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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 11: It Goes to Eleven

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 551

Day 3851 - 1/16 - Storm of 2019

Today is the start of what seems like a storm. There has been a ton of heavy rain all day, even a bit last night, and a bunch of wind. In the like three minute walk from the building to my car I got soaked. The ground is actually kind of beautiful because it's covered in a thin sheet of water, but the rain is light enough that when it hits the ground small spray is kicked up and swirled around everywhere by the winds.

My pre-ordered birthday game should finally be secure again, phew. I got a big donation and what was missing can finally be put back. And if I'm extremely careful there should be enough to cover my car insurance payment and monthly bank fee. But, it basically means I can't use any for gas. I have the about 1.5 weeks in the car and that's it. So hopefully more help will continue to come, and come soon, or that time will quickly come to pass.

I did get another chance for a paid survey, but they keep coming and passing me by without a call. I think at this point only two are still open, with one closing this week. Still, if I got either that would be a huge boost.

I guess though all I can do is continue to hold on to hope that help comes, and that I can hang on emotionally and physically until it does.

Day 3852 - 1/17 - Forced diet

Today I heard some very sad news updates. The news is recommending people with food stamp money be ready to not get the March benefits at the regular time, or at all. They are thinking if the government shut down continues for much longer it could put that at threat. I don't know how I'd eat without my food stamp money. I can try and force myself on a diet for this month and next to try and eat less, but much more than 15-20% less and I'd not be able to function, so I don't see how I'd be able to do something significant like 40% in order to have money into March. I'll try and be really super careful, I mean I should have a buffer anyways just in case, but it's extremely difficult to eat cheaper to have money past the one month I get it.

Today just had a few light sprinkles, nowhere near the downpour of the last day. I suppose that is something.

But with no donations and this bad news I am very worried about the future, even more so if I don't have gas for the car and have to start walking.

I fear trying to rest these next few nights and weeks will be very difficult, but all I can do is try to hang on to hope.

Day 3853 - 1/18 - Drying up

Today things are starting to dry up from the storm. It only did a heavy sprinkle yesterday as far as I could tell, and it didn't really rain at all today. It was, however, ice cold; especially in the library for some reason.

Emotionally I felt ok on the surface. I played a couple of different things and felt a little bit happy, talked on a message board I don't normally talk on, and watched some shows. The load was light, as the library was only 75% full at peak, and probably 60% or less most of the day. So the connection was about as strong and stable as it tends to get.

Below the surface I was still very sad about basically having zero money, doubly so since I have maybe a week of gas left, and no money for food if I happen to run out.

I guess all I can do is try to continue to hang on to what I have left, continue to hope help comes, and try to hang on until it does.

Day 3854 - 1/19 - No blood moon

Today was kind of bad. The connection was completely dead by noon. I tried to do homework that is due Tuesday, but I just couldn't get motivated. It's supposed to only take a few hours, but it feels super daunting.

There is supposed to be some crazy blood moon I think today or tomorrow. I looked around tonight and there were too many clouds. I couldn't see the moon barely at all. The storm has left and it's an early spring feeling day, but the sky was still super cloudy.

I have maybe a promise of some gas money next week, so hopefully that will pan out and I can get that. None of the paid surveys have called me and my window where I have time on my phone is rapidly closing.

But it seems, as always, all I can do is try to focus on what I do have, focus on today, and hopefully help will come and tomorrow will be a better day.

Day 3855 - 1/20 - Rain returns

Today the rain returned. It was only sprinkling during the day, but now y the evening it's getting heavy.

The library was pretty busy, with the connection nearly completely dead by the early afternoon. I again just couldn't focus enough to do my homework. Which sadly means I'll be forced to do it Monday. Though technically I still have Tuesday to do it, but with school open there is actually another project I'll need to work on when I can Tuesday.

With the bad connection I didn't have a lot of fun. I did try to play a bit, but I kept lagging and disconnecting. I only had one real show to watch, and thankfully that only had a couple of longer pauses interrupt it.

Tomorrow at the food store will be touch. It will be loud, bright, and I'm sure uncomfortably cold. But hopefully the connection will be ok and I can get in the mood to do homework. Heck with the library connection effectively dead 25% of Saturday and Sunday I may actually have a more stable time at the food store if it's having one of its better days.

But tomorrow holds what it holds. I seem to no longer be in control of very much. All I can really do is hope help and opportunity come, and hope I can hang on until it does.

Day 3856 - 1/21 - Chips

Today was kind of worse than expected. But in some ways too I expected things to not at all go well, so I guess things were slightly better than the worst case scenario.

