"I'm going to lose weight for you," she said.
"I'm going to go on a diet. I'm going to become beautiful for you."
"I like you just the way you are."
"Do you really?"
"Really," said Billy Pilgrim. He had already seen a lot of their marriage, thanks to time travel, knew that it was going to be at least bearable all the way.
Valencia makes me sad. So do Billy's conversations with her. He isn't being really truthful. It is very apparent that he married her because it was expected and convenient. Love has very little to do with it. He doesn't find her attractive. The reality of the situation is that Valencia's father owns optometry offices, and Billy needs a job. End of story.
I don't care for dishonesty. It's my least favorite character trait. I think this aversion to deceit stems from having to deal with addicts in my life. Addicts lie all the time. They lie to themselves, and they lie to the people closest to them. It's how an addict survives. If I have an addiction to prescription pain killers, I tell myself that I'm not addicted. I'm simply dependent. That relieves some of the stigma and doesn't require intervention.
I have dealt with those kinds of prevarications for a long time. I have gotten to the point of not really buying into bullshit anymore. As my mother used to say, I calls 'em as I sees 'em. That doesn't mean I'm not sensitive to other peoples' feelings. I am. I don't go out of my way to be cruel, If a person spends a lot of time cooking red beans and rice, I will probably eat a bowl of it, smile, and say, "It's delicious," even though I hate red beans and rice.
I suppose that's what Billy is doing in this passage. He's being kind to Valencia at one of the happiest moments of her life. If he had been completely truthful, it would have devastated her. So, I guess complete honesty has a time and place. Confessing to your new bride that you just married her for her father's money and business connections on your wedding night is probably not a good idea.
I don't have a whole lot to hide, however. I'm a poet. Dishonesty makes for bad poems. Can't have that. Go back to the beginning of this blog, over seven years ago, and you will find out a lot of things about me and my life. I'm petty and jealous sometimes. My wife and I almost divorced at one time. Sexual addiction. Lymphoma of the brain. The death of two siblings. Those are just a few of the highlights. There have been good times, too, but, for some reason, they don't make for interesting reading.
Honesty. That's what being a writer is all about. Getting to the heart of any experience.
Saint Marty is thankful tonight that he doesn't have anything really exciting to write.