HI, DID YOU MISS US, WE MISSED YOU TOO. Right now we are sitting in a coffee shop in Olympia, where the Cure is playing loudly and everyone is wearing black and has Artful Hair, and it is raining, and we are laughing a little bit, because it is like A WHOLE COFFEE SHOP full of Rejectionists, which actually is just making us realize how ridiculous we are. But also it is a sort of a dreamy vortex to fall into, like a wormhole into 1996-gothland, and maybe in a minute we will go write some Tormented Poems and gaze moodily out some windows.

We are in Olympia because we are for a brief moment helping one of our dearest and oldest friends sell merch for a very legendary doom metal band, which sounds sort of Fancy when we write it down but really is just driving around in a van with people who have slightly more particular opinions about cowbell solos and seventies horror movies than most other people. We are coming off a week-long visit to Portland, which is a city we once lived in and loved and now hate with every fiber of our being, sort of like when you date someone for way too long and only afterward realize that that person possessed not a single charm, and you despise both that person and yourself for liking that person in equal measure, and also people in Portland wear the most ugly shoes, it is seriously like A PURSUIT, in Portland, going out to find shoes that are so ugly they are actively offensive. There are still a lot of people we love in Portland and so whenever we come out to the west coast we try to go there, but then we just become upset about the shoes and drink too much and start fights with strangers and eat a lot of hamburgers, and it is confusing and sad.

While we were in Portland we read Born to Run, which is a great book. It is more or less about the Tarahumara people of Mexico, who are the best distance runners in the world, and there is lots of Perilous Adventure and hot ladies running around naked, literally, which is creepy but also you know it is kind of entertaining, we will admit this, plus Epic Stories of Overcoming Adversity and Running Hundreds of Miles in Death Valley and all kinds of things, and also it made us realize that secretly inside us there is possibly lurking an undiscovered barefoot ultramarathoner, and we became seized by the urge to unleash this splendid and magical being but then we kept getting too drunk and eating hamburgers. So you can see it was a difficult trip, overall. OH SHUT UP, THE COFFEE SHOP JUST PUT ON THE CROW SOUNDTRACK, SHUT UP, SHUT UP, WE ARE GOING TO ROLL AROUND ON THE FLOOR IN GLEE HERE IN A SECOND. Also in the tour van a joke got made about how there should be a reality show that is a desert meth-off between Andrew Eldridge and Lemmy, which is a non sequitur, but we wanted to put that joke somewhere, because it was real good.

Anyway we always have a hard time when we come out here, because we see people we have not seen in a long time, and they are all happy and well-fed on vegetables and marrying each other and buying houses and having babies, which is great, seriously, but is also probably the farthest thing imaginable in the universe from what we want right now or really ever if we are being honest, and we just get stringier and meaner and more interested in ourself every year we live in the city, and we go out with the friends and it is so clear to us what they are thinking, which is "The Rejectionist sure did turn into a fucking asshole in New York," which is not entirely true; we have always been an asshole, but New York has stripped away everything else that covered it. But still it makes us sad, and we try to explain our life now and there is no context for our life now in this gentle world where everyone composts and their shoes are terrible, and then we become fretful and get too drunk and eat hamburgers.

There is no moral to this story other than sometimes getting older is hard and don't move to New York unless you are prepared to alienate people. But in the van on the way to Olympia we thought about the I-5 corridor, and how that road is like the aorta of our personal history, and the clouds were gathering on the horizon and then it began to rain, just a spattering at first and then more and more until everything outside was a soft grey-green blur. Someone had put on Tommy and for the briefest and sweetest of moments we were so inexplicably and wonderfully happy, and we thought, "This is our life, this is the life we have chosen for ourself, and it is a really, really great life." Now we have to go unload records, dear beasts, but have a very good weekend and we will be a much better friend to you next week, we promise.