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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 8: Endless Void

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 385

Day 2689 - 11/11 - Balancing

Today my body and mind are balancing from the weekend day off. Yesterday didn't feel like a Tuesday, but today half felt like Wednesday and half not. Hopefully tomorrow things will feel normal again. But then Thanksgiving is in a few weeks and I'm sure that will throw things off again.

Today was pretty good. It was cold in the day but now at night it feels a proper amount of cold. Maybe the extra cold that has been around is leaving.

I finally put some work into my writing thing that's due soon. To my surprise it only took a bit over an hour. Though I admit that probably means it's not very good. I kept meaning to work more on it, but due to the holiday and due to a lot of sadness, my balance was off and I couldn't focus. Lately I am still having a very hard time focusing. That probably won't really change while I'm homeless, but certainly all of the other worries about things that need my attention don't help.

Day 2690 - 11/12 - Better day

Today was a better day. The day was chilly, but not too cold. The night now feels like a proper temperature for November.

In the morning I got to play a bit. I was going to do some more work on things before class, but the time got away from me. The assignment went ok, so I feel ok-ish about it. In the evening I had my class that I TA for and that was super fun. A few people asked my opinion on stuff, so I felt useful and helpful.

In the evening some donations I knew were on their way arrived, so that is super nice and helpful. While it makes me happy and in a way very proud to have people looking out for me and helping, in a way I still feel sad that I am in a position where I have to ask for help. But it is good to know that there are some out there who do watch out and who do care.

Day 2691 - 11/13 - No pen

Today I have no pen. I lost the cap for it, and knowing it wouldn't last through the night I threw it away yesterday. It was only after that I discovered it was my last one. I checked on getting more at the store, but with only a tiny bit of money in my account I couldn't afford the $2.50 and will try elsewhere.

It was very sad to think that is too much for 10 pens. It's not a lot individually, but all together it wasn't affordable. Once upon a time that would have been completely trivial. And even just 1.5 years ago when I had my part-time job I would have had the money to not worry about it. But these days $2.50 for pens, or even just $1.25 for an ice cream sandwich treat, is too much. I struggle to get $5 for laundry, $10 for gas, and $30 for insurance a month. No matter how small the costs now, no matter what the item, it is all a source of stress, as well as a painful reminder that it is a thing that shouldn't even be given a second thought.

Day 2692 - 11/14 - Returning habbit

Today an old habit has returned. Because I am showering in the mornings during the week due to the closing earlier and earlier, it makes sense to shower on the weekend if I get a chance. So this morning I got a shower. I was alone. No people came in until I was leaving, so that was nice.

I could have gone inside for a couple of hours in the morning, but the morning wasn't actually too cold. I decided to just stay outside instead of being inside and having to worry about moving. It was tolerable enough for most of the time, but once it got to about 3 and after it started to get very cold and I started shivering. I may have to start going to the food store due to the cold, which likely would be horribly sad because I stopped going due to the connectivity being garbage. Well, the future is the future and I will try not to worry and continue to hope for a chance for change.

But I guess today was ok. There aren't really any jobs to apply to. The postings are shutting down for the holidays, so almost nothing is being posted. But I got to play my game and watch shows, so at least that is something.

Day 2693 - 11/15 - Too much wind

Today was pretty sad. I had sandwich stuff for lunch and dinner, which is meh. I don't have any money for laundry, which is overdue. And while I could be in my spot with a solid connection it was way too windy to stay in the spot. Leaves kept blowing in my face and on my laptop and mouse pad. And while it wasn't too cold to be out, the added cold of the wind made it impossible to retain any heat, so it was colder than it would have been otherwise.

I may be forced to be inside at the food store or other places that I can be without money. My options will be very limited, but if the weather continues to get cold I will have no choice. It is getting too cold to be outside of school many times. This will likely be a very cold and extremely difficult winter.

Day 2694 - 11/16 - Will there be a tomorrow?

Today things seem very sad and worrisome again. This morning the car had a bit of an issue starting, as well as last weekend. Doing the math it's about a 1-2% occurrence rate for how many starts don't have issues, but it has me worrying more.

Will there be a tomorrow? Obviously the world will turn and the morning will come, regardless of what happens to me. But, more than likely I will sleep and wake and things will be the same. But what if it doesn't? What if I get too cold and too sick and something bad happens? What if the car gets worse and stops working? What if my laptop stops working? I got an email about signing up for next quarter, which starts January 4th, but I don't have the $50 for classes nor the $20 for parking. And even gas is down to 1/8th of a tank, as well as laundry being overdue and only $5. Any number of things may not happen tomorrow, leaving me very little to look forward to.

