Friday, May 27, 2011

Tell me your ideas on mine.

Now I know I was going to writing about the successful things I have done but I've been thinking about some ideas all day and to be honest I could use help thinking about them so I thought I'd write them here and people can comment or email me and let me know what they think. What's that saying “Two heads are better then one” well 3,000 people view my blog each week.

Before I write my ideas let me tell you why I come up with these ideas. The first night I became homeless I remembered I didn't care about anything, the world and even my life. In fact I remember laying on a park bench and just waited to waste away. I was so depressed or down on myself that I felt worthless. I had lost all self confidence and couldn't look people in the eyes. Now don't worry I'm not going to do the teary thing.

I remember that feeling well and it makes me stronger because I never want to be that bad ever again. The thing I think of most is I wish someone like me now had meet me then. If you can understand that then thank you because I don't know how to explain it better. I try so hard to help people who are homeless that it is someone trying that means the most.

I'm not sure if I wrote that right but here's a better way to explain I think but it's longer.

Being all alone on the streets and losing all confidence in yourself is so hard to come back from. Every morning you wake with nothing but what you have on you and what you can carry and it's easy to hate yourself and the world around you. Sooner or later you see the worst evil there is 'people' they look down on you and slowly you believe them more and more.

Now I have said many of times “Just saying hi to someone at the right time could change there life” I say it because in ways it happened to me. I have seen and heard many stories of how it's easy to become homeless and give up on yourself but the hardest thing is getting back.

I do pies and coke a lot. I will meet a homeless person and offer them a feed and I'll get it for them, then I'll sit and just talk but let them do most of the talking until I say things like “mate it's not to late to take control again and get back on your feet. I could help” It's saying you can and I care enough to help.
Here's my ideas

1/ I want to do the same but on a bigger scale. I'm thinking of setting up a committee of people and asking people to donate to one thing only. Helping one person at a time in a big way. Here's what I'm thinking.
1 month rent in a lodge (about $600)
$500 worth of new clothes and shoes
1 haircut.
1 mobile phone with credit on prepaid if needed.
All the food he or she would need for at least a month (bought weekly)
toiletries (brush, razor and things like that)
Someone or many meeting him every two days and trying to help him or her to get a job and treating him or her as a friend.

Now the plan is to help the person to feel like he or she is needed in life and they have worth in themselves.

To be honest I can't do this alone because well I don't have all them things for myself so giving it to someone else would be hard. But I know with all this maybe just maybe it could start someone off in the right direction. Now I know if given all this that the person may go back to the streets after the month of free rent is used up, but in my book it's worth a try because if they get a job and take pride in themselves again then really there's no price tag for that.

I know this would be a big project and it really should be done with a committee and done right, but like this blog I'm happy to do so much even if it helps one person.

2/ Now my second idea is a quick and easy one to set up. I'm thinking of setting up a B.B.Q at a Homeless Centre on a Saturday or Sunday and feed all that come. I was thinking of having the B.B.Q cooking food and next to that a table with bread and salads and things like that. But next to that table another table with a whole heap of cloths to give away that I could ask people to donate while selling my magazines. I asked before and it was a huge success. I was thinking if people wanted to come a just talk to homeless then it might help them even more. You would be giving the most valuable they treasure 'time and someone who cares'

3/ Now this one I know I couldn't do on my mine that's for sure. A hall or house or a very large room where beds can be put up and homeless people can go and be safe at night. I know all it would take is mattress on a floor if that's all we could get, I am not just talking about getting out of the cold but being safe at night as well. Some people may not want get on there feet yet and want to stay out. But even they want to feel safe some days too. Maybe because of shortage of beds there could be a limit of 3 nights a week that way they can shower and eat well at least for 3 nights a week.

I know there's no jokes in this post and it's a bit heavy about what I am thinking of doing but really the colder it gets the more I want to do.

Please if you have any ideas or would like to offer your own ideas then please send email to or leave a comment and share it.

This is important. I'd like to thank the 4 people for making a donation towards me making my educational DVD and me helping others. I am trying to do the best with what I have. If you haven't please do because I can do so much with more funds. The button's top left of the screen.

Thank you for reading my blog and I hope you all have a great day. If you like my stories then please tell others.
Grant the Polite Guy.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Bad day then think of good times PT1

Okay today my back was hurting a lot and I couldn't work because I did so many hours yesterday. Now when days like this happen most people start thinking all the sad things in life and I'm no exception. Really there's nothing worst then always feeling pain and there's nothing you can do to stop it except dope (doctors medication) yourself up so much you don't feel anything.

