Virgin Sucks! Is it time for me to finally move over to Tel$tra?

I have had it up to here with the shit reception I have been having over the past few years.

I was with 3 Mobile, switched to Virgin 10 months ago hoping for an improvement. Still shit. So maybe its time I give in to my hate for Tel$tra so I can finally get the reception & coverage that I deserve.

As a result of my pent up frustrations, It is time, again, to contact my “service” provider & hope they give in to my wishes. If not, then it’s off to the TIO for a second time around to get out of my contract.

Bonus is that I may get an update to an iPhone 4S out of it…

My email to Virgin Mobile

In December 2010, I moved from 3 Mobile to Virgin mobile after issues with cellular connectivity & the lack of reception I was having at home & abroad.
Currently I am still having the same issues with your network. At home I have zero reception, if not worse than what it was with 3 mobile.
To put it in perspective, in order to receive phone calls at home I have a Telstra prepaid mobile that I use to divert calls to. That way I can actually carry a conversation longer than 30 seconds without it dropping out and having to call my friend back.
Even when I am at work on St Kilda road in Melbourne’s CBD I have trouble hearing my friends & subsequently end up calling them back from my works land line.
In almost 10 months, I have not seen any improvement.
I have already contacted the TIO to seek advice on this matter, hence my email to you.
I have an iPhone 4, iOS 5, non-jailbreak (not that it makes a difference)

The only reason I chose Virgin back in December was because you had the best offer at the time. In addition, being that you are on the Optus network, I was under the impression that the coverage would improve. This is not the case, and now I am stuck with a provider that is failing to provide me with the service that I require.

I wish to move my service over to Telstra where I know I will get the coverage that I deserve.

The Living End @ Precinct Hotel for Triple M’s Hot Breakfast

Stef managed to win us two tickets to go and see The Living End perform at Melbourne’s Precinct Hotel for Triple M’s Hot Breakfast!

It was amazing, totally worth getting up at 4:30am to get there by 6am.

Was great to see the show itself broadcast live! Then to put the icing on the cake, The Living End hit the stage just after 7am and opened with their top selling single Second Solution. They also played several tracks from their latest album The Ending Is Just The Beginning Repeating.

I won a few prizes too! Got a Living End poster & a Triple M Signed Guernsey.

I took my State of Emergency guitar tab book & the From Here On In DVD cover to get signed. I managed to get those two & the poster I won signed!! So happy!!!

To ensure that the poster stayed safe & undamaged whilst on our trip to Sydney I went to a post office, got a mailing tube, and sent it home to myself!!

Cannot wait to go to their gig at The Palace in September with my cousin Jarrod for his 21st Birthday. Meanwhile, here is their latest single, live from The Precinct Hotel for Triple M’s Hot Breakfast.

Thank You Stef for getting me the tickets! Thank You Triple M Hot Breakfast & The Precinct Hotel for an awesome morning!! And of course, Thank You to Chris, Scott & Andy from The Living End for, as always, putting on an amazing show!! See you in September!!!

The Supanova Fail Whale

So today Stef and I went to Supanova. I had never been to a SciFi/Anime/Gamer/etc convention before. I had quite high expectations of what to expect. Sadly, I was severely disappointed. Not at the content or exhibitions they had, but at the event management itself. I suppose it’s what you get for having volunteers as people and event control.

It wasn’t all that bad really! Stef, myself and her friend Coral went to the Simon Pegg and Nick Frost Q&A panel. Those two are hilarious and I hope they make many more movies together. They mainly talked about their new movie “Paul” which is in cinemas April 14.
Stef convinced me to join the public question line. We put it out to twitter with what to ask, got a few obscure replies so we decided to stick with Stef’s original thought “out of all your roles, either together or separate, which would be your favorite?”
Luckily one of the events people came to me whilst I was waiting to ask said question and said, “you’re the last one”. I was stoked!! And quite nervous!! I asked away and Nick replied with some drama movie that hit close to home personally. Where as Simon rattled off a few movies and said “I couldn’t pick one, it’s like choosing a favorite child” Nick replied, “now I feel like a jerk for picking a favorite” this was the only highlight of the day for me.

