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Epic Fail: The Journal of a Homeless Gamer

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.

Day 43 - 8/13 - Tabula Rasa

First day of the new week of suck. Lunch time nom. I didn't do a morning job check today yet. What with the suck of no real jobs yesterday I postponed job stuff in order to get you guys the last Epic Fail week update before I'm out of contact for five weeks. Plus, the computers that allow me access are only up for 3 hours today, only some of which time I can use them. I can access job stuff from the city libraries later.

The journal is a blank slate. As I've typed the days in I've moved them from the front of the binder to the back. Today is a blank page, well was, hehe, with no pages to pass before it. So it's strange to not see the journal before I write. Stranger still to think so many weeks have passed with so few job interviews. Fate and Destiny must have something waiting for me down the line. What with my mini-job and occasional donations I'm physically and mentally ok enough to continue without sinking too much further. Of course, as more time goes on and I miss more games, lack the everyday things being in a home has to offer, I will slowly start to lose more and more sanity.

My ex-roomie said some friendly things in an email, so that's at least a step forward I suppose from the not really talking to me before. Don't know if I said before when I explained what I meant by not having any friends. People are certainly nice enough to me, particularly those such as classmates, but these people leave in time, or I leave and don't go to their areas anymore. I have a few, maybe 4-8 people, who I guess most would say are my friends, but I only see them once, twice a year, or less. To me, a friend is someone you hang out with at their house, or at your house. You do dinner, movies, watch TV, share hobbies and do hobby things together. You know bits about their life and they yours. In real life I know noone like this. I do, however, have some board people I know who are somewhat like this. I see shows like Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother; these shows have friends. I haven't had anyone like that... I guess basically since my divorce in my mid 20s. Everyone I knew really "grew up" I guess and I don't ever see them and now we've really drifted apart save for about 2-4 who, as mentioned, I am likely to see less than once a year. Sure, we will be happy and have good times if we see one another, but they won't go out of their way or have a desire to hang out with me. You rabb1t fans are likely the closest thing to friends I have these days.

I don't really know why, likely just due to my sleeping at a church, but I compared myself to a priest today. I thought, 'you know, I kind of am like a priest.' My life's work, that which I find fulfilling, is working on keeping my site current and helping people out on boards or via messages, effectively providing the services of helping others who I view as, or state themselves to be, in a state of need. I don't know, today that just struck me as odd that, I suppose, a lot of my motivation and actions likely stem from a same core desire to help others choose a wise and happy path based on what they want to experience. Anyways, a strange thought from teh rabb1t brain. Hopefully I can get the money somehow to get my Eee PC, or get one via donation, and I can re-open my tech church of rambling before it gets too far behind. The thought of my site getting five weeks behind is .

Time passes

My Eee PC 1000H is on sale for $557 at Amazon. Hopefully it will continue to go down and that isn't a temporary drop. Odd though that places still only show the black version. I've got nothing against black mind you, but the official site lists like six colors. I wonder where the other colors are. Maybe they are having production issues.

Ug, these Cupertino library computers are such crap. Things will hit massive suck next week when they are 2 of my 3 hours of access.

Not much I can do about that though. All I can do is keep checking my (job) sites and keep applying... when there are things to apply to. Here we are at Wednesday and I think there have only been three jobs I could apply to so far. I used to do that on a single bad day a few months ago with the average closer to 5-8.

Well, off to run a final check at the library. Maybe there will be some good news. Off to Golfland after that for a few hours, then to my 1 hour at the Sunnyvale library. Not sure what I'll do after that though. Being Wednesday there is arcade madness at Golfland, so I can watch people (if there is a spot open), but I'll have no bathroom access.

Day 44 - 8/14 - Clone Wars night

Haven't written 'till now because I've been busy and nothing has really happened. Doing laundry now, 3:15. In the future I'm going to see about doing it around 7 so I can watch Burn Notice. Some people are here and some poo is on. My guess would be a new-school Fantasy Island, but it hasn't named the show, could be a movie. Anyways, only two jobs to apply to for the whole morning, both poo. The phone interview was ok, but it's part time at $10-12, so it would really still not be something that would be worth keeping as it's below the minimal survival pay for paying rent. Of course, at part-time it wouldn't be enough anyways.

So yeah, that's it; helped like three or five threads on tech, talked some various hobby stuff, typed in yesterday’s journal. Money flipped, so got a bit of foods and filled up my car. The big woot is Clone Wars tonight. Still not totally sure where I'll eat, but I'm thinking Panda Express. I'll have micro foods tomorrow, so that will be helpful to the wallet, oh and a proper shower. Woot for total cleaning/shaving of all my various parts.

Day 45 - 8/15 - Quiet time for a while

Today is the final journal entry I'll be able to type in for a while. I can get in these two days of week seven, but then the school lab will be shut down for five weeks and I will be unable to update my site at all unless someone suddenly welcomes me into their home (extremely unlikely), I get an Asus Eee PC or other portable, which having only about $40 in my account is extremely unlikely, or I get a job and can sneak some time to update, which at the rate I've been offered employment interviews so far is reasonably unlikely. I suppose there is an infinitesimally small chance the Cupertino city library will update their systems, they plan to, and they get a PC I can access my site from, but that is extremely unlikely as I need a PC and it was mentioned they were going all Mac.

Last night's crowd/excitement was a complete let down. The evening started with me running a bit late and arriving at the theater around 7:30, dinner in hand. "Odd", I thought, as I walked up to the theater and saw no line outside. I think to myself, "Maybe there are only a few people and they are inside." Stranger still, I get inside, ask the theater person where the line is, and she points to an empty spot reserved for a line. So I drop my stuff and take a picture of me being first in line. I got a disposable camera for teh cheap ($5.50 on sale), so you can has pictures. "Pictures or it didn't happen," right?

So there I am, first in line, eating my dinner at a nearby table - very slowly eating, so as to kill time and help tummy digest. A young family comes in a bit later. I later get a reference to the dad's age, which I place at around his late 20s, and I'd guess the wife was in her mid 20s, while the kids were 3, 2, and younger than 1. The dad and I get along pretty good and we talked most of the evening while he worked on a Star Wars Lego walker for his oldest son, and his older son was doing various crazy things with me. I may have a new friend there - gave him a rabb1t card - so I may hear from him in the future or see them at teh rabb1t birthday party. You never know.

So, time creeps along from 7:30, 8, 8:30, 9, 9:45, 10, 10:45, finally a 3rd person shows up (counting the family as a single 'person' in line). Fricken nearly only 2 hours 'till the movie and the 3rd person in line just now shows up. We get let into the very tiny theater at 11 and it's not untill 11:15 people truly show up. And there are no costumes. There is no fanfare. There is no revelry. There are just regular people for what could have been any movie on any day - save for two people who come in together with a couple of those $150 lightsabers.

I think a couple of things contributed to the lack of a party. First, the theater actually did kind of suck. It was big enough, but it was tiny compared to the mega complex across the way, maybe 1/2 the size. I'll never go there again, as I want a huge theater for premiers (or opening weekend). Next, it could just be the uber fans either went elsewhere or ignored the film because it was animated. (Which I always did find a silly concept, as Episode 1 and 2 were about 99% animated as well, just at a much higher level.) It certainly was more "expanded universe" than "pure cannon". The padawan would never have said some of the things she said if it were pure cannon. I have a very strong feeling that the movie is really just a premier/pilot for the upcoming TV series and she will play a big part in drawing in a younger, more casual audience into Star Wars. They did some interesting camera work that they likely could never have done with live actors or a scene involving live actors.

Time passes

Crap! I didn't check the sign for the school lab. It looks like it may have shut down for the summer yesterday, and not today as I recalled. I could have sworn the 15th was the last open day. Well, I'll hang out here 'till 11 to see if they simply reduced hours. That would suck if I can't do my reminder / farewell updates and you guys are on your own now. Of course, I mention it several places, so those who look will figure out I have lost update access. And, of course, if asked on the boards or via email I can reply. Guess I'll wait just shy of an hour then give up and go to teh suck Cupertino library.

Time passes

Lunch noms at Golfland. I was probably right about my being wrong, as Ballman and Businessman were both at the Cupertino library when I got there.

Got a call, but missed it - from Stanford. Possible interview there. I'll give them another hour, then call back a second time. They may be at a (long) lunch. (Some peeps do long lunches on Friday.)

That's it for now. My journal ramblings will likely continue to get shorter due to the same sad things repeating. I'm sleeping a touch better now that I've noticed I'm safe 'till after 8. Someone new is walking by at night, happened twice now, and once this morning. I don't think he saw me at night, but in the morning I'd be very easy to define as a covered sleeping person if he got within 5' and looked in, which he's gotten about that close. He's using the church as a shortcut. I'd guess to and from work. He could become a threat to my spot.

Time passes

Not an interview call - something better in terms of short term gain - a psych study at $25 per hour, likely two hours, possibly later phases at two hours per. The researcher sounded totally hawt. She listened to what I answered in a 'this is interesting in a non-research personal interest' way and sometimes giggled at what I said. Teh rabb1t flirted and asked if I'd see her when I was called in. She said no, her's is a women's study, and I said that's a shame 'cause she sounded super cute. I could tell she blushed as she giggled and she said thanks and that I may see her when I come in. (As in passing - not a 'you may see me' way.) You never know.

