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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 465

Day 3249 - 5/24 - Out of place

Today was very strange. During my shower, and again later in the day, I closed my eyes and for a few brief moments I felt like I was in a different time and place. Maybe it's because I haven't been sleeping lately, or just one of those times my mind wandered, I don't know. It was both nice to not be in my sad life, and confusing as to why it happened.

I saved a tiny baby ant. It was near my food bag before class on the table, just walking around. I came back three hours later and it was still there. It must have been just a baby. I could barely see him because it was only about half the size of a normal ant. I carefully gathered him into a napkin and took him out to a bush. I hope he finds a colony and forever home.

I feel very sad today overall. Time is still ticking away and I grow more and more worried that I don't have money for things. While I have about 1.5 months before the registration stuff is due, regular things like gas are going to run out very soon. A week, maybe two at most.

But I try to stay hopeful. And I try to hang on.

Day 3250 - 5/25 - Cold again

Today was cold again. While it was nice and turning towards 85F less than a week ago, today was probably 75F. There were several very attractive girls in shorts out and about in the morning, but I didn't see any later in the day. It seems we will be heading back towards cold weather and maybe even rain showers again soon.

I was feeling pretty sad again today, which kind of in a weird way inspired me to do the spoken word version of the poem I did a while ago. (I think about four months ago now?) I don't know if anyone will watch or care about it, but there it is.

Today I try to hang on. I played games for a little bit. I tried to watch shows, but as usual at school connection was garbage most of the day, so I didn't watch as much as I otherwise could have. The stress is starting to kill me. My lower and mid back and shoulders are starting to get very sore and locked up feeling. And I'm still rarely getting more than six hours of sleep. But I try to hang on. And I try to focus on what I do still have. And I try to continue to look forward to better days.

Day 3251 - 5/26 - So very tired

Today I am so very tired. Again last night I lost two or three hours of sleep I otherwise should have gotten. I would guess due to sadness, stress, and worry.

Nothing much happened today. The bandwidth was pretty bad at school so I hardly got to watch things and I didn't try to play things. But I suppose it was a fairly neutral day. And I guess in a way it passed without getting worse.

So again I try to hang on. And I keep hoping for better days ahead.

Day 3252 - 5/27 - Warming up again

Today was ok I guess. It started with a trip to the recycle place. Even though my trunk and back seat area were pretty full the recycling was barely worth it. I got maybe 1.5 more weeks of gas. And of the money I did get, 15-20% was lost in the gas to get there and back since I now have to go so far to get to a recycling place.

I guess, despite all my worries and barely getting enough sleep lately I did have an ok time today. I felt like playing a game for a bit, so I did that. And when the bandwidth started to go bad I watched a few shows.

While it was rainy looking in the morning, it cleared up by late morning. And when the library was closing it was actually starting to warm up again. It may soon be back to proper Spring/Summer weather.

But today I felt physically exhausted; both from stress, but also a lot from lack of sleep lately. While I am very depressed about all the things, and fighting to not have tears over what I miss as I write this, I try to remain hopeful. There are still things I have, though they are few. There is still enough of a small light of hope within my to try and light my way through the darkness. So I try to continue, and I try to hang on.

Day 3253 - 5/28 - Wondering

Today was ok for a homeless day, I suppose. Surprisingly in the morning the food store had a fairly stable connection. I got what was an unexpected three additional hours online that I otherwise wouldn't have gotten. Bandwidth at the library was mostly as expected, allowing me to play a few games. But quickly after that I was basically restricted to watching stuff.

The day was still somewhat colder with the evening now being a touch chilly. And I am still very physically exhausted. My eyes were half closed nearly all day.

I wonder when, or if, I will catch up on sleep again. I wonder when the weather will turn warm again. I wonder if I will be ok in the future. And more immediately, I wonder what I will do tomorrow, since basically everywhere but the food store and coffee shop will be closed, and I really shouldn't spend the money to go to the coffee shop.

But, I feel allright. And all I can do is try to stay afloat and hope the tide takes me to safety. So for now I try to hold on to hope, and try to look forward to better days.