Whilst at the Q&A Stef was on twitter and a stall holder wanted a coffee and offered free Lego to who ever brought her one. We said why not and found her, she got a coffee but gave Stef the Lego anyway.

As the day went on, it got worse and worse, long queues, no air circulation, and lack of people management. I was cracking the shits bad. I really wanted the Lego thing Stef got! I LOVE LEGO!!! She was going to give it to her brother Edward whom also loves Lego! However after winging about it and the event itself, Stef gave it to me 🙂
It’s awesome, it’s Lego, it’s Star Wars and you can make eight things!! That’s eight things!!!!

We saw a snippet of the ‘One Man Lord Of The Rings’ show at one of the stages and I’m glad I did, because now I don’t want to see the show. I saw his star wars one 2 years ago, but this was not doing it for me. You just saved me some cash!

After Stef wanted to get her photo with Tom Felton, Draco Malfoy. The lines again were ridiculous!! We waited for almost two hours and then I found out the printer was broken. This was the reason for the delay.
Stef and I decided that it would be better if I waited in the photo pickup queue whist she got her photo done.
About another hour later and she was out!! I decided to go grab the car, and it was fucking pissing down with rain!! I got drenched!!!

Stef finally got her photo!! Now time to head home, shower, grab pizza beer and a movie.

Supanova was a waste of time and effort. Although I did like a few things, overall I felt that it was a waste. Others will say they liked it, loved it, and think it’s the best thing ever.

Stef only really went for Tom Felton and the Simon Pegg & Nick Frost panel. She got a photo with Tom and it turned out great!!

Happy Moomba 27th Birthday Fireworks Extravaganza!

Ok, so apologies for the EPIC title!! Well nah not really!

On March 14 1985 I entered this world as a bouncing baby boy, and it was that time of year again to celebrate such a momentous occasion!

Although the actual birthday gift receiving part of the day was rather non eventful. Except for Stef who got me tickets to the MSO on the previous Saturday evening and was treating me to Moomba. My brother didn’t really get me anything, but then again we have an agreement that if I don’t get him anything for his birthday (24-feb) then I would not expect anything in return. My parents didn’t get me anything either, this came as quite a disappointing surprise. In saying that, they have been absolutely amazing in assisting me get back on track with life so I guess that’s their present.

Stef and I were going to meet several people at federation square to explore the Moomba Festival. I can honestly say that I cannot recall the last time I went to Moomba, it was most likely as a child.

On the way to the city, we picked up Stef’s friend June. Stef & June have not seen each other in almost 15 years!! It was great to see that they still get along, a true friend ship has no distance or time limit and this was one of them. We made our way to the closest train station and headed to Federation Square to meet up with Stef’s other friend Coral and my mate Ash.

It took some time for everyone to arrive, but before we knew it we were on our way exploring the rides and making our way through the crowds. We stumbled upon dodgem cars! Now the last time I was on dodgem cars was way back in 2005 when I worked at the Melbourne Show doing catering! So it was a ‘no brainer’ that dodgem car action had to be had! Ash got into one car, June & Coral in another and then myself in the third car. Stef decided it would be wise of her to video the event (youtube) however I think she was silently scared! hehe
It was great fun!! Going around and around and around in circles trying as hard as I can to HIT the other cars as hard as I can!!

Before we knew it, the fun was over and we decided to venture deeper into the festival to track down some decent carnie noms. Whilst we were wandering and dodging people that were not paying attention, Stef suddenly decided she wanted me to win a plushie for her. But not just any plushie, a giant cuddly bear. This thought continued on and on throughput the day with Stef saying “IWANNABEAR” it was totes cute, however neither of us wanted to waste the money on trying to win one, then fail, so we gave it a pass. However still continuing to say IWANNABEAR all day haha.

We found a spot to eat and got ourselves some cheese kransky snags, they were mighty delicious and mighty expensive!! Two snags and some drinks cost me close to 25bux!!! That is REDICULOUS!!!
Whilst we were eating Stef called her other friend Ioanna to see where she was so she could meet up with us. Not long and she was here and we ventured down the river and then across to the other side.

