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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer
Book 15: Digital life, dreaming of a real one

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
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 13 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 14 .pdf paperback book
View/Download the Complete Epic Fail Book 15 .pdf paperback book
These include the Table of Contents, Glossary and links, all weeks, all pictures, and index.

Week 759

Day 5307 - 1/11 - Booster poked

Today my arm is kind of sore from being booster poked. I learned last week anyone can get it now. I thought it was still just certain groups of people, so I wasn't paying attention to it. But now I'm booster poked, so slightly less worry about the apocalypse. But overnight when I couldn't stretch my arm got a bit sore in the shoulder. It's nowhere near as bad as previous times though.

The professor I had in a class last quarter where I did art things gave me a bunch of stuff for my color class this quarter. That was super nice of her. I maybe hopefully don't have to spend too much more than the like $20 I've spent so far. Most of the paint I got at school for $1 each, but I did have to keep one of the two $15 once I ordered online because the school didn't have that color. I could return the other one though, as school had a color I thought they didn't have.

I did one assignment today, so that was good. The online lectures for that class will only be about 1 hour each twice a week, so that is a lot less than I thought. And I'm sure a lot of it I'll be able to run at 2x speed since the professor talks kind of slow and I kind of know some of the material already. Like today was just 45 minutes of general overview stuff, so I did that at 2x speed and just put it in the background and did other things from time to time.

I feel a bit off today. I don't know if I got a bit of a cold from all the rain or if it's just a mild reaction to the poking. But I guess today was a bit better. And hopefully I continue to hang on.

Day 5308 - 1/12 - No book

Today was quite the ordeal at the library; not their fault. I went to get a book for a class. I know there used to be a rule that if it was a reserve, and the library closed before that reserve time ran out, you could take it with you until the next day, which would have meant I could have it over the weekend. But they have only older editions with the correct name, or a differently named one that is a newer version. So we went over them for about 30 minutes until I gave up trying to guess which would work and will have to contact the professor, and hopefully she can get things straightened out.

I kind of had to rush a project too. I was going to work on it tonight, but it's due tomorrow, so I wanted to be sure it was finished and turned in today to be sure. The school website was being weird and wouldn't accept the file though. Hopefully it will work tomorrow from the library.

That was really it for anything interesting today. I told someone they could get hot water in the cafeteria food area instead of microing their cup of noodles, but I really didn't talk to anyone outside of that. I've only been feeling a bit off from the poking though in a few ways. It's mostly better but still hurts in certain parts. I expect things to be restful and calm at the library tomorrow though.

Day 5309 - 1/13 - Lost to helping

Today I lost a bunch of time helping someone. I don't really mind, but foooo, it was probably somewhere around 45-60 minutes of lost time. They didn't know how to turn in a thing for a class, so they were new to submitting things online, new to the school, new to computers, and new to Macs specifically. So since the professor required them to download a .pdf, sign it, then make that into a new .pdf, then upload it, it was this whole long ordeal of stuff the person didn't know how to do. I've never seen a professor require a contract signature like that before. I mean, sure, it was apparently a chemistry class, so something like the lab rule form that might make sense. But they had one for Covid rules? And for academic honesty? Those make no sense to require signatures for. If you sign up for a class and put those in the green sheet they automatically must agree to them by staying in the class.

I guess the rest of the day was ok. I turned in my assignment in the morning, then did another one in the afternoon, so I'm pretty much clear for the week. Things weren't as tough or time consuming as they originally seemed, but things are just starting, so they may just be starting slow.

I guess outside of some congestion and a tiny bit of poking soreness I feel mostly ok. I'm a bit extra hungry though. I have been for a while. But I try my best to continue to hang on.

Day 5310 - 1/14 - Still very rainy

Today there isn't much new except it was still very rainy. I tried to take the day to rest and relax. I don't feel really sick, but I am super tired and worn out feeling. All I can do is try to stay hopeful things will be ok, and I can hang on emotionally and physically.

Day 5311 - 1/15 - Rainy times

Today has been another rainy day. I like it quite a bit, but it does mean things are genuinely colder. And of course, it doesn't help my cold. I'm still pretty congested. I guess overall I'm hanging on ok. And hopefully I can continue to hang on until help for the bills and better food come along.

Day 5312 - 1/16 - Outisde rainy day

Today is a holiday and I expect it will continue to rain, which means I expect a sad rainy cold outside day, with probably very limited safe time to have my laptop out and be online. Hopefully I can continue to hang on.