So here's how I see it, Spend the day feeling sorry for myself and everything I've lost which seems at most times all my life before my accident or pump some music and think what I have done that's good and what I aim to do from here on. It was easy I was hurting so much and didn't want nothing to do with anything good. I just wanted to hate myself. So I sat and thought about mostly my family for about one hour and how much I missed them and then I thought, we learn from the past but we control the future.

So I started pumping music on my little radio that Jaye had got me and just sat there listening to Triple M. I started thinking of, yes the sad things at first but then I started thinking of what I have done in the last 2 years. Then I started thinking I'm a great bloke. Ha ha. Here I was starting out with the Big Issue about 21 months ago because I needed food and I've done so much.

So if you have music, pump it before reading on because I'll look so much better when uplifting music is playing in the background. Ha ha. YEAH. Ha ha. If your at work then please tell the boss I said it was okay. Then tell the boss to read it as well because I love to share. Ha ha.

Please be warned I have new batteries in my radio and free computer for a few hours. Ha ha.

Okay here's a quick story about Grant Richards doing great since I became a Big Issue Vendor, who am I kidding I have new batteries for my radio and free internet. Ha ha.

At first I didn't but after a while I started making great friends and saying “Good Morning or Have a nice day” to people. To be honest I started thinking people were accepting me for being me not the success I had before my accident and I felt more like a person.

I was with my wife one day and I was trying to give a good impression and maybe work things out when this guy hand out a flyer because he was running in the next election. I quickly said something like “Mate I'll help you because I care about this area” (It was my wife's area.)

So there I was all cleaned up the day before and wearing the best clothes I have and waiting to hand out flyers on election day with my wife while I told her how special she was. The guy tells her to go to the other entrance and have me on the main entrance. Really he didn't know this was my way to get close to her. Ha ha. But this was a happy ending because I was very polite and people would take my flyer as they walked passed. OH and Cameron Dicks won the election and then became District Attorney and I got dinner with my wife that night.

It wasn't long after that I was awarded 'Vendor of the Year' after only working for the Big Issue for 5+ months, now that's something to be proud of.

I got a phone call from someone saying I had done such a great job Cameron that Kevin Rudd wanted me to do the same for him. Now Kevin Rudd was at the time our ex-Prime Minister and I kept thinking what an honour so yep there I was handing out flyers again and telling people to vote for him. But this time there was something different. I went to the after party. Now keep this in mind I was homeless at the time and I was asked to go to a party with Kevin Rudd for a beer. You bet I went. Ha ha.

Well I got there and there were people everywhere including T.V camera's. Of course I was wearing the best clothes I had at the time (St. Vinnies). I sat at the bar and said “keep them coming mate.” I worked hard for a beer and I was going to have one. Then this lady walks over to me and starts talking about how others had said how great I had done talking to people while handing out flyers and all the work before hand. Then she said she would put me in front of Kevin and meet him. Now I must be honest I was there for the beer. But my wife was there too and she loves him so to make myself look good I acted all excited about it too.

Kevin came around and this lady leads him towards us. Well I did what came natural and handed him a beer and shaked his hand. Well the T.V camera's came from everywhere. We toasted and he drank some. Now right now I'm thinking it wasn't the best idea but really I also think how many people can say they did a toast with the ex- Prime Minister of Australia. About an hour later we sat and talked for about 20 minutes while drink his beers.

Now I know I can brag about knowing the last two politicians but really because I know one lady that will win the big Prime Minister seat already before she even runs for it is a real difference because with this one she has done so much for me, but the best thing is, being my friend. So I say Jess I'm still waiting to help and support you when your ready. Not because you have done great by me but because I know you have a great heart and would do the people right.

A star on the radio.
One Saturday morning I was working and EJ from 'The Cage' Breakfast Crew on Triple M stopped by and bought a Big Issue Magazine from me and left. She thought I was so polite and then read my little thank you note. A few days later I was told by my customers that they were talking about me and my thank you note on the radio. About a week later I was asked to talk on the radio with EJ. I was scared as because I hadn't talked on the radio before.

I was a great hit and if anything I think I helped people to know that homeless are people too. Of course I was to worried of saying the wrong thing to remember what I said. Ha ha. But I was told I was a big hit.

To do a follow up The Breakfast Crew came into the city and sold Big Issue Magazines for about an hour and a half. Let me just say it's a good thing there so good on the radio because they didn't sell many magazines. Ha ha. I mean that in a nice way of course. The best thing was I got there name badges from Big Issue with there names and photo's. SCORE. Ha ha.

