In Defiance of Entropy

Dearest Rachel – When I was a kid, I collected some book about the ‘Official Rules.’ I don’t recall if that was what was titled, but I think it may have been. These weren’t rules for a game, or instructions for anything in particular; just observations on how life worked, or didn’t. Stuff like Murphy’sContinue reading “In Defiance of Entropy”

Permission to Skip

Dearest Rachel – This may seem inappropriate, but I feel the need to address this. Less than a week ago, I admitted to you that there were times when I just didn’t feel inspired to write you, but did so nonetheless. Which, I suppose, resulted in what an editor (were I to have one) wouldContinue reading “Permission to Skip”

from Rachel: Planned For God’s Pleasure

“4/24 “I could and should start doing house work as if I were doing it for Jesus. Especially the jobs I don’t like and generally procrastinate; washing dishes, hanging up clothes, and sorting and cleaning up messy piles.” Dearest Rachel – Interesting to see this entry now, just as I’d been learning about ‘secondary losses’Continue reading “from Rachel: Planned For God’s Pleasure”

Not the Best of Hosts

Dearest Rachel – Well, the girls came over last night. It’ll be the last time for the better part of a month, as Ellen will be out of town visiting her mom next week, and then I’ll be in Colorado on this men’s retreat the next. So, three weeks until next time. Clever me, IContinue reading “Not the Best of Hosts”

Not Feeling It

Dearest Rachel – As characters in our own dramas (or, more likely, sitcoms – has it ever occurred to anyone that those experiencing life within those sitcoms doesn’t find what’s happening to them to be funny? We are, as audience members, more likely than not laughing at their pain), we are generally oblivious to ourContinue reading “Not Feeling It”

Talking to Thin Air

Dearest Rachel – There are some days in which I have to confess I’m not all that motivated to write you these letters. Sometimes it’s that I’m distracted by other things that require me to respond to them, so I spend my writing energy on something – or someone – else, thus causing what IContinue reading “Talking to Thin Air”

Red Tape

Dearest Rachel – Last night was the Bible study on Zoom, as per usual for the last year and a half. One of the regulars generally start things off with a joke. To give you an idea of the level of humor, here was this week’s offering: Question: How do bureaucrats wrap their Christmas presents?Continue reading “Red Tape”

Leave Behind a Morsel

Dearest Rachel – Back in the 70s and 80s, my great aunt Belva participated in a ministry for international students attending Northwestern; inviting them over for a home-cooked meal, introducing them to our church community, that sort of thing. She had a great knack for keeping in touch with ‘her students’ after they graduated andContinue reading “Leave Behind a Morsel”

Poor Impulse Control

Dearest Rachel – And this… is why you never shop hungry. There’s a lot of things I’ve been doing with more frequency now that I am the lone adult in the household. Yes, yes, I know Daniel is officially an adult, but he is still a dependent child as long as he lives here, IContinue reading “Poor Impulse Control”

We Are All Hikikomori… Again

Dearest Rachel – We acknowledged it between the two of us, but rarely spoke of it outside of the home. The convocation when he first enrolled at Judson spoke of their mascot, the eagle, and how the adults made their nest less and less comfortable over time, so as to encourage their eaglets, as theyContinue reading “We Are All Hikikomori… Again”

A Touch of Nervous Energy

Dearest Rachel – What with having woken up before six o’clock on a Saturday to shower and tend to the dog (although in fairness, I actually managed to do the former without waking up the old guy! Huzzah!), making a point to attend this morning’s Bible study, followed by running about on errands until aboutContinue reading “A Touch of Nervous Energy”

Late for Dinner

Dearest Rachel – “You can call me anything you want; just don’t call me late for dinner!” It was probably one of the first jokes I was ever told by my grandfather as a little kid, and one that I never really got at that age (“what kind of name is Late For Dinner, andContinue reading “Late for Dinner”

Sleeping In Denim

Dearest Rachel – It seems there are a few memes out there about people who sleep dressed, specifically while wearing jeans… Not sure I understand what the fuss is all about. Between showering after walking home, and therefore changing afterwards (look, it’s August in Chicago – why should I stay in those sweaty clothes anyContinue reading “Sleeping In Denim”