Apart from Stef and Myself, it was the first time that each of the people on my birthday adventure had met. To our delight everyone was getting along just fine! No awkwardness or getting singled out, it was great!

We wondered around to the other side of the river where there were yet more carnie attractions and rides and yes… bears… IWANNABEAR!!!
June pointed out the giant drop ride and said “lets do that!”. I basically said, fat chance in getting me on that ride, Ash had done it before and was not up for it again and with Stef’s fear of heights, it was highly unlikely for her to go on it! However, June pulled the “I have not seen you in 15yrs” card and dragged Stef onto the ride along with Ioanna and Coral. There really is not much to this ride, it goes up in the air, waits, then drops. I could hear Stef’s loud high pitched scream as the ride fell to the bottom. You may just be able to hear it on this video (youtube) Ioanna left not long after this ride, she had to get home and prepare for her trip to China!!

After that we meandered our way through the crowds again and found ourselves at the live stage. The music was really strange, but also groovy. I forget the name but it was basically bollywood music live in concert. Ash decided that it was getting chilly, and as he lives opposite Flinder St Station, he decided to make a quick trip home for a jacket. I asked him for one as I did not listen to my mother in the morning “Take a jacket, it will get cold tonight” “Nah mum, she’ll be right” YEAH!? Famous last words they were!!! Ash returned after about half hour and was empty handed, oh well looks like I have learnt my lesson!

We decided it was time for a drink or two. So we made our way back around and accross the river again to Transport Bar. We grabbed a table, some brews, and chatted away. June told us that she was a doctor, we all thought this was awesome! None of us had ever known a doctor before!! June had studied overseas pretty much her entire life and got her Doctorate overseas too. She had awesome pics of injuries etc. It was rather a interesting conversation!! IWANNABEAR

The time was ticking closer and closer to 9:15 and that meant FIREWORKS!!! We hot footed it down to the river, then looked to the opposite side and saw all this empty space in front of the rowing sheds. So we hot footed it again across the bridge to the other side and managed to grab a nice spot on the grass. We parked our arses and waited, waited, waited then BANG!! the fireworks had started!
THIS WAS SOO AWESOME!!!! I had NEVER had fireworks on my BIRTHDAY before! and to spend it with friends and my amazing girlfriend Stef was even better! Fireworks NEVER dissapoint and this was no exception! it was a truly beautiful spectacle!! but as always, it came to and end…

As Ash’s apartment is so close by, he suggested we chill at his for a bit after. He broke out the Rock Band, and we got to rocking it out! I was cracking the shits hard core because I was not able to get the timing right. Apparently it is a lot more sensitive than guitar hero… We all had our shots at singing, guitar, bass and drums and it was getting late. June, Stef and I had to make sure we caught the train before they stopped service for the night. So we said farewell and made our way to the station and discovered that we had some time to kill. I said to Stef lets do that photo booth thing!! The first booth stole my money!! So we tried the second one and managed to get three photo’s taken. you can see them here one, two, three.

Before we knew it we were on our way back to drop June off then on our way home. I asked Stef “Have you ever had a kebab before?” She replied “what’s that?!”
I think you know what happend next, we stopped and got some kebab late night noms and then chilled watching half of Finding Nemo and then crashed.

I would have to say that it would be one of my best birthdays yet. You don’t need to get crunk or “fucked up” to have a great birthday! This was truly special and AWESOME!!

Thanks June, Ash, Coral and Ioanna for joining me and helping me celebrate!
And OF COURSE Stef!!! xoxo

 

IWANNABEAR!!!!!!!

The Birthday Song

Stef wrote me a song for my birthday!!!

