Thursday, 31 January 2013

Catching Up With Fishy

this particular blog post I have had written in notes for over a week and finally had time to write it all up so here it is.

Let's face it - the weather in January has been playing complete and utter chaos with everyones plans  The dam snow either cancelling travel plans and people getting to work on time. Luckily, the late trains worked in my favor for my trek to St Neots, seeing as it should only be a 40 minute trip, it turned out to be a 2 hour train ride. Once I finally got there, the snow was worse there than it was in either Cambridge or Newmarket.

Eventually met up with Luke after a slow walk towards town walked towards shakie jakes to sit down have a catch up over what's been happening over Christmas and New years and talk about the usual subjects: Football and University. We also talked about any market research we had carried out for our upcoming business venture in Sports Marketing. After having a unique milkshake at Shakie Jakes, we met up with Luke's girlfriend before she headed to work, had a nice catch up and laugh over Luke while having a Subway, you just gotta love a meatball marinara.

After we left Ana to go to work, me and Luke made the long trip back to his for a long-awaited FIFA session. On the way there, Luke talked me through 'Magic: The Gathering' card game, this would be one accomplishment of my bucket list (See 'Bucket List' blog post) Luke talked me through the basics and what types of decks there were existant - I was intrigued by this, a few years back I would never have given this a thought and just thought it was too nerdy for me, just like Warhammer and the alternative - WarMachine.

Once we eventually got to Lukes house, the FIFA session was underway! I somehow thrashed Luke in the first game, just couldn't believe my luck as he was Anzhi and I was Arsenal 5-1. But unfortunately, Luke started to be more of a test first winning as Fluminense vs Brighton 3-2 in a hbighly laughable match, we spent more time laughing than we did concentrating on the game, then he won as Olympiakos over Rayo Vallecano 2-1 in another entertaining match, and then - the old firm: Man Utd v Chelsea - it was very equal until Luke did a re-shuffle and put Luiz in midfield and from then on, I couldn't either get a hold of the ball and hold it long enough to launch an attack, lost 2-0 in the end.

After we enjoyed FIFA, Luke gave me my first shot at Magic. First game, he talked me through the lay out of the cards, what each card does and how the game works - I started off with a Black deck against his Ice deck. I did lose the first game but at least I got the general idea of the game, next round Luke got manner screwed and I surprisingly beat him. I did like the chances of luck coming into it when it came to depending on manner to help win a game. After the games, Luke helped me set up my first ever deck, as I had a good idea of how to play with a Black deck he started me off with that first, and now I feel like I've introduced a new hobby/ interest into my life which I hope to take along further.

First day back at university, I went to the Inner Sanctum store in Cambridge to purchase more decks and came across the deck builders toolkit which gave me the equivelant of 5 new decks for the same price of starting 2 decks (£16.99) I purchased dice to go with the game as well as it also gives me a rulebook, Luke has said I will come back to St. Neots at a later time to see if I can shift some of his 2 huge boxes of wasted cards to build much stronger decks for me to challenge him and perhaps bring other friends into the game.

Later in the week, Luke was adament that I try out WarHammer which was another game I have slated in the past, so after our lectures I went with Luke in Games Wokshop to get a  tutorial game in, which I won surprisingly - i was actually interested in the whole concept with having to spend unfortunately loads of money on armies to have to paint them, sand them down to make them look presentable to work. Luke talked me through the different armies and the latest offer 'Dark Vengeance'. I'm interested in starting up with the Dark Vengeance box set with a paint station which would set me back about £120 but it does include everything I would need in a starter set. After looking through the different types of armies, if I decide to expand armies in the future, I would definitely go for the 'Dark Eldars'.

So, I thank Luke for introducing me to these 2 very interesting games and I look forward to if I do go through with starting up Warhammer and how far I go with developing my new Magic decks and getting some friends involved with it :)

A new blog post will be posted within the new next few days revolved around a certain band of friends that are shall we say, "Awesome".

Hope you've enjoyed reading and shall see you all soon :) x

2013 Lookin' Bright

Hey fellow bloggers, readers and followers,

Its been a while since I've written on here - been very hectic the last few weeks and I've been meaning to update this for a while but I just didn't have much time apart from writing down notes for new posts. This post is basically a quick update on what's been happening in my life since new years.

