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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 569

Day 3977 - 5/22 - Feel oddly abandoned

Today I feel oddly abandoned. For some reason my mind keeps remembering a trip to the zoo I had with people probably 14 years ago where I had no money for food. And since we'd spent more than double the time there I thought we would, they were all eating at a restaurant while I had nothing. I guess I just felt abandoned then because I was so very hungry and none of the three adults who were there offered to buy me even the smallest food to hold me over. I think the two worst feelings in the world are being hungry and not having food when others do, and having something (usually a gift) that you love taken away or broken.

It probably didn't help that the connection at school was the worst ever in the morning. It seems to just be getting worse over time. It must have literally been disconnecting me for 30 seconds to a minute about every 5-10 minutes for the first three hours. It was just insanely bad. It was getting so bad I just gave up trying to play.

But mostly I had fun in my new MMO expansion today. I played probably more than I would have in a home, but I needed to distract myself from my sads. In the back of my mind I was constantly thinking and feeling sad things. And I had to focus on my game to even try and drown out the sads.

I guess overall today was ok. I made it through. I continue to be exhausted for seemingly no reason. I think it must just be overwhelming stress. Someone gave me some vitamins, as I thought it might be a lack of nutrition, but after three days of taking them I feel no better or worse. Not much of a test, I know, but I'm not in a position to take them every day without end.

But I guess I survived the day. And each day is another chance. So I continue to hope. I hope help and donations come in time. And hopefully I can hang on until better days.

Day 3978 - 5/23 - Two stars

Today I am feeling pretty exhausted. I think it's mostly just depression today. I had a pretty difficult struggle with the connection again, so I will definitely just risk the public library tomorrow. It's nowhere near as fast, but it's a lot more predictable if the connection is or is not going to be playable. That is a lot better than one minute off for about every 3-5 on, unpredictably dropping. That is just frustrating as hell.

Mostly I played my game while TAing. Since I'm not paid, and it's apparently now I never will be, I've lost a lot of interest. I did say a few important things, so I know I am still needed and appreciated. Though I have to know that myself, as my professor never acknowledges it.

On my way to my car after class I looked up at the stars. There were only two visible in the entire sky. It didn't rain today, but the rain is supposed to stay through the weekend, so I would guess the black sky was due to rain clouds.

I guess today wasn't terrible, but it certainly wasn't as good as it could have been, even for a homeless day. But I guess I made it through ok, and so I try to continue to hang on to hope that help and donations come, and that I can make it to better days ahead.

Day 3979 - 5/24 - Sad and cold

Today I was mostly sad and cold. There were no donations or other help, so I was worried about the bills all day. I suppose in good news the public library connection was good enough I got to play my MMO without too much trouble, and watch a couple of shows at decent resolution, so that was happy. But, as usual, it was way too cold. I did make it through most of my day by putting on an extra undershirt, but by late afternoon I had to put on my hoodie too, and even then I was slightly clenching my teeth from cold.

I guess, overall, the day wasn't too terrible. Though being a homeless day many things did not happen that I'd have liked. But as long as that is a thing I really can't control it. So I try to hang on to hope, and hopefully I will make it through to better days.

Day 3980 - 5/25 - Sunny, but cold

Today the weather has remained clear, as it kind of was yesterday, but it was still unusually chilly for this time of year. Maybe, hopefully, by next week it will turn warm again.

I guess today was pretty good. The connection at the food store was strong enough to play, and the library was mostly strong and stable enough to play and watch shows. I did start to go bad in the early afternoon, but with as bad as it's been lately I expected it to go bad by noon, so I did everything in game I'd pretty much hoped I'd get to, so it was fine it was dying at that point.

Someone mentioned on the social page they appreciated my posts, so that was super nice to hear. I didn't get any help or donations, so it was nice to see that at least my posts are appreciated. And I made some guildies in the game laugh, which was nice. They don't hardly talk at all, which is odd since there are usually 20-30 people on. I guess it's good, as I prefer quiet time, but it seems unusual for that many people.

I guess I survived today. And my laptop is still ok, so I got to play and watch stuff. I don't know how I'd manage if I lost it. The car is still hanging on too, which is equally as important, but for physical reasons. So with my laptop helping me emotionally, and my car physically, I managed to hang on for another day. And so hopefully that can continue and I can make it to better days.

Day 3981 - 5/26 - Freezing sprinkles

Today the rain has come back. Last night and this morning it was absolutely pouring for about 30 minutes. The rest of the time it's been a very light sprinkle. With the rain has come a freezing cold. I had to put on all my layers at the library by just about afternoon. I really don't get why they always keep it so cold here.

I guess the day overall was ok. I basically did all that I wanted in my game for the day, though by just after one it started disconnecting me every 10-15 minutes and by about three it was almost every 5 and I just gave up trying to play.