I did get another call later and set up an interview Monday. It's a phone game test position, and if I recall it's only three days a week at 6 hours a each. But hey, 18 hours somewhere is 18 hours. That would certainly help and I could reactivate my credit card payments and have a few hundred extra. Not enough to move in anywhere, but enough to save a little something and certainly do things like see Madagascar 2 without stressing out over the $10 ticket cost. We'll see.

I think I just killed a cockroach here at mini-work. Totally gross. It was a black 6-legged critter about 1" long with super long legs and super long antenna. It's underbelly had some red lines on it. Sad I don't have my portable yet. That's the kind of thing that, while totally gross, I'm curious to know what that critter was.

Six now, may eat dinner soon. I'm totally hungry. I'm so looking forward to the long / real shower and part shaving tonight. I had a thought that if I could find somewhere down where I hang out that does swim lessons there may be a shower. I think I mentioned before that work isn't close enough to drive up to shower. It's like a 10 minute drive, so maybe 8 miles each way, like $2.75 per trip. Bit much for a shower. I normally only shave my parts twice a week, sometimes three times, so it's not super critical that I'm down at one true shower a week (plus sponge showers). Plus, I can shave anytime I want with my electric razor. So, often I'll get my face twice a week.

I was so sad last night. I got back to the ex-house at 2 AM (to pick up my cloths / bunny bag) and all I wanted to do was go in and flop onto my bed and sleep in 'till I woke up. I miss my home. I miss my room. *sniff* It's actually getting tougher to go back (to drop my bags to do things without worrying about them or check mail). It's like each trip is a reminder of what I had that I can't have anymore and that there is no new home in its place.

Despite sleeping later I'm still struggling to get to sleep. The car forces me to bend my parts around and often I can't sleep comfortable, only stopping the need by passing out and no longer being conscious enough for it to trouble my mind, only then leaving it to trouble my body and soul.

Day 46 - 8/16 - My poor feets

My poor feets are so tired from having shoes on all the time. I'm trying to take them off as much as possible, but I think all this walking is taking its toll on my feets and calves. I've got completely flat feet, I think I mentioned that. Anyways, even with ankle supporting boots they are getting really tired.

Early afternoon now. Around 1 I think. Pretty quiet in the world. I did a job check / board check earlier at the slow computer library. I'll likely watch Psych at the other one later on today. I have till they close at 6, so no super rush.

The Maxrider/Gamevision thing looks ready. It's priced at an insane $11 for two people from the looks of it. Insane because the graphics look pretty bad. The Nintendo Wii has better looking graphics. It's like the designers just didn't care or something. I guess it's 3D though. Still, I'd say it should be priced closer to $6 total than $11 total.

Pretty sleepy. Might close the eyes and take a little nap. Hardly anyone here at Golfland; lot is only half full. Everyone must be at the movies or something. Hum, could be at Clone Wars. I wonder when Madagascar 2 is out - you have to put your arms up when he (King Julien Xiii) says to, it's more fun.

So um yeah... looking forward to pizza party. Gonna wash my cloths early so my favorite cloths are nice and clean for it (probably Tuesday), but that's it right now.

Perfect slow day for sleeping in, playing some WoW, then going to see a movie and dinner with friends in the evening. I hope at least some of you are having such fun, as I obviously can't.

Time passes

A rabb1t fan invited me to lunch. It's on my birthday though, so I don't know if he will do that. It would make more sense I think to alter his plans to meet at teh rabb1t b-day and maybe meet other rabb1t fans.

Nothing else new. Not many board posts what with it being Saturday, though I still managed to give advice in two threads, heh. Hanging at Best Buy / PetSmart now. Golfland got full while I was at the library. Hate not having a portable or access to the web. Got some infos at Best Buy on cool looking headphones, but I have to wait at least until tomorrow to research more infos. So lame. What's worse is that I noticed the Cupertino library doesn't open till 1 on Monday and Tuesday. How lame is that?

What a dummy. This guy with a Mercedes sports car (I'd guess 50k+ base price, if not more) gets back to his car with his family and notices a note on his car. He reads it out loud, and it is someone pointing out he's got a big nail in his right front tire. I'm in the spot across from him, a good eight feet away and I can clearly see it. Someone asks if they have to get a new tire and he's like 'nah'. So he's got this car, easily worth 50k new (though I don't know car prices), and he doesn't care he could potentially lose traction / control? Sure, good tires can easily hit $200 per, but hullloo, just get two, swap them to the back, no worries. Here I am, got a small screw in one of my tires for the past six months because I can't afford the ~$125 for two tires on mine to protect my measly $800-1000 value car, only ignoring it because I have no choice, and this guy blows off something that can play a part in his 50k car crashing? Or crashing into others? It boggles the mind. Sure, I've been fine so far, but with regular income I'd have changed my tire with no hesitation.

Like 2 hours till dinner. I guess that's something.

Day 47 - 8/17 - Holding Service

I found a ball today. His name is Wilson. He's my only friend on this island... oh wait... um...

Around 8 AM, Sunday. I won't fall back to sleep at this point. It's ok though. As long as I have my church spot I seem to have settled into a decent pattern of sleep. I'm actually dreaming regularly, all be them crazy dreams. Like last night, I forget the details, but last night in the dream I experienced something then got out the Epic Fail journal to write it down (in the dream). But I regularly get 7-8 hours of solid sleep. Sometimes I'll fade during a quiet time at Golfland during the day for a 15 minute nap. Gone are the days of quasi-sleep. At least for now, while I'm under the safety of the church spot.

I saw the night guy go by again last night but this time it was the other direction. He was with a girl, and I recognized her as one of the loud talkers. Thus the guy must also be a teen. That doesn't mean he won't see me. My powers of super observation started to come about when I was in my early teens. So he can certainly notice me if he were to look in the right places, but I doubt anything would come of it. And, more than likely he'd stop his night travel path once school starts up in a few weeks. If I recall, high school starts in mid-September.

I was hoping to have dad money by now, but no luck. I didn't check if it came Saturday yet. It won't matter though, as I wanted it to possibly get Wii Fit today, give me something new to look forward to when I get into a place. The birthday preasssuuunnnttt. A goldeeen ring... er I mean Wii Fit. But, I still don't know if what he sent will clear what I owe on bills, let alone the extra for something like that. I suppose it counts either way if I do (this weekend or next). Getting it with b-day money is getting it with b-day money. And, it really probably shouldn't be bought while homeless anyways. While gifts waiting for my return to a home are awesome, they are return policies ticking away. If I'm homeless another month (extremely likely), two months (more likely than not), three months (hope not, but very well could be with my struggle to find anything so far), or more (*cry* ), I would worry if something were wrong and its coverage policy expired while just sitting in the garage. You never want to really buy anything then sit it on a shelf if its coverage period will tick away. Anyways, along with everything else, moot point to consider without the funds.

Sad news, the job I got the interview for, the like three day a week 6 hour a day one, is a contract / temporary position. I don't yet know how long the contract is for, but with a cell phone game I couldn't imagine it would be more than a few months. More money to be safe for a bit, but these creditors are starting to call for blood again, drawing precious minutes from my monthly 60 minute total every few days, causing me to run over and costing me $0.50 per minute.

Looks like rain. It did for a very brief period Saturday morning around 4 AM. It would actually be nice for a change. Rain sometimes cheers me up a bit when I'm sad. I'm not sure why. I think it's the cleansing / starting over aspect.

That's all the rambling I can think up fro now. Being a Sunday there won't be much going on to talk about in terms of new things, but as past weekends have shown I may suddenly go crazy with random rambly thoughts.

Time passes

Around 10 now. The chilly rainy looking weather has mostly gone away - a few gray clouds remain. It's warming up super fast. Getting even a bit too warm in my car.

No money waiting for me at the ex-house. Not really surprising as dad often doesn't get it to me early. I seem to have over-extended myself though. Only about $10 remain for the party. That's not enough to cover me, so it will be a very sad party if his money misses the day and noone shows up to buy me pizza.

Seems like a good day for inviting friends over for some console game fun - maybe some Mario Brawl or Mario Kart, have a BBQ during the early afternoon. Hopefully many of you out there are having a good Summer and not worrying about every little penny and drowning in sad times like me.

Time passes

It's only been 15 minutes, but I'm officially getting too warm, heh.

So here I am thinking about my visitors, thinking with a conservative estimate of 20k unique visitors a year, if even half only saved $25, which is a very conservative figure, that's $250,000 I saved people a year, woah! That's immense. It may not be accurate in % of people who save, but it truly is conservative for savings. So, drop it to 20% at $25, that's still $100,000. In the past week alone, I've directly saved people about $200 for one person, $300 for another, $150 for another, $450 for someone else. An unusual week, but you get the point. And, that's directly observed help. Who knows how much I've helped unobserved.

Anyways, it just got me thinking back to the old EQ days in '99. I used to "hold service" on Sundays. First to do it on my server, I think on any server - many followed the example. I'd sit in Ro, a high teen area if I recall. I'd resurrect people, buff people, heal people. This was kind of a big deal, as Clerics in this level range had no res, and much lower level buffs. Anyways, I'd spend 6-8 hours doing that every Sunday. Being maxed at 50 (later on 60) I gained nothing but being of service to others. It just struck me as odd I just noticed the connection to what I do now on the forums, spending multiple hours per day helping others because I enjoy doing it.

That is one thing I miss about not playing a healing class. You can't be helpful like that or get the occasional 'player made quest to retrieve the corpses' which often would take me to new or interesting places. Always a fun adventure and good for lols when the rescuers died and had to rescue themselves (or other rescuers) to rescue the original target. I suppose though that's not an option in most games. Anyways, struck me as odd I made that connection. I remember some of those days were as long as some of my days now, but holding service, be it back in the day resing, or these days with my new school tech church of rambling... good times.