At work it's finally cooled down after all the stresses of the Christmas period and things getting back to normal. I just recently had a performance review with my store manager going over my role within the team and how me and him's cohabitants has improved since we started working together (Lowdown: Didn't like the guy, never listened to him, made it hard to work for him and the company, but luckily that time has passed) - he has now offered me a chance to become a duty manager at work, this would be about the 4th or 5th time I've been put on this course I just hope I'm not wasting my time again wanting to be trained up.

At home, things are looking up for everything, my eldest of 3 sisters Sophie (17) broke up with her douchebag boyfriend before Christmas and she came home to spend Christmas with the family which I was over the moon about because I had my little partner in crime back - even gave her a hug or two (She's not a "hug" person!). My youngest sister Olivia (15 months) has now started walking and just won't leave her favourite family member alone (Before you lot say anything sarcy, its me!) she climbs on my furniture, likes to pull out my USB from my computer and even likes to try on my gorilla slippers. I've submitted my online application for housing so now I'm just sitting back and waiting on what "Band" I'm placed into, and in that time I'm looking for people that I could share a flat, maisonette, bungalow or even a house with. My family has been prepping me for the move out by buying me things for my birthday and christmas towards my new abode - they're either being very supportive or they're trying to tell me something.

I've returned to Uni for the first time since early December this week and I've been waiting anxiously along with my friends on the dreaded results of our first semester results. After ranting about it on Facebook and Twitter, everyone FINALLY started getting e-mails to collect our assignments. Monday, me and my friend Luke went up last thing on Monday with our e-mails and somehow the faculty had misfiled them (¬.¬) Later in the week, a stroke of luck! We finally got all of our assignments back. I'm very happy for my friends for how well they all did in their penultimate semester - One proud fella :) As for me, I thought I would only just scrape a pass in my assignments - ended up with three 2.1's (60%-69%) overall, I was so ecstatic over them results I'm now aiming to maintain this and aim to get a 2.1 degree as I only aimed for a Pass or low 2.2 degree when I first started. Now it's time to push on with the final semester - making everlasting memories, spending time with such amazing people and getting the best grades I possibly can with these assignments.

And finally, I have entered into setting up a business with an old school friend Stewart and my uni friend Luke. The company is based on sports marketing and hoping to reach out to local sport teams in the beginning to help raise awareness of outsourcing marketing activities to us on a commission and begin to make it a thriving business opportunity for us all. The main justification of our company has been released recently by MP's informing Football to begin a reform of the sport, or face interference by the government (See article here: Fingers crossed things go smoothly until we actually start conducting business - I'm really excited about this venture and showing my skills in this sort of environment.

Will speak to you all later,

Take care x

Monday, 7 January 2013

Dissertation Questionnaire

Hey peeps, just a quick update.
I'm conducting a dissertation in my final year at Uni which is a BIG ESSAY! I have created a questionnaire in which people who have shopped in Cambridge or live in the Cambridge area can contribute to my analysis.
All I need is if you could take no more than 5 minutes of your time to fill in this survey, this is the link to use:

Your feedback is very much appreciated :)


Saturday, 5 January 2013

2013 Resolutions

So, not even a week into 2013 aand it has been a positive start. Lots of plans in the works for what the future holds after university. I definitely have a good feeling for how 2013 will turn out and this blog post is to show you what the plans are currently.

My Three 2013 Resolutions:
1. I know it sounds mushy but I intend to - fall in love. It's been 2 years since my last - and only serious relationship, and I'm hoping to find someone again (:

2. I know right now with my current saving money scheme (which isn't working well) , but I'm hoping - to move out of the family home. This will be more possible if I'm able to find a friend to move in with, but I'm going to be on an uber-save blitz from here until the summer, with any luck I will have a potential full time job or plenty of hours going in my current job to help boost my funds.  

3. My final resolution is without a doubt the more important right now from my perspective - Find my ideal career path. This. for me, has to be completed by the time I finish my 3rd and final year at University which gives me 5/6 months to discover what I want to do in my life. No pressure.

