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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 3: oh noes

This is my journal I wrote during the time I was homeless. It is broken up by week for easier reading. Feel free to read it on the web or download the complete .pdf version and print it for reading offline.

Week 127

Day 883 - 12/1 - Nearly blank

I should be studying for a test today, but I have a massive headache and I'm tired. Nothing new today really, though at not even 3 yet the day is still young. Maybe something interesting will happen later.

Day 884 - 12/2 - The forgotten day

I seem to have forgotten to write anything today. Nothing interesting or exciting happened. I did get a donation though.

Day 885 - 12/3 - Nothing new but my dreams

Nothing is new today save for some strange dreams. The only one I remember is that I was part of a team who had discovered an 800 year old frozen ship and we were slowly defrosting / reviving the inhabitants one at a time. I remember being overjoyed when I'd revived someone about eight years old and they'd been reunited with their mom. The people of the ship had been establishing a colony since they were all out of time (and we were somewhere isolated.) The bulk of the dream revolved around this trial, led by a tribunal. Apparently there were three factions and a person's who's remains we'd found had brought up a huge controversy. Her dress had a pin indicating she had favor from all three factions and they were arguing over who's space she'd be buried in. I woke up before the trial had been resolved just after I pointed out to the court that she had been buried with everyone (together as a single group) for the last 800 years so why should that change.

I guess overall today has been a good day. I'm nomming dinner and it's about 6. I got up late, watched some shows, did a little tiny bit of studying, and checked for jobs. Verifying my pay was sad. While it was higher than I'd estimated the money for Cataclysm greatly reduced it. I guess I'd set that aside at one point but it became unaccounted for and secretly returned to my funds. That means a huge chunk of savings for my laptop didn't really exist, putting me further from getting a system. While not out of the realm of eventual possibility, as was the case when I lost my car, it is still impossible without increased hours, and that won't happen until June or I find additional work. So, now I'm a sad bunny, but I guess that's nothing new.

Day 886 - 12/4 - Last Saturday class

Today was my last Saturday class. I guess overall today was ok for what my life is. Nothing special or truly unusual that was noteworthy.

I find myself thinking my normal life things lately, things that I used to do all the time; plan dinner, cook, what shows I wanted to watch, my routine of getting up an showering - all things I can't do. I guess it could be because of all of the increased chatter around me due to the holidays. It seems odd I'm now in my third homeless winter. I guess though it's not entirely surprising as my life seems unchanging.

Day 887 - 12/5 - Heartache

I guess today was ok in that I got decent sleep and I got to watch some shows. But all day, and for several days now, I've had a terrible heartache. Maybe it's because the rain and wind has returned, bringing with it the cold that had only just gone two days ago. But no, I think it's just the increasing sadness of my life, how more and more people are decorating, more are out and talking about exciting things, and all I have are distant memories of what Xmas past was. I have nothing to decorate. I have no friends to invite over. I have no warm home to return out of the rain from. I have no fireplace to make a fire. I have no bed to lie in all snuggled and warm. I have no area to set up my computer to do homework, fun work, or play games. I have no kitchen to cook a good dinner, let alone holiday desserts like pie or gingerbread people.

While I occasionally am reminded that people do care and that I am helpful online, I remain without shelter, without a home, without friends I can laugh with and love, and in a time when everyone spreads hope and cheer I often wonder how much longer I will keep mine. Like a candle in the night the wick grows small, the fire dims, and it begins to wane and flicker.

Day 888 - 12/6 - Blurred

Nothing super special today. I talked on boards, helped out some peeps, worked on a present for the not-sis' family, put in a resume for a research assistant, and that was it.

My life is so odd. One assignment I did I thought was just meh apparently the teacher thought was the best ever and she asked for an electronic copy to use as an example in the future. Life is like that sometimes I guess, at least for me. Things I don't expect sometimes happen, while other things that I hope for don't happen at all.

I suppose the day was ok. I was super sad, super tired, but I guess I was moderately ok. There is a super attractive redhead sitting one table over from me in the cafeteria now, so I suppose it's not all bad.

I guess that's it for today.

Day 889 - 12/7 - Good day overall

Today was a pretty good day. I didn't feel too sad in the morning. I watched some shows and helped some people on the boards. I think I made a big difference for a couple of people, so I feel pretty good about that. The evening at work was ok too. I had a couple of good movies to watch and that too lifted my spirits a bit.

