Planet MadDog







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Ba ba ba-ba baaaa... SU-PER-MAAAAN!

I've been watching the Superman movies on blu-ray with Amy (now 7) recently. Last week it was Superman; today it was Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut, and next week we'll conveniently-but-rightly forget about a certain couple of other movies and finish it up with Superman Returns.

One thing I quickly wanted to mention was that it was quite mind-bending to watch the Richard Donner version of Superman II. It had me fondly remembering scenes that never actually happened in the original theatrical version (directed by replacement, Richard Lester, after Donner was unceremoniusly dumped from the project after shooting about 83% of the film, concurrently with Superman I).

For example, part-way though the movie, Gracie (who was reading a book in the next room) came in to ask me to rewind the last scene so she could watch it. She said she loved this part as a kid and just wanted to watch this part. I said "Yeah, it's one of my favourites too," and replayed the scene again.

The scene was when Lois, realising that Clark Kent was in fact Superman, pulled a gun on Clark and said "I'm willing to risk your life that you are the man of steel" and pulled the trigger. Of course, the gun only fired a blank and Supes was stooged into revealing that Lois was correct in her assumption. It was a great scene, Gracie and I smiled at each other and we continued to watch the movie. It wasn't until about an hour later that I realised something that blew my mind.

That scene never happened in the version of the film I grew up with.

The Lester-directed version had Clark tripping over and burning his hand in their hotel fireplace, revealing his identity to Lois. The scene we watched today was pieced together from old pre-production test screening footage. Looking back, all the signs were there. The set looked like it was made from plywood. Clark's hairstyle and glasses were much different, and his physique was much slimmer.

It's been literally decades since I last saw this movie, so it got me thinking about all the other parts of the movie I was probably remembering incorrectly. After a good Wikipedia'ing (that's a word, right?) I suddenly remembered all of the other campy jokes and bad visual gags that was removed (thankfully) from Lester's theatrical version. (I'm not goting to list them all here; go read the wiki article.)

All I can say is that I'm thankful for this new(-ish) version of Superman II, which lines up almost perfectly with next week's viewing of Superman Returns. I say "almost" because Donner's ending was a bit of a mess, in a "best-we-could-do-under-the-circumstances" kind of way. Richard Donner sounds pretty bitter towards the producers of the Superman films, and quite resentful about the fact that some of Lester's footage was required to complete his vision of Superman II. I just hope he is proud of the movie he put together, because I loved it.

Posted by a very super MadDog on Saturday September 10, 2011 at 7:56:03 PM - 0 comments

Drunken post incoming!

Hey, hey listen... listen up.

I just wrote a LIMERICK. I think I might become a professional limerick writer. They make loads of money, right? Okay, here goes...

I'm getting so drunk on wine;
It's blowing my tiny human mind;
I might have another;
But soon I'll discover;
I can't think of something that rhymes.

Okay, so when do I get my cheque?

Posted by a very MadDog on Friday July 15, 2011 at 8:15:04 PM - 0 comments

My babies.

Both of my babies were just published in the Shepparton Adviser, a local advertorial newspaper. Check 'em out.

Posted by a very proud MadDog on Friday July 15, 2011 at 7:55:21 PM - 0 comments

Happy 10th Birthday Planet MadDog!

Wow! I totally missed the anniversary date (March 21, 2000), but this website is now 10 years old! Ten years and 225 posts later, this blog has been neglected of late in favour of my web development business's blog, but I still like to come back from time to time to post something off-topic or to read over my past posts and remember. (I'm a sucker for nostalgia, remember?)

Anyway, I don't really have anything else constructive to add at the moment. I really just wanted to mark the occasion, but lets see what else has been happening lately with me...

Hmmm...

See you next year, I guess... :-)

Posted by a very MadDog on Thursday April 8, 2010 at 10:14:12 PM - 0 comments

SHazAM!

I've always been a bit wary about "The Secret", the same way I'm wary about psychics and mediums. Many people are sold on the idea based on some kind of silver-bullet or magic-wand notion that it's going to make them feel good or change their lives forever.

While I personally believe that psychics and the supernatural like are a load of old bunk, I can understand the reasons and the value placed on them by those that who do believe, such as grieving relatives looking for closure after the passing of a loved one. What makes me angry are those that prey on the weak minded, giving false hope instead of comfort and closure with the aim of extracting more money, but that is a rant for anther day.

Unlike psychics, I have no doubt that The Secret can work, but not in the way that the author and her publisher would have you believe. While it may work, that doesn't mean it will work. It's not like some kind of magic switch, in fact, there's nothing spiritual, mystical or phantasmagorical about it. There's no Jedi force, glowing auras, harmonic resonance or any phoney "Law of Attraction" at work here. It basically boils down to one basic truth.