Music Gigs: Asking Alexandria, FUN, We Are The In Crowd

Stacey & Cassy's Wedding

ARU Graduation - October (:

Things To Do:
Find a Girlfriend

Finish Nan's Journal

Finish Univeristy Scrapbook

Find a Graduate Scheme/ New Job

Move Out Of Family Home

FINALLY Get A Tattoo

Friday, 4 January 2013

2012: Review Of My Year

Hello fellow bloggers! Hope you had a great New Years and went into 2013 on a positive note (: I've been planning on doing a review of my year so here it is. Not going to lie, it's been a pretty great year for me - I've made some awesome friends, I've got rid opf friends who treated me like shit, no real setbacks and I'm looking to the future now. I've got included in this new post my favourite 10 stand out moments, the best 10 films I've seen at the cinema and the top 10 tv shows I've been introduced to this year. I hope you enjoy reading this.

Top 10 Moments Of My 2012:
There have been some amazing moments I've experienced and been a part of this year, it was difficult to narrow it down to 10 so here they are in order (:

10. Wembley Stadium Tour
Back in January, I got a Wembley Stadium tour for Christmas and cashed it in, I took my step dad with me because we had previously been to Wembley to see the NFL Internal Series (Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Chicago Bears) It was amazing to see great memorabilia like the cross bar of the 1966 world cup final, champions league winners year by year kit shirts and match day stuff. Got some amazing pictures, got to walk onto the pitch and hold the FA Cup. Awesome day (: Next up is a stadium tour of Old Trafford!!

9. Secret Society of Awesomeness Trip
Very few people will understand what this means - basically, its a group of 5 awesome people that I work with at Iceland and we meet up regularly whether its a cinema trip, bowling, going round someones house for a laugh. This particular moment was the first time that we all had a day out together as a group outside of work (: After a Sunday shift at work, we took a trip to Huntington - did get sort of lost looking for the others when on the way there but they got there before us. We had a mahoosive Frankie & Benny's where we spent over 120 quid between 5 of us! We had to wait well over an hour for our food which was annoying especially when we had to be in the cold outside -.- But after we managed to get our food, we went to the arcades in the cinema complex where we took our first picture together as a group. We then watched Pirates! A Band Of Misfits which was a surprisingly great film! Overall, an amazing day (: And there have been many of them memories since then!

8. Michael McIntyre
This particular moment was not planned, a few weeks before the event I was asked by my Uni friend Stacey if I wanted the tickets so I snatched them up before anyone else was aked. The tough part was finding someone to come with, but everyone just said they'd get back to me but they never did -.- so eventually, I found myself someone to go with. My mate Rob who I hadn't seen for a long while and had an enjoyable time on the way to Birmingham catching up about everything that's been having - we got very giddy about getting onto the infamous 'Spaghetti Junction' and successfully maneouvered a 3-point turn in the smallest hotel parking area I've ever seen! We had a few bevvies in the Wetherspoons and had a nice walk looking around the Birmingham city centre before the event. Michael McIntyre was AMAZING!! Completely different when seeing him live instead of watching him on TV. Next comedian I want to see live is the one and only, LEE EVANS!! xD

7. College Reunions (Charlie, Emma)
I have missed my friends from College as they had done so much for me in the two years I knew them and we made some amazing memories (: (Go back to 'Revisiting College' blog post) Since then, I haven't really kept in touch with anyone but luckily this year, I've managed to catch up with 2 of my old college mates. Emma - we randomly bumped into one another in town and got to talking and arranged to meet up one night for a catch up, and since then we haven't stopped talking and we've kept meeting up seeing films and grabbing a bite to eat. She is now one of my closest friends and I'm so happy to have her back in my life and we always have a fun time. Another friend I caught up with was with Charlie as she came with me for the Olympics Football (I will get into that a little bit later!) I hope to catch up with more college friends in 2013!

