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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 12: Unknown Beyond

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.

View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 1 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 2 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 3 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 4 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 5 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 6 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 7 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 8 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 9 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 10 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 11 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 12 .pdf paperback book
These include the Table of Contents, Glossary and links, all weeks, all pictures, and index.

Week 595

Day 4159 - 11/20 - Early homework

Today was ok. Class was busy. I couldn't play through any of it, but it was fun and interesting. I did my homework after. It only took an hour. It's due Friday night instead of Sunday, so I didn't have a lot of choice in finishing it early. But, that means I can either get a touch ahead, or just spend the weekend relaxing.

I guess today was pretty good. There was interaction in class a bit, so I feel a bit more connected and a part of things. A few people were nice to me, so that helped my mood too. And though I didn't do a lot in my game, I did get an important piece of gear. It's from a raid I don't get a lot of chances to do, so now I'm kind of just down to one piece I need to complete a big goal.

But there were no donations or help, so I'm still extremely worried. Classes are already filling, so I really should be spending my saved school money to sign up. But I may need to unfortunately need to use it to pay car insurance, and all I can do is keep waiting. Hopefully dad will send cash next weekend for Turkey weekend and I can at least catch up on what is overdue and use the school money for school. Hopefully more help will come too. If not... things will get very bad quickly. Not only am I behind on car insurance, but the yearly web space bill is coming in about a month. And I only have like half of what I need to pay that. If that has to be spent to pay for car insurance...

Day 4160 - 11/21 - No emotional defenses

Today it feels like I have no emotional defenses. I'm not sure what is going on. If I had like three medications for psychological issues, I'd say it felt like I took too many of one and none of the others. I feel exhausted, hyper, super depressed, like I'm going to start laughing, and like I'm going to start crying. All the extremes, and all at the same time. In fact, two or three times today I smelled yummy foods and became very sad. When I was microing lunch someone came by with a hamburger and fries to get ketchup and napkins and I almost started crying because it smelt so yummy. Yesterday I mentioned in game when someone asked how I was doing that I felt sad and wanted curly fries, and someone replied "you need to eat something better." And that almost made me cry. Not so much because it felt like an attack, but that someone reacted like that instead of reacting out of kindness or concern and asked something like, 'when was the last time you could have them?'

But I suppose I barely made it through the day, and now it's night. And so it is basically over even though I can't sleep for three or four more hours. There were no donations or help, so I am incredibly worried about what will happen with the bills. But all I can do is try to hang on. Hopefully help will come in the next week for Turkey day. Hopefully I can continue to hang on until they do.

Day 4161 - 11/22 - Feeling unaccomplished

Today I felt pretty sad. I felt like a failure. I felt like I can't accomplish anything. And I suppose what's worse is I feel like I won't be able to accomplish anything if I tried something different. It feels like I wanted to paint this beautiful picture full of colors, but all I had was gray, and a single broken old brush. No matter what I really wanted, what I imagined, how hard I might try, it felt like it would never be the beautiful color picture I imagined. And so I didn't really try much of anything.

It's not how my day really went though. I chatted with a few people briefly. A few asked for help - people I've never met before. I gave some chips to someone (of a flavor I don't like from a multi-pack.) Yet these positive interactions didn't really matter or register in my mind. Because I still felt incapable of succeeding at anything.

There was no help or donations today. There were a couple of well-wishers, so that was nice. But without help another day has come and gone putting me one more day behind on the car insurance for the month, and one closer to the next. And we are rapidly approaching the web space bill.

I still hope help comes in time, but this year more than any other I fear it may not. So little has come this year so far.

Day 4162 - 11/23 - Tiny help

Today started with a big bear. There was some water display at the food store with a really big stuffed bear sitting on top. He must have been like three feet tall from butt to head. (He's in a sitting position.) I hugged him when I passed by, and then hugged him again on my way past to a different isle. It made me laugh.

I went to the bank before the library. A few weeks ago a manager from a local branch called and left a message. I contacted the bank asking what that was about, as she didn't say, and apparently it was to try and help with the charge they do every month. I've tried contacting her a few times about it, but she was never there. So this morning I gave up and checked my options at my local branch. The person changed the account so it's a lot lower fee, and actually set the fee to be waived for a few months, so that helps a bit.

The rest of the day wasn't great. It wasn't really bad, but it wasn't good. I actually had a solid and stable connection, so I pretty much played all day. But guild chat was silent. And I didn't really group. I felt very alone and sad. By about 3 I was very much feeling like I wanted to play other things, but didn't really have anything else to play. I dabbled with the current CCG I sometimes play, but wasn't really into it. I watched a couple of shows after.

I had asked a few different chat groups for help with homework too. Only one person helped so far. It's really disappointing that no one seems to want to help. I even said it should take just five minutes and be pretty fun. It feels like no one cares.

So today I feel uncared for, a little abandoned, and with no help for the bills, very alone.