Time passes

Epic fail at the Cupertino city library again. It couldn't connect to anything. Two thirty now and I've used up all my city library access now since I went to the Sunnyvale library. I suppose the Mountain View library may have access as well, but I don't know if it's worth the $3 in gas to find out while I'm running short on funds like this.

Strange twist of Fate - not only do I not have the money to get Wii Fit since my dad money hasn't arrived (provided it would even be enough to get it), but they also don't have any at Best Buy. No Wii line as there were in the past, what, like three weeks. Odd that this one, the one before my b-day, when I could have had the money for it, there were none.

Teh rabb1t fan and I will be going to meet up at Spoons Bar & Grill on Wednesday. Not a super high-end place, but mid-range like T.G.I. Friday or Chilies. Tasty enough. Apparently the Applebee's that I know of that's like 10 minutes away is the closest one. The next closer one is like 45 minutes away. Odd, because I'd have thought with so many commercials they would be more prevalent.

My USB cover is lost again - very likely for good. It can only be one place, here at Best Buy, and I don't see it. Sad but it's kind of a relief not to have to worry about it all the time now that it's gone. Hopefully I can get a portable soon and I won't have to worry about USB at all. While extremely unlikely, it isn't totally out of the realm of possibility that someone gets it for me, or I gather enough b-day monies to get one. Dad typically sends $200 though, so that will cover what I owe Comcast, AT&T and the DMV for license renewal and that's about it. It would be basically a miracle for him to send me the ~$550+ to even remotely consider it. Ah well, no sense pondering money things with no money.

I like sprained my upper arm gaming in the Best Buy. I did a Ratchet and Clank and Virtua Fighter 5 demo. Not sure why I got cramped. I think it's because the controllers are tethered all close and the monitor was all high. Ratchet and Clank was pretty fun. May have to see what it's prices are these days. Totally made me want Soul Calibur though. I'd forgotten how fun fighting games can be.

Shorts time. Cold is gone. I'm officially hot now. Just under five hours till my next activity - dinner. Let the waiting commence... *blank stare*

Here's a good joke I thought up just now
Q: How do you know if a driver is a MMORPG gamer?
A: They put their navigation system in the upper right-hand corner of their window.

HA! Just thought about that, as the guy next to me is setting up one he just got at Best Buy in the upper-left corner. Seriously though, if I ever needed one I may put it in the upper-right to be out of my main view, certainly the center dash area, before I'd go upper-left right in front of me.

Day 48 - 8/18 - Big ass drive

Gray skies overhead again, about 9:30. Yesterday cleared up by 10 then rapidly went from cold to hot. Around 3 it started getting windy, and by 6 it was chilly again. We'll see what happens today, but it looks about the same so far.

I don't know if the interviewers will care, but I'm trying to recall what betas I've been in. At home, and on a backup disk, I've got my list, which is a list of my alpha/beta experience and all (MMOG) games played post release. It's becoming increasingly difficult to remember as time goes on. If I recall the list is 27 betas/alphas and 13 MMOGs played post release. But, without my list I have no way to remember them all. When it started becoming difficult I made the list so I'd have it. As a challenge / preparation for the interview I've come up with 23/7, so I'm obviously missing quite a few. That's all for now. More later no doubt.

Before I go I would say the only test I really regret missing was Ultima X Odyssey (sometimes referred to as UXO). For those who don't know the project was the next Ultima Online game and was eventually canceled. Back a few years ago a site I designed won a contest and I got a preview weekend ticket. It was a local event (35 miles away), so they wouldn't fly me there, but I lacked money for gas or food. I had to miss the preview event weekend. I've always been sad about that. The game looked fun.

Time passes

Feh. Waste of 2 hours and $10 gas. People say they don't want experience, but they really do. Why say you don't need experience and they give an applicant a 15 minute simulation test? If you want a sample of my writing ability give me a video or something to report on. Don't say you don't want/need experience then give them something which tests for experience. *sigh* Guess I have to keep trying though. Even for those 'far off $10 in gas a day temporary for 1.5 months only 15 hours a week' jobs.

Stealing a power node from a bathroom near by the Cupertino library, hehe. My phone seems to go from full to 'shut myself down to conserve power' in about 15 hours lately. I think the battery is going. That's on zero use. I wonder what a new one costs. One of those things I could easily look up on the web.

Hopefully the city access here won't suck again today. Nearly open now. They don't open till 1. Hopefully someone was in there fixing it yesterday / this morning. Guess I'll see in a few minutes.

That's it for now. Oh, I sold my cans. Sad that I'm in a place in my life where that $1.55 redemption effectively doubles what's in my wallet. Hopefully I'll get dad money today and get at least some flexibility.

Sooooo yeah, that's it so far. No call back on the survey place (that will earn me $50) or web access, so no job checks or fun board checks for today. No new calls for interviews. I suppose it's a good thing I am in a place in the world I can charge my phone and do applications on the web. Easier than some places, or here, 10+ years ago. It would be terrible if I were here in this bathroom out of necessity for shelter and water.

Time passes

Only one job to apply for today total - ultimate lameness. And, while I was watching the rest of Monk I was hit by a poisonous gas attack. Did I mention I'm allergic to most smells (perfume, cologne, hair spray, etc.)? There was this huge cloud near the computers. I'm guessing it was from an old lady a few stations down from me. I considered moving, but the cloud radiated beyond all stations.

Sitting and charging my phone the rest of the way.

Sadly no monies from dad. Hopefully it will be here tomorrow. I think I have enough gas and food money to last me till Wednesday, but if the dad money doesn't come there will be no tasty foods for my b-day dinner at all. That would be super tragically sad if I had no b-day foods and no one showed up. So far I have one maybe and that's it. I've basically been alone for the past several years, so it wouldn't be anything new. My ex-roomies got me cake most years, and one roomie got me a present every year, but that's it. I can't remember the last time I had more than like three people to celebrate something with me as more than just a 'oooh you got cake?' kind of thing. I've never been a big one for parties since my teens, but I don't know, happy friends, presents, pizza, fun games, it might be nice to have all that in my life again.

Still charging, but I don't know what else to say. That's likely it for today.

Day 49 - 8/19 - No pants on

Slept with no pants on last night. Nice to sleep at least semi-naked again. Kind of noteworthy due to it meaning I was not wearing sweats all night, thus not dirtying a cloths item, thus allowing my parts to air out and be less stinky. We'll see if that can continue as time goes on. It's unlikely, as it seems this year is getting cold sooner rather than later.

Today was DMV day. I had to renew my license by walking in. My picture was older than probably a fair portion of my rabb1t fans *sighs at being teh old* I met Mr. handsome there. His name was Shawn. At least a 16 Charisma. I've always wished more of my European genes had shown through and that I had more 'rugged good looks'. I'd guess he looked like a more tan version of the actor who played "Martouf" on Stargate SG-1. We were just kind of friendly bla-bla chit-chatting in line. I asked if he was into PC games at all. I knew he'd say no, but I asked anyways. We chatted about my site for a few minutes and then I said I figured he wasn't and that he was a sporty guy. I put one hand up to my head and said, "I'd guess you were into Snow boarding and Waterskiing." He nodded and said, "Yes, I'm into both of those." hehe He mentioned happy b-day to me when I said my license expired on the 20th and wished me "much good luck" with finding a job and home. I made fun of their security door. The photograph area is a counter in a corner, with a door to a private area behind. But, get this, the security door is in front of the counter, in front of the other door. A trained leaper could easily hop the 4' high counter and bypass the door entirely. Duh, put the security door as the second door. So, fun times at the DMV.

Food is running critically low. Two pop-tarts, 1/3 of a bag of Doritos (those big bags), 1 can of Pepsi, 1/3 bag of Animal Crackers. I'm not sure how I'll make it through the day and into tomorrow without dad's money. I've got $2 I can use for gas, and about just under $4 in my wallet, which likely will be split between cheap $1 Taco Bell food, a 2-lieter of Pepsi, and gas. I'll hold onto it though - use the Doritos and Pepsi as lunch. Hold out till 3-4 and see if my dad money comes. If it does then I'm good to go. It will be off to the laundry for me, hopefully catch Eureka, and no worries for dinner. Without dad money... I'm fairly well screwed. I'd likely have to drop as much as I can on gas, which would mean a $1 Taco Bell item for dinner and free water.

I've been fairly well screwed by gas costs and phone these past few weeks. Thinking back, I've spent probably closer to $30-35 on gas per week, $10 on phone, which means with what I'm paid that leaves $10-20 for food each week. That's insanity. Remember, no fridge or stove. I'm 100% dependant on fast food or dried goods currently. I'm going to cut that down as much as I can in the coming weeks, go with bread with very sparing lunch meat, cheap Taco Bell foods for the majority of dinners, and if I can, reduce gas. I can't really reduce gas though. I'm only using $4-5 a day, which is a ton compared to what I'd use in a home, but that's neither here nor there. A day bus pass would be $5 and slow as hell. The 1-10 minute trips I make would be vastly increased to 1/2 hour or more not counting waiting for said bus. My car was busted prior to Epic Fail, so those just reading this don't know what a pain I had with interviews by bus. I was dropping 2-3 hours per interview to go places that would have been maybe 10-15 minutes away by car.

Anyways... gonna have to really watch my food spending since it's really the only variable I can control. Nine now, library opens at 1, possible dad money around 3. Let's hope we get some positive turn around (in monies / job scenarios) later in the day.