6. Blink 182
I had to wait 18 months for this event to arrive as the band had delayed touring for some reason. Was originally meant to go with my Uni friend but because she couldn't afford to go, so the first person I thought of that liked Blink was my friend Charley, unfortunately because she had a bad ear infection we risked lasting as long as we did in the gig being so close to the stage. It was an amazing gig seeing The Blackout, All-American Rejects and Blink 182. We read online that Blink had been doing a reprise of 'Call Me Maybe' but unfortunately they changed it for this event to do Kelis - 'Milkshake' instead. We did eventually leave a couple of songs earlier to beat the crowd to help Charley with her ear, I bought some bread which was helping the achiness.Overall had an amazing time in Nottingham seeing 3 of my favourite friends with a great friend.

5. Olympics
This is the one and only time anyone would experience the Olympics in my lifetime and I was happy with whatever I got to see. I originally applied for the Opening + Closing ceremony, Men's Football Gold Medal Match & the 100m final day which was in fact, 'Super Saturday'. Unfortunately I was unsuccessful getting any of them so I settled for 2 group matches & 1 quarter-final match at Old Trafford. Surprisingly, it cost £20 a ticket each x * - ACTUAL BARGAIN! I went to Manchester on the 26th July with my work mate Richard and met up with my old college buddy Charlie with her boyfriend Alex. Had such a great time at the matches catching up with Charlie and having such a laugh about old times and the crazy Uruguayian fan in front of us. We saw Uruguay vs U.A.E - we were supporting U.A.E as that absolute c*** Luis Suarez was playing - we all enjoyed booing him and seeing how absolute shite he played. Did manage to catch all 4 of us on television (split second of fame ha!). We got to meet DJ Spoony and eventually the main event we couldn't wait to see was, Team GB vs Senegal, was a disappointing result but being apart of the atmosphere and being passionate for the home nations was an amazing experience.
On 4th August, I returned to Old Trafford with my step-dad and my Uni friend Stacey alongwith her fiance Cassy. The Quarter-Final we were hoping to see was potentially Brazil vs Spain but as Brazil were too good and Spain were shit, it ended up being Japan vs Egypt. It was good to catch up with the loved-up couple over the summer and had a good laugh supporting Japan painting the Japanese flag on me, Stacey and Cassy (Discovered Cassy's hidden talent) and she ended up painting some kids faces too!
Overall an amazing experience with amazing people and moments that I won't ever forget!

4. Asylum 8
I've always wanted to experience a convention since a friend introduced me to the likes of Comic Con, I managed to stumble upon a company that arranges conventions for hit TV shows and I discovered they hold Supernatural conventions. If you don't know what 'Supernatural' is about, its a sci-fi/ fantasy show about 2 brothers facing mythological creatures such as Demons, Angels, Witches & Hellhounds. Truly is an amazing show, I went with my sister Sophie and long-time friend Natasha in Birmingham. Got to stay in the same hotel as the Supernatural stars such as;
  • Misha Collins - Castiel
  • Mark Sheppard - Crowley
  • Jim Beaver - Bobby
  • DJ Qualls - Garth
  • Kim Rhodes - Sheriff Jody Mills
  • Mark Pellegrino - Lucifer
  • Steven Williams - Rufus
  • Jim Michaels/ Guy Norman Bee - Directors
  • Matt Cohen - Young John Winchester
  • Carrie Ann Fleming - Bobby's Wife
  • James Patrick Stuart - Dick Roman
I got to meet all of the cast there and have handshakes and chats with them all and got an autograph each. I got kissed by Kim Rhodes (Developed a massive crush on her - I didn't realise she was the Mum off 'Suite Life of Zack and Cody') I got pictures with the awesome DJ Qualls, Misha Collins, Jim Beaver and the lovely Kim Rhodes. Definitely would go back again to see another Supernatural convention or a convention like Big Bang Theory!

3. Friendship Reconciliation
She may not like me for saying this publically on my blog, but it would be nice for me to tell her. Me and this friend have had an up and down time over the last couple of years and we've hardly talked or spent time together but this year, in my opinion, has made such a difference in a good way. We have spent more time together having a laugh and arranging plans for going to see Blink and going to Download. Spending time together on both of these occasions I hope helped our friendship and I still consider her an important person in my life and I can always rely on her to be honest, reliable, trustworthy and always up for a good time. I look forward to spending more time with you and being able to have memories made with you.

