"Billy--" said Valencia Merble.
"You want to talk about our silver pattern?"
"I've got it narrowed down to pretty much either Royal Danish or Rambler Rose."
"Rambler Rose," said Billy.
"It isn't something we should rush into," she said. "I mean--whatever we decide on, that's what we're going to have to live with the rest of our lives."
Billy studied the pictures. "Royal Danish," he said at last.
"Colonial Moonlight is nice, too."
"Yes, it is," said Billy Pilgrim.
Billy doesn't really give a shit about silver patterns. He's making small talk, hoping that Valencia will eventually stop talking or leave. He's being polite to his fiancee. Valencia, on the other hand, sees silver patterns as a lifetime commitment. They will have to live with this decision until they die.
It's all a matter of perspective, I guess. Billy doesn't see the choice between Rambler Rose and Royal Danish as that important. For Valencia, the decision is akin to signing a Middle East peace accord. It's binding, and it's permanent.
I understand Billy's point of view. There are some decisions that I don't sweat. Shorts or pants. Chocolate chip cookies or sugar cookies. Fox News or real news. Everyone has their own set of priorities.
Last night, I had dinner at my parents' house. Chicken--fried, broiled, and barbecued. It was delicious. However, I nearly came to blows with one of my siblings because there was barbecue chicken on the table. This person simply kept bitching and bitching and bitching about the barbecue chicken. It started as soon as I sat down on at the dinner table and went on and on and on. It ended with raised voices and hurt feelings.
I suppose, in this situation, I was Billy. My sibling was Valencia. I simply wanted to tell my sibling that chicken preparation is not a life-and-death choice (unless you choose raw). In the grand scheme of things, it just doesn't matter. As the old saying goes, "Don't sweat the small stuff."
So, I don't care about chicken. I don't like barbecue, so I choose fried or broiled. If that's not available, I will have a bowl of Cheerios.
Saint Marty is thankful today for the big stuff: love and faith and joy.