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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 5: Life online

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 209

Day 1457 - 6/27 - No games day

Today was ok I guess. It was kind of sad and lonely in that I didn't see friends all day. I didn't feel like gaming before work, so I just watched some shows. I went to work, and before work I did a lot of rambling on podcast 62, so that was good. At work I just spent the evening watching a movie then editing the podcast. I got word from my friend that they were playing and asked if I wanted to play, but I had almost no connection at all, so I couldn't.

It was strange not playing games today. I guess it was a combination of not having anything that really thrilled me to play alone, and feeling sad and just not wanting to play.

Hopefully I can continue to have 'enough' money for 'enough' food and 'enough' games. But as we enter the final days of year four, and as more and more time passes where I am no closer to being in a home, I wonder if I will just get more and more sad if days like today become more common.

Day 1458 - 6/28 - Getting ready

Today was ok I guess. I was so asleep during my nap time my snoring woke me up, hehe. I've been a bit more congested, but I'm coughing much less. I coughed a bit in the morning and that was really it. I haven't coughed since. My throat feels like it still has some of the roughness and odd taste, but I think it's finally getting better.

I ordered an external hard drive for backups. I am worried about all my media for my site; my raw podcast data and event videos. While I can take three DVDs and back up the other info, all the stuff I want to back up that I haven't in quite a while is nearing 40 gig and growing. So, I looked at some 64 gig USB drives and for the price they just weren't worth the cost since, for just a little bit more, I could get an external backup drive that was 500 gig. It's not only a ton more space, but in theory it won't take hours to back up every time since the software would theoretically only back up the new or changed information, drastically reducing the file count. I guess we'll see. It's set to arrive tomorrow, so that is my big plan during work (to get it up and run the first backup.) I know most of the info really doesn't matter that it's backed up, as I can just pull it offline from my site, but still. I worry about losing info.

Day 1459 - 6/29 - Not backing it up

Today was ok I guess. I was surprised at the number of cars at school. It was finals week and I was sure that the lot would be empty, preventing nap time. It wasn't though, and I slept pretty well.

I was supposed to get my backup drive today, but something weird happened with the shipment. I checked at the ex-house at 11 and again at 4 and didn't see it either time. When I got to work the shipment thing said it was delivered at 10:50. I think I saw a truck at that time when I was there, but they didn't stop at the ex-house. So, either it was delivered to the wrong house or they delivered it at some other time. It was there when I checked after work, so I have it now. It's kind of a little sad though because my main plans for the evening was to set it up where I had lots of room and I'm not disturbed / distracted. Now if I want such conditions I have to wait until Monday. I'll probably wind up doing it at the restaurant, which is not the experience I wanted.

Tomorrow is the last day of year four. I can't think of anything else special to say. I guess in a way I've become kind of numb to it in my acceptance that I seem helpless and unable to change things without some kind of opportunity. I guess the good thing is it doesn't currently feel like I'm in a war zone. Though with all of my stuff in storage for who knows how much longer it becomes less and less useful in some ways, while my body and physical items with me can't be cared for and rot an wither around me with use, I feel like I'm on a timer running down to extinction. While life is a natural cycle of wear and renewal, since I seem to have such low renewal cycles it feels like the 45ish years I should have left may never come to pass.

Day 1460 - 6/30 - Another ending

Today is the last day of year four. Unlike the early years, where I felt surprised and shocked, this time I'm not sure if I feel much of anything. If I do, it is a feeling that it is just another day in a string of days that seemingly have no end.

Physically I am better fed, more able to keep myself warm or cool, but I think less healthy overall. My teeth continue to be more and more terrible and a source of great sadness. While my blood pressure is under control, the fact that it is off and has to be balanced with medicine is a sad change. My weight seems to be getting worse with no sign of going back down at all. I get winded and out of breath doing... well, anything. And in recent times this cold / cough / allergies keep cycling between being mostly better and worse. (Though I think it may finally be moving towards truly being better as the odd taste seems gone and congestion is... looser.)

Emotionally... I don't know. While there are times just like a little bit ago when I played online with my friends and I felt happy and almost normal, there are times like the other 11 hours of my day today that I was alone, feeling sad, and doing things that were fun or entertaining enough, but not what I would have done if I were in a home; even a home where I lived alone.

This year's end, while I still hope for recovery, more than anything I feel like what I have is it, and it will be all I ever have. More than anything I want to go home, but this year more than others, I feel I may never have one again.

Year 5

Day 1461 - 7/1 - Super best friends

Today was an ok start to year 5. I was at the restaurant feeling kind of tired and sad about things. I was playing my new alone time game and one of my friends said, 'hey, we decided to get this game, want to play with us later?' And I was like, 'Yes, please. ' So I got it pretty quick, but it took about two hours to patch, so I missed the window to play with my super best friends today. Now we have basically one game of each type. This game is a slower paced MMOG, we have a third person shooter, an arcade style action game, and a somewhat tactical action tower defense game. The only thing we could possibly also get would be some kind of board game, heh. So, I look forward to playing more stuff with them. I guess they had a seasonal something that was keeping them busy, and now it's done, so they should go back to their regular schedule again.

