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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 6: Fading memories

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 275

Day 1919 - 10/2 - Cooking all the hot dogs

Today was different, but sad. I couldn't play my game at all because it was getting a patch and maintenance all morning and afternoon. I just watched shows and tried to relax.

After lunch I overheard a sad conversation. A daughter was there with her mom, and she was explaining how she didn't know how she would make it. She'd been going over her bills and how much she earned part-time, and it wasn't going to be enough. She said she knew her mom had enough to help her out, but her mom didn't seem willing. I couldn't hear much more, but they stayed and talked, and due to their body posture not changing much over the next hour, I'm guessing her mom was not being helpful. It seemed very sad. The daughter had a plan. She had a good degree to work on. She had a part-time job. It seemed mom just wasn't willing to help. Everyone out there reading, if you are in a position to help your children succeed please do so. Don't hold back because you think they need 'tough love' or you want to see them fail to know they can pick themselves back up. They may not be able to. Or it may hurt them so much they never can again. If they are asking for your help to succeed, please help.

At work I was disappointed. I had gotten some low-fat hot dogs to keep at work. I would be at the same work location tonight, tomorrow, and Sunday, so I figured I could make a couple of hot dogs and take them for lunch the next days. Unfortunately I forgot the fridge was broken Monday. It was blowing warm air in the freezer part and had a funky burnt plastic smell. I had to cook all my hot dogs at once. I hope they don't go bad before I eat them all. That's really way too many at once.

I guess that's all for today. I got an unexpected chance to do my podcast, so that was happy, but everything else seemed sad. Because of my situation I couldnt do my schoolwork. Because of working nights I couldn't play my game at all today. And I had to record my podcast all at once, kind of rushed, because I won't get a really good time I'd be at my best otherwise.

Everything seems sad, and all I want are the very basic things.

Day 1920 - 10/3 - Sore feets

Today was kind of sad. The network at the coffee shop was really bad and I was dropped from my game more than half a dozen times. Work was ok I suppose. I noticed my feet were red where they've been sore. So it's not just a tiredness, but a genuine irritation of some kind. The soles are still really good, so I don't need new ones. So I don't know why they are sore and irritated other than possibly because of the extra weight I'm carrying.

I so very much wish I had a regular life with a home today. I miss my night time shows and being able to cook and settle in to watch them. I miss playing for just a bit after, then flopping in to bed to sleep. There is so much freedom having a peaceful, quiet, private space that is yours where you can stay up or play or go to bed early as you please. I haven't known any kind of freedom for so long it is difficult to remember what my life was like when I didn't have to set a timer for everything and didn't have to worry all the time about this is then and that is then. Although I have lots of time, due to pressure of always having to watch it and having no freedom with it, I feel like I never have time.

Day 1921 - 10/4 - Cookies

Today was ok I guess. It passed pretty quickly and I don't remember as much of it as I probably should. When I got to work I discovered my cookies were still in the fridge from last week. They are kind of ruined though. The chocolate got all melted before, turning them into a big mush, and while the fridge re-solidified the chocolate, they are all stuck together.

Once I had been at work for a bit I got super extremely tired. I think I even nodded off for a few minutes a few times. I've been having a tough time falling asleep, so I'm short on sleep.

Tomorrow is Saturday. Once upon a time it was a day off. I could come home after Friday work and stay up or just go right to sleep, whichever I wanted. I'd get up whenever it was I got up, usually by 10, take a shower, have a bit of breakfast noms, usually just juice, and play and have fun all day. In the evening with dinner I would often do a Saturday movie. It used to be a day I looked forward to, a day I would be more likely to see and play with online friends, a day I didn't have anything to worry about or fuss over.

But now, now it is just a day. It is no better or worse than any weekday. I can sleep no later than other days. I get no breakfast. I get no movie. And if I did, it would be with greatly reduced enjoyment. Instead of being free from worry, I almost always worry all day. And instead of being a day with no pressures I am almost always watching the clock and monitoring what possible activity windows are opening and closing all day long.

Day 1922 - 10/5 - The fastest day

Today was the fastest day ever. I don't know why, but it feels like it's only lunch time now when it is night. I didn't do much. I tried to play my game, but I was disconnected a lot. I probably spent more time on the forums than actually playing for fear of disconnect.

I suppose that really describes my life right now. I keep trying to get connected and stable, but no matter what I remain unstable and keep disconnecting.

Day 1923 - 10/6 - Tired, lonely, and sad

Today I am tired. I'm still having a lot of trouble sleeping. I had some really bad homeless dreams last night as well. My jaw was hurting a lot in my sleep too. It wouldn't surprise me if I were crying in my sleep from sadness and pain.

Today at work things were ok and went by pretty quickly. After, when I was playing my game time seemed very slow, which was good. But I felt very isolated and alone. Seeing people getting ready for Halloween time seems to just remind me I am alone and unable to celebrate.

My feet hurt a lot today. My class work is difficult and I am not motivated, and my job prospects seem slim to none with no improvement in sight since school hasn't helped at all.

Today I am very sad about all the things.

