v-day biz

valentine’s day is a tempestuous holiday. it makes being single feel more alone. but on the other hand, puts horribly unnecessary burdens on married couples to perform extraordinary magical love-giving, and in the end, things can get blown out of proportion and expectations are burned to cinders (or at least that has been some of our experiences). it seems like we fight more before and during, and when we–i  try to dissipate expectation, some still lingers. #notlookingatmyself #blameless

my wizened, and yet still youthful-looking mother though, started a tradition several years ago. we have a nice dinner, drink bubbly, and on each plate is a gift bag. each of us before dinner have to write notes to everyone about why we are thankful for them. my mother and grandmother will also put in the receiver’s bag a few extra tidbits: candy, socks, a gift card, etc. it is more of a “let’s celebrate our friendship/relationship and life together day.”

the tradition still continues even though hundreds of miles have separated us for over 2 1/2 years. we try to send our notes for the family before their special dinner and they send us a love box in return (the nebraska love box is not contingent on our note sending). this year, instead of cooking the traditional love meal of knefla, i thought it would be unique to separate the day and give both of us the opportunity to plan. i took the morning and matt took the evening. a trip to a new coffee shop san francisco coffee and a 2 hour park exploration ensued saturday morning at orme and piedmont park (we found a separate entrance that attached to a neighborhood so you don’t have to go through the official entrance and pay #locals). that evening matt took me out for cheap chinese based on raving crab ragoon yelp reviews. we finished the night with a bottle of presecco and matt’s virgin viewing of some like it hot. we were too full for matt’s dessert plans that were hidden in the fridge.

here are some pictures from the park outings. i think matt has found his niche: camera set to automatic with manual focus. he is really getting quite good. watch out, liebovitz.


by mb


shot by mb

20060215-DSC_0039 20060215-DSC_0006


shot by mb



blowing in the wind

ma and i's reflection at the sheldon

ma and i’s reflection at the sheldon

these last few days

have seemed longer

than the last two weeks.

seamlessly floating

in my mind.

stretching like an

old rubber band.

bloomington life

seems so far away


like a dream

but here

it feels sometimes

a bit impossible.

old dreams following me

memories trailing after

an old life

i had.


people i knew

from places

i used to go.

we have all moved

not necessarily physically

but in patterns and heights

one could never see.

minds shift

personalities  delve

and settle–


as they sit.


filling bricks

into the spaces

between the living.


creating unsettling

making the expanse

of bricks

grow ever thicker.

driving tomorrow

will bridge the gaps

between these worlds

in my mind

drop me back

into reality

back to a flat

with just my man’s voice


the silence will be

an old friend

just like the chaos here

warmed my blood.

so life continues

life up to 2001 (or my mind’s nonsensical bridges)

life has been good.

real good.

a relief

with no work.

or at least

not the everyday


of working

at my old job.

work is good

but other things

are filling my



i have


people’s children

on quick notice.

helped out more

with ruf

our church plant.

so many things

i could

have never

dreamed of taking on.


for bible study

we’re supposed to

write our life story.

it’s been a


hard project.

for me to

look at my


in a fresh perspective:

spy the twists

and turns

begin collecting

the patterns.

the project took



flying to mind

webbing images



creating pages.


so far i have 12 pages.

only leading

to 2001.

loose poetry

like this.

i will not share it

with my


but i am going to

keep moving.

ma said perhaps

i will be able to

share it

with my children

or at least

an edited


our pastor’s wife

just cut her hair

she went for

anne hathaway

at the oscars.

she looks ravishing.

chemo starts perhaps

next week.

16 weeks of chemo.

8 of radiation.

she’ll be done

by early october.

the harsh schedule

caused by

the unknown


the cancer started.


please keep her and her family in your prayers.