I'm pretty sad and worried about almost all the things. I'm pretty hungry too. Today would be a good day for a medium speed food, but I have no cash, and I spent the last of my gift card the last time I was sad a few weeks ago. I have a tiny snack for later, but I don't want to make a special trip to the food store for more food. Plus, I have just enough left in food stamp money, so I don't want to risk more and run out.

Overall a more sad day, but I suppose I made it through. So I continue to try to hope help and donations come, and that I can make it to better days.

Day 3982 - 5/27 - Maybe spring is back

Today started extremely dark and gray. It looked like it would be pouring later in the day, but instead by noon it turned sunny and even started to get warm. It's possible spring may finally be coming back.

It was a bad day in that I had to be at the food store all day. But I guess it was pretty good in that the connection held strong enough and I did what I wanted and even a bit more.

There were no donations, so I was sad and worried most of the day about bills, but I guess I made it through ok. Tomorrow will be back to regular, at least in theory, so hopefully things will be ok. For the moment I worry about everything, but I try to hang on for help and donations, and hopefully I can make it to better days.

Day 3983 - 5/28 - Shorts, not shorts

Today the weather can't make up its mind. I started with shorts on and the sky was dark gray and covered with rain clouds, but when I got on campus and was walking to the shower I got heavily sprinkled on. I'd brought my pants, just in case, so after my shower I put those on instead of the shorts. But then it was clear bright blue skies with hardly any clouds at all. I guess I'll try shorts again tomorrow if it stays clear today.

Today is just getting started. No donations or help so far, so I'm very worried about the bills. But it should be a usual at school day, so I will TA (and probably play during lecture), and then play and watch shows the rest of my day. Hopefully I can stay distracted from getting too sad about things, and in time help will come and I can make it to better days.

Week 570

Day 3984 - 5/29 - Seeing the danger

Today I took my blood pressure. I've known it's been super bad, and I wonder if that's what's causing my exhaustion. The testing station is up half a flight of stairs and back down a little ramp, a very short walk but enough to get things moving in my body up from my normal resting state. I tire very easily these days. I only waited 15 seconds after sitting before testing and it shows maybe how very bad things are. The reading showed 175/110 with my heart rate over 80 bpm. I've never seen it that high or even knew it could be. I waited a little bit and it tested lower. I waited about a minute more and it was probably about where it normally is around 150/90 at 60-65 bpm.

I see now maybe why the doctor was so worried. I knew it was bad, as it's always bad when I'm not on my meds, but seeing it that high after just about a 50 foot walk was scary. I think maybe too the machine wasn't quite reading correctly, as it pinched way harder than it normally would during those first tests.

Well, things are what they are. Right now critical needs are $40 for car insurance, basically due now, and $200 for registration due in about 1.5 months. After that the first 'spare' really has to go to contacts. I may have a lead on an optometrist, but with probably needing to pay for the visit, and a single box with three pair costing about $25, it's not looking into further until I have money. But with the current pair being at least four months old the need is pretty critical. Thankfully they seem to be hanging on ok, so hopefully that will continue until they can be replaced.

The school connection was again garbage, dropping me repeatedly multiple times an hour. I again contacted the people about it and maybe they can find the issue. It seems unlikely though as she says nothing changed during break, so they don't know why it would have changed. And I know it's not my laptop, as it doesn't always happen, doesn't happen at all at the public library, and I can see the same failures to connect if I try to connect on my tablet.

But none of these things are things I can control. So I try my best to rest and relax. Hopefully I won't get scared to death. And hopefully help and donations come in time, and I can hang on until they do.

Day 3985 - 5/30 - Dash bunnies

Today when I got to school and parked I noticed the car next to me had two super cute bunnies on the dash. They were probably 5" big each. It made me smile and was totally unexpected.

When I went to settle in before the first class of a day of TAing I got another surprise. I discovered that all three classes I would have been TAing for were canceled. I don't know what's going on, but I'd guess the professor decided to do something related to her new job and just blew the day off and didn't bother messaging me about it.

I immediately re-sorted my activities for the day in my brain and planned things. Unfortunately a lot of the plans were killed when the connection effectively died completely between 11 and 2. I could barely connect at all, couldn't game at all, and could barely watch a buffered show at the lowest resolution. A lot of my game plans were ruined, which I guess doesn't matter, as it seems no one was doing the big activities I'd hoped to do when I did get a chance. The loss of time put me in a sad mood and I lost a lot of joy when playing in the afternoon.

But it seems weird to feel sad about. If I were in a home it would have been what I would have done. I'd have played for a few hours in the morning, then taken a few hours break in the afternoon, then played a few more hours before dinner time. I think it's because it wasn't something that I'd planned to do, and my sad life limitations had forced the issue, which made it sad and depressing that it wasn't my choice.

I guess overall the day was ok and wasn't too terrible. I'm still very worried about money and my health, but I can't control either, especially with those things being connected. So I try to hope for help and donations. I try to hang on to hope in general. And hopefully I can hang on until better days.

