I responded, “Quiet.”
“How are you going to spend it?”
“Quietly. Maybe make a ham, a few friends might stop by.”
A woman interjects, “What about your wife, your children?”
“I don’t have those.”
“He’s a loner”, someone says quietly.
“That’s sad”, she continues, and I look at her – she immediately regrets saying it, I see, but I respond.
“Is it? I’ve not found a woman who I can stand, or who can stand me. There are women I like, who I have liked, but no one that I could stand or who could stand me. Yet there’s nothing wrong with me, I am whole, no parts are missing. And I am not sad, I am not lonely, and I’m not a victim of society’s narrative where people must get married, must have children…”
The table is silent, I realize I need to cut this short. Yet I see nods of quiet assent, even from a few married people at the table.
“Why lose serenity by chasing happiness?”