When I was young I couldn't wait to fall asleep and wake up to all the things I looked forward to seeing and doing the next day. In my teens and 20s I knew what awaited me and what I could afford to look forward to. There were plans and regular events. But now... now I am alone in life. I have lost so much. I don't know if what little I have left will still be there in the morning.

People do watch out for me. Maybe yet again I will be spared and able to hang on a bit longer. But tonight, for the moment, I wonder if there is a tomorrow for me.

Day 2695 - 11/17 - The day so far

Today so far feels about three hours later than it is. It feels like I've done so much, yet I've really done nothing. I didn't even need to stop at the store because I have canned food. I just took a shower. While it was a bit longer / later than usual I feel like so much more has gone on.

Maybe it's because I couldn't sleep 'in bed' for about three hours and I'm running on maybe six hours of sleep. Maybe it's because I have two moderately big project things I should focus on. I'm not sure.

I wish I didn't have the stresses of my life. I'm happy with my TA thing. I'm happy with the classes I have. I'm happy I can play my games. I guess just the struggle with money, the homelessness, the feeling of not belonging or truly having a place people want me, need me, and miss me when I'm gone, all leave me feeling ok with myself, but lost in the world.

Week 386

Day 2696 - 11/18 - Feling low and tired

Today I have felt pretty low. In the morning I felt tired, cranky, upset about... something. I'm not even entirely sure what. Maybe it is just all the stress in my life. Or maybe because I also feel a bit congested and my throat is a bit off and I have a cold and my symptoms are just imperceptible.

I also feel very tired. Today really felt two days long. Again I don't know why, particularly since I just wrote a paper and the rest of my day was basically a totally regular Wednesday. Again, maybe it's just all my sadness and worry getting to me and wearing me down, particularly with the holidays coming up. The Thanksgiving weekend that will be empty and alone, the December Xmas and New Year time reminding me of things coming to a close and with my current life not knowing if I'll be able to continue due to not having money... I guess I just feel extra sad, very tired, very defeated, and as always, very alone.

Day 2697 - 11/19 - Horrible chips

Today went pretty good. Things actually felt normally paced, or even a bit fast. Though for some unknown reason during lunch I thought it was Tuesday for a brief time.

I've been missing my favorite sea salt chips a lot lately. Since I usually eat sandwich stuff on the weekend I thought I'd get some. But there weren't any. In fact, I recall them not being there the past couple of times I've looked. There was a different brand of 'sea salt and vinegar' on sale, so I thought I'd try those. It turns out they are horrible tasting. They tasted really disgusting. They should be called 'a bottle of vinegar poured over chips', it had that much vinegar taste. I'll wind up finding people to give it away too, but it is terrible that my life is so on the edge that I am now worried that $2 will throw off my budget.

Day 2698 - 11/20 - Failing car heart

Today has suddenly gone from what was an otherwise pretty good day so far to one of terrible fear and worry. When I got in my car to leave school it didn't start. The vvv... vvvrom pause issue has been getting persistent the last week, maybe two, but just now it went vvvv.... ptth... tick tick... peh... tick. It's sounding like a battery issue, and when I did my smog the person did say it seemed like an old battery, so maybe it's just not retaining a charge or something. Recently the clock had jumped forward 15 minutes though, so I'm worried that it's a deeper electrical or computer issue since that's the second electronic issue after my turn signal becoming intermittent.

But there have been no other issues. No smells or sounds or odd behavior. Once the car gets going it's been going fine, so hopefully it's something 'easy' like a battery. But when I last looked that was nearly $200, and with so few donations lately it seems very unlikely I would get help if it even were a 'simple' issue, yet pricy like that.

I have been waiting 15 minutes for the tow guy to come now, so I don't have a diagnostic yet. I am very very worried it will be something bad, something I can't afford, and with the car dead on the street that help will not come before it's towed. Hopefully there will be some sort of good news to report soon. But for now all I can do is wait... and worry.


Well, I suppose the news is as good as it could be. The car guy came by and hooked up a jump battery thing and while the car didn't start right away, after leaving it connected for a few minutes it ten did start right up with zero pausing. So, yay!

He said it absolutely was a failing battery and couldn't be anything else because if it were there would be x, or y, or z indicating issues, and none of those were happening.

The bad news is he said that even if I did drive it for at least 30 minutes to charge it (which I did) there was no guarantee it would actually start again. Or if it did, how many more times. So now I just have to pray I can get enough donations for a new battery very very soon. The issue there is that it is $125-150. While I have gotten some very large donations recently, that is still an incredibly large number to achieve.