In total I think 3 times I have spoken with The Breakfast Crew on Triple M. (The best station)

But that's not the best there was about being a star on radio. EJ came to Post Office Square to do a promotion for The Reds and seen me and she came over and asked how I was and YES I got a kiss on the check. Now I don't want this to come out wrong because she's married and such a lovely lady but let me brag here a bit. Ha ha. Guys listen to her every morning and dream of meeting her and here I am I just go to work and she comes to me and I get the kiss well it was on the check but hey it still counts. YEAH. Ha ha.

Now you'd be thinking wow Grant has meet a lot of famous people that remember him in the last year and a half and really for most of it he was a homeless person. That's great.

Oh I haven't finished yet remember this is so I think of the good things. Ha ha Keep that music pumping.

I was asked by the manager of Big Issue to do a promotion with Peter Garett the Mid Night Oil signer and he was a minster for the politics doing something which I can't remember. Now this was to promote him being a great guy and promoting the Big Issue being out there. So I met him and everything was great there was some guy telling what to do that was with him and a lady from Big Issue telling me what to do, As if I didn't know how to sell magazines. Ha ha. But I will say they both were very polite and happy at the fact I was to.

Peter Garett stood beside me and people came running from everywhere. You see he was signing them as I sold them. Now this is going to sound bad but there was a small line of people waiting to buy a Big Issue magazine and one thing I noticed was this lady that had been mean to me and had said to me “Go get a real job” and this lady was waiting to buy one now. I must say I thought of a lot of things there and then, because I was the one that had something she wanted.

I asked her name so Peter could write it and I remembered it then every time I've seen her I've said “Good morning or Good evening Mary” and since then she has even stopped to talk to me a few times just to say hi. She just had to see my nice personality. Ha ha.

Afterwards he gave me a nice speech about never giving up.

That promotion made the papers and T.V news. A star again. Ha ha.

Now all of them are famous but if I'm going to write about the great things that have happen since I became a Big Issue vendor then I have to write about the really great things that mean the most.

When I'm not talking to someone, I would get about 200 people say “Good morning” to me every day. Now really who could have a bad day after having 200 people saying hi to them. But the big thing is I know over 200 people that want to say hi to me. I feel good about that because a homeless person has gained over 200 people respect me enough to say hi too. I feel special.

Hey I just thought of it. I write in a blog and over 3,000 people a week check out my blog. Hey that's got to be a great thing. Ha ha I think it's it's because I'm so handsome. (Nobody tell me different please.) Ha ha

I have bought hundreds and hundreds of pies and drinks for the homeless because I always want to help others and I know what it's like to have nothing.

I got a job working in a call centre with a great boss. Okay it's only working about 16 hours a week and I don't show up for some shifts because of my back, but it's a great job and I'm good at it and I'm proud to be working again.

I organised a clothing drop to be dropped off to me and I took it all to a Homeless Centre. Well most of it because I had told some of the homeless people I know to drop by and take what ever they need instead of buying it. I collected so many clothes that I had trouble fitting it all into a station wagon car. A great result. All them clothes were or will be given for free to the homeless.

I have many more things I'd love to tell you, but really this blog wasn't to look good it was to feel good about myself and I wanted to type it to read myself. But for the readers that like to read about everything I'll do a Part 2 in two days.

I was playing around with my blog and trying to get it working right when YES I worked out how to put extra pages on it. So I'm going to start that Homeless Information Site right here. I know it's only going to have Australia but hey it's a great start. So as I get time I'll be adding information for people to give to homeless and people in need. As I've always said “If it helps one person then it's all worth it” So if you know of any food vans, charities or places that help homeless or people in need please send it to me

But let me say the one thing that I'm mostly proud of is knowing people I can call a 'mate'

OHNO this has taken 4 hours and most of that I was standing and typing at the same time. To be honest my back is hurting too much.

Remember I'm trying to put an educational DVD together and I'm asking people if they like my stories and would like to help me to help the homeless and make this DVD then please donate at the donation button on the top left hand side of the screen. I'd like to thank the one guy that has. Thanks mate.

I hope you all have a great day and really if you like my stories then please hit the share buttons next to the yellow pencil under this post.

Grant the Polite Guy

Friday, May 20, 2011

The start of something New

I just checked and it's been a few weeks since I last posted. Please let me say I'm sorry about that. I'm having trouble with my blog. I have asked 3 people to help make changes and try and put another page so I can add homeless information to it here. Then my blog wouldn't work for me to do posts and why I couldn't put pictures up on the last one and the fact I haven't had a computer didn't help. Ha ha. I only hope I can work it out for this one.

Where to start. There's so much to write about. Ha ha.

