Jul 7, 2016

First Impressions of Washington State

Everett Police station use's a question able font.
All you need to know about Everett is
that someone chose that font. Deliberately.


It's 4am.
The little light that breaks through the curtain of my hotel room window is too much.  I can't stand light in my roo....


The air conditioner and fan are on full blast.  They're meant to drown out any possible noise from the outside world. I sleep this way everywhere I go. It's important that...


Motherfuckers!  That goddamned clicking sound is driving me mad!  I needed to get some real sleep tonight but these ass-holes in the room next door aren't about to let that...



There's nothing I can do here. Really. I'm gonna complain and ask for my money back from Motel 6?
Oh that's where I am by the way.
Motel 6. Everett, Washington. It's a hole. But a somewhat cheap hole.


That clicking... It's coming from the room next door. It's the sound of a torch. That's a lighter fueled by pressurized butane gas. It burns hot enough to singe your eyebrows in milliseconds. They're smoking crystal meth.


Don't ask me how I know this shit. I'm a bartender. I know a lot of shit.  I know the price of gold. I know the name of the cosmological model that was replaced by Copernicus. I know how many grams are in an ounce and how many ounces are in a shot. I know all the words to "We didn't start the Fire" and I know which person in the bar you should be networking with...


This won't end.  That's not how this works.  I may as well write you all something decent.  This is meant to be a hiking blog, but If you're not new to my blog style you'll know that's not necessarily what I focus on.
Hence the title.

Don't get me wrong, I'm out here for a reason.  Hiking does wonders for me and I fully intend to finish what I started last year. But I'm also out here to think.  I'm primarily out here to think, actually. 
  The world is changing.  It's no longer just the haves and the have-nots.  It's the knows and the know-nots. Which one of those do you think you are? It seems to me that everyone's got the answer.


...Even the tweakers next door. They'll tell you all about the world and how it works.  Chances are they have a better footing on it than you think.  After all, they've probably been subject to arrest. They're more aware of how our legal system truly works.  It's not just education that's dividing us, it's naiveté.  They at least, may be less naive about some of the coarser things in life.  If everything went to shit, who would be more shocked?  Them or you?

Look at me. I'm defending tweakers now. Jesus, I should have been a lawyer.

It's 430am. This post isn't going to get any more pleasant. Just a heads up. 


consumerism is dead on the Pacific Crest Trail.
 PCT and dead malls don't go together

The Pacific Crest Trail rarely provides images like this

Ever been to a dead Mall before?  I went to one today.  It was the second time I'd seen such a thing. You can really feel the bullshit of our form of capitalism in a deserted mall.  Because the thing is, it's still open. There are still workers there. Manning the kiosks and such.

But they don't hassle you. They're too busy on their phones and frankly, you're not worth the effort anyway. And of course the whole time the place is still playing music.  "Moves like Jagger" is coursing through the air, completely out of sync with the reality of the environment.

An empty advertisement for an empty mall
Yes, 'Enjoy,' all you imaginary patrons...

That's the kind of place I'm at. Motel 6 tweakers and dead malls. It's called Everett, Washington.
Sorry if you live here. Impressions from an outsider, you know. 

On the plus side, I did score a pretty hard win against an old nemesis of mine today: Sports Authority.
On my way back from the Everett Mall, I chanced upon a massive SA in deep liquidation mode. I swear that store has been sticking it to me for years.  What with their cheap-shit-you-don't-want for low prices and Good-shit-you-do-want for small fortunes. They've stuck me good me on more than one occasion.

Sports Authority gets got again. Karma on the PCT.
Those two Poles look slightly Masonic or what?

  But today it was my turn to do the 'stickin.'  Hiking socks 80% off? Yes please. Thermals, for $2? Damn skippy, I'll take a pair of them.  I ended up getting so much stuff, I'm gonna have room send a ton of it back home. I just don't have the room.

Speaking of the room....
My pack is feeling awfully heavy. Worryingly so. That could spell disaster.  I'm just going to have to get it under control before I go. Last thing I need is a repeat of last year.

 I'm not one of those "what's your base weight" hikers if you can't tell. I fill my pack up with food, throw it on my back and go.  If it feels heavy, I drop stuff or eat more.  It's really that simple.  Make sure you have the basics of course. Don't skimp and expect to get by with total garbage.  But that ultra-light shit is for the birds.

I want my tent. I'm getting older and and need my little amenities. They make me happy, so they're worth the weight.  Anyway, that's how I'm rolling on this thru-hike.
   I gotta get going now. I talked the very beleaguered night auditor here at motel 6 into giving me a ride up to Mt. Vernon as soon as he got off at 7am. No, he doesn't live there and no I'm not gonna tell you how I did it. I'm a bartender, remember? You just gotta know stuff 


Image of railroad tracks on the PCT
Which one do you suppose is
the 'wrong' side?

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