Oh, I took a picture of the crappiest glasses ever. The day, the very first day I had them, the right ear thing breaks half way off. The second day, the thing that holds the left one in place is all broken off and loose. The place I got them from wanted $20 for them. For a pair of glasses that were broken in two ways in two days after I get them?! Let's just say I'm very glad I did not pay the $20 to get them and leave them at that. My last glasses were muchly loved for at least eight years and they were $5 kid glasses. They were metal rimmed that had round purple lenses. There are some online, a 12 pack for like $16. I'll get those after I get my dad money. I'd love to drop like $350 on Oakleys, but heh, haven't had the money to drop on glasses like that in about 16 years. I will have to remember to double check those are sunglasses though and not just tinted plastic. Sometimes that design is just for color and not sunglass shading.

Time passes

Lunch time nom. Nothing new really. I finally set up my next study phase. So that's an extra $25-50 Tuesday. There is this odd smell on the wind. I'd say it's 'east Indian'. Not sure where it's coming from. That's it so far. Library access in about 1.5 hours.

Time passes

Minor money boost. Apparently the regular shift person at my mini-work is sick, so I can has extra shift. That's something at least. Zero jobs to send apps out so far today. What with my work shift this is the only check I can make today. I did find a tiny bit of money I'd held in savings, so I can pull about $7 for gas. That leaves the ~$4 in my wallet for food and a Pepsi should I need it. Still don't know about dad money yet. That won't come for another hour at the soonest. Oh, the best thing about work tonight - total massive shower / cleaning of teh rabb1t for the party tomorrow. Yeeeaaa!

Someone was poopie to me on the boards. I've been killing time lately in Best Buy, looking at stuffs as you know, and I started a thread asking people's opinions / thoughts about headphones vs. ear buds. Took like one minute of online time to create. They were like, 'I like bla bla, but I'd have other priorities if I were homeless'. Um hello? Window shopping. Just because I ask people's opinions doesn't mean I am going to buy them. Yeah, like I'm going to run right out and buy a Core i7 because I've been reading about it, or I'm going to buy like five different HDTVs that I put on my Amazon list... um no. Sheesh. Some people get weird over the littlest things. I can apply or not. If I've done my job searching for the day I have nothing else but to go places and kill time, particularly if I already happen to be in their parking lot nearby. Anyways... had to vent there. I've had such the massive headache today. Not sure if it's stress about the lack of job postings or something else. Likely that. It's the start of yet another week with poor looking prospects, no interviews set up, and we are nearing another milestone, day 50. Though day 45 was likely a bigger deal, being 1.5 months.


Time passes

Late lunch / early dinner nom. 3:50, 1 hour till I should leave for work. Just enough monies to put a bit in the tank, get a 2-lieter and get one $1 Taco Bell foods. About $0.80 left in the wallet. Just short of a second $1 nom.

It's going to be a very sad b-day if dad's money doesn't come tomorrow. I've burnt all my cash at this point. I have the lunch nom with rabb1t fan, so I'll be covered there. I actually have a feeling I'll be getting a French Dip and saving half. I rarely eat a whole one at once what with my small tummy.

Looking forward to the shower tonight.

Nom nom nom... I love Animal Crackers. Um... that's it for now.

Day 50 - 8/20 - Birthday day

Finally here - the birthday. Hopefully dad's money will show up today and I can get my planned pizza party and cupcakes. If not, it could be an overly sad, and possibly very hungry, birthday.

You won't guess where I am. Serious. The school lot. Every day since it's been "closed" I've noted several cars in the back lot. I mean several. Way more than there could be just for full time employees. I decided to investigate the shower area. The lockers were open and the shower water was warm. I can has morning shower. I'm not sure how long it will last though. Seemed to be a swim class of some kind going on. And more curiously, there are student types walking around. So for being closed it sure doesn't look very closed.

8:45, got about 1 hour till I head over to wait for the slow library to open. I try and save the fast one for my new 6:00 late day check. That way, if a lot of postings go up in the afternoon, I can harvest them all at once. There is no way the slow systems could do that. Best to leave them for the morning cycle when there is a far lower chance of job posts.

So... we got the curiosity of investigating who walks by here, library at 10, rabb1t fan lunch at 11, waiting for dad money around 2:30, hopefully laundry immediately after, hopefully pizza and cupcakes, maybe even see some rabb1t fans, or at least people coming to meet other folks. I threw a post on a few boards to extend the night to an RL gathering, so I may get a few strays there just to hang out. Zero replies that anyone was planning to come, so I don't expect anyone.

Did I tell you about the RL event back in the day with EQ? Some people from my server hooked up at an event. We did a lan thing for I guess about 8 hours. There were like eight of us there the whole time and about 4-6 others who floated in for part of the time or just to say hi. Mostly we just hung out and helped each other do quests they were having trouble with. (I think I was one of two maxed people there.) It was kind of funny because I'd actually seen a few of them around the server and said hi in-game before. This was back in the day when peak population was about 1,000-1,200, a far cry from these days where peak server populations are closer to 5,000. Fun times. I don't see why more people don't do local lan events to meet other local peeps and say hi and stuff. If I were ever rich maybe I'd start up a rabb1t lan party, focus on all kinds of games, maybe do an assembly class for teh free. For some reason a lot of lan parties only seem to focus on two or three games.

Misting / sprinkle raining this morning. Kind of odd. There was a dog walker this morning. I know he saw me on his return when I was putting on my cloths. Hopefully it will be fine and not a regular trip.

Anyways... should be an interesting day. I really hope dad's money gets here.

Time passes

About 3:30 now. Had lunch with teh rabb1t fan/friend not too long ago. We talked about my sad times, particularly the recent events not yet posted. We talked about different games, career paths, little bit about little ones. He ordered me way too much foods, about 4x what I normally eat, and he filled my car's gas tank. Yeeeaaa for teh rabb1t fan/friend Wayne for saving teh rabb1t. I didn't know what I was going to do there for foods, let alone gas. Now I should have way more gas than I need to cover me till dad's money comes, and enough foods for today, and probably tomorrow. Though, it's tough to predict how well said foods will last.

Pretty full lot here at Golfland. I'm off to the side and can't see. But I'm going for my evening library check in about 2 hours, so I guess it doesn't matter much. Sadly not much in the morning check. I think I only made one general low level part time application and that was it. Most of the places I checked were fairly devoid of posts. That can happen on a Wednesday though. Wednesdays are random in terms of many / few posts. Tuesdays are typically the big posting day, sometimes Thursday.

We'll see what happens later. I'm guessing I'll wind up sitting in Round Table alone for 2 hours, having to do my pizza / cupcake party on another night due to lack of money, but we'll see. Maybe, as I was at lunch, I'll be pleasantly surprised.

If I haven't said it already - let life surprise you. I find it is much more enjoyable if you have no expectations. Certainly have hopes, absolutely have dreams, but I find you often run into trouble when those turn to expectations.

Ah there we go. Craziness ensued when a bunch of people came out to the lot. I guess there were 10+ cars worth of people all doing some fun work thing, then they headed off to dinner. Why they didn't car pool is beyond me. In a good viewing spot now. But... um... they were the only golfers here. Did I mention I'm going to start actually searching for lost balls? Should speed up my collection. No balls today though.

Oh, sad news on my dad money. Not only has he not even sent it yet, but it's only $100, which isn't as much as normal. Guess I forgot to mention that earlier. I got that news just before lunch so I was fairly distracted as I had to spend the last of my money on a license renewal which left no money for food or gas, let alone fun party things. I was depending on dad's money to replace it before I'd need it. Without teh rabb1t fan/friend help I'd have been in serious trouble in terms of having gas money to get to work Friday, or even buying any food. Still no money for food till it gets here, but the left over lunch foods may hold me until then.

Odd mix of events today so far - good news on showers (possibly), good lunch, possible new sorta long-distance rabb1t friend (he lives a few hours drive away), leftovers for foods, plenty of gas, ex-roomie sent me some money, no dad money, no job replies or ads (so far). I wonder if the evening will be as interesting.

Time passes

About 8. Noone here but me (for my party). *sniff* *tear* So hungry. Sad I have no party pizza or cupcakes. Sadder still to think without teh rabb1t friend lunch I'd have no foods or gas at all. At least if I have yummy lunch leftovers to look forward to later, so I won't be hungry long.

Life is like a chain and it can only move forward if all the links are intact. But what about me? All my links are broken. Can a new chain ever be forged? I've been without friends or love for years. Will my life just continue like this? I guess only time will tell. With every breath drawn, with every moment there is a chance for change.

One more hour, then I'll move on. Likely be a party that didn't happen. Maybe I'll take myself to a movie after I get money since it will be too little to do much else with. Maybe have pizza and cupcakes another day, possibly before my movie.

Well, time continues on. I continue to wait till I reach the place Fate wants me to go.

Day 51 - 8/21 - Moar balls

About 8:30 in the school spot. Killing time before the slow library opens. I was going to try and nap till about 9:30, got up about 7:15, but there is this bust up the ground machine making a ton of noise.

Nothing much to say, as I haven't been to computers yet. Still very sad about last night. Sort of about that noone showed up, but I do know peeps wish me happy b-day and all, they just aren't in a place close enough to stop by. Mostly sad because I didn't have the like $20 to do pizza and cupcakes on the proper day. Yeah, it's a lot of money for me these days, but it's a celebration, and you have to do some things now and then to cheer you up or you'll just go crazy.