Civic Duty Never Ends

Dearest Rachel – Out of all the mail received yesterday, the only thing that wasn’t either an advertisement or a plea for money (but I suppose I repeat myself) was a summons for you to appear for jury duty in about a month for now. I suppose, since your death was recorded in a differentContinue reading “Civic Duty Never Ends”

Ce N’est Pas un Rendez-vous

Dearest Rachel – Since both your parents were university art professors, I know you had a thorough grounding in the fine arts, including history and the like. And given your dad’s fondness for dada and surrealism, you’re undoubtedly familiar with Rene Magritte and his work. And at the moment, I’d like to call attention toContinue reading “Ce N’est Pas un Rendez-vous”

The Things Mine Eyes Have Seen

Dearest Rachel – I never got around to telling you about this, but when we were down at Kevin’s over Memorial Day weekend, I broke down and got a copy of Minecraft. Somehow, he figured out how to set up a server, and the three of us just started digging around (in survival mode, noContinue reading “The Things Mine Eyes Have Seen”

Loaning the Lawnmower

Dearest Rachel – Whenever you are able, ·do [L do not withhold] good to people who ·need help [or deserve it]. If you have what your neighbor asks for, don’t say, “Come back later. I will give it to you tomorrow.” Proverbs 3:27,28, Expanded Bible I’ve already been working on a letter for you, which when I finish it will beContinue reading “Loaning the Lawnmower”

Darkest Night

Dearest Rachel – No light. No air-conditioning. No fans. No Internet. It’s truly been one of our darkest nights. Literally. According to Daniel, everything went sideways shortly before I got home from walking with Erin last night a little bit before eight. By the way, that was rather a washout in its own right. NeitherContinue reading “Darkest Night”

No Puede Ayudar

Dearest Rachel – You never know what’s going to happen some days. It’s been a fairly straightforward one for the most part, and then I make to head out for the usual Tuesday evening walk. What with her being up in Door County with her parents last week, I’ve missed being able to chat withContinue reading “No Puede Ayudar”

Waiting for a Table

Dearest Rachel – Since I woke up this morning with little to no memory of last nights dream (which, come to think of it, is more how things used to be when you and I were together nights), I figure I might as well instead relate the events of last evening to you as partContinue reading “Waiting for a Table”

from Rachel: Seeing Life from God’s View

“April 28 and 30” “If I were to try and give a metaphor to life, I think I would go with it being a journey. To me, this isn’t entirely worldly and unbiblical, there is A Pilgrims Progress, and, more importantly, Jesus talks of the narrow road to heaven as opposed to the wide roadContinue reading “from Rachel: Seeing Life from God’s View”

Cornfest

Dearest Rachel – It’s the first Saturday in August, and you know what that means. Well, yes, they did serve food at the men’s Bible study this morning (you might recall that Oracio used to own – and still works at – a pizza joint. Yeah, pizza for breakfast, prepared on a grill. Things theseContinue reading “Cornfest”

Just Desserts

Dearest Rachel – So I get home this afternoon – evening? – from the ‘office,’ and Daniel is asleep in his recliner, YouTube still yammering on from the laptop in… well, his lap. Even the dog is asleep. So, rather than bothering to wake them, I figure I’ll make a dent in the leftover pizzaContinue reading “Just Desserts”

The Brains God Gave Gravel

Dearest Rachel – You may have noticed throughout the course of this these letters that I have written a great deal about Chompers throughout the course of my efforts to adjust to your loss and absence. And considering my general apathy towards him during your lifetime, I’m sure you would find that rather odd. ForContinue reading “The Brains God Gave Gravel”

The Glamour of the Rustic

Dearest Rachel – In the mornings when she comes over to work on this or that room, Jan usually arrives a half an hour before her official schedule. What I mean by this is, when she says she’ll be here by nine, she’ll generally arrive around eight- thirty. It’s the sort of hyper punctuality thatContinue reading “The Glamour of the Rustic”