But for now the car will rest. And I at least can rest knowing it's an issue that I can take care of myself, not something I need a mechanic or shop for. But in the meantime I will suffer, a lot. I will have to walk all the places I normally drive because I have no money for the bus. (That's like $5 a day last I took one years ago.) And even if I did there would still be 15% as much walking because I'd have to get to the bus stops. You get a free bus pass with part of the student fees, which I can look into when I get back online, but I'm pretty sure that has to be requested at the start of the quarter, and nearly at the end it seems very unlikely.

So I will walk far too much. I don't have a choice. And likely be in far too much pain. But it does seem fixable, which I am extremely thankful for.

Day 2699 - 11/21 - Stinky; looking down

Today was very very sad. It started earlier than usual. I had a tough time sleeping, and because of my hours of light and warmth are doubly limited now I got up a bit early.

As soon as I got on campus I put out my call for help. Not surprisingly, no one came to my aid. I hoped some would, but being the weekend, and near a bigger holiday for many, I expect my need to go unnoticed and unmet. At least for a while.

Walking to school my head was down, held low. Mostly because I thought if I looked at the ground the hour or so it would take to get to my spot would pass quicker. On the way back it was because I was just so very sad, and so very tired from walking.

I used to walk like that quite a lot when I was young. I guess in part because emotionally I literally had nothing to look forward to. Days like this I wonder if I always have been looked at like 'the sickly pet', the one no one wants to adopt. I wonder if that is why I've never been able to get anywhere in life. They say all you need is determination. But that isn't really true. You need emotional support. You need resources; either money or marketing. Alone... I just don't think it's possible for anyone to make it without those things. Which is more than determination alone.

Here I sit at the end of my day. Cold, tummy a bit upset from diner and physical exhaustion, and very stinky parts that even if washed would just be stinky again quickly due to needing to walk everywhere.

I hope tomorrow will be better, but it seems like I may be alone, and if help doesn't come this could be the beginning of the end.

Day 2700 - 11/22 - Stinky from three feet away

Today I am still so very sad and worried. No help for a new battery has come yet, but I still hang on to hope that it will. Things typically move pretty slow on the weekend, so I would have actually been surprised if help had come already. Though I was very hopeful it would have.

My socks and underwear are extremely stinky though. I took them off and put them in the dirty cloths and I could still smell them from nearly three feet away. That is very bad news as all my socks are dirty and I only have one more pair left. In two more days these will be as stinky as those. I guess the slinkiness wouldn't matter much through the holiday weekend, but if I get no help to get a new battery, or at least a little help to do laundry, I don't know what I'll do. Things will get more and more stinky and I won't be able to fix anything.

This holiday season is starting to seem very very doom filled instead of cheer filled.

Day 2701 - 11/23 - New car heart

Today I am very hopeful. I got word during the later morning that someone sent a new car battery and it should be there tomorrow. So that is super awesome. That means I should have one walk in the morning, hopefully catch a ride with someone back to the ex-house at night to pick it up, then install it.

I am just a little concerned as t the fit though. Checking the measurements, if they are correct on the website, it's going to be an extremely tight fit. But the site did have a checking thing and it says it will fit my model, so if it doesn't fit their checker would have to be off, which I'd think if it were someone would have discovered that already. So I am hopeful that outside of something being difficult to get loose that it will be an easy operation.

Today I am hopeful things will be ok. I have yet again been spared in what seems a darkest hour. And I yet again have hope and know there are people out there who do care. Hopefully the transfer will go smooth, hopefully I can continue on with what seemingly little of my life is left, and hopefully this will indeed alleviate the troubles with that car that had me most fearful and worried and kept me up at night.

As always I hope I can sleep tonight and tomorrow will be a better day. But today is one of the few days I genuinely have something hopeful to look forward to.

Day 2702 - 11/24 - Take a chance on red

Today I decided to take a chance on my car. My feet and legs have taken all day to recover from my morning walk and all night from the evening walk, so with a battery on the way today I thought I'd see if it started up ok. If it did, I figure it should also be fine to get back to the ex-house in the evening. And if not, worst case sscenario I get campus security to jump me.

I feel much better with a battery on the way and a fresh shower. Though even with an unburdened walk of about three minutes I'd gotten hot, a touch sweaty, and had a bit of a smell. All the recent strain has taken all of my normal ability to resist walking strain. But I am hopeful things will go ok and be normal today. And more hopeful still the battery will arrive as it should and installation will go quickly and easily.

As always I worry about the unpaid things and the costs I need to cover, but try to hang on to hope for the future.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008-2015
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)

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