Earlier, I was at a fast food chain, so hungry I was ready to commit felony if I was not fed in the next five minutes. Fortunately, the line moved quickly and I soon took a place at one corner of the restaurant and started on my full meal eagerly.
It was halfway on the soup when I suddenly realized all the noise around me coming from the afternoon crowd: a family taking the kids out for a snack, friends and classmates recharging after school, and couples holding hands while laughing at their own inside jokes.
I was alone.
As I dug into my single serving of mashed potato, I could almost feel the eyes of these strangers darting towards my table, in their minds questions that their imagination can only answer. I can picture them wondering: Why is she eating alone? Didn’t anyone wanted to join her? Where was her boyfriend? Does she have friends? Is she a bad ass?
There is something about being alone that bothers most people. It is as if it is a negative thing that comes next to buying condoms or panties that makes people uncomfortable. Thus, everything has to be done with a companion, even the mundane like walking, eating, even going to the loo. I looked at the lone chicken wing I was tearing apart like a caveman at the moment… I wonder if it is bothered by the absence of the left wing? Or was it the right?
It is as if being alone sends an invisible message to the world that leaves many iffy… like if they are left alone there is something inside them that would be reluctantly exposed, and they will be left vulnerable, so they go through all sorts of things to cover it up… and get company. I swear, it is something worse than silence in their books. Curious, isn’t it?
I was pretty full at this point on my table for four, and as I unwrapped the brownie left for dessert, I imagined what I would say if anybody I knew spotted me there gorging on a brownie by myself and asked why I was alone. I smiled to myself and leaned back contentedly. The answer was pretty simple…
“Because I can.”