How Long Until You Knew?

Dearest Rachel – Just think, it was only yesterday that I was congratulating myself for having reacclimatized to the local time zone. I really should have known better. But last night, I had already woken up once, at three, so I was mildly disgusted with myself about that. At the same time, my head wasContinue reading “How Long Until You Knew?”

Plus Ultra

Dearest Rachel – No, honey, this letter has nothing to do with My Hero Academia, despite that anime making a catchphrase out of this Latin motto. I don’t know enough about the series to comment upon it; I may have been the first otaku in the family, but I know better than to get involvedContinue reading “Plus Ultra”

The Site of Armageddon?

Dearest Rachel – It’s a strange thing to consider; while we’re well aware that the name Armageddon comes from a specific place – the valley of Megiddo, where we are now heading to – it goes against our understanding to think of the end of the world happening in a single specific place. Armageddon seemsContinue reading “The Site of Armageddon?”

Can’t Get Him Out of the House

Dearest Rachel – In a way, I think I’d prefer to talk to you about my dream from last night, but it was so much of a non sequitur that I wouldn’t be able to make much of a story out of it. Basically, it involved my dad and I trying to sell a litterContinue reading “Can’t Get Him Out of the House”

Little Nightmares

Dearest Rachel – So, last night’s study had us wrapping up the book of Philippians; you know the passage, the one about not being anxious, but rejoicing in every situation. I’ve always had difficulty with that, simply because I can’t keep from thinking of joy as an emotion, as opposed to an action (yes, IContinue reading “Little Nightmares”

from Rachel: My Broken Dreams

How about you? Ever sing along, hoping the song (‘When You Wish Upon a Star’) might be true? “I’ve sung the song, but I’m not sure I had any particular dreams in mind. If I did, they were probably outside of the natural order of possibilities. My favorite fantasies involve portals to other worlds: policeContinue reading “from Rachel: My Broken Dreams”

Travelling in Only One Direction

Dearest Rachel – Lars asked me yesterday, as we were walking through the forest preserve by Oakton College and Beck Lake, how much I’ve been telling you about what’s going on in my life. He suggests I not tell you quite as much as I do, if only for the fast that there are otherContinue reading “Travelling in Only One Direction”

Long Term Plans

Dearest Rachel – Well, wouldn’t you know it. Just yesterday, I was saying how I need to be telling you a bit more about Yvonne, and last night, she comes out and asks me some hard questions. So, it looks like I need to talk about her at this point. I will say that timeContinue reading “Long Term Plans”

So Much Nonsense

Dearest Rachel – I don’t know what my brain was trying to process last night, but it certainly was working overtime in generating dreams. Mostly, however, the dreams it was creating were both fairly realistic (that is, nothing to psychedelic or dreamscape-y), and at the same time, illogical enough for me to recognize them asContinue reading “So Much Nonsense”

Cleaning Out and Stocking Up

Dearest Rachel – I left the house this morning to the sound of the dishwasher firing up; I stopped at the local wholesale club to fill my tank (despite the high price tag – it’s the first time I’ve ever put $60 worth of gas in the car at one go – because I’m sureContinue reading “Cleaning Out and Stocking Up”

Amid the Ruins of the Pyramid

Dearest Rachel – Today’s sermon was about being friends with Jesus, using John the Baptist as an example. Interestingly, the main passage centered on the point when John was beginning to doubt as to whether Jesus was Who He said He was, even going so far as to send his own disciples to ask Him,Continue reading “Amid the Ruins of the Pyramid”

The Finnish Reindeer Coat

Dearest Rachel – The other day, I saw Mom getting a few old coats out of the cedar closet in their basement (from the room under what used to be my own, back when I was growing up). Admittedly, I didn’t think much of it, but took the moment to fill her in on theContinue reading “The Finnish Reindeer Coat”

Distance and Silence

Dearest Rachel – Sunday mornings are a challenge for me these days. Well, every morning is a bit of a challenge, but the weekend is particularly difficult. While I think I’m starting to get accustomed to the fact that the bed – and the room – are empty apart from myself, and you’re not goingContinue reading “Distance and Silence”

Forecasting Follies

Dearest Rachel – Aside from the fact that I don’t want the responsibility – and cannot fathom why anybody else would – I have certain… ideas… that probably would suggest that I shouldn’t be trusted with the reins of any sort of power. I’m not a big fan of the psychic community, for instance. Personally,Continue reading “Forecasting Follies”

