Right… found the picture I was talking about last week. The mountain (Mt. St. Helens) is kind of hard to see in the picture… it’s actually the near-white crater shape behind the more greenish mountain in the foreground. Click on the picture for the full-size scan, and you’ll see what I mean.

Back in 1995, I made my first trip west of the Mississippi, all the way on out to Seattle, Washington (U.S.), to visit with a group of friends I knew mainly via our fiction writing for the Superguy list. (This was back in the days of CRT monitors, dot matrix printers, and hard drive storage measured in megabytes, when going out to meet in person people you mostly only knew from being online was not a regular occurrence. For that matter, knowing there was a line to be on was not a regular occurrence.) One of the things we did was take a drive out to see Mt. St. Helens (the ‘mountain’ in the picture).

I don’t remember all the details anymore, but I do recall that we were blocked at some point from making a closer drive. But we found this scenic overlook, with this marker telling us where Mt. St. Helens was–a thing we all found hilarious in its terseness.

I’ve never been back to the Pacific Northwest, but I’d like to, someday. Maybe get a bit closer to the mountain while I’m at it.


Gary W. Olson is the author of the dark fantasy novel Brutal Light. His blog originates here.