Your chance at being successful at something increases exponentially the more passionate you are about it.

I'm not talking about a casual hobby or a passing interest. I mean an all-consuming passion for the subject where you can work so hard on achieving your goals but you're so focussed that it doesn't feel like work. Look at the successful people throughout history. They weren't bestowed with phenomenal cosmic powers or share some ancient powerful secret. Their success came from their passion, their will to see it through, and the hard work that went along with it.

I'm a web guy. It's not just what I do; it's who I am. I'm always being approached by people with the idea for the "next big thing", even having to sign the odd NDA or No-compete Clause. You know how it always ends?

  1. I build out the project on spec, on time and on budget.
  2. The client sits back rubbing their hands together, waiting for the money to come in.
  3. The website is left to stagnate, usually closing within 2 years, rarely turning a profit.

I swear, it's like South Park's Underpants Gnomes every time.

You can have the best idea in the world, the best plan, the best execution, but I guarantee you will be beaten by someone who wants it more and will work harder. I can also guarantee you will fail without the correctly channelled enthusiasm required to see your plan through to success.

That's not magic. It's what's called "applying yourself".

I'm not up on a soap-box here. I'm not entertaining any ideas of becoming a motivational speaker and I'm certainly not telling people anything they don't already know.

I just think it's worth reminding ourselves that you don't need to spend your hard-earned money to have Oprah or anyone else tell you what you already know about life and living.

Posted by a very whimsical MadDog on Thursday March 25, 2010 at 9:51:51 PM - 0 comments

Insert annual update here.

It seems I only update this blog on an annual basis now, so without further ado, my favourite points from this year's 100 things we didn't know last year.

11. Naked rambling is legal in Switzerland.

29. Parts of cremated bodies are recycled.

61. Trousers used to be called unmentionables.

71. You're as likely to be hit by lightning as killed by a mentally ill person.

98. French babies cry with an accent.

See you next year!

Posted by a very fluffy MadDog on Tuesday January 26, 2010 at 9:16:27 AM - 0 comments

Nostalgia strikes again.

Now, I've been on the internet a long time, and I thought I'd already sought out or otherwise stumbled across every single skerrick of nostalgia from my childhood, but just now I hit upon a trifecta of forgotten memories.

Primary school television in the 80s was awesome!

Posted by a very nostalgic MadDog on Thursday January 8, 2009 at 9:47:14 PM - 0 comments

A quick update.

Nothing major at this point. Changes are in the works (as this 5-year-old, table-ridden layout makes me want to spew), but at this point, I've just done a quick tidy up of the links to the left and merged the Baby Blog with the regular one. I've also dusted off the old webcam (well actually, the old webcam has been retired due to a lack of Vista drivers I'm now using a Sony EyeToy with hacked drivers. Does that give me extra geek cred?) in an attempt to reclaim page one of the PA Cams with my good buddy Jerz.

Posted by a very hot MadDog on Monday February 19, 2007 at 9:17:49 PM - 0 comments

Testicular fortitude.

I sit alone in my study, staring gloomily at my internet banking screen having just completed a $1,500 transaction to pay my annual council rates. Gracie walks in chirping "I've got a surprise for you!".

"Meh..." I reply, still staring at my screen. "I feel like I've just been kicked in the nuts..."

"Here. This will make you feel better."

I turn around to find Gracie holding out a big bowl of ice cream for me.

"You're right. That's just what I need.", I say as I take the bowl and rest it on the affected area.

Posted by a very woozy MadDog on Monday February 5, 2007 at 9:08:35 PM - 0 comments

Happy New Year 2007

Yes, I know it's a damn shame that here we are in 2007, and I still have 2005 posts on my front page. Technology analysts say there are 200 million blogs which are no longer being updated. I'd hate to be yet another statistic, so consider this an update.

The fact above came from BBC's 2006 list of 100 things we didn't know last year, as per last year's list which *cough* you can see further on down this page. So without further ado, here are my faves from this year's list:

7. The lion costume in the film Wizard of Oz was made from real lions.

30. The brain is soft and gelatinous - its consistency is something between jelly and cooked pasta. (Yummy!)

33. Eating a packet of crisps a day is equivalent to drinking five litres of cooking oil a year.

49. When filming summer scenes in winter, actors suck on ice cubes just before the camera rolls - it cools their mouths so their breath doesn't condense in the cold air.

59. Dogs with harelips can end up with two noses.

68. The egg came first.

92. In a fight between a polar bear and a lion, the polar bear would win.

100. In the 1960s, the CIA used to watch Mission Impossible to get ideas about spying.

Posted by a very jolly MadDog on Monday January 1, 2007 at 2:40:58 PM - 0 comments

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