What is a Life Without a Sum of Sadness?

(Inside of a nursing home, private room an old man-Eugene sits at a table filled with papers and medication and he’s looking outside. It is in the middle of the afternoon about 2-7 Pm on a colorful fall day. He turns and looks at the audience, he has both sadness and happiness in his face and tone at this moment, he is content)

Eugene: I’m going to die. I’m 92 and as you’d suspect I’m not in the best of health. But I’m going out on my own terms. I gave a ring to all the people I want to say goodbye to and my daughter will come by with my granddaughter and I’ll say goodbye to them and tell them I love them. My nurse will wheel me outside to see my last sunset over this beautiful valley in the middle of Fall. Then I’ll take a few pills (Chuckles) and a last sip of wine and say goodbye to the world. But I’m not scared. I think that (Pauses and thinks for a quick second) that when you get around my age death stops being so scary. You’ve become so used to the pain, loss and cold that the idea of relief, going someplace happier, friendlier and… I dunno warmer I guess, is (Thinks) is soothing.

(Phone rings, looks at it and picks up) Hello? (Shocked) Elizabeth? (Lowers down the phone looks at the audience, puts phone up to ear) What do you want Elizabeth? Oh You want me to call you Liz? Well, maybe you could have mentioned that sometime over the past, Oh, I don’t know 40 years? Oh, you don’t want to fight, then what the hell did you want? (Pause) Sorry? (Taken aback, but still enraged) you're sorry? No. No, you see (motions with his hand like she’s in front of him) you don’t get that. (Screaming) You don’t get to leave me and your daughter for 40 fucking years, don’t reach out at all then say you're ‘sorry’ like you knocked over a damn dinner!

What they hell are you thinking? Oh, ‘you needed more in life’ yeah I got that back awhile ago- I’m asking why are you talking to me now? (Pause) Wanted to clear things up? What before I kicked the damn bucket? Well let me tell you this: Things will NEVER be cleared- you got that? And you want to know why? Not because of the fact that you left me. I could have lived with that. I could have handled that. But leaving your daughter? (Pause, visibly saddened) She was eleven. ELEVEN FUCKING YEARS OLD AND HER MOTHER JUST FUCKING LEFT HER. Do you know how long she cried? How many times in the night I- not you- I had to hug her and tell her it wasn’t her fault when in my own room I was falling to pieces on my own.

But afterwards (Pause) she graduated from her collage with the highest marks and let me tell you- I was there- not you- but I was there in the crowd giving a standing ovation with tears over MY (Pointing to himself, tears rolling his cheek) beautiful daughter. I saw her get an incredible, wonderfully paying job. I saw her marry an amazing, funny, smart and handsome man. I held my granddaughter for the first time and now (Pause) she’s going to be just as good, if not better than her mom. But you? (Makes a face) I bet you don’t even know her name do you?

(Pause) What? No, NO! NO! NO! STOP JUST STOP! I don’t want your pity! I don’t want your anger! I don’t want your apologies! (Sobbing and yelling greater) I... DON'T... WANT... YOU!!!! (Pause) WHAT DO I WANT? I- I- I WANT YOU TO DIE! Please. Do that for me, would you? Would you please just drop dead right now and I can forever be at peace because I know that you will never crawl back into their lives again. After everything you've done to me- to us you could have at least given that! Hello? HELLO!? (Pauses calmly puts down phone, then suddenly then in a  burst of anger picks up the phone and throws it across the room hitting the wall, knocks everything off the table, stands up and flips over the table and knocks down his chair before he falls over, he's on his back aching in pain he starts whispering with his eyes closed still tossing and turning. HE IS NOT DYING he is just in pain, but great pain nonetheless) You could have given me that. You could have given me that. You could have given me that. You could… you could...