The ongoing prattlings of a lifelong geek and his random luck with love, work, children and rediscovering himself.



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Long live WinMX!
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MOVIE: X-Men The Last Stand

SPOILERS ABOUND, so be wary about reading any further if you wish to see the movie "virgin"...

Being that I am a huge comic book collector since the age of 10, I have a lot of feelings for the treatment of characters I've watched for (oh lord..) 28 years now. I will say in a nutshell that this movie was EXCELLENT. Now for the details...

Jean Grey's return was a given (and all over the commercials on TV) so that is not a big deal. The "death" of Scott Summers and Charles Xavier were a bit of a surprise, that's a certainty. Furthermore, the Professor USING the catatonic body shown at the beginning of the movie to save himself was also a shock (anyone who has seen the movie and has no clue what I'm talking about - SHAME ON YOU for leaving before the credits were done - that'll teach you!!). This is an obvious setup for future movies, if needed (and it will, since this movie made $44 million on it's FIRST DAY, setting itself up to make new records, possibly even rivaling the top opening of SW3:ROTS). Funny, though, that they're ripping off a Doctor Doom trick from the classic John Byrne days of the Fantastic Four to "save Charles" (for reference, issues of the Fantastic Four where Dr. Doom is coercing Terrax to fight the FF and the Silver Surfer, and Dr. Doom is destroyed, but transfers his mind into a nearby body before perishing).

The Beast: I enjoyed him, once he was in action. I don't think they could have done much better than Kelsey Grammer. I was more impressed with him in action, though.

Wolverine: Well, they've certainly turned up the healing factor on him, eh? It's been shown in the two previous films working "very quickly", but to have him losing sections of his flesh and body and they grow back instantly as he's losing OTHER sections of his flesh and body was a bit much for me. Creative license went a bit too far in my book.

Magneto and Xavier: The de-aging performed on them for the "first meeting with Jean Grey" was impressive. Very subtle but very well done. Magneto, however, was COMPLETELY OUT OF CHARACTER at the end after he lost his powers! "What have I done?" was just WRONG, especially when used in the context it was meant (not that he lost his powers, but that he had unleashed Phoenix). It was quite dumb.

Storm: Whoa! Kick some arse, Ororo!!

(lack of) Sentinels: The snippet they spread across the 'net and TV a couple weeks before the movie of an obvious confrontation with a Sentinel had me expecting some awesome 50' robot action! But alas, it was just a quick Danger Room segment (though it was a COOL segment). ;-)

Moira McTaggert: I would have preferred someone true to the character (Scottish sounding, not English sounding).

Morlocks (for lack of a better term): I admire the length they went to have so many mutants in the film (though in truth, it was more for cannon-fodder than anything). Either I missed it, or Callisto did not have a very big part in this.

IceMan and Pyro: GREAT fight, and even GREATER outcome for the finally iced-up IceMan!

Jean Grey/Phoenix: Interesting scaling-down of the Phoenix entity itself, yet at the same time... the fact that she "can do anything" in Magneto's words was interesting. (a) I assume she is not going to stay dead, and (b) that means any dead person or destroyed item is up for grabs for future movies. A Light Phoenix (or should I say Green?) from the classic X-Men days would be awesome (or, a cocoon at the bottom of the bay, found with Jean's real body, a la John Byrne's reinvention of Jean Grey when X-Factor was first introduced all those years ago in the comic books).

Mystique: I'm at a loss to think about why someone decided she would simply turn on Magneto. I know he dumped her after the "change", but this still seemed out of character. It was more likely that she would go off on a vendetta to get her powers back then backstab the Brotherhood, IMHO.

I'm probably missing a few things, but all in all, this was a GREAT movie. I will probably go see it again in a matinee (perhaps today).



I decided to start reviewing and making contributions to Wikipedia more frequently (and as my logged-in username now so it's trackable). It's interesting to see what people have come up with on subjects that I'm very familiar with, and those I'm not.

