Boyd, TX is a small town in Wise County. Population 1,099. My parents live in Boyd, which I why I moved there after the birth of my first son. I commuted 150 miles daily to work. I usually left home very early. But one rare day, I left home after the sun had already risen and came across an elderly man standing on the side of the road outside the subsidized apartments. Not hitching that I could tell, just standing. I pulled over and stopped and he jumped in the car.
He told me the most important thing in the world.
I asked him where he was headed. The same place he went every morning - the gas station. For breakfast. But it was drizzling, so he was hoping someone would stop and give him a lift. He hadn't been waiting long. The densely populated area of this small town has little zoning between residential and commercial, so it wasn't very far to this corner gas station from where he lived. He usually walked, he told me. Then he said, "You want to know the most important thing in the world?"
He paused, and I caught his eye. He was staring intently at me - the first lull in our short conversation. Now I ask you, who doesn't want to know the most important thing in the world? Furthermore, I submit to you that this old man was filled with the wisdom of decades the likes of which wouldn't be within my grasp for many years. I considered this a chance to get a leg up on the competition. An edge in life. I nodded.
The old man cackled. Yes, cackled. Cackled in a slightly mad way - in that "slightly mad old man" way. "Pussy!" He said again, and cackled the rest of the way to the gas station. So much for my profound revelation.
About a year later, I saw that same old man on the side of the road and stopped to pick him up. As we drove to the corner gas station he asked me, "You want to know the most important thing in the world?"
"Pussy?" I replied.
"That's right!" He said. And started cackling.
Pussy: The Most Important Thing in the World.