At teh rabb1t lunch the friend person mentioned he didn't know how I managed. It constantly boggles my mind too, but it's like war - you can't even conceive of it or believe it until it happens to you and you are stuck with it. All you can do is try and deal and adapt. Or, maybe like quicksand. I'm not sinking all that fast really, but without outside help, without something big changing, I can't really affect my situation. Small branches and things help but snap off. I need a major vine or a rope thrown to me. 'Till then I just can't struggle too much and have to do everything I'm able to keep myself hopeful, positive, and from thoughts that would spiral me into a panic or depression I can't get out of. That's part of the point of the journal - to keep my focus on things outside of my immediate sphere that I enjoy and connects me back to the people I normally interact with, all-be-it indirectly. The various boards help me do that in a more direct fashion.

Approaching 9. I think I'll shower soon. The gate to the pool is open, so hopefully showers are as well. I'll be hopping into dirty cloths after, but, well, nothing I can do about that 'till at least my ex-roomies b-day money flips into my account. Hopefully that will happen today, but it's far more likely I won't see that money 'till Monday. As soon as I can though I'll wash cloths. They are overdue.

Time passes

9:20, breakfast nom. One chicken strip, cold fries (cold fries are teh lose), and some super tasty corn bread (it's like a breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert food all in one), and holy water. The water from the church fountain is the only water around here that seems to taste ok. It's like the rare drop food that gives you the 1 hour buff to multiple stats vs. the one that is just one stat for 5 minutes.

Well, guess I'll head over to the library. Only one chicken strip, a few bits of corn bread, and a few cold fries left. That, some Doritos, and a pop tart are all I have left to eat. Hopefully the ex-roomies money will be there later, or it's going to be a very hungry next few days.

Time passes

Woot! I can has foods. No roomie money, but I'd forgotten about a minor refund from a stat package I added to my domain. It needed scripting to work, which I can't do (both in knowledge and web access), so I got them to refund me for that since it wasn't stated anywhere. I got 2 Pepsi 2-lieters and have $5 for Taco Bell nom. That should hold me for a few days. Hopefully long enough for the ex-roomies money to flip or dad's b-day money to arrive.

Nom time. Gotta go.

Time passes

Rar! My Spot and Search checks are pretty high. I can has red ball. Now I've got four colors, about half of the collection I think.

My wrist has been feeling more and more naked lately. I used to wear Survivor buffs all the time, either on my head, 'cause I shave my hair super short, so my head is cold, or on my wrist. About 1/3 of the year it's too hot / warm for either. I've been thinking I'm ok with my short hair look, used to wear it on my head 'cause I'm shy about my balding spots, but my wrist feels naked. I thought I saw a gamer rubber wrist thing - like everyone has those around here (not gamer ones, just regular ones.) I'll have to look into that more later. I wonder though how you get them on. Are they stretchy? They must be.

What the hell? I just peed like 20 minutes ago and now I feel like I have to pee again.

What is with this lady? I'm like 30' away and I can hear her bitching at her kids. Hey dumb lady, they are kids! Like pre-teen to mid-teen and she's getting mad at them for "being on the green" when she goes. Quit bitching lady, they are happy excited kids. It's what they do. Let them be kids. They can learn patients with other things. If it bugs you that much go first or wait 'till they are done. It's not hard to figure out.

I just don't get people like that. Like, I see parents that have kids as young as 3 year olds who have been mad at them for not lining up the shot or not timing the shot or whatever and I want to yell at them 'chill the bleep out and let the kid experiment'. It boggles my mind some of these parents are so controlling they interrupt their kid having fun and experimenting. Talk about shattering their desire to experiment and learn on their own.

Time passes

Ug. Tummy likes the taste of the cheesy beefy Taco Bell things, but they are really starting to wreak havoc on me. I normally eat out once every other month, now I'm eating out once, sometimes twice a day? Ug. I really wanted cheezburger but it would have cost all of the money I have, and I really need to reserve it in case the money has to last through the weekend. Of course, I didn't think 'till just now that I could get a cheezburger by itself, outside the meal. I think it would be like $2 still. Something to consider though as that $1.25 or so for the drink is about 60% of the cost of a 2-lieter. I guess that's a fair price if I do a full refill, which I usually do.

There were only two jobs I applied to today. Sad, but actually more than I did the other days this week. One was maybe a hair above my experience at $3,700 a month, so that would be woot pay. The problem is it would block my ability to go to classes, as it's 10 hours Monday-Thursday. No classes means I owe like $750 more per month in student loan payments I have to make. Though, if that is post taxes that would be enough. If that isn't... that would still be like $1,200 above my minimum survival per month. The second one was part time 9-1 every weekday, so good schedule there. Oh, there was a third I applied to, so woot for three, at a medical place, though I doubt I'll hear back, as I have no medical office experience.

I feel like I'm missing something. Again like there is a disturbance in the Force. I've actually felt like this most of the day - since about 11 AM I'd say. I can't figure out what it could be, so it must be outside my direct ... well my area (of what I see / perceive / contact / interact with, etc.) Never figured out what the last one was either. Bugs me when this happens.

Well, that's likely it for today. Four dollars and change left in the wallet. 8:15 now, so it's extremely unlikely I'll get any calls (good / job or bad / creditors). Um... guess I'll say good night.

Day 52 - 8/22 - Cycles

Not many here in the school lot. Seems only sporty people are here. At least the showers were open. Less people to watch, so my 1 hour here that remains will be kind of boring. Being sporty though the girls are pretty cute. They got shorts on and all mostly have a smaller / athletic figure. I like smaller girls (well, I guess regular girl height 5'-5'6") which have what I call a 'used muscle structure', which I define as an average muscle mass, but slightly toned, and I like girls that are kind of model-ish, slightly taller (around 5'8" to 5'10") and slightly thin to light average weight.

I guess the lower schools are starting now, and high schools around next week. My Golfland network will soon be far less interesting on weekdays.

It seems I missed the Summer. I hate when that happens. Back in the day when I started school in 2000 I was ok on money and could take the Summers off and not stress out over trying to find a job and work. In more recent years I've been stressed all the time about it. I'd say being unemployed, where you have effectively no control, is far more stressful than being at a job you don't really like. (Of course don't be like me and my experience back in '92 where the job was so disliked / pressured it was making me physically sick all the time.)

Another cycle ends and a new one begins. Life and interest is renewed - but not for everyone. I've always disagreed with that. Here in the states, if you are lucky, your job will start you off with 1 week vacation. If you are looking at something over about 45k a year you may actually get two, but in many work places two is the cap regardless of how long you've worked there. It can be very different in other countries. Last I heard there was 2-3 months of mandatory leave in Australia, and in South America, I forget where, everyone only works a 20 hour work week. I believe England has one month leave standard. I'm not lazy or anything mind you. (I worked one job for four years and another for nearly five.) I just think people really need time off to renew themselves. Have time to really get into their hobby, time for a vacation, start a new hobby, play with family or friends. This constant year-round grind we have here in America is... unhealthy if you ask me. Hopefully I can eventually get into a position in a school, where the schedule is 10 months, and I can go back to having my Summer. I love Summer time off. As I think I said, I'll try to take the CBEST next time around (in October). Some have said with that I already qualify to be a substitute teacher. I'd be all .

This too is a cycle, though more like a horrible tornado where I can't catch on to anything. Hopefully I'll land safe and sound soon.

Nightmares last night. Blood, gore, various parts of me rotting and peeling away because I couldn't tend them properly. The dreams did bring up an interesting point. In the dream I was sick with a fever - a fever so severe I was losing memory. It brought up the point that while I'm homeless there is little good in calling in sick. I have no bed to go to sleep with, no TV to curl up in front of under a blanket, no stove to cook chicken soup. If I got sick, particularly very sick, or gods forbid injured, I'm fairly well screwed. There is free on-campus help if it's open, but that's only minor things, and only when campus is open. Hopefully America will move away from its current healthcare system. There is already a movement for it. People without coverage just can't afford it. And a country that doesn't take care of it's peeps like that...

Time passes

Got my ex-roomies monies. Doing my laundry. There's a Night Elf Warrior in here doing his laundry, HA! I got the infoz on current wireless gaming. Seems it's still pretty gimped. He said he's ok at home, but out on the free wireless he gets disconnected a lot in populated areas.

Later I'm gonna grab some sandwich stuff for lunch. Got a ticket for Tropic Thunder tomorrow. I'll grab pizza first. Maybe a small single serving cake. Without the cupcakes that will be about what I planned to spend before. A late b-day celebration, but a celebration none-the-less.

That's about it for now. After I get dad's money and the survey money I may get some more stuffs. Maybe a Jedi wallet, cammo shorts, so I have more than one shorts, probably some tank top type shirts, maybe a towel.

Time passes

At mini-work. I was going to get the lasagna noodles for dinner, but something about lunch disagreed with me, so I got Salisbury steak instead. I'm guessing it was an overdose of Doritos. Being coated with cheese I probably shouldn't get the big bag anymore. My favorite chips are the new school baked Ruffles. They have like no grease, and they have ridges don'cha know.

I think someone lied to the jazzercise lady. She was all waiving at the ceiling and asked if I knew there were cameras here in the office. She's talking crazy talk. On my first few nights here I looked all over for security - a curiosity in case I ever got in trouble or in case someone else did. I found zero evidence of cameras. I'd guess this building is about 40 years old. I have a key that opens every door in the place. There is no way any of it is under surveillance. Even if they did have tiny cameras (which last I looked are very expensive) there is no security room where the lines connect up or record. There is no way it's wireless. This building is so large I doubt a wireless signal could carry across it, let alone outside to an external facility. I think someone lied to the old lady to make her feel safe. Surprised me to find no evidence of cameras, being a gym attached to a young person's school.