Day 3254 - 5/29 - Crying day

Last night was very rough for me. I went to the ex-garage for a bit and while I was there the ex-roomie came in. She was putting back some towels I use for bedding that she'd washed for me, which was super nice. But she said she washed them because they'd gotten so stinky the whole ex-garage was stinky. I said I was sorry and told her how rough things have gotten now.

After she left I cried. I didn't want to be stinky. I don't want my items to be stinky. And I thought about how I don't have extra money for laundry. I thought about the homeless at the food store. I thought how they are stinky and I feel like throwing up around them. And even the chair they sit on is so bad now I can't sit near it. And I thought about how I'd become accustomed to the stink of the towels, and wondered if the same was happening with my cloths.

And so I cried and cried. For like half an hour I cried and thought how I am rapidly approaching the bad side of the line. How I don't know when I can get back to the neutral side of homeless again. Nor if I will ever return to a normal life again.

The more sad fact is just how little would be needed. About six paid hours a week would cover what I need to balance again. More, even 12 hours a week paid and I could upgrade to a new laptop in about six months, or have enough to cover a car emergency should one come up. And I again felt disappointed that, on average, I am in class TAing 12 hours a week, not counting time I'm just around to help, and I'm helping on forums roughly 7-10 hours on an average week.

Today is a new day. And I tried spending a quarter to test my 'dry cleaning' idea. I put in one of my bed items, and my used towels. I found three used dryer sheets and turned on the dryer for the five minutes that quarter got me. It actually sort of worked. The towels no longer stink. The bed item smells much less bad. Of course, neither have been actually cleaned. Each of the towels have dirty discolored marks, even though they are faint and difficult to notice. But the dry cleaning can be done. So, for emergencies at least, that could help prolong my shirt and pants washings.

But today is difficult too. I am reminded every minute that my life is not normal. There is no escaping or pretending today. I spent a few hours at the food store, where there was no signal. After, I parked in a mall lot across from school, then spent the bulk of my day outside of school. It was fairly quiet. Only maybe a dozen were there all day, usually just passing by on bikes or walking through. I suppose I could have stayed longer than I did, but it was cold all day, and as it was nearing dusk it was actually reaching winter-like coldness. Plus there were little tree pollen bits everywhere. And when the wind kicked up, the few times it did, the bits would swirl around me and I was at risk of having an asthma attack.

But as rough as last night and today were, and as deep as these scars go, even though it may take years to recover, if they ever actually do heal, I try to stay hopeful. I try to remember today was just today. And I try to remain hopeful for better days ahead.

Day 3255 - 5/30 - Back in place

Today I am back in my spot at school, with a class to TA if they need help, and things seem ok. I am not back to homeless normal, as I am too close to the bad things to feel balanced in any way. But hopefully today will pass as it should, and hopefully in doing so I can feel more my current self and have the few good things I can have these days. I don't know what my future holds anymore, or if I even still have one waiting. But I try to hang on. I try to look at just today. And I try to continue to hope tomorrow will be a better day.

Week 466

Day 3256 - 5/31 - Cupcakes

Today had a slight surprise. Most of the day went basically as normal. I didn't really help before class, as no one really needed it, but I did help on the forums I help on.

In class someone brought fancy cupcakes. I can't remember the last time I had cupcakes. I've often thought of them. They are a go-to joke reply when someone asks a question. But it's sad I can't remember the last time I had them, nor proper restaurant pizza.

I guess I held on ok today though. I was exhausted. I felt like I was going to fall asleep at times. I felt like I would cry at times. But I managed to play a few games, watch a few shows, and made it through the day.

And with so much out of control, many days it feels like that is all I can do. That and try to hang on to hope, until better days come.

Day 3257 - 6/1 - Barely open

Today I could barely keep my eyes open. I'm losing a lot of sleep lately due to sadness and worry. It's starting to get so bad people asked me some questions today and I couldn't follow my own answers. I know things came out ok, but the sentences were forgotten as quickly as I said them.

I went to visit my MMO for a bit today. I've been too sad to play for a few weeks now, maybe a month. I almost cried when I was there. I think more because of how exhausted and tired I am. But I thought of everyone doing the new content while I can't. I thought of the new places I can't go, the new class I can't play, how I'm left behind, how others are having fun, probably grouped with friends. I almost started crying.

But I suppose it was bittersweet. My friend I used to group with was there doing the new content, so I got to say hi.