Day 5313 - 1/17 - Back at school Tuesday

Today hopefully should be a regular school day in the warm cafeteria with a good connection and a shower in the morning. I'll be behind on school stuff just a bit as I expect I won't have a chance to do anything for school Monday due to the holiday. I expect I'll be doing school stuff basically every school day, but just a few hours. I may change that to slightly longer on less days though, we'll see.

Hopefully things will be back to normal, money help for things will come, and I can continue to hang on until it does.

Week 760

Day 5314 - 1/18 - Gooped eye

Today my right eye has been a little gooped all day. Which for those who aren't contact wearers, is kind of a big problem. The goop can't get out easily, so it's repeatedly irritating the eye more than it otherwise would. Or you could take out your contact, which really can mess with your vision (to have one in and one out.) For me that would effectively mean I can't function as I wouldn't be able to see hardly anything, because more than half of my vision would be blurred.

Oddly, for most of the day my blind spot seems to have been much less bother. Yes, the goop was bad, but overall I felt like I could more often see clearly than I have since the blind spot first appeared, I think around early December. I guess the end of this month will be 5 months with the floater, so hopefully it will be completely gone and things will be normal soon. We'll see in time, hopefully literally.

I did get about half of the reading done for the entire quarter with the one class that has reading, which is super good. Though I have no idea what the point of the reading is. For the material she has gone over so far, it basically said the same things she did, but less. I'm trying to get the names and important facts down, but so much of it seems like super detached rambling and rarely focuses on specific parts, or changes in the art direction.

I also double checked a painting that I need to do for my color class. Which is important that I did that as I'd started kind of doing the project wrong. I guess it's supposed to be two panels and I only thought it was one. I have enough done with sketches to pick a second, so it's no big deal. But it is due Friday just before midnight, when I thought it wasn't due until Monday. So, that was important because I wasn't planning on doing it until Friday, so now I know to swap my planned Thursday and Friday activities.

I guess outside of my eye being goopy I had a pretty ok day. I did school stuff. I got to play a bit. I watched a show. And while I never took off any clothing layers, I was basically warm enough. So I continue to try to hang on.

Day 5315 - 1/19 - Wrecked throat

Today my eye stopped being tortured. It is still puffy in the area around my eye, so it's only about half open. But it basically could focus and function just about normally today. The puffiness has remained about the same for the past 10 or so hours, so that does worry me as that is much slower recovery than I thought it would be.

Oddly last night around midnight when the irritation stopped, I guess it almost immediately turned into a damaged throat. I probably sound pretty normal, but it feels like I've been breathing with my mouth open in a very hot desert area. I don't remember coughing or anything odd in my sleep, so it's very confusing.

I did my painting project today. I guess I was wrong about it. Checking the details it only has to be "40%" done, which I don't get. That means from the start of class until when it's due will be 2.5 weeks. While it did take me about 2 hours to do, which was much longer than 1 hour I expected, why do we basically have 2.5 weeks for a project that seemingly has nothing to do with color theory. I am beginning to worry I took the wrong professor to teach me what I need from the class. I did like how he taught the drawing class, but he hasn't really presented any theory so far.

I guess today was ok, and I continue to try to hang on.

Day 5316 - 1/20 - Feeling pretty sick

Today I am feeling pretty sick. The yuck in my right eye that turned into a wrecked throat has evolved. Now it is pretty badly ringing ears, a touch of goupiness in the left eye, mild headache, but mostly an even more wrecked throat and icky feeling tummy from all the yuck going straight down my throat from my nose.

The weird thing is that even though I have a lot of bad symptoms I don't really "feel" sick. But yes, if I had the option I'd have been on a couch under a blanket having just soups today. I barely played any games, playing for maybe 3 hours total when I otherwise would have played 2 or 3 times as much. I kept the volume to about 1/2 of normal. And I watched a lot of shows and killed time. I didn't feel much like playing games, and I couldn't really think, so while I do have an important assignment I barely read 10 pages of it, when I'd expected to read 30-40.

Hopefully I will feel better tomorrow. And then I can do the reading and get rid of this super heavy 1300 page book. (Thankfully I only need to read 6 chapters of it.)

Day 5317 - 1/21 - Still very sick

Today I am still feeling very sick. Last night things got worse and worse and from the early evening until around 1 AM I had a pretty extreme fever and chills. It was that extreme level where your body feels like it's floating between different planes, and shards of void ice are crashing through you, making parts of you unbelievably cold.

After 1 AM it pretty much stopped. My temperature turned back to normal and my skin felt ok pretty quickly and I thought I was past the worst of it. But today my ears are still ringing very badly and hurting, feeling kind of like someone has jammed pencils in each ear. And my throat is still completely wrecked, each swallow hurts. I have barely eaten today and yesterday because everything feels like gray mashed potatoes in my stomach. I've actually thought I maybe kind of would like to throw up so I can get all the snot out of my tummy since I have no way to get it out of my body (since I'm guessing it's draining straight down the back side instead of through my nose the regular way.)