I'd totally be a good detective. I found a bracelet under the bleachers when I needed to move them. I guessed it was for a young girl by the size and value, guessing around 12 years old. I packed it up to drop at the office. Someone was still there and she said, "Oh, you know what," pondering, "there was a 6th grade orientation in there last night." And I said, "Well there we go. She's in the 6th grade. Hopefully we can get it back to her."

Couple of posts referencing my site on the boards. Looks like yet another new board is getting used to me as tech support, hehe. A few posts of praise, one from someone being somewhat poopie. It's like, I don't know what it's like in the rest of the country but despite the appearance of my skillz I can't just snap my fingers and get a job. I've been applying high and low, both above and well below my experience level. I don't get how or why people just assume I'm not applying for anything I could possibly do. I'm trapped in a tight spot - unable to get into a new career path, unable to take starter / low level jobs because they refuse me for being "overqualified", and facing extreme numbers for anything I apply for. People always get hundreds of resumes in a few days. It's crazy. And, as I mentioned to the rabb1t fan/friend at lunch, I feel trapped by the scale of my debt. Even if I managed to get a job outside my physical area my debt was incurred at the scale of this area so I'd be worried a job anywhere else wouldn't allow me enough to clear out. I don't know if I would totally be against moving if an offer seemed decent though. I've always been attracted to smaller towns - like those shown in Eureka, Dead Zone, and Ghost Whisperer. I think people have described them as 'New England Town' style. Places with trees, a town center, spaces between houses, but not too much space. Again though, I'd be worried about my debt scale.

If I could live anywhere though I'd probably go to Santa Monica (sort of North of L.A. along the hills and along the beach, it's where Venice beach is) or maybe around the coast a bit in Santa Barbara (where Psych supposedly takes place, but I bet they film on the Hollywood lots, which is really sort of North of L.A.) Maybe Bel Air, though those houses may be a bit too remote. I like space, but I wouldn't want to have to drive like 1 minute to get to my nearest neighbor. That might be too isolated.

Looking forward to my b-day movie/pizza. I'm sad I have noone to share it with, but, well, the past few years I've missed several fun things because of that and I'm tired of not living because I'm waiting to share. I'd love to have a sweetie and/or friends to go with, but I don't.

I guess I'm just feeling melancholy, is that the term? Heh, not too long ago I wikied emo and found out I'm a 1st gen emo.

Guess I'll have dinner and be off.

Day 53 - 8/23 - Pizza and a movie

In contrast to the other night I had fairly good dreams. Most of it I forget, but in one part I was on a 'helicopter' tour. I say it like that because there were about 15 of us on a sort of disk that was mostly moving about through anti-gravity, though it did have helicopter blades. It was completely open though, no windows to block the view, no wind either. Some beautiful hillside landscapes, some old Greco-Roman ruins, then we went up and over a hill and we saw a city landscape across a bay. The tour guide said it was New York, but it was sort of an expanded more Sci-Fi version. And, of course, New York isn't across a bay from somewhere.

About 8, been up a while now. Stupid get up early to be out of the church areas before people spot me poo. I went in a bit later too, same reason. If I go in after 11 and get up after 7 I'll still get a solid 7 hours with reduced risk of being spotted by night or morning walkers.

Cloudy, cold and gloomy. Looks like rain again. It was hot shorts weather yesterday, so I expect it will clear up by 10.

I think I'm getting used to the boredom. Back before '90, before I was using teh Intarwebs, I was bored like this all the time. If I wasn't working there was little to do. Sure, for a while I was designing card games, board games, stuff games (board games with cards and counters and "stuff"), role playing games, and once a month or so we tried to get friends together to do a BBQ, Nerf War, or movie night. (My stuff was never picked up by a publisher despite submitting things to several big companies. I did self-publish one card game though. Somewhere out there are about 20 copies floating around. I've thought about releasing it on the web - let people print it themselves.) But, back then I was used to this. Occasionally I'd get a new game. In those days 10-15 hours to complete a game was the norm, so they never lasted long.

Well, about 1.75 hours till the libraries open. I don't expect anything on jobs will move today. Likely just do fun boards and try and catch up on my TV shows. Of course, pizza and a movie in the evening.

Time passes

Not much new to report. As expected, no real job postings. I did apply for one that's more sales than office though. I guess there is a lot of money to be made in sales, but I'm not one to con people. I'm too honest, heh.

No dad money, but I don't think the mail has come yet. I'll check again around 2. It's like 12:30 now.

Oh, get this, my glasses are even more broken now. Now both sides are falling out of the holders, and the one side is busted in half and now the left ear holder has broken off entirely. So now it's broken in four different ways.

Helping a few peeps on the board with trouble shooting. Bit of a rare activity on those boards. Still boggles my mind that the community manager Cryptic hired instead of me doesn't seem to interact much in tech areas. Sure, sure, that's a tech support person's job, but I think I've seen her do three posts total in the past few months. I'd check her post count, but that would be obsessive and I know there is more to the job than we on the forums see.

Still disappointed in the small amount dad is sending. I'll have to be careful with it. I guess just shorts, $16 for cammo, like half what my regular shorts cost, and a couple of $4 tank top type shirts, and maybe a towel. I need the shorts and shirt to survive the warm times and the shirts will serve as undershirts in the cold times. My old ones like that got all worn out. I'll have to give the glasses a careful look. If I don't need to pay shipping they are like $16. If I do they are like $25, which is a bit much. I do need something though. I'm fairly light sensitive. I tear up when the eye doc uses those eye flashlights.

Guess that's it for now.

Time passes

Writing in very faint light at the side lot at Golfland. Totally full main lot, mostly full side - a last hurrah before school and shorter Golfland hours I suppose.

Tropic Thunder, full of lols. Good enough crowd. They did all the appropriate things as it were, hehe.

Empty wallet, full tummy. Got a small pizza and ate half earlier. Half is for later. As time goes on I can eat less and less pizza. Only a few years ago, and by that I mean 2-3, I could eat most of a small by myself in one sitting as it were. Now, those 3 pieces (half a small) filled me up and did some major fighting with my tummy. It could be I'm at a disadvantage from the constant war with grease from the fast/micro foods. I'm not sure. I still wonder if I'm maybe getting, or always have been, allergic to coco. Back in 2001 I'd stopped drinking Pepsi completely and mostly had non-chocolate snacks (apple, angel food cake, pound cake, etc.). I weighed about 160-170 and was in good shape in terms of energy and other chemical balances. Since I've re-taken up Pepsi I'm around 180-185 and many times sleepy. (Though that could be a caffeine thing.) Maybe I'll try (again) to go mostly Slice / 7up and see if I lighten up and have an easier time digesting. It's likely just age taking further toll since I drank more Pepsi as a teen than I do now.

Dad's money came late in the day, so that is cycling into my account. I'll wait to see it flips before spending any. Odd thing - I didn't see the sunglasses I was looking at before on Amazon today. I'll have to look more in the coming days and put it on my wish list.

At the bottom of side 1 of page 100 now. Crazy. One-hundred hand written pages. I had really hoped to have had most of the money saved by now, ideally a good job, and not just poo part time ones, but I don't even have that. And I never dreamed this journal would go so far. I don't know if that's a good thing or bad.

Well, I have left over pizza for tomorrow. Should be enough to cover me on food till dad's money flips.

Wish I could have had a proper b-day celebration today; friends and sweetie at dinner, friends and/or sweetie with me at the movies, cake at home and surprise presents, now getting ready for a good night's sleep in bed, happy memories in my head. Instead I'm alone, in a dark parking lot, waiting for time to pass so I can go park my car in a lot, to yet again sleep in its cramped quarters, hoping nothing bad happens to me during the passing of the night, and preying that tomorrow is a better day.

Day 54 - 8/24 - Parents and kids

Good day for a Soul Calibur tournament with your friends then do a BBQ while watching a marathon of Season 1 of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Back in the day I would have done that. But now I have no friends, no home to watch it in, nor money to buy either. Instead I'm sitting here, outside Target at 8:45, wouldn't even normally be awake yet, killing what will be the first of many hours on a long day. Roughly three to go before I approach my first library check. At least then I can get back in contact with some people and truly feel a part of something again.

Most definitely a shorts day. Already warming up and the day has just begun. I spent last night with no pants on at all, didn't even need my sweater as a second blanket for most of the night. It was almost warm enough to be truly naked under my single blanket.

My dad and I have never been close, nor will we at this point. It's been something I've regretted later in adult life. Those of you out there with children, or who eventually have them, be kind and praise/compliment what they value as accomplishments. Don't ignore them and then criticize what you see as shortcomings or failures. They know how they have failed, and when - they don't need to be reminded. If they want your help on figuring out why then and only then offer help. I was never complimented or encouraged in life, only criticized, and it's really messed up my self esteem, and I don't have to go into how that may have eventually led to where I am today. Anyways... Be kind, peaceful, loving, and supportive to your children. Often it will just take a few seconds of praise or encouragement to acknowledge what they are proud of. (Of course, don't make them feel superior over everyone. That's bad too.)