Oh, I picked up Cataclysm at the ex-house and spent a few minutes chatting with the friend/ex-roomie. I'm so allergic to her kitties now. hehe In only 10 minutes I could feel their hairs irritating my throat.

It's late now after work, nearly 11:30. The sanctuary I was going to stay at is compromised, so I'm waiting for the heat to cool down. If it doesn't cool off soon I may have to go to a different sanctuary. I hate being like this. Times like this the fear and sadness come flooding back. I worry about what if I get caught. I worry about if all my timetables at that sanctuary will need to change and if I'll lose it. While I shouldn't be there at all - both in the sense that I'm not allowed and in the sense that I shouldn't be homeless - by being there and having some safety it is enough to be at peace. Enough to be at peace. Enough to feel at least somewhat safe. Enough to feel somewhat normal in that I have a routine, however sad it may be.

A happy day most of today, but now I'm off balance, worried, and scared.

Week 128

Day 890 - 12/8 - So very homesick

I'm so very homesick. I feel tired. I ache in many places. I can't think straight. I feel like crying. And the worst part is that this is not just a greater homesick than when I was young. I can't call my parents to come get me. I'm not just sleeping over somewhere that's unfamiliar. I'm stuck in a situation that I can't change. My home no longer exists. I've been trying so long but no change has come. Even now while I reach out (to others) far more than I have in the past, my attempts and cries are often ignored, or if met with well-wishing apparently people are unable to help.

I hope I do win my millions some day. Not for my sake, though I certainly would set myself up to never be cold or miss my fun again, but for the sake of everyone I meet. With enough money I could ensure that others around me never have to suffer in this way that I have. With my experience and notes over the years we can forge the tools to help others who are about to be in trouble avoid that trouble. With my money I can help them to avoid it.

That may never come to be. Though people win money all the time, it is equally as likely, if not more so, that I will simply continue to fail the rest of my life and that some day I will be no more. And those who have read my words, those who called me friend, will slowly forget who I was.

Day 891 - 12/9 - Less tragically sad

I'm less tragically sad today, but still very sad indeed. I helped some people on the boards, so that was good. It's also a relief to not need to worry about classes anymore. It was so very strange to be hearing the professor say goodbye last night. It feels like the quarter has just begun.

It's sometimes sad to be helping others with their system builds while I can't do any of the changes for myself. I do love to help and see people happy though. There is still hope for me too. The $800 system that is awesome still comes and goes (in and out of stock) and I found a decent alternative at $700 if it does disappear completely before I can afford it. (The alternate even has higher resolution which would be good for non-gaming. I'm not sure it would be able to handle gaming at that resolution, but I could always try.)

I got Infinity Blade for my phone, which is awesomely fun. At least I have that unhindered. As I feared, Cataclysm is running at about 5-15 FPS in just the quest areas. I fear what a dungeon would do to the system. And raids, forget it. I couldn't raid in the last expansion; there's no way I can in this one until I upgrade.

As always I wish to be somewhere I can have my desktop system set up, upgrade it to three screens, set up my movies and console systems, cook... but honestly just a small bed somewhere quiet, private, where I'm welcome and not allergic to the home, pets, or people... that would be enough.

Day 892 - 12/10 - Bewildered and confused

Today I've felt confused. Things were ok I suppose. I chatted on boards, watched shows, and even played my game for a few hours. But I feel confused. I feel lost. I feel as if I'm doing things but no longer understand why.

I'm doing my everyday homeless life activities, yet they don't feel like they are mine. I don't feel like me. I feel like someone, maybe a child, who isn't in control and I'm just watching what is going on around me wondering why things aren't better, why they aren't what everyone else is doing. My routines feel off.

I guess maybe it's that I feel safe enough, that my 'routine', while completely different than life in a home, while not in a way I want to do my life, my life is as much as it can be for me. I can really do no better. And, in understanding that I guess I just yet again feel bewildered and confused that 'this is as good as it gets' for me.

Day 893 - 12/11 - Pretty good day

It's been a pretty good day today I guess. I got to sleep on campus, though I couldn't fall asleep until around 3 last night.

I spent the day watching shows and played my game for a bit. As I feared, low 5-10 FPS continued and it was closer to five than not during a dungeon. I would have to get an upgrade to really be able to do the content. Still, that's something that without change can't happen until around June. By then I'm sure the ones I've got my eye on will have changed.

Who knows what my life will be like then. I suppose it will still be the same. While once upon a time I thought my life may be changed and better in six months time, now I expect it won't be.