It was a Sunday, so that was really it for today. I put up the last of year four this morning, which is sad. Sad story and life is sad. But I guess today was ok overall in that nothing went wrong, I have my game system, games to play, games in my budget every few months, a few places to connect that don't mind me hanging out there, I ran my first complete backup last night, and for as sad and terrible as my life is things were ok today. They don't really get much better.

Day 1462 - 7/2 - Busy seeming day

Today seemed busy, though not much actually happened. I suppose there was more than usual what with my online work for my friend, updating my site with a bit of news, but the rest of the day was a normal Monday, just laundry and work.

I suppose nothing was truly different, but in the new online game I did mention my podcast to someone (they listened to a bit and said it had good sound quality and they liked it ) and I told a few people about my site so they could email me and talk about some computer upgrade questions they had. So, again, not as busy as my tiredness feels, just a regular sort of busy I guess.

Before work I did about eight minutes for the next podcast. And in the evening one of my friends was on and we played for a bit. I had a super awesome connection at work and could play. I can't remember the last time the connection was strong enough to play. The last month or so it wasn't even connecting at all from that location, so that was doubly unexpected.

I guess tomorrow is the end of the first (partial) week of year five. And, so far, I guess it's off to about as good of a start as I can realistically hope for.

Day 1463 - 7/3 - Life calming down

Today life is calming down a bit. It's morning time but I got my nap, and don't have work. I'm back to my regular Monday and Friday only shifts. Though with it still being summer I expect I'll still get extra shifts now and then for the next few months. I only had one cough drop yesterday, which is a first in probably months, and only one so far today. I'm feeling a bit better and the cough is down to normal, though congestion is still a bit high.

With no work I look forward to a calm day of playing games, watching shows, possibly playing with friends later, and taking a look at job postings. Today seems pretty promisingly calm so far.

Week 210

Day 1464 - 7/4 - No games day

Today was happier than I expected. My day started too early, due to school being closed I couldn't sleep in. I went to the coffee shop and was going to play for a bit, but wound up spending all my time there patching. When I got to the restaurant I got myself a small sausage plate for the holiday. I was a bit sad about it though, thinking I'd have rather cooked the sausage on a BBQ myself, with a quiet gathering of friends, and after everyone had foods maybe we would settle in and have fun with board games and card games. With a heavy sigh I said I have no local friends, and that's just how my life is right now, and I wondered with all the goings on in the day if anyone would think of me. I figured if anyone would it would be my best friends that I play online with. I figured there were probably others too, but with all the busyness I would not be on people's minds, and I'm ok with that.

I settled in for lunch and watched a show. I was in a playing mood, so I logged in to play my new online game. It wasn't much more than about an hour later that one of my bestest friends came on and asked if I wanted to play. He said that they missed me at their BBQ (they are across the country) and they thought of me and put a plate aside for me. I almost shed a tear because it really did surprise me that someone thought of me today at their party (even though it was the ones who I figured would, which should not have surprised me.)

So, I had a pretty good day compared to what I thought it would be. I got to be somewhere I could play. I played a bit with one of my friends, and although I am one of a few who has noone to be with and nowhere I can be today, I actually felt pretty ok.

Day 1465 - 7/5 - Time with friends

Today was pretty ok. I think my cold is coming back a bit though. This morning when I was napping in the car I was super wheezy and had a raspyness in my lungs. I can still hear and feel it now that it's time to hide for the night. School is open, so I can continue to sleep in during the mornings. I slept really well. I think all the stuff going on last night, the higher alert levels, had my nerves up. I didn't sleep too good before I was at school. I had bad dreams too all last night and this morning.

I watched a show and played my game in the afternoon. When I was about ready to go tke a break my friends came in. I played for a suuuuuper long time with them. It must have been three or possibly even four hours. It's been forever since we played that much.

That was really my day. It would have been nice if I had a regular life, even on good days like today I still feel like a failure and an outsider. I guess I just have to keep waiting until an opportunity comes along. Imust continue to accept that I can only control for what I can, and the rest is out of my hands.

Day 1466 - 7/6 - Like days long past

Today was actually pretty good. I decided to not sleep in, as there were too few cars on campus. Whenever there is a very low car count I have trouble sleeping. I played my new game for a bit in the morning, watched a friend do a podcast video stream in the afternoon, then had work. Before work I did the rest of my podcast for the week. It was mostly sad kind of stuff, so hopefully it won't turn out too negative. During work I edited my podcast. After, work actually had enough bandwidth to play for a bit. The lights in the office are kind of broken, so it's almost dark. I put up the volume to a reasonable level while playing. It was almost like the old days, when I was in a home and played. There wasn't the incessant lout music or people milling around me. I was sort of in my own private play space. It made me remember how much I miss being me, a me solitary instead of forced to be in public. And, as always, at these times I wonder if I will ever really have that again.