Like the other day I was waiting for people during the b-day event. There was a family there - a dad, a mom, three sons and a daughter. The children were coloring. The youngest, I'd guess about 3 or 4, says he wants to save his picture and finish later. The dad snaps back with, "Why? When have you ever finished anything ever before?" I felt like going over there and smacking this guy. It doesn't matter if they haven't finished it 10 times before, 100 times, 1,000 times, or 10,000 times or more. This time may be the time something different happens. The kids are fricken like 3-8 years old and this guy is crushing their spirit already.

Parents out there reading this, don't do that. Spend the four seconds to instead say, "Ok son, let's do that." Or, "That sounds like something you will enjoy later." And set it aside to take home. If they don't follow through throw it away eventually, doing so will take another five seconds or so. If you instead crush their spirits that five seconds you crushed them for could last a lifetime. Let your comments instead carry them forward in a positive way. A few seconds can change a lifetime.

Time passes

Damn. Best Buy must have some Wii Fit. There is a pretty big line and people were camping the spawn. Seriously, there are like four people who have/had chairs out.

Well, I suppose it wouldn’t have been much of a b-day present if I bought it for myself anyways. Buying for yourself is buying for yourself, even if it was gift money.

Tasty ham and pineapple pizza slice for lunch nom.

Confirmed - the entire line was Wii, Wii Fit and Mario Kart. Really speaks volumes about the system. I think Wii will outlast the lifespan of both the PS3 and Xbox 360. Graphically it can't touch either, but mainstream population is still back on old-school TVs, very few are on 1080 and would notice a true difference. Even if you are on 1080, the gameplay and fun are still there. I could easily see there being more games I want for Wii (as release or by WiiWare) than my PS3. The development cycle for Wii is soooo much faster and so much easier I think they will really pick up momentum and attract a lot of developers and get a lot of games. Wouldn't surprise me if they dominated this, and future, Holiday seasons.

Nearly out of paper. Only one sheet left. Got to buy some more when my money flips.

Everyone in line is inside now. Soon everyone will be coming out with new shiny fun things, save for me, stuck out here with nothing. *sniff* *tear*

Time passes

I almost started uncontrollably lolling in the library just now. The monitors have these "privacy screens", which means if you aren't in about a 60 degree arc in front of it you have a very hard time seeing what is on the screen. But they have the computers set up so there is effectively a walkway where stray eyes will see all the screens on either side where you can see about 40-50% of the side you are on. Anyways, I almost start loling uncontrollably because there is this guy, must have been 80+, and he's looking at chicks who's boobs are the size of bowling balls. He's looking at dozens of these pics and seems to be sending some of them to the printer (which you have to do a password to print.) The vast majority seem to be dressed, but it's like, 'old dude, you are looking at chicks with boobs the size of bowling balls in the library and anyone passing behind can see you'. LOL

I decided to hold off on buying anything today, though I may get groceries later, even though my money shows as flipped already, which is weird as I deposited it into an atm at like 4 on Saturday. I will probably get the tank top like shirts tomorrow morning. From 10 AM to like 5:30 it was super hot. I was even sweating a bit. Now at 6:30 it is rapidly cooling, bordering on chilly.

I called up to a military surplus store earlier, confirmed they had cammo shorts, and drove on up. Dumb guy on the phone didn't bother to mention they only have small, extra large and extra-extra large. Guess he didn't feel any normal sized people would be interested to know normal sized shorts are out of stock and they won't get more (says the guy in the store) till like March. The in-the-store guy did bring up an interesting point - that being the season is almost over. While it has been super hot lately it is entirely possible it could cycle to pants weather in only a matter of weeks. I think I'll hold off on my order at least a few days and see how the weather is next week. If it dips to cooler weather I may hold off till after Winter. If it stays hot I may or may not get the cammo shorts. I don't really need two pair of shorts. Well, unless I spill something.

Nearly time to make a final decision on dinner. I think I may go get McDonalds chicken strips. I may get a pre-cooked chicken at Safeway, or I may go to Panda Express. I'm somewhat torn. You'd think I'd be going to McDonalds for the chicken foods more often, as I normally cook chicken for dinner, but I recall them being kind of expensive and had single fill drinks. With In-N-Out not noticing (or caring?) that I get like two drinks that rapidly increases the value of the meal. I guess I'll see what Safeway has in pre-cooked first, then likely go to McDonalds. I need more soda and paper anyways, so it's first on my path.

Guess that's it for now. About 6:45, so like 45 minutes here then I'll move towards a dinner decision.

Time passes

Confirmed over the past few nights; Sony has a boyfriend. I saw her with him putting kisses on him a few minutes ago, hehe. He does Tekken 6 a lot. Some of those guys with cards have spent an insane amount on the game. (Cards track win/loss and let you customize the character.) Some have dropped like $300, $400, and more. It boggles the mind. MMOGers bitch when a month goes over $15? Please. Back in the day with Imagination Network (circa 1992) they had a base 20 hours a month for like $20. If you went over, it was like $2.50 per hour (the charge varied by plan). I had several $50 months and one as high as $120. MMOG players should be very grateful things moved away from the arcade style pay-to-play model to unlimited time.

McDonalds was indeed as expensive as I recall, if not more so. I forgot to check Safeway for pre-cooked chicken though. Maybe I'll remember later. Dumb Safeway had no office section. The one near my ex-house does. Out of paper. It's ok. Out of stuff to say for tonight, heh.

Time passes

I'm writing on the edge of mah paper, hehe. I had to mention this. Totally cute little car next to me. It's a Toyota Yaris. I don't know if it's a hybrid, doesn't say it is. It's almost my exact size, but looks a bit roomier due to inside design. (I've got a Geo Tracker.) I'd guess it's about 18-20k from the looks. (Looking up the price later, a maxed option car is ~18k.) Very cute little car I'd consider getting if I had money and went with a non-Jeep car. They just drove off. Seemed pretty zippy, could be a hybrid. Totally an automatic. Normally I like manual better, but zomg, I'm getting so sick of shifting all the time. Could be due to all the driving I'm doing all the time, but I would love an automatic right now - just push the pedal and go. So much shifting with short trips. Anyways... nearly time to be off to "bed". Night peeps.

Day 55 - 8/25 - I can has another lunch

Um... It's Monday. Not much to say yet. Got a second lunch set up with the rabb1t fan/friend later. I got some paper but I didn't notice it has fat spacing. I guess it's ok. It was $0.50, heh. No tank tops my size. What is it with only having small and extra large in things I like lately? There was a pretty cool looking backpack for $30, urban cammo color. It has a few pockets, which would be useful for separating my stuff. My current one has a spot for a cell phone and that's really it for pocket areas. I'll check back as time goes on, maybe I can catch it on sale for $10 less or something in a few weeks. Gotta try and stay lean as I can, but I can window shop, heh. Probably pick up my glasses late today. Says it will take five days to ship, so it would be a while before I get them.

That's about it. Nomming a few baked Ruffles. Expensive, but a 'healthy' junk food. Gotta try and stick to better foods if I can. Really nothing going on for... 2.5 more hours. No clue why the slow library opens so late Monday and Tuesday. The fast one opens at 10, but it's best to save that for my evening check.

Got some 7up. They are yummier than I recall. I didn't see coco listed in Pepsi, just caramel coloring, so that is off the potential 'why am I fatter' list. Plus, as implied before, I grew up drinking it and only really stopped for a period of about five years, so it's likely just activity level, or age, or other snacks, or all three.

Um... that's it for now.

Time passes

Oh, this was totally funny. I forgot to mention it. This morning I'm at the tennis park. There is a dad and son playing. The son is a noob, maybe 10 years old. He's trying to do the weird 'I'm too lazy to move my body' shots. This one time he goes for a backhand, but misses, and the ball beams him right in the balls. I lol because it's like something someone would post on YouTube. He was obviously pretty ok because he just went and bent over a little. I couldn't help it, probably lack of sleep, but I was loling for like three minutes. Still loling remembering it now. Don't see that at the golf course very often (just once sort of.)

Hum. These papers are a little thinner width wise too. Guess it doesn't really matter once it goes on teh Intarwebs and .pdf.

Still waiting for the day to really start. At least it's noon.

Time passes

Such a headache now. Really mixed bag today. Had a good time with teh rabb1t friend/fan. I can has RL friend. Though no clue how often I'll see him. He gave me some foods to micro and a couple of butter type cookies. Those are tasty, but butter does bad things to my tummy, so I have to eat them super sparingly. Down to $25 in my account. All shopping has been suspended until tomorrow. Then, after I drop my survey money in the bank I'll get my glasses.

In sad news, no jobs to apply to on the boards. A decent number in total, but nothing I'm qualified for. So that's... stressful.

I think Madagascar 2 doesn't open till November 7th. I thought I saw somewhere that referenced September 2nd. That's sad. Though there was a post about the new Knight Rider finally making it to series and starts the 23rd. Hopefully it will be online. If not I'll have to wait for the DVD.

About an hour to kill before I go to the fast library. Maybe some jobs or a job app reply will appear between now and then.

Probably go for a Panda bowl tonight - avoid the grease and cheese. Cheezburger was yummy at lunch, but I need to keep my grease/cheese intake down if I can.

Time passes

Still melancholy from the other night, maybe a bit sad. The fun parts of today were fun - watched Burn Notice and there was the lunch earlier - but now... now that it's night and I put out no applications... I'm tired and sad and really want this to be over and have a home again. *sniff* *tear*

Dinner nom. I guess the Panda bowl is only $1 cheaper for a lot less foods, so it didn't seem like a good deal. (Particularly with the free item coupon only working on 3 item meals.)

