PC talk system recommendations blog Facebook YouTube articles and guides links bio
game screensots rabb1t's ramblings podcast email
Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 10: Wisp of Hope

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 473

Day 3305 - 7/19 - Long day

Today moved very slowly and it felt like a long day. When I was leaving I had a hard time remembering what happened more than just a few hours before. I guess it was an ok day. I helped on the forums. I watched stuff on a beta for a game I hope to get (in October). I actually felt like playing a bit, so I played a bit in three different games.

Oh, speaking of playing, an interesting discovery came upon me yesterday. I was doing something and did it in the normal way, a way which has been firewall blocked by the library. But I discovered it is no longer blocked. I tested the two game connections I knew were also firewall blocked, and those too are no longer blocked. So some time in the past probably four months it looks like the library has changed its firewall settings to basically no longer block anything. That's super good news for all future gaming I'll need to do at the library. I still won't be able to voice chat, but I really don't normally like to do that as most have horrid microphone quality and have a ton of annoying background music going on.

Nothing changed today, for good or bad, which I suppose overall is better than bad change. Really it was just another day of hanging on and trying to get by while hoping good change or opportunity comes, while hoping for better days ahead.

Day 3306 - 7/20 - In my head

Today I was alone in my head all day, which I guess is a good thing. The day started at school with a shower and micro. I think I passed by two people's side view who I knew and neither saw me or said hi. I guess it makes sense since I've been gone more than a week now. If they have been by my spots they would see I'm gone and not expect to see me. But it was weird, like I'm gone and just a ghost.

I played the games I don't know why I'm playing today. I may stop the PvP one. I just don't like PvP and today in the three games I played I wound up blocking 1-2 people each game, which is just ridiculous. With the other game I think I am just playing because I believe in the idea behind it. But class abilities are uninspired. There is no loot to speak of, and I still have yet to ever group. And what's more is in the like four or so hours I played I only saw about two people. So with no one to play with (that I know), and nothing to gain in the game, I really should focus my efforts on other games. Yeah, both are moderately fun time wasters, but I have several other games I could be playing through.

I guess I don't feel too bad emotionally, but I find myself looking forward and hoping for better days. I hope to get games I have more fun with, either new or expansions of ones I have. I hope for a place to belong again; at a job, with friends, in a home. And I hope for a future where I at least don't have to constantly worry and be afraid of bills or repercussions thereof. All I can do for now is try to hang on and hope such days do come eventually.

Day 3307 - 7/21 - Quiet day

Today was a pretty quiet day. I didn't feel too much like playing, so I only played maybe two hours.

I don't really remember what I did instead. I know I tried again to watch the shows that are blocked, but they are still blocked. I looked for news of interesting things since there is a big comic convention this weekend, but I don't really recall much of the day. I think I did a lot of looking at posts in a social group, and a lot of just time killing things waiting for interesting things.

I started the day ok, but as it went on I got more and more tired. Now, in the evening, I feel pretty exhausted. I think it's a combination of lack of sleep and lack of stimulation. I'm still losing several hours a night not sleeping.

But I try to hang on to the good things I still have. I try to keep focused on the things ahead to look forward to. And I try to hang on until better days come.

Day 3308 - 7/22 - Partyish

Today was different. The first part of the day was normal, except it did get super hot. I heard it was over 90F, which is crazy since it's only been in the mid 70s for about a week.

In the evening though I went over to some people's new apartment. Two people I do the every two to three week game with were basically doing a house warming. There were a few other people there, so it wasn't like an official party so much as a hanging out for a few hours thing. They may be new RL friends; I guess we'll see if that happens again or not. Outside of the regular game time this was the first time we've 'hung out'.

They had a super cute kitten too. She was a big sweetie and super playful. She wasn't too shy either, which is kind of surprising for such a young kitty. She was three months old and maybe half the size of a full grown kitty. Certainly not the only one handful big I expected when they said kitten. So I got lots of pets and even some kisses.

That was really it. I played a little at the library, but my pre-party time passed quickly. I suppose today was a better day. A day until my dad sent money I thought I would have to cancel, so it's good I didn't need to. So today was a rare day.

Day 3309 - 7/23 - Half laundry

Today was happy and sad. In the morning I had a bit of time at the food store and there was a stable connection, so I was able to do forum helping things and play for about an hour and a half.

After that I went to micro my lunch at the game store, as the every two to three week game as today. It was super fun, but also sad driving back, as I have maybe a week and a half of gas before I'm out again. So that was sad and worrisome.

