Alice: Ralph, I don’t want a million. There’s just one guy I want: you.
Ralph: Baby, you’re the greatest.
Not everyone is as lucky as Ralph and Alice, the central characters in the classic TV series, The Honeymooners. Ralph is always hopeful that one of his schemes will result in a big break and good fortune. But the simple exchange between this couple is so sweet you can’t help but smile. And what does this tell us?
The self-effacing Ralph and the simple expression of affection between the bus driver and his wife remind us of how often we all take loved ones for granted. Life is a struggle for most of us. We tend to get preoccupied with the trials and challenges of everyday living. We dream of something that will improve our lives. We strive to earn more money. We focus a great deal of energy on our surroundings and our possessions.
If you are lucky enough to have someone who puts up with your shortcomings and nevertheless offers true love that manifests itself in the form of a thousand acts of kindness and understanding, especially through tough times and hardships, you need to stop and thank them. But if you are at all like me (or Ralph), the words just don’t allow you to fully express how you really feel.
Nobody’s perfect, of course. And it’s the differences in people that make the beautiful tapestry that is nature of the world. Somehow we found each other and sometimes, like Ralph, I cannot believe my good fortune. We were married more than 30 years ago. At this point I really don’t want to wait a whole year to celebrate that day when we exchanged vows to love honor and obey. Lately, I think about it almost every day. How lucky and blessed we truly are.
Happy Birthday and Happy Anniversary. Baby, you’re the greatest.
Optimist contributor Wes Morgan: Originlly posted March 2011