Cane Toads: The Conquest


Oh yeah “Ooh, aah”, that’s how it always starts. But then there’s running and screaming.

  • Ian Malcolm

    The Lost World: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

I have read a lot of Michael Crichton novels. One of the hallmarks of science fiction is even with the best of planning and intentions the “science experiment” always goes “awry”. And art imitates life. Science does not always plan for “Unintended Consequences”. However, the insurance industry does when setting its rates. And that is a bit ironic.

Borrowing a quote from the late Hunter S. Thompson who stated, “I have never believed much in luck, and my sense of humor has always walked on the dark side.”

I watched a documentary film that combines these two tangents. This is a movie to put in your Netflix queue.

Cane Toads: The Conquest is an “unintentionally funny and off-beat” documentary that turns out to be a very effective film.

In 1935, the cane beetle was destroying the sugar cane crop of Australia. The cane toad which did a good job of eating the grubs infesting the sugar fields of Puerto Rico were brought in. That was the “expert plan”. Well, there turned out to be a big difference between a grub and a beetle. The toads were not about “to jump for the Men Down Under”. They then did what many of the “unproductive” members of a species decide to do. They then went about reproducing in mass and wreaking havoc on the environment.

This movie is the story of the “bizarre” methods that people in Australia have employed in order to control the cane toad population. It is a population that is now estimated to be over a billion in numbers. So the strategy has been “flawed” at best. It shows a lot of the “fears” of mankind in regards to controlling nature. “The hubris” at work with the so called “experts” trying to take that control.

Plus, watch out for the poor dog that develops a strange “affection” for the toads.


Sorry, but he made me laugh at his “dilemma”.



Graeme Sawyer- The Lord Mayor, The City of Darwin says “Yeah, it was a bit of ‘Aw, shit’ moment to think it was there. It was a bit like an army on the march…there was just wave after wave of them.”

Think of the cane toads as mini Godzillas going wild.

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Coming Attractions


The National Security Agency’s response to the public outcry about how they are currently operating should go like this:

“What the hell are you bitching about? You people cannot recognize boundaries either. We hope you enjoyed the latest batch of celebrity nude photos. Nor can you keep anything secret either. You cannot wait to get on social media to spoil the ending of the latest TV episode. In fact your, TMZ blabber mouth mentality is the basis on which we began to operate anyways. The Paparazzi was who started the market for domestic spying. And you bought it.”


Before I go any farther.

Let me say this to the Regal Movie theater chain. I WILL AVOID AT ALL COSTS GOING TO YOUR THEATERS. Over the last few years, I have seen only ONE 3-D movie that did not have a technical trouble. The movies have frozen up, been out of focus, no sound and even the wrong one completely. And good luck trying to find a person there to solve the problem. Waldo is easier to find. The Managers there can never been found to complain about this. If they even exist there.

And another thing Regal. The “First Look” segment you play before the movie is just plain obnoxious. It is commercials and segments featuring a movie or TV show that NO ONE wants to see. And amazingly, it is the only part of the movie seeing experience that never has “technical difficulties”.


I really do like movies. However, I had to stop listening to many podcasts about movies because they give too much away. Plus, I do not get to see many movies the weekend they come out. I hate going to crowded theaters. So I tend to go when the crowds die down. There needs to be some time frame to give people.

I do not like writing direct reviews per say. I just want to point people towards movies that I think they can “discover” something in. I do not want to say what it is. I would rather leave it to them. And hopefully have a discussion afterwards about it.

Another problem with movies now is the Coming Attractions that are played before the movie. They give away the movie many of times. In the 2-3 minute preview the 3 Act structure is given away. The only good thing is you can get back the 2 hours of your life by not seeing it. In fact, you should be insulted that the film producers think you need to see it all with an explanation in 2 minutes.

Star Wars: The Phantom Menace trailer shows plenty but reveals nothing about the outline of the actual story. (I will debate later the actual execution of the story of this movie in another future post)


Or the latest for Mad Max: Fury Road. I am not sure yet if it reveals too much or just enough. Right now, I think Tom Hardy is the right replacement for Mel Gibson in this franchise. (Mel Gibson haters watch Get the Gringo or The Beaver)

The newest Quentin Tarantino movie is the best teaser trailer yet. The movie has yet to even go into production. In this trailer all we are given is the setting and the character names involved. There is no idea yet which actor is playing who. Grantland has an article even breaking down the clues trying to figure out the details of this movie.




I have not had a chance yet to Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. The producers of the film made a series of short films based on the movie. I would rather watch one of this instead of the trailer of the actual film. It builds up the story.


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Steven Pressfield may call the interruption of creativity, “Resistance”.

I just call it a Pain in the Ass. Or this week a pain in the head. Every time, I start getting momentum it seems to come out of nowhere. I got hit with my seasonal allergies worse than ever this year that left me with headaches, congestion and itchy eyeballs. I could not focus my eyes to read anything. And for a person like me that is the worse side effect. So for the last few days it just meant a lot of naps and binge watching Netflix.