In the evening I went to do laundry. I had the normal amount of money, as it was already more than I could afford. But since I had too much laundry to do I was barely able to do half. I suppose the good news is the half I didn't do was pants and outer shirts, things I won't need while we are in days like today which was 85-90F or hotter. Those items don't smell freshly cleaned, but they also don't smell terrible. At least not yet. Having to sit unwashed for a while that may change in the coming days. Hopefully I'll get more for gas and laundry and can catch up soon. But at least for the moment it is ok and I can get by.

So today was both happy and sad. There is still some time left in the evening as I finish laundry, but I expect it to go normally. And as such all I can really do is hope for better days ahead.

Day 3310 - 7/24 - Hot chilly

Today's weather was odd. At first it was pretty hot, but once the sun went down it got chilly quickly. I would guess that means overall things will be turning towards chillier weather, or at least cooling off to normal summer temperatures from super hot.

Other than that it was a pretty typical day. I started at school getting a shower and shaving all my parts. I think I heard a janitor cleaning up the girl's side around 9, which is unusual. But the morning swim practice hasn't been there lately, so they may be changing their schedule to summer kid swim lessons soon.

After the shower I had some time to kill, so I chilled in my car and ate in the parking lot instead of going to the library extra early. It felt... peaceful. I still feel... better on campus. I have always, regardless of which college it's been. I think because it represents opportunity, hope, maybe dreams, and in a way youth, and for those not young, possibly renewal. I still get stressed and worried the dean would see me (even though she never comes out of her office and I don't even think she's there this quarter), so even just walking to do my micro seems a bit stressful. But I do need to try and eat at least a few micro meals a week.

The time at the public library was pretty regular. I did feel like playing, so I did that. It seemed sad, as I was online and not grouped. But I don't know if I really wanted people with me. I am still very sad about all the things all the time and often I think things are better if I'm alone.

But I try to hang on. I try to stay positive. And I continue to hope better days are ahead.

Day 3311 - 7/25 - Quiet and slow

Things seem quiet and slow today. Though I don't know if I've gotten a fair sampling of it with it just now being morning and still 45 minutes before the library is open. I guess, even though I still have a few weeks I can visit school, in my brain I have already surrendered that and shifted to 'off for the summer mode', where I have nothing to do and I am not wanted or needed. While it's nice to just 'live for me', without that I feel unfulfilled.

I know it's not true in that I am still the voice of tech support on the forums at the very least. (Though even my free virtual con ticket stopped a few years ago and I've gotten nothing at all these past couple years. ) But I also know there are always those who could do that if I left. And I suppose on the social pages there are those who laugh at things I say, or are helped. But again, without confirmation I feel like I'm lost floating down a river just shouting things to campers alone the shore who are there for vacation.

I hope I do not wind up like a new homeless at the food store. I call him 'the castaway' as he looks like he was in a boat wreck and has been on a deserted island for about a year. He's got a busted hoodie he wears open, with no shirt, which is a dirty gray black in color, sweats of a similar color, shredded at the bottom of the legs. That's all he has. HIs hair is maybe 12" long and wild, as is his beard. He's maybe in his late 60s or early 70s. I saw him this morning, and as he walked he would put his hand out to the side in a dismissive fashion, towards no one. And after he sat down, he stretched out his arms in front of him and waved them around as if rotating an invisible ball.

I suppose I could never be that out of touch. Even as my gas dwindles to less than a week's worth, and the few things I have remaining get closer to functional death, I still want the things of the world. I want friends to play and hang out with. I want love. I want a job, paid or not if I can afford not, where I feel wanted and at least somewhat appreciated. I want to continue to live and be in the world and in people's lives.

And so I try to hang on. I try to focus on the future, and get by in the now. Hopefully help will come and I can continue to hang on until I am in a better time and place, and I find my forever better days.

Week 474

Day 3312 - 7/26 - Slightly better

Today I feel slightly better. I got about an hour more sleep than I have been getting and I feel so much more awake and alert. Hopefully I can get more sleep again tonight because I've been losing several hours I could be getting every night for a while now.

Since I felt slightly better I spent most of my day playing a game. It's still one of the ones I really wonder why I play since I have little to nothing to gain there, but it is quiet, and I have space from people, so I think it's why I currently play.

In the evening I got notice of a donation. It is again from the person who is always watching out for me. I don't know where I'd be without his constant generosity and concern. I certainly may still be mostly ok physically, but I almost certainly would be without my car by now. So I am very thankful he, and other donators, are still helping.