I never thought that this would be,
A good equation together you & me,
I could go on about how much I think,
That this can’t be true,
But I know it’s real,
‘Cause I’m here with you

I never want this to end,
And you should know, you’re my best friend,
I could go on about how much I think,
That this could not be
But I know it’s real,
‘Cause you’re here with me

Happy birthday
Happy birthday
Happy birthday to you
And I hope that
All your wildest dreams come true

Happy birthday
Happy birthday
Happy birthday to you
Grant, I just want to tell you so much,
I love you
And I hope that this present
Isn’t too cheap for you

It was such a beautiful thing to do, no one has ever written me a song! I was so moved I cried for a bit. Truly the best present that anyone could wish for!

The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra & My Birthday Part 1

On Saturday Stef took me to the Melbourne Town Hall to experience the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (MSO) play songs & scores by the incredible John Williams at the Star Wars And Beyond concert.

I have never been to see the MSO before! Stef went to see them about a month ago when they had the free concerts at the Myer Music Bowl. Unfortunately I was working for every single one of these free concerts so I could not attend. Stef bought me a ticket for my birthday (14/03) It was an amazing present, and also one of the many “firsts” that Stef and I find ourselves doing.

Our seats were right up in the back row. Yeah, it might sound like they were shit seats, however its better acoustically to sit at a distance from an orchestra. They opened with the Olympic Fanfare & Theme which was written for the LA Olympic Games. Next was JAWS!!! Those two famous notes! Duhhh Duh, Duuuhhhh Duh!! OH it was amazing! It sent chills down my spine!! Up next was the Lost In Space theme. I never watched this show, so these scores didn’t really have much of an impact on me.

One of my favourite movies of all time Jurassic Park was next on the play list! Oh it was soo cool! Every part of this score was amazing!!

I could literally go on and describe every song, but i would be here for ever doing so. Soooo here is a quick list of the rest of the songs.

Memoirs of a Geisha: Sayuri’s Theme
JFK: Theme
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone: Hedwig’s Theme
Far and Away: Suite
Catch Me If You Can: Closing In
Superman: March
Raiders of the Lost Ark: March
Close Encounters of the Third Kind: Excerpts
Schindler’s List: Main Theme

This one was awesome because the 1st char violinist stood up and did the solo section of the entire song. It was truly beautiful!!

The Phantom Menace: Suite
Star Wars Suite: Princess Leia’s Theme
The Empire Strikes Back: Imperial March
The Empire Strikes Back: Yoda’s Theme
Throne Room and Finale (credits) from Star Wars

Star Wars OF COURSE was truly awe inspiring!! I absolutely love these movies, and hearing the amazing work of John Williams played live was pure bliss, absolute BLISS. I closed my eyes at several points throughput these scores and was in heaven. What I liked best about this was the fact they played them, pretty much, without interruption. With exception of the stupid bitch sitting next to us with her FUCKING PHONE RINGING!!! RAAAGGGEEE!! Then she had it on and recording or something. The light was in the corner of my eye. Stef could see that i was getting irritated, and so was she, so Stef asked her to put her phone away. “but i didnt make any noises” Stef: “Its the light, its annoying the shit out of me” Perfect!! That was just awesome, thanks for that Stef!

With exception of that the MSO was truly AMAZING!! They even did an encore with the E.T. score from the bicycle chase! I definitely want to see the MSO again! If you would like to, check out their ‘what’s on’ calendar here

Sunday was next on my birthday weekend of awesomeness. I was meeting all the crew at the Templestowe Hotel for some afternoon drinks. It was supposed to be great weather, and they have an awesome section outside, however in true Melbourne style, the black clouds came in and the heavens opened. oh well there was plenty of room inside for us to chill.

Stef was quite nervous, because she is not really used to doing the “group” thing. She is more used to 1 or 2 people at a time. We got there and we got our drinks and chatted away. It wasn’t so bad, I thought Stef got along quite well with my mates! Especially that my mate Gordon went to primary school with her for one year 15 years ago!! We were only there for a few hours, chatted, drank, played pool, drank, chatted, drank. Was awesome to introduce my amazing girlfriend to my group of mates. I think they all liked her.