The Mega-site I wanted to build and have a grand opening on my birthday didn't work out as well as I thought it would be. The site was made but it was hard to understand on how to use. Now some would say use it and fix it as you go. But the problem with that is if people used it and couldn't work it out then they won't use it again even if it becomes easier to use because they wouldn't know. I know myself if I went to a site and didn't understand it then I wouldn't use it again. So it's best to rebuild it again. Now the guy that helped with it tried very hard to do what he has done and if anything at least he gave it a go. Aces in my book.

It will happen but like all good things takes time.


Last week I was talking to a guy that was homeless and after hearing his story I asked him if I buy a pizza could he please share it with me, because I wouldn't eat a whole one on my own. The truth is I wasn't hungry but he was showing pride and showed the fact he didn't want handouts so I asked him to help me by eating it as I didn't want to buy it and waste the food. He was happy to help and I didn't take any pride from him.

Now I'm only writing about this guy because of the story he had to talk about. Like me he had a wife,kids,house and a good job but with this guy it had happened 14 years ago and while telling me about how much he misses them he had tears running down his face.

He went on to tell me all about how life was prefect then his mum died and he fell to pieces and lost his job and soon after his family. He said at the time he just couldn't face life or anything at all. He's been travelling from place to place and living on the streets.

Now in all this time he has never called or contacted his family. When I asked him about it he said he was ashamed of what he had become and didn't want them to know. I straight away went into maybe he could start getting on his feet by selling Big Issue magazines or something like that.

Soon after I knew he wouldn't be working because he was down on himself not because of what had happen to his mum but what he had done after it. He didn't want to get on his feet or face people he knew and see there look of disgust because of what he became.

I had to go to the toilet so I said I'd be back in a few minutes and I'd bring a drink back for us. Now while walking I kept thinking about his story and then thought this guy was not getting off that easy. We are going to be best mates and I won't let up until he was on his feet again.

I was only gone a few minutes but he was gone when I return. I walked around looking for him but I didn't see him. I haven't seen him since that day. The worst thing is he told me his name but I forgotten it. All I can say is I hope one day he forgives himself so others can too.

I think that's the problem that most homeless have and yes this is me included and that's they need to forgive themselves before they can move on. Now I'm not going to do the mental heath speech because I don't think that's what I mean. I think I mean it's easier to quit then to fight, it's easier to drop your values to let someone win and the next thing you know it's true what there saying, Then you believe it yourself.


If any of you remember I had to do a speech to NAB bank managers some months ago and I was scared out of my wits at first. Will they had a reunion so of course I turned up. (life of the party) It was great to see my great friends again and show them how I have gone forward from the last time they met me. Now I know I haven't progressed much but I was proud to show I have progressed. If I'm heading in the right direction then it don't matter how fast as long as I keep heading in the right direction.

But with saying that I'm proud to say I'm trying to put together an educational DVD that will help young girls. I don't want to say too much about it because I'm looking at this as a business and will get on my feet selling them and the last thing I want is someone taking my idea. Ha ha.

But I can say this, I have researched it and it will help young girls and there is a market out there so I'm asking anyone and everyone “Please any help with donations towards the cost would be great and can help me to help others.”

The DVD will cost about $5,000 so as you can imagine, for someone selling Big Issue magazines this is a large amount. But I know if everyone donated $3 (going by the stats I see of numbers of people that visit my site.) I would have enough in 3 weeks.

Please know I hate asking for money from anyone but I really don't think I have no option because in my heart I know this would work and I will get on my feet faster and with the extra money I could help so many more people in life. Who knows this could be a million dollar idea and I'm going to be one of them guys that uses my wealth to help many. After my accident I can't do much but I can use my brains to put a DVD business together and be successful.

On the same note I would like to thank the 4 people who have donated since putting the donation button in. I have removed the ads on my blog as people were going to the sites but they were commission only so when no-one bought anything there was no profit from them. Looks nicer without the ads ha ha.

Now I have so much to talk about that's happened in the last few weeks but if I write this post too long no-one would read it. Ha ha. So I'll try and post this and see if it works then over the next few days write another one quickly.

I hope you all have a great day and thank you for reading my blog.
If you like it then please recommend to others by using the blue F for face-book and the other buttons under this post. If you would like to donate towards writing this blog or my DVD idea then please do it's at top left of the screen.

Thank you again
Grant the Polite Guy.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Just Proud

I'm so proud I don't know where to start first. I have great news all round. Well let me start by saying a very proud moment for me.