Day 3986 - 5/31 - Not there

Today I had kind of a funny thing happen in the morning. The food store used to have a blood pressure machine where you could check your weight, so I went into the little room it should have been in. Instead of the empty room with the machine there were like three people sitting in chairs, the furniture was rearranged, there was furniture, and the side doors were open to rooms with blood taking chairs. I was like uuuuuhhh. Apparently I guess it's now a satellite office for the blood testing place a couple miles away. It was kind of funny because I walked in and expected an empty room with a machine, but instead it was totally different and kind of felt like when you walk into an unlocked bathroom and someone is in there using it.

I guess it's not too big a deal. I can check my blood pressure at school. Besides, the less soda experiment I'm doing will likely have little to no effect. I've tried cutting back before and it's had zero impact on my blood pressure or weight.

I didn't get to play at the food store in the morning. The connection was completely dead there. I guess it's not a huge deal, as I had offline stuff I could do during that time.

The library was freezing by about noon, which is really disappointing since it's basically shorts weather outside. But the connection was strong enough, and I played basically as much as I'd hoped and expected, so I guess that was good.

I still feel pretty sad though today. I'm very tired. I'm hungry for better food. I was way too cold. I guess I survived the day though. I did have my car. I did have my laptop. And I did have a connection. So I try to hope that help and donations come and I can pay the bills in time. I try to hang on to hope in general. And hopefully tomorrow will be a better day.

Day 3987 - 6/1 - Probably as expected

Today felt a bit frustrating. I did get to play at the food store in the morning, barely. It was laggy a lot of the time. And I did play at the library, though it started lagging by noon and I was dropping pretty repeatedly by 1:30. I guess all in all that was pretty much what I expected. Baasically each week lately the library has lost any real capability to connect as early as noon.

I wanted more. I wanted not a homeless life. I wanted to be able to exercize a little, eat cooked food, control the temperature and volume of things around me. But that is not my life. I have a sad homeless life with little to no control over anything. But I have games. And I have my car. And so I tried my best to feel ok and hang on.

I continue to hope help and donations come in time to pay the bills. I continue to hope for positive change and a future. And I try my best to hang on until it comes.

Day 3988 - 6/2 - Disconnection

Today was pretty bad. The connection at the food store was ok in the morning, so I played a tiny bit there. But from about 11 on the library got very rough, and from just about 1 on it was completely disconnecting me every few minutes. And by about 2:30 the connection was completely blacking out and not even connecting to the network.

I couldn't do much all day. I barely got the minimal play for dailies and even to get that I had to struggle through lag. And I didn't even get through more than half of a show I expected to see all of.

I guess though I live. My laptop lives. My car lives. And with that I can continue and hopefully things will get better. (Though tomorrow I expect the school connection to be totally dead between 11-2 as it was Thursday.) So I try to continue to hope. Hopefully help will come and I can pay the bills. Hopefully I get lots of good sleep and not feel exhausted. Hopefully tomorrow I will be warm. And hopefully I can make it to better days ahead.

Day 3989 - 6/3 - It's not there anymore

Today I felt a bit weird. There were some shows I was watching and they talked about loss and change and I think that's the hardest thing with being homeless. Not only can you not just go back home, your home isn't there anymore.

I thought about that, and places I felt like I belonged, or had a connection with, in times past. While I still remember the 70s, they are gone. I think there may be one or two places still around in this whole area that were around when I was young. And even then the things around them, and in the cases of things like malls, what is inside is totally different. The 80s are gone. The 90s are gone. And I can even see evidence of the 2000s starting to be gone. The places I knew, the places I grew up, they aren't there anymore.

I think part of what people see in my writing when they say I am strong is my ability to adapt. I see the change. I acknowledge it. Because, like it or not, you can't not acknowledge it. Those times you knew are gone. Many of the places are gone. You have to adapt and adjust to what is new... or I suppose you become a prisoner of your past; times and places which no longer exist outside of your memories.

I guess the day was ok enough. I was hoping to do a fancy thing in my game, but the connection was bad most of the day, so I just stuck to basic things. By the time I felt it was strong enough to try I looked for about an hour and I didn't find anyone doing it. But I guess I had an ok time. And I watched a few shows. There were no help or donations, so I'm still very concerned about the now overdue car insurance and the upcoming registration due in about 1.25 months. They seem like insurmountable things. But I have to try to continue to hope. And hopefully help and donations will come in time. And hopefully I can continue to hang on.

Day 3990 - 6/4 - Big day for them

Today it is finally warm and summery. I am not only in my shorts, but have taken off my hoodie and outer shirt. I expect I'll put on my outer shirt soon, but I don't expect I'll need my hoodie again until I leave at night.

I have the class I TA for today and it's a big day for them. They have a super important project due, so hopefully there will be about 15 projects to watch. They seem ok so far, not super amazing, so I don't have very high hopes for the quality, but they should be fun at least.

No donations yet, but I am trying to stay hopeful help will come in time to pay all the things. Hopefully class will be fun, and hopefully the connection will not be bad and stupid after and I can play and watch shows. And hopefully I can hang on until better days.

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

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