MOVIE: Poseidon

This is a remake of an old movie called "The Poseidon Adventure" I believe. I do not remember that movie (if I ever saw it at all as a kid). This movie was "okay". There was a lot of "Titanic nostalgia" in it (especially in the special effects). It was not something I'd say you should pay full price for -- for the matinee.

MOVIE: Over The Hedge

This kid's movie was enjoyable. I actually don't recall any subtle sexual inuendo or inappropriate speech, which amazed me in this day of Eddie Murphy tainted stupidity (oh wait, he wasn't in this movie I don't believe, maybe THAT'S why it was good...).

I definitely recommend this movie to all.

Dani Makes Trombone Section Leader!

Daniella was appointed the section leader of the Trombones for the 2006-2007 school year at Spruce Creek High School today! Totally awesome! ;-)


MOVIE: Mission Impossible III

Despite the rantings of a semi-crazed, religiously pathetic Tom Cruise in recent months, I found Mission: Impossible III to be thoroughly enjoyable! Probably the only quirk I found was the "too happy ending".


Digg = Bad

I am happy to report that I am removing from my daily website visit list.

I cannot support a site that is so overrun with with horrible grammar and 11-year-old speech patterns. It's a truly sad site (but caught me for a couple months with their Slashdot-ish article mechanism and occasional tidbit of "cool news").

Long live Slashdot!

CMS and SCHS Band Banquets 2006

The Creekside Middle School band banquet was quite fine. Bill Guthrie seems to have come into his own the second year with the band, I'm happy to say (I was very unhappy with the band the first year he was with it, and it seems the communication problems have been distinctly improved upon this year, and will hopefully continue to do so). The band and the band boosters seem to really love him, which is great. I certainly appreciate his technological side (though I'm sure many of "my ilk" would laugh at his Mac OS laptop; for his needs, it's perfect, though). Chris received his Superior ribbon for State Solo and Ensemble (for his solo on Baritone). I saw a lot of "talent" that will be hitting the high school next year (especially the third-trumpet; she exhibited the excitement and interest of "being in band" more than ANY other student last week at the year-end concert).

The Spruce Creek High School band banquet went fairly well. The sound system, once again was a joke. Now, before anyone who was there ASSUMES I'm talking about a later incident, I'm referring to the fact that in the back half of the room, you could not understand what most people were saying at the podium. It was ridiculous! Speakers everywhere, and because of a combination of echoing and the fact that no one anticipated that people in the back MIGHT ACTUALLY TALK during the ENTIRE ceremony made for horrible acoustic (stupid freshmen, sheesh). My daughters and I had to restrain ourselves from REALLY hauling off and verbally beating the "kids" around us. Next year, NO SITTING with the abandoned freshmen! Good lord...

Now, the "later incident". I produced the Year-End DVD as well as the Senior Farewell DVD (order them now). I spent about 60+ hours on both, as I did every single step of the process (except recording the audio "will and testaments" which Shawn McKaig did -- unfortunately the recordings were ONLY on the LEFT CHANNEL and mostly too long, so I ended up doing a ton of alterations on them anyway, but I chalk that up to being "part of the job").

About 45 minutes or less of the 2.5 hour year-end DVD was played during dinner (which was expected, though I had hoped it would play with sound-turned-off the rest of the night; oh well). If the DVD sells well, I'm sure everyone will get to see the "whole thing" eventually.