Yesterday I was working hard selling my magazines when a lot of big guys wearing red shirts with the symbols The Reds. Now most would think YES this is great but out of the corner of my eye I noticed EJ from the Triple M radio Brekky Crew. Now I have meet and spoken to EJ on air a few times over the past year and every time she takes time to be nice to me so I have a lot of respect for her.

Well I notice she's doing a promotion with The Reds so I just move down a bit and put my head down and kept working, thinking she's busy with big footballers. Like there big and good looking and I would look over and move down more away. Well you won't believe this but they did the photo's thing and EJ came walking towards me. I GOT A KISS ON THE CHECK and she asked how I was doing by name? I straightened my back and pushed out my chest and felt much bigger then any of the other boys. I was proud not because I got a kiss on the check, Not because I knew how famous she was, Not because she remembered my name, but because here she was with famous footballers and she walks away from them to come and talk to a person selling Big Issue Magazines while everyone was watching and kissed me on the check and didn't care who seen it and we talked for a good few minutes.

Now in the last 12 months or so I have been with Peter Garrett, Kevin Rudd, Cameron Dicks and many others doing promotional things and I have to say EJ was the only one that I could see that really got it. People are people.


Now for a few weeks I been telling people that most homeless can't afford to buy clothes so must don't and live in what they have. So I have asked people to donated clothes to the homeless by bring them to me and I would take them to Micah homeless Centre. Well the day was today I collected all the clothes from people dropping them off and let me say I was proud to see people cared enough to care enough to go through there cupboards and bring in good but unwanted clothes.

I got sleeping bags to suits and every bit of clothing you could think of. I had the biggest smile just watching people walking to work holding plastic bags of clothes and dropping them off for me to hand in.

Before I go on about how great it went I would like to mention Denise and Dave. Not only did they bring in clothes from there home but they email and talked to people at both there workplaces and said they would collect the clothes and bring to me. (A huge haul). Now lots of people collected clothes and it's really a great effort. I would say at least 30 people handed clothes in. Now some of the ones that let me take pictures I did. If you see any of these please shake there hand or give great big hugs because there great and I'm proud of each and everyone of them.

Right now I'd love to say all clothes made it to the Micah homeless centre but only ¾ did because as homeless people went past a lot knew what I was doing today and hit the piles quickly. But really it's what I collected them for. Giving homeless clothes for free and giving them respect wearing them. Who knows maybe today changes someone's ideas and he or she decides today it's time to get on there feet and start fresh. I can only hope.

Now when all the bags had arrived and a ¼ already taken I was standing there thinking now I have to get them all to the Micah homeless centre and started waving down taxi's. 40 minutes later in one of Brisbane's busy-est street. Oh I saw a lot of empty cabs but as soon as they seen all the bags they just speed off. Now I'm a smart guy so I asked for a trolley and started carrying all the bags to the Taxi rank across the road and it took 6 trips but I got it there. Ha ha. I was a man with a mission. I waited for a wagon and just opened the back door and started piling the bags in. The Taxi started saying “Your going to need two cabs” I kept thinking I can't pay for two cabs because I was paying for it. So I said the only thing I could think of. “Yes mate but I'll full this one first” and started packing faster. Then again “Your going to need two cabs” my heart racing trying to pack even faster to get the bags into his cab. I filled the back and the back-seat and with the last bag I put on my lap and jumped into the front seat. Turning to the guy I said “wow we got it all in, that was close” Oh course with a warm smile. Ha ha.

Getting to the homeless centre and unloading the taxi the lady came out to collect it all saying how much there was and what a great thing I was doing and that it would help so many. I didn't have the heart to say that ¼ was already handed out to homeless people. Beside if they hadn't it would have cost more because there was no way I was fitting any more into that taxi. But then there was room on the roof. Ha ha.

The goodness went all around today. People felt good in themselves giving clothes they don't want to a good course, Homeless got clothes to improve there clothes and feel better within themselves, The homeless centre felt good getting a lot of clothes to help others and then there's me, I was proud of everyone. The people giving the clothes, the people taking the clothes and may stand proud and the homeless centre for continuing the work.

Now a lot said they didn't have enough time to get clothes ready so yes I'm doing it again Friday week which happens to be Friday 13th. We will turn a bad day into a great day for the homeless people. Ha ha. So please I'm asking again look and maybe there's something you would like to give to help someone who needs it.


I thank you for reading and please if you like it then tell others. If you think what I'm doing here is good and would like to donate then please do because I could do so much much more with funds. I thank the 3 people that have.

Most of all I hope you have a great day.
Grant the Polite Guy.
P.S I took alot of pictures but I can't seem to be able to put them up here right now. I will add as I can.