Day 4163 - 11/24 - Not the best

Today was not the best. There was no help or donations, so I am still extremely worried about bills. I felt very lonely and sad, so I ran junk videos in the background while playing. The connection was again strong and stable, so I did play all day, save for the hour I did homework.

But without help the same fears and worries dominated my mind. And there was no opportunity for change. But I try to remain hopeful.

Day 4164 - 11/25 - All the things are worse

Today it very much feels like all the things are worse. It really started last night while watching a new series. About once an hour my movie watching software crashed after visual and audio glitching. This has become somewhat frequent probably for about the half dozen times I've watched stuff. (Oddly up until this point it had only happened with series, not movies.) After its third time last night it refused to load the disk at all. I tried a serious frustrated cleaning and the problem persisted. My optical drive may be dead. I've tried different disks, both types, and three different softwares. At most it will 'load' the menu data, but then locks up when it should start playing the disk.

I'll try to clean the lasers again tonight after I'm done writing. Maybe a different, more careful and serious cleaning will work. If not I'd have to watch high-def stuff on my console, which is not the best as that requires unburying it from storage. Even if I did, it would have extremely limited viewing windows. The more likely case would be to watch old-school DVD versions of things on an external drive I got years ago. Assuming it still works. It's been in storage for probably eight years or more.

I again woke up much earlier than I needed to. Over an hour early today. That's been happening quite a bit since the time change. It's like it's impossible for me to sleep more than about 7.5 hours, and I'm averaging closer to 6.5-7.

During a chip snack I noticed the gum between two teeth felt... different. I checked in the mirror, but both looked pretty 'normal' in color. But sucking very hard at the spot did result in an iron taste. And checking I confirmed there was blood. It's almost certainly a small shatter in the area, probably between them were I can't see or feel. Yet another start of what will eventually be another lost tooth. Twelve now are highly corrupt or completely gone. I'm always on the verge of uncontrollably crying about that. I can't ever get that back. And it's a reminder of a lifelong story of abuse, hurting, neglect, and poverty.

After only three hours of playing and trying to relax at school I really didn't feel like playing anymore. I did, because there was nothing to watch due to the holidays, as well as an extremely massive headache preventing any kind of attempt to do something like homework.

So today just felt full of loss, reminders of previous loss, and being pushed furtherer towards failure and the eventual loss of what little is left. Both physically and emotionally. Inside and out.

Day 4165 - 11/26 - Smallest of victories

Today there are the smallest of victories. Last night I cleaned the optical drive, and it wasn't immediately fixed, but did show signs of improvement. I waited and cleaned it again and it again wasn't fixed, but did show an older error that is often fixed after a restart. I restarted and it worked fine. In fact, it was running the smoothest and quietest it has in years. I used to have a disk cleaner I'd do about every 25-30 hours, and I think I know where it is in storage, but for the moment it seems fine again.

Another very small victory is last night I fell asleep a bit early, and stayed asleep almost all the way until my alarm went off. I probably got about 8 hours of sleep, maybe a touch more.

I'm still extremely worried about bills. Things are looking very bad. I'm still hanging on to hope dad and hopefully others can send help for the holiday this weekend, but help these days is the rarest it's been. But all I can do is try to hang on to hope.

Week 596

Day 4166 - 11/27 - Closer

Today was ok. Class was busy, but fun, so it was ok. After, I decided to check on doing a homework that's due this weekend because my software options are extremely limited with what I have. To my surprise it only took about 45 minutes from start to finish, so one of two things are done. When I was playing I finally finished a kind of bigger goal I had, so that is finally done after a few weeks of trying.

I got some help from a friend too, so I am a bit closer to paying the bills. If dad sends a medium amount for Turkey weekend, in cash, I shooouuuld have enough to pay for web space and school registration like the saved monies were originally intended for. I won't have anything for car insurance, parking next quarter, or monthly gas, but the biggest most important bills would be covered. So, hopefully that will happen and I can worry about the others with the next help.

There is maybe a visit to the ex-house and ex-roomie on Friday, so I will finally be able to do another laundry. So that will be hugely helpful.

So for the moment I try to stay hopeful another couple of helps will come and the things will be covered. That would be a huge relief. But all I can do is try to hang on until they do.

Day 4167 - 11/28 - Chilled to the bone

Today at no point did I warm up. The food store was much colder than I anticipated. The connection was ok, so I did the minimal amount of playing and really not much else. I didn't trust the connection for group activities, nor was anyone really on. There were only about eight guildies on at any given time, and even in world events there were less than half the normal number of people.

I'm concerned dad may not be sending anything at all, as I sent an e-card and he replied with no mention of sending a physical card. He did send extra help around my birthday when contacts got so bad, so that may have tapped him out. Which would be pretty disastrous. A friend sent help, so if dad did send the normal cash amount more things would be ok. Without it I will have to make some drastic choices.

But today was what it was. I have all night to survive, but it seems all I can do is try to hang on until help comes. And hopefully it comes in time.