But the "incident" in question was this:   The staff at the Daytona 500 Club facility had the cables from the DVD player plugged incorrectly into their sound system!! Oh.. my.. word. I wanted to strangle someone when the Senior Farewell video started playing, while my 28 minute remix of "The Best Of Times" (yes, 28 minutes..) played LOUDLY with the speeches by Mr. McKaig! You could not understand him at all. I wanted to leave and never show my face again, but instead, marched into the control room, started poking around cables and controls (it was pretty simple - DVD player, DVD volume and master volume on the receiver; no equalizer, no nothing; really "advanced"). As I then stood at the door between control room and banquet hall and signalled for the 500 Club worker to do this-and-that, suddenly (several minutes later) the sound came out PERFECTLY. If I understood what he told me correctly (because at this point I was not going to go near the equipment for fear of uncontrollable destructive tendancies) the LEFT and RIGHT outputs from the DVD player were plugged into one INPUT (correct) and one OUTPUT (incorrect) on the sound system! WHAT THE HECK! Do they never USE the DVD player?? Do they REWIRE IT OCCASIONALLY?? (it was built into a standard networking rack mount, so I doubt this) ARE THEY REALLY THAT POORLY EDUCATED ON "output plugs into input"?!

So, the second half of the video actually had SPEECHES with light background music, instead of loud music and some words being muttered incoherently. I still wanted to just leave at that point, but RELIEF had taken over and made me semi-comfortable. Seeing a few teary eyes (which was the desired effect) in the audience at that point made it all worth while (hopefully everyone understood that it was NOT the video that was at fault, but the building were were in, and it's staff...).

So.. that is the recap of this year's band banquets at the Middle and High Schools.

Next up: I'm part of the band board now at the high school ("officially", as I've been the official photographer for a year know according to Andrew Kidd) as the Football Program person (which means I develop and prepare the literal "program", a large printed booklet of ads and pictures, which is sold at the SCHS football games). That means (oh yeah!) we can sit at reserved band board seating at the banquet next year! (how sad that this is what I'm now anticipating as a "perk"...). The noise from the FRESHMEN aside, it was still a good two evenings. I did not take anywhere near the number of pictures I would take at most events, but they are online as of today.

Extra note: THANK YOU Andrew Angelo and the rest of the officers for DEGUNKIFYING MY SON! Lord only knows he (and they all) needed it! Long live the Gunkies!!


Halo 3 Finally Official

"Bungie announces Halo 3, the third and final game in the Halo Trilogy. Halo 3 will be released for Microsoft's Xbox 360 in 2007."

This comes directly from Bungie's website today. There's also a video...

A funny quote:   "We declare it the best kept secret ever."


Keeping Busy = Staying Sane

We received our subscription tickets for the 2006 Seaside Music Theatre finally! Five performances spread across the summer. Nift!

I've begun work on the latest website I'm hosting - CreekBandAlumni.Org.

We watched, with great anticipation, the new full two-minute trailer to Superman Returns yesterday.. and I am very pleased with what I saw overall. I think as long as you can suspend disbelief ("Superman III and IV never happened... Superman III and IV never happened... there was no Richard Pryor...there was no Nuclear Clone Man... Superman III and IV never happened...") then you will enjoy this movie. It looks extremely nice (visually). I can't wait to see more of Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor. The full trailer (not the short teaser that was out for a while) is here.

Also saw a clip from X-Men III, where Colossus and Wolverine do a fastball-special (sort of..) and Wolvie rips the head off of a Sentinel. I'm still mixed about this movie, since it's combining too many elements. I still would have preferred a fairly faithful retelling of the original Dark Phoenix saga circa John Byrne. Oh well.

I have orders coming in left and right for the Year End and Senior DVDs (as well as more for the Peach Bowl disc) I am producing for Spruce Creek High. Apparently people enjoy my work (and I'm cheap, so...). Order yours here by printing the order form.

Tonight, we shop: Clothes. I.. can't seem to get excited about that, but it's a necessity.

Peace out.

No More Soda Vending In Your Local Schools

Well, at least for about 87% of the schools.

Pepsi and Coke apparently are voluntarily PULLING OUT of public and private schools. So now, kids will have to choose a drink that's NOT purely tooth rotting. Imagine that.

How sad it is that the soda vendors themselves did this, and not our government or our school systems ("because they needed the revenues") (sic).

Story here.