2. University
This year has been an awesome, yet stressful year when it comes to University. The first half, I've amanged to create more memories with my uni mates and achieve a 2.1 so far with my current grades, and in the second half has been my the first semester of my final year so alot of pressure has been on this one. In Year 3, everyone has had to worry about how stressful and tiring the assignments have been, the stress of applying for either post-graduate courses or graduate schemes. I've also decided to create a scarpbook with memories of my friends and the times I've shred with them. Hopefully have it all done by the time 3rd year ends so I can show them. 2013 is going to be a stressful and emotional year saying our goodbyes and handing in the last of the assignments and eventually graduating!

1. Download Festival
First time festival-goer. First-time Downloader!
5 days of drinking, music, mud, no baths, fairground. 5 days of AWESOMENESS!
When me, Charley & April arrived at Castle Donington it was long wait and one of THE LONGEST WALKS I'VE EVER DONE!! Luckily once we got to the Blue campsite it was an easy tent set-up and helped the girls with their tent along with a few others as we were tent newbies. We spent our first night settling in after the rain hit and got to know our Download neighbours.
On the second day, yet another rainy day (I don't like rainy weather as much as anyone, but I didn't mind it as much this time as it's a part of the whole festival experience) but we walked around the festival village to see what they all had to offer and ended up getting our faces painted (Me ~ Joker, Charley ~ Eye Fairy Decoration). Later in the day, Charley and April had fallen asleep and I was tired of being in the tent so I ventured to the comedy tent to see some of the events happening such as Kunt & The Gang.
FRIDAY - 1st day of Rock in the Download Arena, but as the line up on the friday wasn't as good as the saturday and sunday, however, we bumped into a couple of Canadian guys who were in the country to volunteer for the 2012 Olympics, ended up having a chinwag getting to know one another and somehow ended up having one EPIC mud fight, which I believe that April lost as she was being targeted the most. After that, we settled into Charley & April's tent and ended up playing 'Truth or Dare'.
SATURDAY was a great day as it was first day me, Charley, April and the 2 Canadian lads Shaun and Jason, we enjoyed the fun fair rides before we went on a long trek to the Download Arena but as we got there we had the chance to see Steel Panther from the top of the 'XLR8' thrill seeker which was a spectacular sight seeing the sheer mass of people around the arena. We got to witness the likes of;
  • Tenacious D
  • You Me At Six
  • Metallica
...during the day.
The final day at Download we went all out! Drank the remains of our alcohol, coincidentally bumped into a couple of lads from Haverhill, played drinking games both in the campsite and the 24 hour cafe which made some amazing mash and beans. We managed to go see bands like;
  • Rise Against
  • Black Sabbath
Unfortunately, I didn't get to see bands like Shinedown & Fozzy on the Sunday, but it was a great last day with everyone smiling and having a great time :)
It was sad to leave on the Monday but I will never forget my first festival and I will definitely make sure to see some more in the future, whether its Download or V Fest.

Top 10 Films I've Seen At The Cinema:
10. Paranormal Activity IV

9. Pirates! Band Of Misfits

8. Battleship

7. Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part II

6. The Sweeney

5. American Reunion

4. Perks Of Being A Wallflower

3. Dredd

2. Dark Knight Rises

1. Avengers Assemble

Top 10 Songs Of 2012:
10. FUN - Some Nights

9. Maroon 5 - PayPhone

8. David Guetta - Titanium

7. Rita Ora - How We Do (Party)

6. Pixie Lott Feat. Tinchy Stryder -  Bright Lights

5. Jessie J - Domino

4. The Script - Hall Of Fame

3. FUN - We Are Young

2. Rihanna Feat. David Guetta - We Found Love

1. Flo Rida Feat. Sia - Wild Ones

Top 10 TV Shows Of 2012: (This list also includes shows that I have been introduced to this year!)
10. Sons Of Anarchy


8. American Horror Story

7. New Girl

6. Walking Dead

5. Chuck

4. How I Met Your Mother

3. Celebrity Juice

2. Big Bang Theory

1. London 2012

OVERALL, it has been an amazing 2012 for me with more highs than lows, and I'm going to make sure that 2013 is just the same and if not, BETTER! I have plenty planned with some amazing people so far this year and I feel privileged to make memories with these people (: