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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 553

Day 3865 - 1/30 - Wiped out

Today I am wiped out. I have no energy. I would guess that's due to my cold. I still barely have symptoms. I have a sore throat, a very rare sneeze, and mild headache. I suppose my lungs feel dry ye congested, but that might be due to my throat messing up the air. But I have no energy. I've felt like I was going to pass out all day. I even got in a super creative mood and started a homework assignment due two Mondays from now and after 2.5 hours working on it my brain was done (even though the lab was open for 45 more minutes.)

But I guess nothing bad happened. Both the car and my laptop acted 100% normal (for their age.) So I guess that is something. As always, it seems all I can do is try to hang on until help and opportunity come.

Day 3866 - 1/31 - Plugged and dizzy

Today, for most of the day, my ears have been plugged and ringing pretty badly, especially the right one. It was so bad that for a few hours I had to move very carefully because I'd get super dizzy if I moved. Now, in the nighttime, it's only about 15% plugged, but the ringing is pretty extreme on the right side. Hopefully it will calm down enough to sleep in a bit.

Overall I'm pretty exhausted. I've been really too tired to almost do anything, wheezing and being out of breath just sitting still. The oddest part is when I cough I feel like I'm improving. Like the cough is getting out yuck and clearing things out.

I guess today was ok. Class was a demonstration, so it was meh. After, I worked on a super important project. I almost finished. I have maybe four or six hours of nit-picking and it's done. Which is great, as my estimate yesterday was that I'd need about 20 hours to get to where I got to today (in six), so I guess the bulk of it went much quicker as I progressed.

With January over I have no outstanding possible paid surveys. And I think my phone time will be out very soon, if it's not already. There were no donations or other help today. I suppose in good news my birthday pre-ordered game is having another test this weekend. So I can hopefully play my super fun game a bit more. Though my progress won't carry through. But I always say, 'If you are only playing a game for levels or loot you are playing for the wrong reason.' It's odd though that games which have those tend to be the ones I enjoy the most. I guess it's just enjoying the feeling of accomplishment, with the acceptance that they will go away eventually. (When I leave the game or it's shut down.)

But for now I try and hang on to what is good, what I still have, and try to hang on until better days.

Day 3867 - 2/1 - Probably won't get paid back

Today I did something I hope I won't regret, but have a sad feeling that I will. Someone asked if I had any cash. Apparently they forgot their wallet and bus pass. I gave them all the cash I had to get home, which likely wasn't enough for a day pass. (Which was more than half a week's worth of gas for me.) I had a class with this person probably three years ago. They haven't spoken to me since. I doubt I will get paid back as they promised. After I gave them the cash I instantly regretted it, thinking I should have just let them call their parents or sister, as I recall they only live about 30-45 minutes away by car. If I don't get paid back I will very rapidly deeply regret giving it to them because my getting help is extremely rare these days.

Again there was one slow car start, but only the one out of four total today. Other than that I suppose the day was pretty good. I spent most of the day playing in the test weekend for my pre-ordered birthday game. I may play a bit from the library tomorrow and Sunday, but after that I'll have to wait three weeks until launch. My laptop has a pretty hard time running the game, but it's super fun and I'm glad I could get it.

My cold is still beating me up pretty badly. Again my ears were plugged and have been ringing all day. Again there was about an hour they were so plugged I got pretty dizzy. Besides trying to relax I don't know what else I could do to recover. I have no spare money for food, only the gift card for the fast food place, which I may use tomorrow to get some fresher healthy food. (Leaving me one meal left if I'm not mistaken.) But besides that there isn't anything I can do to try to get healthier.

As always it seems I am in the hands of fate, and all I can do is hope help comes, and try to hang on until better days.

Day 3868 - 2/2 - Slanted rain

Today was ok, but not quite what I'd hoped for. It started at the food store where I played a bit more of my game test weekend. The library wouldn't let me play for some reason, which is odd because I didn't have much trouble playing last weekend from there.

The only thing of real interest was the weather. At one point in the day I guess it had gotten super windy and super rainy. The rain was falling at a 45 degree angle. It was actually really pretty.

I tried to recover, but I'm still super sick. My ears weren't ringing quite as badly. I did use a meal from my gift card to get a healthier cooked meal, so hopefully that will help. But there were no donations and no opportunities, so I still worry. But, as always, it seems all I can do is try to hang on until better days.

Day 3869 - 2/3 - Air dry

Today really the only news is that I air dried most of my cloths. I should probably make a mental note to do that if I can't wash during a month. Maybe even do an air dry every other week if I can since the only real cost is the $0.25 since it's less than a block from the library.

The sad news is that, for whatever reason, I couldn't play my fun pre-ordered birthday game from the library either today or yesterday. It seems something may have changed in the net code which prevented a connection. I prey it changes back at launch so I can play from there. It's unlikely weekend library play would be more than a few hours a day, so I'd already be limited if I could play, but not able to play at all would be terrible. And six months from now when we are back to summer break it would be devastating.

I'm still super sick. My ears are ringing a bit, I'm sneezing, and had a headache almost all day. Hopefully I'm getting better, but I really don't know if I am.

No donations or other help, so that is very sad and worrisome. But I guess all I can do is try to hang on until better days.

Day 3870 - 2/4 - Yay for paid back

Today was ok. I wanted to do some editing of game footage I took over the weekend for my super fun game, but because of the file size I have to wait. I was supposed to do work on a project I'm supposed to finish in the morning, but I have just been too sad lately to do any work on it. It's not really due until Thursday morning, so I have plenty of time.

The only really important thing was that the person surprised me by paying me back the $4. So I don't have to worry about losing that. The weird thing was they asked why I'm always 'here' playing games. I kind of ignored the question. Partly because I didn't want to answer, and partly because I was eating. But then they spent the next three hours lying on a nearby couch chair messing around on their phone. It's like, sure, going back by bus to their home couldn't be done if they just came from a class and are waiting for another, but why ask why I play games and then spend hours probably doing nothing real yourself? Weird.

It rained quite a bit today, but not on me. It was when I was inside or under cover. But I'm still super sick. My ears are still ringing, lungs still coughing and congested, and most of the day my ear was plugged and could hardly hear anything.

There were no donations, but I guess nothing bad happened either, so there's that. So I try to hang on to the little that was good, and hopefully help and donations come, and I can hang on until better days.

Day 3871 - 2/5 - Too much cold

Today there is too much cold. It's super cold outside; thankfully it's not raining. But my cold seems to be getting worse. My ears are plugged and hurting or ringing nearly all the time, I have headaches, and the congestion in my lungs and sneezing are the worst ever. I spent too much on cold medicine, so hopefully that will help.

I'm a bit rushed today as I'm kind of behind on the project that's due Thursday. But hopefully I can have time to rest and relax later.

But, as always, all it seems I can do is try to hang on and hopefully help and donations come. And hopefully I can make it to better days.

Week 554

Day 3872 - 2/6 - Freezing cold

Today it was literally freezing cold. When I woke up the car was frozen and it took a few minutes of defrosting before I could see out of the windows. The odd thing is that by the time I'd gotten to school and showered the evidence of the night before was almost entirely gone. All the cars at school were defrosted, and there were no clouds in the sky. It was completely clear.

I guess today was ok. I don't really remember much. I am so completely and totally exhausted. I don't know if that is from the cold, the cold medicine, overall increase in stress, or combination of things.

I did do a new free to play game for a few hours. It's ok. It's not really my thing because it's a competitive PvP game and I'm not into that. I may continue to try it for a bit over the next two weeks while I wait for my pre-ordered birthday present to launch, but I don't expect to continue after.

No donations or anything good happened today besides the new free to play game, which I guess was pretty fun. So I try to remember the good times and hang on until better days.

Day 3873 - 2/7 - Tummy sick

Today I feel pretty sick from my cold, but there has been an ever increasing tummy sick feeling since lunch. I don't know if it was a bad lunch, bad dinner, or just an effect of my cold, but I don't feel great. I'm sure I'll be ok in the morning, but right now I feel pretty bad.

Emotionally I feel slightly on the better side. The morning class was good, and I have a bit of time off for the moment. The next big thing is due in two weeks, so I can casually start to work on that this weekend, but it can wait until lab in the class if I wanted a break over the weekend.

There was no help or opportunity today, so I feel very sad about that. For the moment I'm ok, but there are things coming in just a couple of months that will rapidly squeeze me into very bad spots. Not to mention the monthly car insurance, gas, and contacts all ticking away day by day.

But I try not to worry. I have no control, so all I can do is hope help comes, and that I can hang on until it does.

Day 3874 - 2/8 - Goodbye big tooth

Today I lost one of my bigger teeth. It was a mix of relief and deep sadness. It's been corrupt and wiggly for more than six months, maybe close to a couple of years since I first notice it was damaged. It was the back most one on the bottom left. It wasn't a wisdom tooth, as I'm pretty sure that one was coming in sideways and stopped growing at half its full size. And really all my life the two above that tooth have been crashing into it because my jaw is very small. So it really wasn't surprising it was corrupt, cracked, and eventually surrendered.

The scientist in me wanted to keep it. It had list 25% of its mass on one side, but remained mostly intact other than that. But there was a long tear along the side, completely exposing the bone cartilage on the inside. I suppose that is why it lost its status of alive and was rejected by the gum. But the scientist saw the mostly intact cartilage and thought it could be used to someday clone a new tooth.