Not Just ‘Someone Else’s Car’

Dearest Rachel – I want to start this letter off by saying there’s nothing more uncomfortable than driving someone else’s car, but that’s not exactly true. I suspect that, given enough time, and pointed where all of the necessary (and some of the extraneous ones, like the sound system) controls are, I can get usedContinue reading “Not Just ‘Someone Else’s Car’”

So… Darned… Close

Dearest Rachel – I’ll give Ruby credit, she’s making the effort to keep in touch with me, contacting me every day while she’s supposedly down in Phoenix with her siblings. She’s also informed me that she’s told her mom (who I guess is down there with her siblings? In which case, shouldn’t she have mentionedContinue reading “So… Darned… Close”

On Being ‘The Grenade’

Dearest Rachel – I’ve spoken to certain people who find themselves amused at some of the stories I tell you about my life lived after you, particularly those having to do with finding a successor to you (if you’d want to call her that). It offers a measure of comfort to me that, if IContinue reading “On Being ‘The Grenade’”

Fifty-Two Weeks Ago (part one)

Dearest Rachel – I still remember our first visit to Camp Awana for family camp in the summer of 2019. I hadn’t been there since the fifth or sixth grade, I believe – or maybe it was the just the summer between them. We wandered the length and breadth of the place, discovering it wasContinue reading “Fifty-Two Weeks Ago (part one)”

Rich Fools

Dearest Rachel – I will always remember the story that you used to tell about your mom‘s father, who worked for the SEC in its early days. It was a fairly lucrative job as I understand it (working for the government often is), and most of his colleagues were both younger than him, and decidedlyContinue reading “Rich Fools”

A Prayer For Daniel

Father God – First of all, thank You for being willing and desirous for us to call You that. The idea that the Creator of the Universe is willing to consider us His children when we, as a rule, do little more than bring You embarrassment and regret that You even thought to create us,Continue reading “A Prayer For Daniel”

What Was So Important, Anyway?

Dearest Rachel – You might remember how, back when the magazine still existed, I would buy myself a copy of Life at the end of the year as a sort of memory refresher; their “Year in Pictures” issue. This is what happened in the world during the year, the important stuff, the important people, theContinue reading “What Was So Important, Anyway?”

Before I Change My Mind

Dearest Rachel – I keep forgetting whether I’ve told you about this or not. I know I mentioned the possibility, but there are people that I meet that are surprised when I tell them about what I’m about to do. So maybe I haven’t given the specifics to you yet – I can never keepContinue reading “Before I Change My Mind”

Triple Feature

Dearest Rachel – It was so good to see you last night, and so many times, and through so much. If only I could convince anybody that you were there. Everything started off with a rather kinetic, video game feel to it. You and I were trying to get through a maze, and sort ofContinue reading “Triple Feature”

Sport Seats

Dearest Rachel – It’s a well-established fact that dreams, by their very nature, needn’t be expected to make sense. But some dreams are just that much weirder than others. Some have bizarre psychedelic imagery, with swirls of colors more at home in a bad acid trip than restful slumber. Others just construct strange scenarios, withContinue reading “Sport Seats”

Biden My Time

Dearest Rachel – I’m sure that you wouldn’t approve, I don’t feel like there’s anything I can do about it. Now that the house has been thoroughly cleaned out, there are so many more rooms Daniel and I can use. And use them we do; except it means that we’re rarely in the same roomContinue reading “Biden My Time”

Steampunk Living

Dearest Rachel – You’ll have to understand, I hadn’t intended to have anyone over today. I left the office early because I needed to drop something off at FedEx (the bank had me sign some papers for the estate) and get a few accessories for my costume on Saturday (the ‘suspicious astronaut’ costume – IContinue reading “Steampunk Living”

Time-Released Time

Dearest Rachel – I think I remember your roommate (and eventual maid of honor) Elizabeth talking about how, when she was young, she would occasionally find herself scared sleepless pondering the concept of eternity. The idea of time going on, and on, and on forever without an end terrified her. What would you do withContinue reading “Time-Released Time”

Paying Down My Sleep Debt

Dearest Rachel – Shortly after getting home from the folks last night, I found myself getting sleepy what we were watching one video or another, and I decided that, rather than heading off to bed at the ridiculously early (even for me) hour of nine p.m., I would simply close my eyes and catch aContinue reading “Paying Down My Sleep Debt”

