We had a professor last year who was young, energetic, handsome, and didn't wear a ring. Then we found out that he was a consecrated celibate in a community. We're talking vows not promises. And suddenly, how you looked at him was changed.
I remember the way my friend explained it. If your vocation is your stand in reality, then this total chang of perception makes perfect sense. When you find out someone's vocation, suddenly you see them in light of this fact, this calling which determines the rest of their being. If you see a man in plain clothes, who then introduces himself as a priest, the same thing happens.
One of the guys who plays soccer never wears a ring when he plays, so I never knew he was married. Then I saw him at a different function the other day, with his wife. And it just clicked- it made him make sense! Now I can see him much more in reality; his stand in it is named. I don't know how to explain it. But there is something in how he plays, in how he affirms everyone on the field, and how fatherly he is that I just couldn't seem to reconcile with a single man and it kind of confused me. And now I see why! How cool!! His marriage defines him in a fundamental way, and it is communicated just in the way he is. He didn't even have to have his ring on, or mention his wife every day for me to know there was definitely something to him, that he was not a normal single guy. I'm wondering if there's a way to tell him that, but I think if people don't know where I'm coming from, the JPII vision, they might think it's... well... strange. "You only made sense to me when I saw you with your wife!"