Day 1924 - 10/7 - Helpful day

Today was actually pretty good. I got to sleep quickly last night. I didn't have bad dreams, but they weren't good. I suppose I could say they were troubled. I had an ok time before class doing my quick online work, watching a show, then playing for a short while.

The super cute girl in my class replied to a question I had about the homework. I'd mentioned I didn't have the book and she posted a link to get a pdf version, so that was super helpful and I have the book now. She sat next to me in class too, but there was no chit-chatting, so that was sad. During the break I saw someone had a shirt from the company that made my game that I'm an MVP for on the forums. We chatted for a bit about gaming and he mentioned he was looking at building a system. I mentioned my site and that's exactly what it's designed for. I saw him peeking at it during class. Hopefully it will help him make an awesome system when he's ready.

I did get a bit sad though when he clicked on my sad story. It's not that I didn't want him to know about it; it's that I always worry about people skimming. Just skimming and seeing sad stories makes me worry that my sad life will make people sad. I don't expect people to read much, and that certainly seems to be the case when I check the numbers, but I hope most spend enough time with it to see the good things, and to see things reflected in their own lives, so they aren't saddened, but instead see things that help them in their own lives, either in ways to avoid bad things or how to find their own way back to things they have lost themselves.

Day 1925 - 10/8 - Laptop still on track

Today I'm sleepy. I still had a tough time getting to sleep last night. I don't think I fell asleep until about 2 AM. I suppose I should eventually try and get caught up on sleep, but the weird thing is I'm not sleepy.

There is someone here at the coffee shop clearing his throat like every 30 seconds. It's like really? Get some cough drops or tea. Someone has been in my spot, but I think she is moving now, so that will be good.

Checking bills, while still a bit tight, it looks like I'm still on schedule to get my laptop replaced in a week and a half when I'm paid again. (I could almost do it now, but I'm a few hundred short.) Which is good, as I just moved my system to my spot and after being unplugged literally about 10 seconds it dropped 30% down from full. Thankfully it just appears to be battery issues and seems fine plugged in. (It's still annoying a new battery didn't fix the issue.) It did do one of its funny squeaks this morning, but that's been the only issue since the DOS style disk check a few weeks ago. Hopefully it will be fine until I replace it. Then hopefully it will be fine perma plugged in at my friends until he can get the monies for a new desktop.

I guess that's it. I'm quite behind today because I didn't type in the fail for this week like I normally would have last night. I've been thrown off a lot by the class. I still haven't updated my site with new system recommendations. I meant to have that up a week ago. Maybe I'll do those later today. I suppose it depends how sad I am and how the rest of the day goes.

Week 276

Day 1926 - 10/9 - They can see my butt

Today was ok I guess. I didn't get my homework done, there were still problems, but it looks like the professor will be extra lenient towards me.

Something funny happened today. After walking to class my left butt cheek felt unusually cold. Wondering if it somehow got wet or something I felt around. It seemed there was a rip, but upon further feeling it wasn't just any little rip. More than half of the pocket had ripped. The entire top and one side had ripped, so it had become this flap where, if it flopped down, people could see my underwear on like half my butt cheeck. hehe. I have no idea how that happened, nor why I didn't feel or see a rip when it was smaller. I showed someone in class and he mentioned I'll have to try and patch it. It made me sad. My life is so sad I've been thinking, 'Well, there goes another pair of pants. Guess I'll throw them out and get new ones.' It hadn't even occurred to me to try and patch them. I don't know if I can with no iron or access to needle and a thread. I guess I'll look at options, but it seems sad that I am still in such an abnormal frame of mind I don't think of that stuff on my own.

Day 1927 - 10/10 - Local soup

Today was pretty good. I am still feeling super sick and would much rather be sleeping in half the day, but outside of going to school for that it's not an option. I decided to look around locally for lunch. Even though my usual soup place is only a few minutes drive away I don't like to leave the coffee shop just for lunch, particularly during actual lunch time. I discovered there is a sandwich place around the corner that has a small vegetable soup or sometimes chicken soup I can get. So, I'll do that again in the future while I'm still feeling sniffly and sick.

My day was mostly ok. I had my spot, played my game, and did laundry. I ignored school stuff because I had to edit my podcast, but I felt pretty ok today.

Day 1928 - 10/11 - Disapointed and sleepy

Today I am so very sleepy. It must be because of the cold. I woke up early too, which I don't understand. Hopefully I can get to sleep quickly enough and stay asleep. I've been having bad dreams again.

Today was disappointing. This morning, and sort of last night, I came up with a really good suggestion for the game. I spent an hour working up a UI mockup for it and describing it in a post. More than 12 hours later it had less than half a dozen views. It's like noone cares.

I really wanted cookies. One of my favorites though has to be cooked, and ideally nommed while still slightly warm. So, I couldnt get those. I stood and tried to decide for probably 5 minutes which pre-packaged ones to get. When I tried some of the ones I got during work I discovered they are on the bleh side of meh. I'm sure I will eat them eventually, but I certainly won't buy them on purpose again.

