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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 9: Fractures

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 463

Day 3235 - 5/10 - Sick in the morning

Today I got sick in the morning. I don't know if it's stress, worry, lack of sleep, or this sneezing congestion cold I have, or a combination of things. But when I got on campus and was going to park at the pool shower area I started coughing. I coughed and coughed and then sort of threw up a bit. Thankfully it was just that one time, and not more than a lot of congestion yuck. But I felt very icky for a while after.

My day was going pretty sad and slow after that. Again, there was almost no bandwidth at school. It even got so bad that even the landline didn't have enough to watch my show during lunch.

During the class I TA for things picked up a bit, as there was a lot of stuff to watch. There were some laughs, but mostly they were just meh. But it was an important first step into real projects for this quarter.

After, there wasn't much time left in the night. I watched what was left of the shows I tried to watch earlier, and had dinner, and that was it.

Now as it moves into night I try to settle. I try to focus on what I have left that is good. And I try to stay hopeful for the future.

Day 3236 - 5/11 - The little things

Today seemed like the little things have brought tears. At lunch and dinner I thought how nice it would be to buy regular food. I can't even remember when I last got a hamburger and fries at school. And when I played online, I was forced to be on the landline if I was even going to try. And by the time lunch came and I wanted to watch a show, even the landine bandwidth was so bad I couldnt.

At night after I left campus I was fairly sad in general. I thought how if I had a best friend or sweetie surely they would notice. And for a surprise they would get me yummy pizza to try and cheer me up. And they would know my favorite is Round Table pepperoni with thicker crust.

But I have no such friend. No such sweetie. I can't just watch shows uninterrupted. I can't play games as stable as they should be. My life is damaged. It is broken. And days like today it is so hard that the thoughts of missing such simple and basic things bring tears.

Day 3237 - 5/12 - Neck breaking

Today I have neck breaking levels of stress. Some time yesterday my shoulder and neck muscles started seizing up. Today I am completely stiff. I can still turn my head about 45 degrees, but that's it. And it feels like there is a neck brace around the back of my neck and shoulders preventing movement.

There still has been no recent help and I am still down to hopefully a week of gas. But then I'll be forced to recycle to get more. And if I do, I can't really spend it, as I need to save it to move the car at least one day a week. Things will become almost impossible if I don't get help soon. I don't have a clue how I'll survive bigger things like registration coming up. And even more pressing matters like laundry will become sources of constant and extreme stress.

But I try to hang on. I try to stay hopeful. It wouldn't take much help, and not a lot of people helping, to be in ok shape again. At least for the immediate emergencies. So I try to remain hopeful help will come.

Day 3238 - 5/13 - Movie

Today was different. It's like there were two halves of the day. The beginning was very sad. There was nothing new that was sad, just an overall sadness about all my limitations and how I have to try and be the happiest I can. Bandwidth was decent most of the day though, so I got to play some games and watch a show.

In the evening things were different. I took the other movie pass I had and watched a movie. Not counting that I didn't get to have a fast food meal (as I would have done if things weren't as they are) for a few brief hours I felt almost my normal self.

But now it is over. The night is cold. My tummy would be empty, but it was too hungry to sleep, so I got extra food. Which I am hoping does not throw off future meals.

So I try to push sad thoughts away. I try to focus on the good in the day, the happy memories. And I try to continue to hope help will come soon.

Day 3239 - 5/14 - Sad, and tired

Today was very sad and I was extremely tired. I debated going out to rest in my car for a bit because I was so tired. Because of how sad I am about all the things, and being so stressed about things, it is becoming more and more difficult to sleep.

Plus, I think I was extra sad today because of the holiday. Not for what you'd think. My mom died so long ago holidays don't alter my mood about that. It reminded me I could not get clean, let alone extra clean and spruced up many are doing today. It reminded me I have nowhere special to go. It reminded me not only can I not afford a special breakfast or brunch, but that I am not having one at all. It reminded me of the watchful gaze of a mother I do not currently have in my life in any form. While there are those who watch out for me, I have not received comforting words of support, nor donations to help me keep going in a while. And more than that, how that is always missing in my life. And maybe it always has been ever since my mom's death when I was 13.

But I try to keep my head up. I try to help others or guide them where I can so they do not wind up in a similar spot. I continue to hope Fate has a place for me and my sadness and suffering are to guide me, or others, where I, or they, need to be. And I try to stay hopeful that help will come. And maybe someday my life will be back to... well... a life.

Day 3240 - 5/15 - Sick, sore, stink

Today was pretty sad. I'm very depressed and sad lately. Today did start pretty good though. I got settled in at school and got a good shower. I got into the lab early. I got solid bandwidth and played more games than I normally would have. The class I TA for had a test and we watched some stuff. But the day was basically a blur. I didn't clearly remember anything. And beyond a few hours ago my short term memories of today seems no more clear than long term memories of last week.

Maybe it's because I have a cold. I am still sneezing and congested. But it is probably more stress, which is causing my parts to become stiff and sore, and I'm regularly losing sleep or having bad dreams.