But I suppose I survived another day. Not well. Things were sad and extremely difficult, but I made it through. All I can do is continue to hang on and hope tomorrow is a better day.

Day 3258 - 6/2 - #onset

Today was very different. It started the same as any other. But at 10 I started helping someone on a film shoot they were doing. He had almost no people. There were the two actors, two others, him, and me. And it was barely enough to move the heavy stuff and get all the shots. He also kind of blew it by not having a script, storyboard, or shot list. So a lot of time was lost figuring out where to go and what to shoot. But it was pretty good. There were some laughs and people had fun. It went until 8 at night, but between 1 and 4 I had a break. He got me a hamburger with fries for payment, so I got a real meal. I can't remember the last time I had that. It's probably been six months or so.

So I got to do very little online today. I barely watched shows and didn't get to play at all, but that's ok. (Particularly for it being just a once in a very great while thing.)

But now it grows dark. And I am getting very tired again. And all I can do is hang on to hope. And hopefully someday I will have forever better days.

Day 3259 - 6/3 - Gripers

Today was kind of sad. There was an update in the game I help on the forums for and a few dozen people (out of 70 million) can't play anymore, and some of them are complaining and griping at me a lot after saying they should post a dxdiag file. When they do finally post one, in most cases they are way behind on spec. Most of the affected people have eight or more year old hardware. When I tell them 'sorry, but you are below minimum specs' they seem shocked and surprised. Sure, I hate saying that to people, but if you are below minimum specs on eight year old or older hardware you shouldn't expect to be able to play the thing. It's an unrealistic expectation.

There was a nice thing streaming online so I tried to relax and watch that. But with all the griping, and sad things in my life, it was difficult to enjoy things.

I am still very exhausted. I can barely keep my eyes open. I want very much to go to sleep and feel like I might lash out at anyone who comes near. I hate feeling like this, but with so much stress and worry about how I'll get around since gas is running out, and more so how I'll pay for registration and smog coming in a little over a month, there seems to be nothing I can do about it.

But I try to keep hoping help will come. And I try to keep looking for opportunity for change. And I try to hang on until better days come.

Day 3260 - 6/4 - Sad but happy

Today was sad but also happy. The morning started at the food store. And by some miracle it seems like they have fixed the connection there, so I actually had a pretty good time.

In the afternoon I started to get very sad. I went over to my every other week game early, settled in to eat, and got sad thinking this might be the last time. I have little gas left, and while I keep hoping change and help comes, things are too close to be guaranteed to have that extra $5 to do it again. (Lately I haven't even had an extra $5 for laundry. ) But about half way through the game I was able to pull myself up again and have a fun time.

Now it is getting into night. I again am left with thoughts of laundry, more accurately what is unclean, worry about gas, and the nearing smog and registration. And with that I worry about my future in general.

But I try to hang on. I try to focus on the positive and what I do have. I try to continue to hope that help will come, and that someday I can find my way to my forever home and better days.

Day 3261 - 6/5 - Sad, quick

Today I feel pretty sad, but for once in a great while I felt almost balanced. Though nothing has become balanced. Things are still the most stressful and sad days in my life so far. But I played a bit, I watched a show, and I watched part of my favorite recorded game stream. (Which is actually my favorite thing of all the things I watch.)

But the day passed quickly. It was warm and there were a lot of cute girls around, though all were too young for me. But it reminds me they are out there, and maybe someday I'll find someone. And so the day seemed to pass quickly. Which is a very good thing in these very sad and terrible times.

But I try to hang on to hope. I try to continue to hope that help will come. And I try to keep hoping for better days ahead.

Day 3262 - 6/6 - Five or six

Today I am very tired and my mind is wandering. I probably got five or six hours of sleep the past few nights. There was likely too much sadness and stress to sleep properly. I might be getting sick from that as well, as I've been sneezing lately and extremely congested.

I got a big donation today, so that is a big help towards what I'll need for smog and registration. But I still feel like it's a very long way to go until I have enough, and so I am still very concerned.

But each day is a new day. As long as I live, and I can do my regular things, there is still a chance for change, and eventually recovery. So I try to hang on to hope and I continue to try to hope I make it to better days.

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

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