I kept the tooth wrapped in a towel for a few hours before saying goodbye and throwing it away. At the rate organ regrowth is progressing it seems we are probably still decades away from something like teeth. Even though I hopefully still have nearly 40 years left, it might not be enough. So I threw it away. And it was sad to think I accept and consider myself disposable and undesirable and that broken and corrupt things should be thrown away and replaced.

Since then I've felt very detached. I wish I was not me, so I could hug me and say I am not disposable, that I'm not undesirable, and that I'm not unworthy of having things everyone else has.

Overall I feel neutral and numb. I am more ok with it than I should be. It felt like when I was young and lost a baby tooth after it being lose and wiggly for so long. That it's fine and things will be ok. And I know, given enough money it can be. At least physically. Emotionally I will always feel this loss, shame, and deep sadness.

But it reminds me there are things in my life I have no control of. And that all I can do is hang on to what is left, and hope that help, donations, and opportunity come, and that I can hang on until it does.

Day 3875 - 2/9 - Surprise maybe test

Today I got an invite to a game test that I don't remember signing up for. The thing is that the test closes very late Sunday night / Monday morning (at something like 1 AM) and with as slow as the library connection is I don't know if I can get the client in time. I was downloading all day and only got 31 of 42 gig. At school that probably would have been an hour, but at the library... it seems so far there is a 50/50 chance I'll get it before noon when the bandwidth is so bogged down that I couldn't play. I guess it really doesn't matter though, as it's a modern real-world type shooter. I do like the game mechanics, skills, and loot system, but as a modern real-world shared world shooter there is a very high chance if I played more than an hour a day, especially if I did it several days in a row, it would trigger my PTSD and fear of death. Even a sci-fi shooter when I'm shooting aliens and beasts have a chance of triggering it if my character dies too much.

Other than that it was a pretty regular day. I'm still horribly sick with headaches, throat and lung congestion, and an upset tummy all day. I did rest and was as relaxed as I could be, but this cold seems to be hanging on and not going away.

As always, it seems all I can really do is try to recover, hope help, donations, and opportunity come, and try to hang on as best as I can in the meantime.

Day 3876 - 2/10 - Half sandwich

Today I had barely one sandwich all day. I guess I miscalculated how much food I had gotten yesterday and there was only enough for what would normally be one sandwich. So I split the food between the two breads I had gotten. I didn't feel super hungry, so it's ok. I need to start cutting back a lot anyways as this stupid government shutdown continues. I guess the 15th is an important day for decisions on that.

Overall I was pretty extremely sad today. I had almost no bandwidth, so I could barely do anything. I did get to try the test game, but almost all day it would disconnect me after one minute. At the end of the day I got 15 minutes and that was really enough. My system had a bit of a struggle running the game, as expected, yet still depressing, as it's yet another game I would struggle with. It's also ok in that even in just that 15 minutes time I was bothered by the regular people being killed. But, I would have liked to have had the chance to play something different for a few hours.

The last of my money was put into gas too. Yet another thing reminding me things are running out. Gas is running out, food is running out, bills coming up; it all seemed like reminders of my life being terrible and just slipping further and further away.

Day 3877 - 2/11 - Super depressed maybe

Today I think I am super depressed. The morning when I did my TA thing felt ok, but pretty rapidly after that I've been on a steady decline of mood. I think part of it was the morning choice of food, where I have to start being super aware of how much I'm spending, and spend less on food. But after, I noticed my backpack rip is getting really bad (also reminding me of my teeth). I really need to replace that, but I don't have the $12 it would take to mail. I tried to play games, but nothing interested me, and now being distant from my pre-ordered birthday game, having not played in a few weeks and it not releasing until 1.5 weeks from now, I am pretty saddened both by not being able to play and thinking of the lower frame rate and settings I'll have to play at compared to everyone else.

I think too maybe I'm sad with this week's post coming up. It seems each week people care less and less about my sad story. I try to stay positive and hopeful, but with help becoming more rare it is becoming very difficult to hang on. And even just a little help would go a very long way.

So I try to stay positive. I try to hang on. But it is becoming harder each day as it seems I have less and less to look forward to.

Day 3878 - 2/12 - Another cold day

Today is another cold day. Not freezing like the past couple of days, but certainly on the cusp of it.

I'm pretty ridiculously hungry even just a few days of about 85% normal food. I don't know how I'll manage to cut back to 75% or even 50% to try and save enough to have food in March if things continue. I'd forgotten the early days of having one can of soup as my only food. I'd forgotten how hungry I get. And back then I weighed probably 12% less than I do now (so I wouldn't be as hungry in theory.)

I'm super worried about the bill things and not having any money at all. But really everything physical is out of my control. I can only try to control my schoolwork, my gaming, my job searching, but everything else seems out of my control. All it seems I can do is try to hang on until help, donations, and opportunity come.

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

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