Or maybe it's because I'm not eating well. Being back to now just microwaved or preprepared food my tummy always feels bad, or like now, there is a led weight or a feeling like someone punched me.

And even though I got to shower in the morning it was only a few hours before I could no longer smell the nice soap. I didn't smell bad after, more like nothing. But it leaves things around me open to being smelled. Like the trash on the department's level which apparently hasn't been emptied out since Thursday. Or now that I am in my night cloths, the stink of the night cloths (which I don't get to wash often as I don't often have enough space for regular cloths, let alone extra like night stuff.)

But mostly I worry. It feels like I am alone again. It would only take a little bit of help from a few people to be ok on gas for a while. With a few more; ok on cloths and a bit safer on gas. Yet no help seems to be coming. So I worry. I grow more stressed and sick feeling each day. And while I try to hang on to hope until better days come, I can't help but feel like I am alone in a corner, lost and forgotten by others.

Day 3241 - 5/16 - Trying to stay hopeful

Today is gray and cold. I don't know what happened to the warm near 80F weather. It's like it's winter again. But the blue skies are trying to peek through, so maybe it will get warm later.

Today should be ok in the class I TA for. They have a quick test then we are watching a bunch of stuff. And, there is a super cute attractive gamer girl I get to see, so I always am reminded to be hopeful maybe someday I'll find a sweetie again. I'm sure she's not interested, but at least seeing someone like that reminds me they are out there.

And too my professor was recently contacted by someone who was sad I (and other helpers) are unpaid. She was thinking about it more, and she has found a way to try and get me some monies. I am trying to stay hopeful for help too. Today is another day of posting my sad story. And it would only take a few people helping with what is the cost of a cup of coffee for me to have gas for a week. So I try to stay hopeful there are some out there reading 'live' that I can get enough help. And I try to stay hopeful that continues until opportunity for change comes and I am back on my feet.

Week 464

Day 3242 - 5/17 - Stinks

Today was pretty good. Though the department floor stinks again. Like Monday it's been several days since the trash has been taken out. Shortly after lunch through much of the floor it started to smell like a wet dog. It was so bad a student in class said he took out the trash, which is not at all something that should need to be done.

But I had time to play today. And I watched a few shows. And a few times in the basic class that I TA for I made people laugh, so that was good.

But the car had a bit of trouble starting in the morning. And before leaving school I checked the oil and it's just below the low mark. So that's yet another $4-5 cost that I don't really have money for. And still no help has come. Which makes me worried, but it also makes me very sad to think I am in so much pain and so scared, yet it seems no one around me seems to notice. Sure, I hide it so there is no reason to look below the surface. But just following a few link clicks would take someone to my sad story. And then just a little from their life could greatly help in my times of darkness, pain, and struggle.

But even though nothing came today, and nothing changed for the better, I continue to try to hope for tomorrow. And the days beyond. And hopefully I can continue to hang on until change comes.

Day 3243 - 5/18 - Surprise donation

Today had some nice surprises. The morning started kind of sad. I played a few games, which was nice, but in the early afternoon I stared putting together my character sheets and info to send to the people who play my every other week game with me. Just before sending it I got a donation. It wasn't enough to say that I had extra to continue playing, but I went to move it to my bank before sending the things anyways. To my surprise there was a big donation there waiting for me from a week ago. Somehow the system did not send me the automatic notice that it normally does. But it is enough that I should have gas and laundry money for a few weeks. Maybe more if I am super careful.

Also, as part of the donation today someone sent a code for a game. It's been one I considered picking up for mobile, but never had enough money for. (It was a pricier one at like $5-10) So I have that to play and check out

There was also news about a game that is a sequel to one I spent a bunch of money on back a few years ago. I'm still unsure how I feel about it. On the one hand I can get it for PC, but I don't know if my laptop is strong enough to handle it. But on the other hand I have kind of sad memories attached to the first game. While I did have a job at the time, since it was on console, those first few months I played I dropped a couple hundred playing at an internet cafe because it was safer than carrying the console around. (Not to mention the collector edition cost of $80, plus some console headphones I got, which was another $100.) But over the year that I played the two friends I started playing with basically abandoned me. So there was a lot of sadness and disappointment that now I was alone, and all that extra money was spent for nothing.

I suppose if I did get this new one (supposedly after September) that wouldn't happen. Being on PC no extra money would need to be spent to play. I wouldn't have to have extra security precautions or extra hardware. And, there is a lot being done to help connect players to other players. So I theoretically wouldn't feel as alone. But I still worry those sad feelings might be there .But, if I do have money, or it is gifted to me, and my system can handle it, maybe the fresh start could also be an emotional fresh start. And may even lead to new friends.

But whatever I decide it is out of my hands at the moment. And even if things weren't, it's still four months or more away. So today ends with extra hope. Hope for maybe a game to look forward to and the change it could bring being in a new but somewhat familiar world. And hope that there are still those out there who do care and look out for me. And hopefully this is enough, and I can continue to hang on.