One of the movies I'd rented for watching at work won't play either. It's sad because it was one I wanted to see in theaters, but it got terrible reviews. I guess the software says it wants an update, but what that really means is that since they stopped supporting it a few years ago newer disks might not be compatible. So that was super disappointing. I guess I can get it on DVD as that standard won't ever change.

I'm still pretty sick. Coughing. Congestion. Sneezing. I'm super tired, but there really isn't anything I can do to truly rest and recover.

Day 1929 - 10/12 - Smells like fresh laundry

Today was pretty good I guess. I mostly played my game, but I also watched some shows and posted on a forum. I even sent in a resume for a job that an auto-search thing found for me.

I felt sorry for someone today. He's new to the coffee shop. He's been around maybe for about a month. He always plays this one game. I know he's homeless because I overheard him talking to someone about it. Apparently he was under the impression that he wouldn't have to pay rent where he was staying when he was out of the state, presumably during times he was going to college. Which sounds just completely insane to me. I don't know any landlord who would agree to that. He came back I guess and the landlord asked for rent. He refused to pay and eventually fled the property becuase the landlord would bug him about it. I guess the landlord eventually locked him out after he'd left, saying he'd abandoned the property. Anyways... I felt sorry for him today because he seems in worse shape to recover than me. He's playing his game 99% of the time he's there. He only stops when he eats, because the game requires constant mouse use, at which point he'll watch a show or look at a sports page. I never see him interacting on something like Facebook. He seems to have one friend he calls and plays with every extremely rarely. And that's it. There seems to be noone he talks to online (as he never types) and he certainly seems to have nowhere to go. He seems to have given up on life. He doesn't care how he looks, despite the fact that the coffee shop is literally right across the street from the college where he could show and shave and stuff every day. Mostly he has no smell, but a few times he's smelt so bad I wondered if he'd showered or washed his cloths in over a week. My life is sad and terrible, but I don't know, when I see people like this, or others who I know are homeless in the coffee shop who seem to have given up, it makes me sad because I know without some kind of miracle they will never recover.

Before dinner I stopped at the ex-storage. Apparently I'd spilt some hot chocolate on my shorts in the morning after I'd just put them on after being washed. When I got out of the car I smelt one of those fabric softener smells. It smelt like fresh laundry. I miss being in a home and doing laundry. I miss that nice smell. (Though I have to use one sheet like four times due to how sensitive I am to the smell.) I miss making my bed and getting in and having the sheets still be a little warm from when I did them. Such a simple thing. But I miss it so much.

Day 1930 - 10/13 - Apple beats teeth

Today is very sad. I brushed my teeth as well as I could in the shower this morning. That alone makes me sad. For as long as I can remember doing that has made bits feel rough, like sandpaper. I know that is the corrupt area, and brushing helps keep that away, but it's always been a deterrent to my brushing, creating this downward spiral of corruption. Today I had a healthy apple snack, and I felt bits of some teeth falling away. I found some pieces, not much bigger than slivers or the head of a toothpick, just tiny shavings really. So I'm sure it can't be as bad as it feels. But it feels terrible. It's likely just because it is on the back of the bottom teeth, where the tip of my tongue rests all the time. But I can't help but think that everything beneath that layer, all the inside of those teeth, are corrupt.

If I could have one wish, or travel back in time, and alter only one thing about me, while every other aspect of my life path remains the same, that would be it. My teeth have always been a source of sadness. My mouth has almost always been sore at some level. I've always felt sad and sorry about it. And yet, like so many things in my life, it seems like it is too late to change. And now it spirals out of my control with no opportunity to stop it.

Day 1931 - 10/14 - Missing it before it's begun

Today was kind of ok, but more so very sad. I had to get poked in the morning to get blood work for my doc that is checking stuff for my blood pressure. That is always sad and worrisome. I don't really remember much of my time at the coffee shop, as it was pretty short due to needing to go to class. After, I had some extra time, so I started the podcast early, which makes me happy. Though it seems like it will be another short one, which makes me sad.

I've also been getting notices for Destiny. I really want to play. They are doing pre-orders and people who pre-order get in the beta. But now, without the money for a PS4, and being so far from recovery, I can't do a pre-order, nor does it seem like I'll be able to play anytime soon. It may be years before I get to play. And with how my life has been going, I wonder if it will wind up being yet another console game I never got the chance to play.

Day 1932 - 10/15 - Extra shift

Today seems ok so far, but it's only the morning, so it's barely started. I'm pretty congested and sad, but that's pretty much normal for me these days.

Things still seem on track for getting the new / replacement laptop tomorrow at just after midnight. Which is good, as unplugging the system today for 5 seconds dropped about 35% of the charge. It basically must be plugged in 100% of the time. The other day I turned it on and discovered after that the plug had no power. It shut off in less than one minute. It didn't even get through boot to the login window.

I have an extra shift tonight, so that will help recover some of the savings I had. Hopefully I can do some school stuff. I didn't do any over the weekend like I thought I might. Sad life is sad and motivation is extremely difficult for some things.

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

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