Secular Answers

Dearest Rachel – You might remember the many times that we would talk together about various issues of the day, and what’s up with the younger generation. Part of that had to do with one of my ideas for a YouTube channel – I was hoping to illustrate to a younger audience than ourselves (which,Continue reading “Secular Answers”

If You’re Looking for Devils

Dearest Rachel – When I was a freshman in high school, I think it was our youth group that went to another church where there was a presentation about the evils of rock music. I heard it all there: the ‘fact’ that the Eagles’ Hotel California album featured Anton LeVay head of the church ofContinue reading “If You’re Looking for Devils”

from Rachel: You Are Not an Accident

“April 21, 2004 “My first thought is that I’m pretty content in my skin. I can’t think of much that I still need to accept. But that sounds prideful, so let’s go deeper. I suppose as far as appearance, I love what God has given me, but I don’t like any changes – I pluckContinue reading “from Rachel: You Are Not an Accident”

The Liberation of Surrender

Dearest Rachel – So just last night, I was observing how difficult it was for me to follow my own advice, and simply (and completely) give up on the possibility of finding another life partner like yourself. This morning, on the other hand, I find myself considering just how much better off I am, nowContinue reading “The Liberation of Surrender”

The Drama Llama

Dearest Rachel – Among the piles of clothing that filled the sunroom once upon a time, there were some Christmas presents that you never got the chance to enjoy. There was the odd item that didn’t arrive in time, since you had ordered them for yourself (it was a standing agreement that if you foundContinue reading “The Drama Llama”

Three Lefts

Dearest Rachel – I’m sure you’re familiar with the old saying that ‘two wrongs don’t make a right.’ And I’m sure that Relient K weren’t the first people to come up with it when they added the subtitle ‘(but three lefts do)’ to one of their albums. But that’s the full phrase that goes throughContinue reading “Three Lefts”

What Does This Say About Us?

A ·good [righteous] person can look forward to happiness,but ·an evil person can expect nothing [L the hope of an evil person will perish]. Proverbs 10:28, Expanded Bible Dearest Rachel – It wasn’t all that long ago that we were, in fact, looking forward to happiness together. So many of the things that cause most people to struggle inContinue reading “What Does This Say About Us?”

Can’t Recall The Verse

Dearest Rachel – I don’t often set my alarm these days, but it’s necessary on Saturdays, in order to ensure I’m there on time for the men’s Bible study (not to mention the fact that, on the first Saturday of the month – because last week was a holiday – the guys organizing it fixContinue reading “Can’t Recall The Verse”

Observations Along The Way

Dearest Rachel – Depending on when I leave the house, I can (and do) run into a number of people along the way. And I have to admit, I can’t seem to prevent myself from commenting on some of the things I see. To borrow from the legendary Yogi Berra, “you can observe a lotContinue reading “Observations Along The Way”

Fugue State Vignettes

Dearest Rachel – A quick word of warning: this particular letter is not going to make any sense, it’s going to hop between one image or moment and another. That’s because everything listed here happens in my sleep, or just as I’m yanked out of it. So, the other night, I was in in theContinue reading “Fugue State Vignettes”

To What Purpose?

Dearest Rachel – It has been a while since I last identified myself as such, and probably even longer since someone else has, but the other day, I was told that I was “task-oriented.” Now, that’s not news to me; in my many struggles with my boss back in the day, I often brought upContinue reading “To What Purpose?”

Not in the Night Soil Business

Dearest Rachel – Leave it to the Victorians to come up with such a quaint and pleasant-sounding term for a decidedly unpleasant job dealing with decidedly unpleasant material. In the days before indoor plumbing was common, human waste was removed from the privies and cesspools of urban dwellings and transported out of the city byContinue reading “Not in the Night Soil Business”

Early Morning in a Strange City

Let’s go up on the roof beneath the neonPretend we’re foreigners and drink the city inSomewhere between the stairwell and the starlightI find myself holding your hand Mark Heard, “Love is Not the Only Thing,” from Second Hand, 1992 Dearest Rachel – I’d kind of like to start this letter off like a conversation: youContinue reading “Early Morning in a Strange City”

Yet Another Goodbye

Dearest Rachel – It seems the 2021 has been, is, and will be the year of losses for me. Your departure would’ve been more than enough to make it so, but of course there are all these littler ones that follow, or that are expected to follow. You’ve certainly heard plenty from me about Chompers;Continue reading “Yet Another Goodbye”

The End of Pride Month…?

Dearest Rachel – So, today is June 30th. And we all know what that means: the end of Pride Month, apparently. WordPress even got in on the act a couple of days early; their app, which has been a swirl of colors for most of the month, changed back to its standard basic blue onContinue reading “The End of Pride Month…?”

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”

from Rachel: Letter to Oprah

“Dear Oprah, “[I love your show… blah blah blah] I also love your new song. I think that was so terrific of Paul Simon to write that for you. The song is running through my head at the moment because as he sings about you ‘A story in your eye / Well, speak until yourContinue reading “from Rachel: Letter to Oprah”

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”

Gallagher’s Happy House

Dearest Rachel – There were several things in our lives that we both had knowledge and enjoyment of, but never quite shared as we could have. One, of course, was the nation of Japan, which we both visited and fell in love with before we became a couple – you as a teenager with yourContinue reading “Gallagher’s Happy House”

The Ingenuity of Fools

Dearest Rachel – There’s an old saying that I’m fond of quoting that insists you can’t make anything foolproof, because fools are too ingenious. I’m reminded of it as I watch Chompers stagger about in his little wheelchair. It’s supposed to function on the same principle as training wheels on a children’s bicycle, where theyContinue reading “The Ingenuity of Fools”

Do You Have to Study to Pass the Bechdel Test?

Dearest Rachel – I can’t recall if you’re familiar with the concept of the Bechdel Test. At its most basic, it’s meant to be a measure of the representation of female characters in a work of fiction. The idea is that in order to pass, such a work needs to a.) have at least twoContinue reading “Do You Have to Study to Pass the Bechdel Test?”

What Size His Domain?

Dearest Rachel – For all the time he spends asleep, it’s amazing how hard Chompers resists being put to bed at night time. there are times when it’s an absolutely titanic struggle to get him to find a place where he’s comfortable enough to curl up and go to sleep. Considering how he has veryContinue reading “What Size His Domain?”

Daily Bread

Dearest Rachel – You might remember that one of my favorite Biblical characters is a man who is only mentioned once, wrote a single chapter of Proverbs… and we know pretty much nothing else about him except his name, Agur. That, and the fact that he gave one of the most brutally honest self-evaluations ofContinue reading “Daily Bread”

A Bit Player In My Own Story

Dearest Rachel – For the better part of the last century, at least, it’s been easy to think of our lives as a movie, with ourselves at the center of the story. I suppose it might have been thought this way prior to the popularization of the cinema, with the story being literature instead –Continue reading “A Bit Player In My Own Story”