Mum got some take out bbq chicken and chips for dinner, we watched some tv and then Stef and I retired to my room for some….. Jurassic Park movie action. (what did you think i was going to say??? tisk tisk)
This movie is awesome, and was made so much better that we had heard the John Williams score for it live by the MSO!! We both were live tweeting like crazy and loving it! im sure the twitter universe was also loving getting flooded by the both of us!!

Before we knew it it was midnight and my birthday had arrived!!

Stef gave me a kiss and told me how much she loved me!! SQUEEEEE

When we kissed she told me that my kisses were out of this world.
I said “would you like to go to mars?”
Stef: “huh?”
Me: “i would like to take you out of this world again” and i kissed her again
Stef: “i dont want to go to mars”
Me: “then where would you like to go”
Stef: “the moon, its closer”
I burst out laughing, it was so cute the way she said it. I even made up a little song on the spot, the melody started out ok but then i just started to ramble!!

if i could take you to the moon
i would take you right now
we would fly there and sit in the dust
we would watch the earth come up
and maybe play some golf, then search for the flag
the one the americans left behind
thats not actually there
coz they never went
and its all fake
so we will be the first

You can sort of see where i went of towards the end, but i thought it was mildly amusing!

She is truly amazing, and I am very lucky to have her in my life. Not only is she my loving girlfriend, but she is also my best friend. I love you so much! and I am lucky to get a midnight kiss on my birthday!! She was feeling bad because she has not gotten me a card or anything. All I can ask for, is her to spend the day with me and my birthday is complete. I’m not one for material possessions, words and the expression of how one feels its way more valuable to me.

Time to stop rambling, got to sleep so my birthday can continue in the morning!

Good Night!

Happy Birthday Mum!!

Today is my Mum’s Birthday!

I wished her a happy birthday this morning, however I did not have a card or a present to give to her as I’m poor due to being sick and not working.
However I did manage to scrape together enough change from my car to get her a card on the way home, I even had enough to get her a ‘quick pick’ for tonight’s lotto draw!!

Message on the Envelope

To The MOST Awesome
Mum In The WORLD!!
THATS YOU!! 🙂

Here is the message that i wrote on the card

Dear Mum,

Thank you for everything you do for me. You have been there for me every step of the way. Especially thru the last eight months or so, as I get myself back up on my feet. I definately could not of gotten to where I am today without both yours and Dad’s support. Although I may not show it all the time, I do truly appreciate everything you do for me.

Happy Birthday Mum!!

Much Love

Grant 🙂 xoxo

Both of my parents have helped me thru some very difficult times, basically since 1st of July 2010. To name a few: Got fired, struggled to find work, Dad got me onto a recruitment agency thru his work, my Girlfriend of 5 and a half years left me, they took me to Vietnam for three weeks, and have helped me out financially numerous times!!
I honestly cannot be more thankful for both of their support whist I pick myself back up and get on with my life!
Not to mention my other family and friends too!
And my awesome girlfriend and best friend Stef!!

There is also a message on the card that I got, it is as follows

For A very Special Mother

This brings a special thank you for the love you show all year, and the thoughtful things you do that make you so dear…
And this also comes to tell you today that you are loved so very much – far more than words can say.

Happy Birthday

I Love You Lots Mum!! I hope you have had a great day, and we all enjoy dinner tonight with the family!!

Love,

Grant xoxo

Vietnam Day Seventen

Early pickup
Drive to da nang
Crazy driver
Mountain road
Shortcut thru mountain tunnel
Da nang airport
Quick flight
Ho Chi Minh City
Hotel, chill
Walk to lunch
Walk back, parents walked to river
Snooze, shower.
Walk to and around market
Got hassled my dinner place
Say come back
Buy stuff
Back dinner, very cold beer
Walk back, ice cream
Hotel, sleep