Day 3244 - 5/19 - Felt odd

Today felt... odd is the best way I can think to put it. On the one hand it felt like it went as it should. On the other I felt like I was living in a different time and as if I should be in a different place. I felt like I am remembering or re-visiting somewhere from my past.

Maybe it's because of the game sequel and the feelings it's brought back up. Or seeing footage so similar to the first game that I'd spent so much time in (now two to three years ago.) (Apparently 18 played days worth of time, nearly 500 hours.) So maybe part of it was feelings from a time years ago.

Maybe it's because I have no class today and there are so few on campus on Fridays that I just feel out of place in general. Though that isn't much different than other days.

Maybe it's because I am still not eating well, and with all the lost sleep lately things feel and seem odd and kind of surreal in general.

I may never know the reason, but today seemed ok. I continue to have enough to hang on for the moment, thanks to the most recent donations. And so I continue to hang on and hope for better days ahead.

Day 3245 - 5/20 - Laundry and gas at last

Today was pretty good for a number of reasons. First, the cold has finally gone and it's super warm. It's even hot for me, so it was probably over 85F today easily. Also, because of recent donations I have enough gas to last at least a few weeks, and to do laundry at least today. I spent a touch extra and got caught up on cloths again. (Though towels and bed things are still behind.)

I spent the day at the library, so I was inside and cool all day. And the connection was strong and stable. I think because of the heat there were a lot fewer than normal. It only got about 75% full.

And I got a bit of good news in the mail. My car registration came and it's only $110, not the $150 I thought. So that's good to hear. Though I still need to do SMOG, which is probably $50-60. And if the fan fails to work, it will fail and I won't pass.

I'm extremely exhausted though. I am still having a lot of trouble sleeping. And yesterday something in lunch didn't agree with me. I still have an aching sick feeling spot in my tummy.

But for today hope is renewed. There is a slight bit of leeway on gas, at least for the moment. So I continue to try to stay hopeful. And I continue to try and hang on until better days come.

Day 3246 - 5/21 - Pretty good

Today was pretty good. I still have many worries about all the things, but it was extremely warm, I had a fun time with the every other week group of people, and I even saw a suuuper beautiful girl come in to the gaming shop. Even though she came in with someone, assuming that was a boyfriend, it still does give me hope for finding such a nice gamer girlfriend for myself someday.

I've been thinking more about the sequel game, and listening to bits of the soundtrack, and I do think I would enjoy it. But there are a lot of ifs. I'm still at the worst point in my life, so for the moment if I were to get any game it would have to be a gift. And then there is the question of if my aging laptop can handle it. As I think I mentioned, the new generation of this laptop gets 11,000 benchmarks whereas my system only gets 3,500. So I am a lot less powerful than new systems. But the game won't release for at least four months. And if the PC delay rumors are true, even longer. Who knows what would become of my life over that time.

But today I feel pretty good. I don't feel really safe, in any sense, and I can't look to the future beyond about a week. But I feel ok. I feel hopeful. And I try to hang on.

Day 3247 - 5/22 - Hoping

Today was ok. It wasn't as warm as the weekend though. On the weekend I was hot for me. Oddly the temperature said it was 85F online today, but when I was walking around it only felt like 75F. So I think the online temperature was wrong.

I was looking at some news on the sequel game. I am remembering fonder times playing. And with nearly 500 hours played with the first game, regardless of my falling out with the people who I played with, it certainly was worth the money I paid. So getting the sequel would almost certainly be of equal value, if not more since it would be on PC and no additional costs or hardware would need to be carried around to play. So I continue to hold on to hope that I can get it. And also try to hold on to hope I find a something to gather the monies to also upgrade the laptop.

So I try to hold on to hope for the future. There is an expansion for my MMO coming in a few weeks. There is the nice sequel coming sometime in September (or after if the PC version is behind the console version). And so I hope that even if my experience in this world doesn't improve, at least there are other worlds coming I can maybe escape to. And hopefully I can continue to hang on.

Day 3248 - 5/23 - Feeling distressed

Today I am very tired and feeling physically and a bit distressed. Last night I got a decent amount of sleep for the first time in weeks, probably 8 hours (compared to the around 6 I've been getting). But I had some bad dreams. In them I was in unfamiliar locations and struggling, and in one I was only around 10 years old, and being held captive by people, along with others, who they were killing and eating.

So while I feel rested, I also feel kind of beaten up. And my areas around my eyes feel puffy, as if I was maybe crying in my sleep.

Today is just starting, and I have one of the classes I TA in. Though just being an introduction to the program today I likely won't do much beyond sit in the back just in case. Which is ok, as I can pretty much do whatever.

While I feel somewhat distressed physically and emotionally on the surface, I think it should warm up later and people will probably come by who need my help, as a big project is due in the basic class tomorrow. So I try to feel good that I have a place in the world, though unpaid, and I am helpful and appreciated by others. And I try to hang on to hope I will continue to make it until better days come.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008-2017
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)

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