Day 4168 - 11/29 - Short day

Today was a short day. In the morning and early afternoon I was at the food store. The connection was ok, but not amazing. I got through my important dailies. There was no guild chatter, as again being a holiday most weren't around.

In the early evening I went to visit the ex-roomie. So I got to do an important laundry and we watched a few shows I don't have access too. I didn't get to do all the laundry, as there wasn't enough time, but I did enough that the important things will last a while. Certainly enough to cover me through the upcoming winter vacation. After that, well, my lack of shifting outer layers would be noticed. But for the few weeks until then, and during the break, I don't think any will notice the frequency of change, or care.

To the point when I went offline there were no donations or help, so I am still very worried and don't know if I should expect help from dad or not. So I continue to try to hang on until help comes. And hopefully I can hang on until it does.

Day 4169 - 11/30 - Ghost drain

Today was ok I guess. It started with a bit of a scare. At the food store I turned on my laptop and logged in. Instead of logging in it simply shut off. I turned it on again and the battery showed 0%. A few restarts of trying things and it never showed up correctly. However, since it worked fine plugged in I just stopped trying and continued on. When I got to the library I again messed with the battery, by shaking it vigorously and blowing off the connections. When I turned it on it showed the normal 96% and not charging/charging cycle it normally does.

I noticed later that my tablet was also extremely low, down to like 40%, which it really never gets that low without doing multiple heavy app things at the same time. So either the unusual cold messed with the batteries, or a ghost visited me last night and drained them a lot.

I checked what I had saved for the bills and added it to the help I got the other day. It was indeed enough to pay the yearly web space bill, so I did that. I have the gift card money left from my birthday, but I'm still uncertain what is safe. I should have already signed up for classes, especially with one of them being a first half of a two part class, as that will be difficult to take if I miss it. But as of tomorrow I'll be officially two months due on car insurance. They haven't been upset about that in the past when it's happened before, but that could very rapidly get extremely bad. There was no card from dad today, and while that doesn't mean he didn't send anything, without mentioning anything on Thursday, it is probably more than likely nothing was sent.

So I am still extremely worried about bills. The last of my gas money will go in the car tomorrow. And with things unpaid that still need to be, my future seems very sad and uncertain.

Day 4170 - 12/1 - Like wet dogs

Today the library smelt lightly of wet dogs all day. It's been super stormy since late yesterday, so everyone coming in was wet.

I guess the day was ok. The connection was ... enough. I did ok on some homework I had left to do, so I think I just need to spend Tuesday and Thursday finishing the projects. It's all lab on those days, so it should be plenty of time to do the projects.

I took a bit of a risk and signed up for class today. The one is only offered a couple of times a year, so I wanted to be sure I didn't miss it. I'll pay for things on Wednesday if there are no extreme threats from the car insurance. But now I am officially behind two payments. And while I've done that once or twice before with no consequences, I do really hope late Turkey day money is on the way from my dad, as well as maybe other help. Basically all I have in my gas tank is it. No other money for car insurance. None for more gas after the week runs out. Nothing.

But all I can do is hope things are ok. Hope I make the best choices I can. And hopefully more help will come in time.

Day 4171 - 12/2 - Feeling maybe brokenhearted

Today I am not really sure how to describe how I feel. I guess above all I feel sad, and worried that these homeless times are taking an extreme toll on my body. I feel like one day I may fall asleep and just not wake up due to the stress being too much.

Maybe it's because I woke up with a pretty bad headache, like from sleeping with my head and neck at a terrible angle. Or maybe it's because someone corrected me in a way that seemed unnecessary and hurtful. I don't think that's why I feel how I feel. Being wrong about the order of things that happened 20 years ago is more a curiosity than something I'd be upset by. So I think I'm just sad about... everything. And I feel brokenhearted. And I have no way to do what I'd normally do when I feel this way, which is have some alone time with the things I enjoy to cheer myself up. I can't cook. I can't play games or watch shows alone because I am always in public. I can't do chores, because everything is in storage and I don't have a place to do chores.

And it's odd, because my cheeks hurt a bit from laughing. Stuff I watched today was unusually funny. I've probably laughed and smiled today more than maybe in years. And, someone complimented me on how my character looked in game; a stranger, out of the blue.

So outwardly things were happy and unusually good. But inside I feel alone, sad, brokenhearted, and maybe a bit hopeless. Yet I try to hang on. I try to continue to hope help will come in time. And eventually maybe I can recover. But these days things seem extra hard.

Day 4172 - 12/3 - Everywhere smells

Today I'm sleepy. Everywhere smells like wet dogs now. I guess all the rain on stuff and stirring up the soil has made stuff smell not the best.

It's just lab for class today, so I have a couple of hours to do a big project. It would be nice if I could finish, but I don't think I will. It's not really due for two weeks, so even if I don't finish soon I have plenty of time.

There are no donations so I'm still very worried about the bills. But all I can do is continue to hang on, and hopefully help will come in time.

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

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