printing press and inked it.
The next step was what makes printing on a rose possible.
The American company that developed the patented printing process asked Jesse not to disclose that step, however.
So I'll just have to leave you readers guessing.
The reproductions of Evgeniya and Aigerim came out pretty well. As proof, check out the photos accompanying this blog.
A modeling photo of Evgeniya Klishina. Photo courtesy of Yevgeniya Klishina.
A modeling photo of Aigerim Kozhakhanova at the Miss Universe. Photo courtesy of the contest organizers.
The next issue was whether Evgeniya or Aigerim – or, hopefully, both – would contact me.
To use an old clique, I'm waiting with bated breath.
If they don't rush to me, I've already decided that it won't be because I'm not handsome enough.
I've already picked out a couple of fall guys. I will blame Jesse and Sergei for any lack of action – and ask for my money back.
If any of you loyal readers know Evgeniya or Aigerim, you can help Jesse and Sergei keep the money by showing the ladies this column.
If they read it, chances are they will be thrilled and indeed contact me.
As for you other guys out there, if you want to impress a lady, you can reach Jesse at his website, www.astanaroses.com, or by calling him at +77476188542.
The printing that Jesse and Sergei do on roses isn't limited to faces, by the way.
They print messages on flowers, too. For example, your company's name.
Just in case neither Evgeniya nor Aigerim contacts me – it would be their loss, of course -- I've decided to have Jesse and Sergei put another image on a flower for me.
It's a message I've wanted to send to someone I've been crazy about for some time.
And here it is:
I'm serious, darlin'.
But you'd better act fast.
I'm expecting a call from Evgeniya or Aigerim any day now.
Sergei Golenyayev, left, and Jesse Foster. Photo courtesy of Jesse Foster.