Also Labor Day weekend is a bit tough for me. It is hard to believe that it has been almost two years. I am not going to go into the details because delving into them is not going to change anything. It is what it was and nothing can change it. It was the realization of the “roller coaster ride that was soon to happen and it was going to end well”. Little did I know at the time it would take less than two weeks to happen back then.   Being all that, I still have to find some “humor” in it all. Somewhere. Somehow. I have been on a Bob Newhart kick lately. The photo above is an actual statue dedicated to him and his sitcom. People actually go there to have their picture taken while sitting on the couch. I think people want to experience (metaphorically) that someone is “taking note” of them. But finding that “balance” over the last couple of years has been s struggle. I cannot control the audience but I can control my “output” here. I just wish my head could clear out. F-N allergies. And then some.


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Raw Listening


A thousand years from now, when the archeologists of the future are shifting though the rumble trying to trace the origins of what contributed to downfall of human society. I wonder what they may find. I think one of those factors will be one that many feel is “benign” cause. It will be the increased use of Purell and the notion that everything needs to be “sanitized” in order to protect the masses. Physically, it is probably not helping to build up people’s immune systems. The other side effect is the “mentality” that is being built behind it. Nothing points it out more that most of the music being played on the radio. I am tired of auto-tuned and music edited to a technical precision that is “sanitized” in a way not to offend but also not to be very significant either in the long run.

I like raw music. I like reverb, distortion and feedback. I do not want the singer to necessarily be pitch perfect. I want hear and feel the “passion and the pleas.”


Husker Du was a band of “melody tapered with noise”. This was the sound that would be part of the basis of the Alternative/ Grunge music of the early 90’s. Zen Arcade released in 1984 was also for its time a double album. It song structure lyrically was a story of man going through a metaphysical journey through America in a dream state. It is hard to summarize “concept albums” in real precise turns.

Husker Du was one the early American Hardcore punk bands. However, they did everything musically on this album to defy the “definitions” of being labeled in those terms.

The music that breaks out and has long term impact is always going to go to the “risk takers”.

This is the song that starts the album off. A loud and raw declaration of what is about to come.


And the instrumental that closes the album.



Would the Grunge sound every have happened without the early works of Neil Young? Especially being back by Crazy Horse.

I saw a sitcom episode where they made fun of his voice as the sound of “cat being straggled”. However, it is the imperfections that make you take notice of a person. He has that “unique” voice. He still has that passion in the voice and through the lyrics.


People need to get pass album sales charts and radio airplay. It is the worse “metric” at the moment for judging merit and endurance for an artist.


Do yourself a favor that some time to go through the archives of music.

I have a memory of time when I had a friend who owned a record store. He bought used CD’s all the time. But he refused to buy back most of the “pop music” of the time. I remember one day he got into an argument with a customer who wanted to trade in a Michael Bolton CD. He refused to buy it back and questioned why the guy even bought in the first place. But back to the used CD’s we open them up and play random selections all the time and debate their merits. The new CD’s came sealed so we could not do the same thing with them.

Real treasures need to some digging about to find.

Don’t fear getting a bit “dirty”.




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In No Particular Order



I get thoughts.

I ponder.

I pose questions.

Here are the latest.


Are there any Zen Buddhist swear words? Or euphemisms?

I do not understand why there are people who need to expend their energy on being an Internet Troll? Is there any documented proof this breed has EVER posted anything that has had a profound effect?

We need to bring back the “Spectacle” of the Glory Days of the Roman Coliseum. Who does not like a Lion Show? However, this time the “Bait” will be Internet Trolls. And PETA will finally have a complaint I could get behind. It will go like this:

You are feeding the tigers a food source that is the equivalent of potato chips. Internet Trolls are basically junk food fueled basement dwellers.  Internet Trolls are not known for their exercising habits. They are lethargic blobs of fat and grease. They are for the most part truly “Empty Calories”. As evident by their appearance. And mentally as proven by their postings. Also they are not giving the lions enough exercise either. They are for the most part truly “Empty Calories”. The lions do not even need to run or get their heart beats up to catch them. There is the danger of these lions are being breed and trained to be “couch potatoes” themselves.


Now on to other dietary habits. I think Vegetarians are people who think every day should be “Lent”. A season not really known for its “humor”. I also find it hard to find one with a sense of humor either. Or one who can see the humor and the irony in the question, “Would you eat an animal cracker?” Only to get the answer from one of them, “It all depends on what the ingredients are and how it is made.”

If you have “Faith in Humanity” why do believe so much in “Politics”?

I believe Cable Stations should be honestly named and required to hold on to that. MTV should be playing music. The Learning Channel should be actually teaching. The History Channel should be documenting actual historical achievements.

The Real World has absolutely nothing in common with the actual “real world. I do not care about a family with beards and duck calls. It pains me to know that by default I can recognize what a “Honey Boo Boo” is. And it is more of a “what” than a “who”. The only time a storage unit is interesting is when “dead bodies” are found in it. If a food dish has more than five different ingredients in it, the chances of me actually cooking it goes down. I do not know why people go on to “competition shows” to be screamed at by a British person? All “Make-Over Shows” should be based on what the person can actually afford to “maintain” when the show and their crew leaves. Those types of shows only really encourage “jealousy and envy”. And those leads to a lot of ads “creams and pills” that promise better “endowments”.








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