Day 1467 - 7/7 - Disappointing spec

Today was ok, but I was so tired and wound up being disappointed. Around noon my friend came in for a bit and told me they had to shut down due to some lightning storms they were having. So, it was sad I didn't really get to see them, but I hope they are all snuggled in safe and sound.

My game was kind of disappointing though. I spent almost all my day playing, a bit more than I otherwise would have. I guess I played about eight hours. The disappointing thing was that the points I got in that time were basically all spent on alternate skills, ones I was hoping to make into a ranged DPS or healing spec. But, I didn't actually like the way that weapon works. It has the highest range, but there is a half second delay on using most of the abilities, so that completely negates its range in most cases. Had I only spent a tiny fraction sampling the first abilities I could have found that out and researched much sooner. So that was very sad and disappointing. I guess it's ok though, since my friends weren't on to play with I didn't want to do too many new quests. Doing new quests are a lot more fun with them than alone.

I couldn't sleep last night. There were about three lost hours of sleep. I've been very sad lately in the back of my mind. The kind of sad that doesn't go away and my distractions won't help me with. I'm sure I'll be ok again soon, but lately, constantly in the back of my mind, I am sad about how my life is with not being in a home, and how everything I do is not the way I would really like to do it. I guess, for now, all I can do is continue to dream of days past and hope that someday my dreams can come true.

Day 1468 - 7/8 - Slower experience

Today was ok. It had some fun times, but overall it was... off. I've had a lot of trouble sleeping lately. I lost 2-3 hours last night. I didn't expect anyone to be around in the school parking lot, so I didn't get a nap. And, I was up and about again unable to go back to sleep about an hour earlier than I had to be.

I had an ok time playing my game alone and watching shows. For a few hours my friends were on, and that was a super happy fun time. I got way faster experience when they were on. I'd say like 3-4 times as much. It's almost so much more it's like not even worth playing solo. I don't really play too much more than I wanted though, even though I did play about five hours solo.

Guaranteed my day would have been very different in a home. But a bed, shower, kitchen, living room area, privacy enough to relax and unwind... these are things I do not have, things which are becoming harder and harder to really remember.

Day 1469 - 7/9 - So much sneezing

Today was filled with so much sneezing and sniffling. I've actually been blowing my nose, which is super rare for me. I'm still a bit wheezy in the lungs too, so I guess I could have a full blown cold again (or allergies). This may explain why I haven't slept well lately - I've been fighting a cold. I decided not to sleep in this morning since I had an eye appointment along with all my usual Monday stuff, but I certainly will tomorrow. That should help with the cold quite a bit.

I had to do my friend's work online, check for jobs, and do laundry. I only had a few hours for shows and game playing after my appointment. The appointment actually went a lot quicker than I thought it would, so that was good. I guess it's been about 1.75 years since my last yearly exam. Not having a car for six months really threw that off. Everything was fine though. The change was so minor it's not worth changing my prescription for. The eye doc thinks it will be over two years or more before we should need to worry about it. He loves me too, and only charged me half what he charges regular customers.

My boss was stupid at me today. I work basically remotely. I never see or interact with her. Today she was all meh meh meh about something dumb that doesn't matter. But, it does mean I have to be careful about not showing up early to work. Seriously? Getting upset about me getting to work early?! Anyways, not worth talking about, as it will likely blow over, as she is super lazy and I really don't think anything will change. But it did serve as a strong reminder that this job is not going anywhere. The most I could hope for is extra hours. Which, speaking of, I indeed got asked to cover Sunday mornings through to the first weekend in August. So, there is a 50% weekly bump in hours/pay. That should be helpful.

I really need to win monies so I can be free. It would be so nice to be truly free to work on my rabb1t stuff. With more money/freedom I could go to conventions and other events, film and report on more stuff, and stream or record videos of me playing stuff to entertain or inform. What with no monies, or at least getting into a really nice paying job... I will never be free to really do what I want and enjoy.

Day 1470 - 7/10 - A cold, bleh

Today seems like it should be a good day. I have nowhere to be and nothing I need to do, and have a few new games to play that I got lately. It's later morning, just before the restaurant is open. It seems strange now to do my writing for the day when it hasn't happened yet, but I Guess it's ok, as I can always edit important things in later. And, it does mean I am forced to be more reflective of what happened and what's to come. Which is a good thing right now for me I think as there are so many things changing and in flux right now and I'm having to adapt more than usual and try not to forget things. Like I've been forgetting my exercises due to all my colds lately, which is bad, so if I talk about it it helps to remind me.

Outside of my boss being dumb yesterday the week has seemed pretty good, and outside of not getting year five's cover done I think the year seems pretty good so far.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008-2013
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)

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