I will hold on to the money as long as I can. I am hoping there are donations for my birthday. I'd really like to get the game coming in October. The base game is $60, but there is a version that includes the first few expansions at a little bit more at $100. Which, fooooo, that sounds like so much to me these days. But with 19 played days on the previous version on what was the equivalent there, on my console which I had limited access too, that's 456 or more hours I played. On my laptop I could play even more than that (since I wouldn't be limited to dragging the console around and setting it up somewhere.) So, it would very much be worth the money. I just prey my laptop can run it ok. While it still does fine on most things, the recent demanding games have caused struggle.

But for today I feel more positive. I got more sleep, so I feel more alert. I got a big donation, so that was super nice and helps reduce stress. And things don't seem so super terrible. So I continue to hope. I look forward to the game I got with dad's money in about a month. Maybe more birthday surprises will happen. And I continue to hope better days keep coming.

Day 3313 - 7/27 - Hopeful excited

Today was pretty good. The bulk of my day was fairly normal. I felt ok, so I played about half of the day (after helping on the forum and checking for news.) Things were still pretty quiet most of the day. The library only seems to really get busy about noon to 4.

But in the late afternoon I got some news which has me hopeful and excited. First, the game I would love to get in late October announced the beta date is in about a month, the week after my birthday. So I'll be able to see how my system does then. (Provided the client is not too big to get before the beta closes. Which I expect it will be much smaller than the full client.) But the second, and probably more important, news is they released the minimum specs. And those specs are not only lower than the three recent games my system struggled with, but the minimum CPU is lower than what I have, and the GPU is one which pretty much rates equal to mine. So there is really no reason why I shouldn't be able to play. The recent games I struggled with, but was still playable, had minimums where the benchmarks were about 50% higher than what I have, so being nearly equal to the new game is very exciting. Again though I'll know for sure in a month if 'm ok to play or not.

That was really my day though. Nothing really different, just a bit of potentially very good news. At least good news in terms of motional news, for it is through my games and new worlds I keep going and am able to hold on emotionally. Along with the boost I got yesterday in donation money I have a little bit of leeway again. And that goes a very long way indeed towards better days.

Day 3314 - 7/28 - Panic, fear, distraction

I've been forgetting to write terrible news. Which, I suppose is good that it can be forgotten. But a few nights ago I saw a movie and it triggered my panic and fear of death. It was advertised as a dark comedy about a guy who hears his pets talking to him and he kills people. It actually wasn't really funny. It was kind of sad and tragic. And the two deaths they showed were people probably in their early 30s, and they were very real, very drawn out, and basically accidents. It triggered my own worries and fears about that. My heart raced and it felt like I was going to start crying. In this week I have a few panic attacks and fear of death, so I have to try and focus on distraction.

But I managed to mostly calm myself down again. I still feel waves of it now, a few nights later. But I try to calm myself. I try to remind myself as long as I can remain fairly stable there is no reason I shouldn't still have my remaining 40 years. And I try to keep my resolve and know that once I've recovered in a home I can start eating ok again and at least do a little exercise and stretching and hopefully recover from being out of shape.

So I try to keep distracted, I try to focus on now. I played my games most of the day. Though I am still always alone in the new old MMO and still wonder if it's even worth playing. And again there were asshats in the PvP game, so I may be getting closer to uninstalling that one.

I also decided to try and distract myself with a 'summer of movies'. Though really these days when I do that I'm spending all my time on TV series, as movies have been a Saturday sometimes Sunday night tradition, which I can't really do very often these days. It was a moderate chunk of the donation money I got, and after getting a few weeks of gas I'll be down to only half left. But with my recent resurgence of panic and fear of death I have to redouble my efforts to keep myself distracted. At least short-term, until my feelings and worries calm down again. Because if I don't I'll just be reminded all the time about how it's inevitable, and it constantly surrounds me and could happen at any time and that's it. No more me.

So for now I try to not worry. I try to keep myself distracted. I try to hold on to what I have, see what is positive, and remember there is just as much opportunity for positive and good in the time I have left as there is for bad and sad. And I will try to continue to look towards the future with hope, and be hopeful for better days ahead.

Day 3315 - 7/29 - The crush

Today wasn't as bad as it likely should have been. The library has had really poor connection speed the past few days. By even just 11:30 it wasn't really playable. I tried watching shows, but from about 2-4 even that didn't work. There was barely enough bandwidth to do forum and social page things.