A few times I thought, 'it's ok, tomorrow I can have soup for both lunch and dinner,' but I can't because tomorrow is Sunday, not Monday. My brain has been off. So that can't happen until one day later than I've been thinking.

I also lost a ton of VPN use. Like 5 gig today just disappeared. In searching around, it seems like they've reduced the free big plan to 10 gig a month down from 15, and the free basic plan to 2 from 10. (I have one of each using different emails. Though I rarely need to use both.) Which isn't completely terrible while I can be at school. That's 2-3 hours per day of use when I'm at the library. But once school stops that will kill my shooter play time as what is probably a 15-20 hour average week would be forced to drop to 5-6. I guess there is time to worry about that later.

So today was not great. And all I can do is hope things get better.

Day 5318 - 1/22 - (Hopefully) The final mutation

Today I am hopefully in the final mutation of my cold. Last night was more of the same; crazy goopy eyes that crusted my eyes closed when I slept, and a lot of rough throat feeling. Not too much fever or chills, just a teeny bit. But this morning things changed again. I woke up instantly panicking because I felt like I was being choked. My throat was pretty congested and my nose completely stuffed up, so when I tried to breathe through my nose I couldn't breathe. So my brain went into panic thinking I was choking to death and started coughing like crazy. I was like, 'no no, calm, breathe, breathing through the mouth is clear... calm... calm...' After a bit I was ok and for the first time in my time since having the cold I felt like I could blow my nose, and so I did.

After that is when the mutation happened. The only way I can think to describe it is if I somehow blew everything out of my nose and throat where it connects to my tummy. And I mean everything, the bad and the good. Things felt wrong. I could feel the cold air, smell at a heightened level, and was aware of things I hadn't noticed before. I was the clearest breathing I have been for months. If I were to describe it another way it would be like how you see sewers in TV and movies; how they are constantly shown with a bit of yuck, and the walls are moist and things are very dark. If you took that, stopped the flow, flushed it out with clean water, then chemically cleaned it, then dried it all out, and gave it extra light, that would be how things feel in comparison. Overly clear, and somehow wrong. Even now nearly 12 hours later it still has that same feel, and smells, of wrong.

There has been no more nasal drip or congestion that I am aware of. That has seemingly stopped. But I can still feel there is congestion in my lungs. I've coughed once every 45-60 minutes and I can feel yuck in my lungs when I do. But if I'm not coughing, things feel basically normal in my lungs. Really the eye goop is the biggest remaining symptom today. I worry it has ruined my current pair of contacts. I think twice today I had to rinse them. At least I'm praying they aren't ruined. I only have three left. Not three pair, three total. With my prescription being out for probably nearing 2 years I would have to spend $50 for a new prescription, then $40 more per box. And these are technically weekly wear, so that should be for 3 weeks. They can last a month per pair easily though, two if they are worn and carefully cared for. But I don't have any money for anything, let alone nearly $120 for a prescription and at least 2 boxes to hopefully cover a year. These three last contacts need to last as long as they can since I don't know when I'll get more money that's 'spare'. But I don't think they are the cause of the goop, as my eyes goop the most when I'm asleep. They goop so much I have to wipe them to open them a few times during the night. If it was contact related that irritation should stop when I take them out.

I guess aside from the odd nose/throat non-congestion change, and the goop irritation, today was a pretty normal day. Hopefully I can feel better soon.

Day 5319 - 1/23 - No more fat book

Today I am giving the library back their fat book. It's nearly 1300 pages of name, date, bla bla bla that hasn't told me anything the professor has covered in her lectures. She has a 'mid-term study guide' that we can download, so when that gets close I'll compare and see what I'm missing. And if I am missing anything, then I'll get the book again. I've read until past the mid-term, so only when I need to get it and read more will I do so. So far it has just seemed like a complete waste of time for me.

Hopefully today I can be calm and restful and maybe start feeling better.

Day 5320 - 1/24 - Unknown Tuesday

Today I don't know what to expect. My history class will have something new for sure, but I'm not sure what to expect for the color class. Like I said before, he kind of put stuff up for those first two weeks and hasn't changed anything after that. Hopefully things will actually start soon. I still have no clue what the point of that seemingly unrelated first project was for.

Hopefully today I'll be feeling better. Maybe class stuff will be fun. And hopefully help for the bills will come soon and I can continue to hang on.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008-2022
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)
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