The food store, as expected, was cold, loud, annoying, and distracting. There was someone there in the morning again playing this horrible sounding foreign opera gameshow. But the person who claims to not be homeless (yet gets to the library like four hours before it opens, stays for eight hours, then spends the next nine at the food store, every day) offered to get me a big bag of chips because they were on a super cheap sale. I think maybe he felt like he owed me one from about a year ago when I got one in a contest and gave him the ticket for it because I wasn't familiar with the brand and I assumed it was a small lunch sized bag, not the full size big one. So I have a super yummy chip snack, as I got my favorite type. It's good timing what with the forced diet I need to be on.

But the bandwidth was pretty terribly lagging me in a game I tried to play, and completely disconnecting me from another. I watched stuff most of the day, which thankfully could mostly buffer. So at last that was something and I'm not behind on my Monday show.

But due to the cold and noise, frustration with the connection, and not being shaved in quite a while, my day was sad, disappointing, and not at all what I hoped for.

But I guess what I have is what I have, and better than some options, or nothing at all. So I try to look at what was good. And I try to continue to hang on until help or opportunity come.

Day 3857- 1/22 - Up too early

Today started with a scare. I used my laptop unplugged last night for about 45 minutes, so I knew the battery would be a bit lower. But when I set up this morning it was acting oddly and shut down instantly when I unplugged it. It showed no battery was detected. (Good to know it could run plugged in without one.) Reseating it seems to have fixed the issue, so hopefully that is better now. It has been going into sleep mode whenever I've been afk for like 5 minutes, which was an early sign of my last laptop having battery issues. (Which turned out to be the housing, not the battery, which is a not fixable issue.) Though I'd love to upgrade, I have no money at all to do so, so I have to prey the issue is ok now that it seems ok again.

I had to get up way too early in order to get a shower and get my parts shaved that have been bothering me. I'm pretty tired, but I guess it's ok for a once in a great while thing. Though there is another holiday in about a month, so I may need to do it again.

I have my fun class, so that should be pretty good. I'm warm and starting to settle, but I'm still worried about all the things since I have no money to pay anything coming up, and my phone is nearly out of time.

But, as always, all I can do is try to hang on to hope that help and opportunity come, and that I can hang on until it does.

Week 552

Day 3858 - 1/23 - Shaved

Today had a funny thing. I was 'guarding the room' between classes (student's aren't supposed to be in the room without a professor, so I stay there between the professor I TA for and the next) and someone said he was super jealous because when he sees me my head sides are always shaved so smooth. I told him it was mostly genetics because my hair grows so slow I only need to shave every three days or so. It was pretty funny to think someone is jealous of that.

I guess I had an ok day. When I had the TA class I just played games. We aren't really at a point I do much helping yet. After, I played a bit more and watched some shows. I did apply for my old job so that felt weird and dumb. It's like you people wouldnt need to be repeatedly looking if you hadn't fired me. (This is the 3rd time the job has come up that I've seen in the last four years.) I doubt they will call me back on it. I still highly suspect they let me go to simply avoid giving me benefits that would be required to be offered since I'd be starting my sixth year.

But there were no donations and no paid survey offers. I suppose in good news my battery issue seems to have indeed just been a glitch and things are fine again. Probably because I take the laptop out of my bag and move it around a few times a day so something just got jostled around. So, I guess while ntohing good happened it's sort of good news that nothing bad happened either. And I have to take that as a positive sign. But still, I do hope help and opportunity come, and that tomorrow is a better day.

Day 3859 - 1/24 - Car engine seizure scare

Today ended on a pretty scary note. I was pulling into a parking spot near the ex-house and the second I stopped and put the car in reverse the engine just shut off. The lights were still on, but now there was a check engine light and oil light lit. My heart started to race with fear and worry. But I turned the ignition off, waited for five seconds, then tried to restart. It restarted and I parked and things seemed normal. I checked the oil and radiator fluid, and from what I could see it has enough. My only guess is the old oil is taking a toll. You are supposed to change it every 3k miles, but it's probably been about 10k since I last changed because I have no money. (I drive fewer than 2k miles in a year.) In that time I've added two quarts of what is four to fill it, so it's not all as old as that. But I know older oil can gum things up, and these lower rev times might be more difficult.

But, I moved a bit down the block to do some stuff at the ex-house and things seemed fine. I moved away to a different spot to park for the night and it again seemed fine. So I don't know if it is some super odd glitch with gas since I'm down to only a few days of gas or what. The ex-roomie gave me monies to take stuff to the recycle, so in the morning I'll get a few weeks of gas. Hopefully this isn't a big issue. Thinking back I think this did happen one other time, not recently though, maybe a year or two ago. Oddly I think it too was when I put the car in reverse, in that same spot. Maybe it's a ghost that lives there.

The rest of the day was actually pretty good. I had my fun class. I didn't originally plan to, but I wound up doing a homework that's due Tuesday. Which is good I did it then, as it took about three hours, which is nearly 100% of the time I would have had Monday to do it. So now I'm free to play and relax instead.