Spot Macbeth

Dearest Rachel – No, this does not refer to some Shakespearean take on Where’s Waldo, although the idea of Martin Handford drawing a crowd in the Globe Theatre into which the actor portraying the Scottish usurper is trying to blend while being pursued by Macduff and Malcolm makes for an interesting image. Considering Handford’s BritishContinue reading “Spot Macbeth”

Surprises

Dearest Rachel – I’ll tell you, this year thus far has been absolutely full of surprises. Which means that it’s probably a good thing you’re not around to deal with them, as you hated surprises. This was particularly evident when it came to birthdays and holidays – anything having to do with gift-giving. The longContinue reading “Surprises”

When the Veil Pulls Back

Dearest Rachel – I wonder if, at the moment of your passing, you are exposed to all the answers. Does the Lord sees fit to, at the moment which you can no longer do anything about it, release to you the wisdom of the ages, and the minutiae of how His plan is meant toContinue reading “When the Veil Pulls Back”

Wondering if the Chains Will Hold

Dearest Rachel – When I was a little kid, I really wasn’t much for roller coasters. The idea of being spun around and inverted at those dizzying speeds, suspended at heights that, were I to fall from, would undoubtedly kill me (and that was merely the drop itself; never mind the metal mechanisms and trackContinue reading “Wondering if the Chains Will Hold”

Seeing Other People

Dearest Rachel – It’s hard for me to wrap my head around it now, seeing as to how for so many years the two of us would appear in public practically joined at the hip. But in those early days of our relationship, we had, shall we say, “spaces in our togetherness.” In a way,Continue reading “Seeing Other People”

Dreams of Future Passed

Dearest Rachel – To say that the events of the past few years have upended my plans would be rather a gross understatement. Hey, look, kids, check it out – it’s the latest installment of the adventures of Marvel’s newest superhero, Captain Obvious! Or would he be a DC type of character? I don’t know…Continue reading “Dreams of Future Passed”

Culture Is Not Forever

Dearest Rachel – There have been a number of days when I’m literally writing to you at the last minute, standing around waiting for Chompers to do his business, or waiting for him to finally succumb to sleep. And as I wonder what topic to discuss with you, I can think of nothing else toContinue reading “Culture Is Not Forever”

Measuring For The Makeover

Dearest Rachel – I haven’t forgotten that this is the five-month anniversary since your departure. It is going to be a long time (if ever, let’s face it) before I forget about the significance of the twenty-third of the month. What’s interesting about it, is how often I have something going on – and moreContinue reading “Measuring For The Makeover”

Twenty-Eight

Dearest Rachel – Twenty-eight years ago today, I came home from work to find you standing in the bathtub, leaking. I think you had expected your water to break with a single large gush, and that wasn’t happening. But regardless, we had to get you over the hospital right away. You insisted on walking –Continue reading “Twenty-Eight”

Moving On Up

Dearest Rachel – Yes, we’re moving on up, to the upstairs of the split-level section of the house. Unlike the Jeffersons’ theme, I think it’s the south side of our house – I was never particularly good at orientation, and determining direction based on a compass: whatever direction I was facing, I always felt likeContinue reading “Moving On Up”

The Lord Never Spoke to Me (part eight – “Megumi”)

Dearest Rachel – So, now you’re gone. And I’m on my own, still raising Daniel, but essentially alone. And I don’t mind telling you, I hate it. So much so, that I am already seeking God’s will to find somebody new. Not so much as to take your place as… maybe fill the spot youContinue reading “The Lord Never Spoke to Me (part eight – “Megumi”)”

The Middle of the Bed

Dearest Rachel – At home, there’s always something that prevents me from taking up the entirety of the bed. It’s partially a physical question of real estate, where some of your stuff has been lying there. Indeed, I’ve been keeping a couple of your Bible study books there as a reference to flip through andContinue reading “The Middle of the Bed”

The Temptations of Travel

Dearest Rachel – So at the risk of acknowledging the fourth wall a bit, I’ve been asked where and how I come up with topics to discuss with you every single day (and then some). And it’s a fair question, really. Much as I enjoy the little dopamine hit that tells me “Congratulations! You’re onContinue reading “The Temptations of Travel”

When I Grow Up

Dearest Rachel – There was some confusion on Monday about whether Awana (and particularly, Sparks) was to be held that night. Our paper copy of the schedule had the 22nd as a day off, presumably due to Spring Break – granted, I was also assuming we’d be holding club every single week by now, soContinue reading “When I Grow Up”