Vietnam Day Sixteen

After our big day around the DMZ we had a little bit of a sleep in. Not much tho as we were getting picked up for our cooking tour. Our pickup was at 10am so we grabbed a light breakfast and waited at the check in desk for our guide to arrive.
Our guide Threi (pronounced three, found that amusing) arrive at the hotel. She had walked all the way from the restaurant to the hotel. She had left her phone at the restaurant so we called for a cab and got on our way.
The first stop was the markets. This was a great experience. We discovered that 99% of the people in Vietnam buy their food each day. They would go in for lunch, buy cook and eat and do the same for dinner. Unlike us westerners who shop once a week. This is due to fridges being so expensive they are unable to keep food cool for that long. So they shop every day.
We started just walking thru the market whilst Threi explained how the products are gathered and farmed in the country and brought in by car, motorbike or bicycle to thr city markets. We bought some onions, garlic, noodles and several other products before we headed into the seafood section.
This was a real shock, so much fresh seafood. A dinner plate sized dish full of baby squid, 50kVND that’s only 2.50AUD insane!! We picked up some fish and moved thru to the meat section. The smell was, well pungent. It was unbelievable how all this meat was, well everywhere. Being cut and prepared on slabs made from tree stumps. It was rather shocking. Health and local laws would have a field day. We got some beef bones for stock and fillets for the the soup. We continued to wonder around the market for a little more, checking out some of the stalls and more fresh produce and made our way back out to the street.
Threi asked us to wait at the front of the market whilst she ran off to get a cab to take us back to the restaurant to begin cooking. Our cab arrived after about 10mins and we were on our way. It was really hot and humid in the markets so we relaxed with a cold drink and then got started. Threi handed us an apron each and a chefs hat. This was starting to become lost of fun! I get to wear a chefs hat!!
Without going into too much detail, Threi began by explaining the menu and instructions then started to show us how to do the first part, Vietnamese Pancakes. We stood by thinking when are we going to get a shot, then she grabbed my brother and got him to begin preparing the vegies. Mum and Dad started with the sauce, and I got started on the pancake mix. Its a savoury pancake, with vegies and some seafood inside. Kind of looks like an omelette, the way it folds over. Before we knew it, they were cooked and we got to eat them, they were sooo tasty!
Next we were to make Fresh and Fried spring rolls. Not much too these really, just rice paper, onions peppers mushrooms etc. For the fresh spring rolls you stirfry the vegie mix and then spoon them onto the paper, roll them and plate them up. For the fried ones, you use fresh vegie mix and then roll them and flash fry them. Pretty simple really, and yet again tasty
Next was Pho Bo, a beef and rice noodle soup. We brought out the beef stock with the bones in it we started earlier, added some more ingredients to it for flavour. Each bowl had a small amount of rice noodles in it, and we had a platter of greens to put in after dishing it up. The beef is cut into tiny little pieces, this is due to the way we cook it. All you do is put some beef onto the ladle and cook it in the boiling stock for a few seconds, spooning the hot water over the top. Its cooked within a minute!! Amazing! Put the beef into the dish with stock for the soup and add fresh greens into the soup for flavour.
There was nothing left to cook, so we sat back enjoyed our soup and had a few drinks to wash it down with. Before we knew it, it was almost 5pm and we were exhausted. We got a cab back to the hotel and dad decided to walk. I bet he wished he didnt because it absolutely bucketed down as soon as we got to the hotel, he walked for almost an hour in torrential tropical rain! Haha suck it!
We just chilled at the hotel, got some drinks, room service and had an early night. Tomorrow we’re off to Ho Chi Minh City

Girl Talk

allday_frontcover

Yesterday whilst driving I was listening to Triple J’s 2010 with Richard Kingsmill and he was talking about a free downloadable album from Girl Talk. The reason for it being free is due to every track containing an uncountable number of samples. So due to copyright issues they cannot produce the album commercially. Either way Free or Not I had to get my hands on it.

I have been listening to it for almost half an hour now and OH MY GOD, the tracks in combination samples are like a musical journey through time! For instance the track On and On (track 6) has 80’s and even recent top 40 chart artists. Full sample list is available here all 350+ artists!

This album is truly unbelieveable!!! Definately worth the download and listen multiple times!!

It is available for download here at illegal-art.net. You can download it as one single mixed track, or split ‘for easy navigation’
Can’t wait for them to release the FLAC version of it.

OMG just before I hit post Rage Against the Machine was sampled. I now LOVE these guys!!