I'll have to change up my sleep times a bit. The late night walker is now the early morning walker. He woke me up at around 6:45. Guess I'll be getting up at 6:30 on weekdays. Guess it should be safe to go to sleep around 10 again. He'd have to be in bed by then if he wanted 8 hours of sleep. I don't think I'm at risk of him telling anyone to get me in trouble, so at least that's something. I'd hate to go back to needing to move around at night.

I'm not the only one who thinks Businessman is crazy. I've seen him a few times at the slow library. He's all swearing at the computers, complaining to librarians and talking to himself/the screen. Others are giving him the 'you are crazy' look, so it's not just me.

There are three or four regulars at the slow library in the morning. I'm not sure why the main guy comes. He must come for the social aspects. The other day he mentioned he owns his house, which around here is an amazing feat, and that he's running a server from his house. I can only guess he comes to socialize. He's a bit older. I'd guess his early to mid 60s, but he's in good shape mentally and physically. It seems odd to see a 'normal person' at the library. Most are elderly, who obviously don't normally use computers, or family people, who again normally don't need or use computers, or teens, who aren't not-normal, they just aren't adults and thus not in control of household purchases. Not sure why I'm talking about how everyone uses the computers seem off (or like me, only there due to no other choice, which is off in it's own way.)

"Your laugh and enthusiasm please those around you" (in bed).

Dearest Betty,

The war is not going well. Our comrades have almost fallen and reinforcements have come and gone. The bombs are falling around us, and I fear there may be no way out. In the morning we are going to try another offensive, but I fear it will be beaten back by the enemy. They seem insurmountable in number with limitless ammunition. Our supplies are lean and ammunition low. The light from the air bursts flicker and flash in the trenches creating a freakish puppet show of the branches and bushes above. The ground shakes and rubble falls loose as the tanks roll by. Each night I wonder - will it be my last? Will I see the dawn and will the war be over at long last? Or will I not make it to see the dawn at all?

Day 56 - 8/26 - Detective detecting

I've been at the Summer school spot a while now. Got here just before 8, 9 now, woke up around 6:15. Normally I'd have taken a shower by now but I've been watching Businessman. He showed up around 8:40 in sweat cloths. He took a huge gym bag with him towards school, came back in his business outfit, traded the gym bag for his business bag. I don't understand why he lugs that thing around with him everywhere he goes. He's got a truck which he keeps locked. He could easily reduce what he carries. Due to the age of the truck I'd guess his story is something like this: Back in the 80s, when there was a big building boom, he had plenty of work. He was married and had a house. When the building boom stopped his craziness started to show through. His wife divorced him, taking the house with her. A steady decline in work since has kept him from recovering, and now he has no home at all.

Here is what I don't understand - he's using the computers as much as me. In fact, he walked back towards campus 20 minutes ago and hasn't returned. It's possible he knows about an open lab that I don't. So why, over all this time, obviously longer than I've been at it, why hasn't he gotten a laptop? You can get a non-gaming laptop that would do Internet and email just fine for like $800. If he's an (electrical) contractor, who seems to depend on the web for job contacts, why not just set yourself up for constant contact? If I were a contractor that'd be one of the first things I'd do.

Well, I told myself I'd give him five minutes to return then go investigate. Going to go for a quick shower then wander the campus a bit. If it is an open lab that would be roxor. I doubt it though. To my knowledge all labs are closed and only a few bathrooms/classrooms are open. Plenty of time either way. Post shower it will only be about 9:30. The slow library doesn't open till 1. I could easily meander campus for 1/2 hour and fully investigate things.

If anything I'd guess he was hired as a contractor on the big project they have going on campus here. They are making a couple of massively large buildings.

Off I go. More rambling later.

Time passes

I don't know where he could have gone. Maybe he signed up for some classes or something? There don't seem to be any open computers. Admissions is open, bookstore is sort of open (getting new textbooks, but the rest is normal) and the only open areas, as mentioned, are a few classrooms.

I always feel... at home... on campus, always have - As if a great weight has been lifted off my shoulders. Basically any junior college or college campus with trees and space does it. Maybe it's because college is full of learning and exploring. Maybe it's because it's where possibilities can turn to experience for going to jobs and hopefully happy futures. Maybe it's because you are free to explore who you want to be. All very different feeling than corporate America or retail.

I really hope I can get a job at a junior (or full) college some day. I always seem more at peace, happier, when on a campus with young peeps around. I'm sad none of the dozen or more applications I've put in at my local colleges have panned out yet.

Not quite sure how to spend my 2.5 hours till the slow library is open. I suppose I'll eventually go to the Safeway near Golfland and get some sandwich foods. I need quarters to park for my study later and there is a laundromat I can stop by to get some.

My tummy has been feeling a weird kind of upset since I had Panda Express. I guess that's a good reason to not get a two item +1 item for teh free. Too much food.

Time passes

Back from my study. Though I should have maybe stuck around there instead of fighting rush-hour traffic. It did bring up some education questions, which led me to think about my recent trouble falling out of the masters. It makes me wonder - is this it? Is this really all I get? Are there really no second chances? Will I really never be somewhere like this getting my doctorate? All stuff I've asked myself before. A professor once mentioned to me that only 30% of people get their bachelors, and even fewer progress beyond that. I suppose that in itself should be something. I suppose going to Stanford wouldn't guarantee anything, but I always thought I'd progress my theory to the point somewhere like that would welcome me with open arms, yet... anytime the subject of my education comes up, noone seems to know what to do if you've been bounced out of a higher education program. It's like hello? Do you guys (the school) not really care? Are grades all you look at? I know Stanford wouldn't even glance at me due to my grades and it's like, is 2.9875 really so far off from the 3.0 I needed at San Jose State that I should be banned forever? Are there really no second chances in college?

(Woot. I just MacGyvered a broken part on my glasses to another broken part and they sort of work again.)

I don't really know if I'll ever get my credentials and make it to be a substitute teacher or counselor at the junior/full college or high school level at this point. Well, I didn't really before either. I'm mostly hoping taking these classes towards an Associates in Child Education will help them reconsider me for master level classes.

If this is true, if you really only get one chance in college, all you younglings out there reading this, please, I beg you, don't blow it. Do as good as you can in school. If you have any trouble don't get discouraged, get some help. It's ok to need help. Talk to the teacher and ask what you did wrong and how to fix it. Make it to that college and get a degree and keep getting as good of grades as you can. Keep those grades high and it will open up opportunities for you. As you can see from my struggle I just don't seem to have the opportunities I really want. Hopefully a happy ending will come some day, but I really don't know. Do as good as you can, better if it's possible. Working hard when you are young means you will have more opportunity and an easier time later. Stay in school and go as high as you can. Do it out of love of yourself, not for anyone else, but for you. Don't let what's happened to me happen to you. Don't be afraid to ask for help or how you can change to do it better. School credentials are as much a strategy of knowing how to use the knowledge as it is having the knowledge.

All I can do is keep doing my one step at a time towards recovery - revel in my small victories and what I do have.

I do have you rabb1t fans who are reading this. *hug* I do have fair health, certainly nothing major wrong with me (health wise). I do have knowledge and boards and email to pass on my knowledge. I do have a working car. And, wherever I go I seem to make people feel ok about themselves - maybe a little sad for my situation, but that certainly puts things in motion for them to contemplate their own lives or for me to point out their happy things they may have forgotten about or take for granted. And, I make the girls smile. I said to the teller at the bank, "I think you helped me last time I was here," and she said, "yeah?" Then a minute later (after entering my bank data) I said, "I remember 'cause yer cute." And she tee-heed, smiled, and said thanks.

Traffic should be clear in the area - wanted to avoid that if I could. About 6 now. Time for my last library check, then dinner.

Time passes

Well, the evening check revealed a very small number of ads to reply to. At least that's something.

It looks like Nvidia stealth launched the 9800 GT. Way back in the day it was supposed to launch ahead of the 9800 GTX. It was later bumped to along side the GTX. Later still word of the GTX 260/280 came out, and it was implied the 9800 GT would never actually launch. So, what with the card appearing on NewEgg and I've not seen or heard about a news update at any of my hardware sites, I'd say this is certainly a stealth launch. Makes me a sad bunny that I can't update any of my stuff.

I didn't even notice till tonight there are also tacos on the $1 menu. I can get that instead of the cheesy beefy thing and hopefully reduce my cheese intake. Trading rice for lettuce may also help my digestion.

I'm so tired of the noise. The constant rushing of cars and chatter of people. My night spot is super quiet, but once I'm awake and out in the world it's just a constant buzz of noise. As I think I mentioned I don't really listen to music, so when I have a home to be in teh rabb1t room is often completely silent if I'm not playing a game or watching TV. My poor ears are as tired as my poor feets.

Minor woot - I ordered my glasses and found a surprise. I actually almost completely forgot to order them. Anyways, I go to check out and discover I had like $12 credit. I think I returned an item and they credited my account. I could have sworn they gave it back to me in cash. Well, either way, the glasses cost half what I was expecting. They won't be here until a week from now though.

Well, I guess I'll grab some cookies for dessert and end the day's rambling.

Oh, last thing, I got a message on a resume I sent out a month ago. Could be something there. The person wanted/needed specific classes though. Just a message, so I have to actually talk to them tomorrow or whatever. (I already left them a message.) Anyways, possible lead there.

So, um, that's it for today.

Comments and stuff Copyright E. Stryker 2008, 2009
Pictures for Epic Fail are taken by me. :)

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