Tomorrow will be a bit weird. I'll be going to school because my pre-ordered birthday game is having a test this weekend. This time I can test at school and see how I manage under 'ideal' public wireless conditions. The requirements seem to have been lowered too, so it's possible they did some optimization that wasn't in the previous build. I still expect my system will struggle and not be the best, but as long as I can play at some playable settings that will let me experience the game and collect gear for the day I can upgrade the laptop and do the super serious demanding stuff.

I guess though all I can do is hope. Hope the car is actually ok and nothing is wrong. Hope the game plays better on my system. Hope the connection at school tomorrow run ok. And continue to hope that help, donations, and opportunity come and with that I can hang on until better days.

Day 3860 - 1/25 - Okish

Today was not entirely what I'd hoped for. The first half of the day was pretty bad. I'd expected to get into my game test at 9 AM, but the servers were slammed and I didnt get to play until just after noon.

After that though I had a super fun time in the test. My system still struggles quite a bit, but they have done some optimizing since the last test and I'm not struggling quite as badly. The struggle is still pretty bad though. Not so bad I think I need to cancel the pre-order, but I certainly will be playing in a limited form compared to what it's supposed to be experienced at.

I may have been a bit short in radiator fluid in the car. I have the tiniest radiator it's hard to tell. I have nearly a gallon of stuff so I put some more in. I think I put in two to four (measuring) cups worth before it was full. It hasn't had any more weirdness, so I hope it's fine.

I guess overall I feel ok. There is a weird mixed feeling in the air. It kind of feels like spring, but it is still super cold and feels like winter too.

I guess as usual all I can do is try to hang on. Hopefully help and donations come. And I can hang on emotionally and physically until better days.

Day 3861 - 1/26 - Disappointing day

Today was a pretty disappointing day. Nothing bad happened, it's just that a ton of people were at the library and the bandwidth was basically immediately crippled to the point of not being able to game. Normally I have two to four hours before that happens and I was hoping to do some more fun test time this weekend with my pre-ordered birthday game. It did finally calm down in the evening, but I only got about 30 minutes compared to what I'd hoped would be two hours or more.

I didn't really do much at all today. The bandwidth issue not only stopped most gaming, but pretty heavily crippled show watching as well.

I guess the day wasn't terrible, but it did serve as yet another reminder of the basic things I don't have. But I try to hang on. And hopefully help and opportunity will come, and I can hang on until better days.

Day 3862 - 1/27 - Normal load

Today there as a normal load at the library in the morning, so I got to spend a couple hours playing my super fun pre-ordered birthday game weekend test. It's sad to see the test time close. I want to keep playing. But, I guess it's only about 3.5 weeks until launch.

I didn't get to play or watch much after that, as bandwidth was hurt pretty badly in the afternoon. I did watch a few shows in lower resolution, and did play just a little.

While not amazing, today was about as good as could be expected. I got to play my super fun game, and confirmed it can both be played from the library and the food store. I also got an actual number for frame rate and it's about 20 FPS constantly, though that doesn't diminish my wish that I could play it on a new laptop at triple that speed with higher resolution settings. But it works. For now. And with what my life is at the moment that is enough. But I will still hope help and opportunity come, and try to hang on until it does.

Day 3863 - 1/28 - Maybe warming

Today I've felt a bit warmer than usual. Maybe the world is warming up. I'm not sure though, because my throat has been extremely rough feeling and I've been sneezing, so it's possible I've picked up another cold and I'm running a bit of a fever.

I guess today was ok. I had the class I TA for, but it let out an hour early for them to do some basic shooting. So I spent that time and the next few hours editing some game footage I'd gotten over the weekend from my pre-ordered birthday game to post online. It was actually kind of fun, but more work than I'd expected, and it made me miss the fun game. It's fine though. Hopefully the footage helps some people decide some things.

That was really it though. When that as done I only had a few hours free before the evening class. I didn't really have much time at all to watch shows or play. I may purposely take some time off tomorrow to do so. At most I'd get about six hours, so I probably will since I have some bigger projects coming up that I'll need to work on.

No donations today, but nothing really bad happened either. The car took about one second to start in the evening. I think it did that once yesterday too. But out of four starts a day I'm not taking that as a sign of something bad yet. So I try to stay hopeful. I hope help and donations come. And hopefully I can hang on until better days.

Day 3864 - 1/29 - Rough throat

Today my throat is very rough and messed up feeling. I lost about four hours of sleep last night, so that didn't help at all. Hopefully I can relax and get better before it gets worse.

I'm sneaking this writing in during class because I had a bit of a late start due to needing to finish a bit of work to turn in first.

Today will hopefully be a day of rest and relaxing. I have some projects to work on in the next few days, so I'll be pretty busy. As always I try to stay hopeful help and opportunity come, and I can hang on until it does.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008-2019
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)

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