I started to get sad and spiral into worry and panic. On any other day this would have been terrible, but I had an extra distraction today. I think maybe around noon the most beautiful girl walked in. She was smiley and happy and bopping her legs in her seat. I'm not sure why, but I always find cute average girls much more attractive compared to runway or magazine beautiful kinds of girls. I instantly got a huge crush on her. I was ridiculously smiley and couldn't resist peeking over at her. There have only been a few that had this affect on me in my life. Even now hours after the library closed I am still smiling and my cheeks hurt from so much smiling.

I expect I'll never see her again. But she was too many years younger than me to be proper to approach. She had college books, so I would guess she's in her early 20s. But without actually knowing her, at least casually knowing her, approaching her wouldn't be anything but creepy or scary I'm sure. But, you never know, stranger things have happened. If I see her again, maybe it will be Fate.

So I think because of my crush I held on today better than I otherwise would have with the loss of almost all connectivity for several hours. But still, it wasn't a bad day. I watched three shows, and got to play for about two hours. Not counting the hour or more I helped on the forums.

So today I am grateful for being out in the world in this sad life, as that led me to her. And even though I expect I'll never actually meet her or see her again, at least I know I can still be smitten. My heart is not so old or broken or sad that I am incapable of it. And I am grateful for my shows and games and the distraction from my panic those bring. Today was not a terrible day, and a small reminder as long as I continue anything can happen. So I continue to look forward to better days ahead.

Day 3316 - 7/30 - Bad connection

Today was again a very bad connection day at the library. I guess it's a good thing that on Sundays I spend as many hours at the food store (split in two visits) as I do at the library because I barely had bandwidth for forums and the social page. I think I barely got through two shows and no games due to the lack of connection. If it continues being terrible I may be forced to consider going to the school library.

So today was different. My 'good times' were at the food store, which is loud, busy, and I'm constantly surrounded by movement. But I guess it's ok, as the food store has been pretty stable these past few weeks. So it was really the only way I got through my shows and got a little bit of gaming.

But I try to stay hopeful for the future. I try to remember tomorrow is a new day where new or good things might happen. So I try to look to the future. And for now I hope for better days ahead.

Day 3317 - 7/31 - Not a good spider home

Today was kind of sad and frustrating. The connection at the library was barely useable at even the start of the day when it was empty. By 11 it was getting so bad I couldn't even connect to the social page or do forums. I sent a message to the library support letting them know how bad it's gotten lately. They checked and discovered several libraries were affected and they'd look into it.

While I barely got through some shows at low resolution, the connection completely dropped several times during the day. In fact, it's currently down now. I'm not writing at my usual time of night. But it is too late really to bother packing up and going elsewhere. I'll just write, do other things, and hopefully tomorrow it will be better.

There has been a very beautiful spider web on my car mirror for a few days. I tried to take a picture, but you can't see it. I've left it because it was nice to see something beautiful in my life. But today I had to destroy it, which made me sad for several reasons. I destroyed it because I saw a little orange spider peek out of the mirror after stopping at the library spot. I didn't want a spider living in part of my car, that's not a good spider home. There was a big tree just a few feet from my car, so I thought by destroying it, and bouncing the mirror, the spider would be convinced out and see the tree and go make a nice proper home. But they didn't come out. And now I'm worried the spider will not have a home at all.

So today I feel extra sad. While I still have more than some, I was left with more suffering than normal. And I had to destroy something beautiful I didn't want to destroy. Worse, that thing was a critter's home. But I try to remain hopeful things will be ok. And I hope that tomorrow is a better day.

Day 3318 - 8/1 - Hopeful, but worried

Today I am hopeful, but worried. It's officially August now, and that means near the end of the month it's my birthday. I'm trying to focus on the good, positive, and hopeful aspects of that, but it also indicates passing time. As such it becomes difficult to ignore that about three weeks after that I should sign up for school things. Which while not a lot is $75, which is a lot to me during my sad life. And only a few weeks after that I have to worry about what to do about car insurance. I try to focus on now, just today, and the fun of birthday things coming up, but time is starting to pass very quickly.

I am hopeful for the day even though it's just starting. In the last few hours of the library being open yesterday the Internet cleared up and went back to being super fast. It was at 15 mbps when I tested, way faster than the 0.5 to 1 it had been during the day, and much more than the about 5 I need for even the most demanding thing I do these days. (Though even at 15 that will be much slower than you at home with 50-100 on average.)

So I try to stay hopeful today will be ok. And I try to focus on the good things and what I have today. And I try to set future worries aside as much as I can, knowing there is as much chance for good and hope as there is not since those days have yet to come. And I try to hope for better days ahead.

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

flash required for the logo
best viewed at 1280 wide resolution or higher