Nothing different, some helping on boards, playing what I can, and watching shows. I expect jobs will become even more scarce to apply to over the next month or two due to the holidays.

Day 894 - 12/12 - From heartache to heartbroken

I think I'm heart broken. All the time just around my heart feels bad and aches. I'm sad nearly all the time and constantly have to try to distract myself or cheer myself up. More than anything I want to be like everyone else. I want to have a place to rest, to play my games, to watch my shows, to study, to try and find a better job, to find peace and quiet, to feel safe and secure.

All the time I'm out in the world. I see people talking on boards, or in my game, and I know somewhere in the world that person is probably in their home. Me, I'm out somewhere in public, with noise, motion, and movement always around me. I can't stop it and I can't just leave and go home.

When you feel sick, when you feel sad, when you feel excited, when you feel lonely, when you feel uncomfortable, when you feel tired, you want to go home. I am all of these all the time and I want nothing more than to go home... but I can't. I have no home to go to.

Day 895 - 12/13 - Making Xmas; the role of the dice

I had a pretty good day today. There were lots of happy things to life my spirit. It started too early this morning, as it always does for homeless people. I got lucky and found that school was indeed not as closed as I expected. The administration and pool areas at least were open. I napped near administration, and decided to check showers after. They were still hot. After, I went to the ex-home to the garage to get my printer set up to make Xmas for the not-sis and friend/ex-roomie. The covers for the out of production DVD series printed beautifully. I decided to look around for my dice again as well. Looking where I expected I found no dice, but I did find several toys/special objects I'd completely forgotten about; things that I'd see very day if I weren't homeless. Seeing them lifted my spirit a bit. I was about to give up looking when I decided to check one last box as I had no idea what was in it. Lo, there were my dice! So now, while not with me, they are in a very easy to get to spot that I could easily get at any time. I'm not quite D&D ready though. While I do have many die types there are primarily D10s and D6s, as that was what the systems I played used back in the day. I found some dice the other day online to add to my wish list, so I'd have them all if I were to play again, so that's cool. If I were to game again I'd want to add new dice anyways. It's kind of a generational thing with gamers I think. While we may not remember exactly when we got which dice I think many buy at least a few new ones to add to the collection when starting with a new game group. Also added to my wish list are new school type counters for keeping track of life points. After I was done in the ex-garage I went online and discovered someone left a message they bought me an Xmas something off my wish list. I wonder what it is. It is so exciting to have an actual Xmas again. I've no idea how many years it's been since I got a present where I didn't at least know the category it came from.

I did some more choosing of laptops too. My list now has, I believe, four models. However, I'm still hundreds away. With still no income to put towards savings I'm still stuck until that changes. By the time we get to June and my hours have increased I expect to have an entirely different generation of laptops on there. I suppose it's ok though. By taking longer I think I wouldn't want to exceed 15" if it's possible, something I didn't consider at all before. The next step up at 17" is 50% heavier and several inches larger. My life is all about portability right now, so smaller is better if they have comparable power.

I think finding my dice again, making me feel like a whole gamer again, making presents people won't expect (in terms of what it is), and getting notice that I've got one coming for me, has made me feel... well... Xmasy; something I haven't really felt in I don't know how many years. Though it goes beyond a tree, and hanging decorations and lights. (Which I can't do.) I feel... better. I know the feelings are just on the surface, as I can participate and celebrate so little, and that likely soon I'll be back to an extreme battle with depression, but for now... at least for right now, today, I feel happy, and that is something.

Day 896 - 12/14 - No work today

I was informed 10 minutes before my shift started (by phone message) that I have no work shift tonight. Well great. Now not only am I losing 50% of my income for the month due to the closing time to do work on the facilities, but I'm losing 12.5% more for some special event. Several stupid little things like that is rapidly eating away what monies I had saved for my laptop, and threatening to start eating away what the guild built up for me in savings. I suppose I should be thankful that I have it to be eaten. Without I'd be in very bad trouble again, but it's terribly disheartening to be beaten down yet again. Yet again I get my hopes up in improving my life, make progress towards it, then have something beat it back down.

I wish I could have ended this week on a better note. Things seemed to be improving lately, but with this loss, with having to knock down my laptop savings several times over the past week in the budget and move money to my regular account to cover costs that should already be covered... it's hard to focus on the positive in anything other than a wishful thought kind of way.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008-2010
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)

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