Archives for 2012

Cycling through the Eras

Some of the Cats of 2002 went on to become legends of the Club.

Premierships are the benchmark of successful teams.  Geelong had been starved of real success since 1963.  A founding member of the league as we know it, influential on the rules as we know them, the once powerful Geelong had become mediocre.  A spate of losing efforts in Grand Finals dating back to 1967 against Richmond, 1989 against Hawthorn, 1992 and 1994 against West Coast and in 1995 against the Blues, teased us supporters and Geelong had become known as the ‘handbag team’ of the competition.  Together with a lack of success on field and financial trouble, Geelong looked to be a real mess.

The year 2000 saw Mark Thompson appointed as Senior Coach.  His mission was to rekindle and revamp, the team.  He saw that a rebuild was in order and over that 2000 season (finished 5th) and the following one in 2001 (finished 12th) blooded some impressive talent, mixed in with some older heads who could show the young guns the way.  The plan was laid, the new team unveiled in the reserves.  The seniors road was still going to be rocky; because the young guys had to do their time in the reserves and slowly be introduced into the seniors, the old blood trained the new breed ‘on the job’.

In 2002 Geelong reserves (VFL team) showed something extraordinary.  The young guns, unearthed by Stephen Wells (recruiting manager at the Cats) provided a glimpse as to what the future team would look like, when it conquered Port Melbourne, by 22 points to win the VFL Premiership.

In that team there were players who were relatively untried and unknown and they included: Gary Ablett, Steve Johnson, Paul Chapman, Josh Hunt, Jim Bartel, James Kelly… these players have now gone on to become common household AFL names and Premiership superstars. That game also saw the exit of Tim McGrath and David Mensch.

A new look team started to take shape.  Add to this, impressive list, the likes of Cameron Ling, Cameron Mooney, Corey Enright, Joel Corey, Tom Harley, David Wojcinski and of course Matty Scarlett who debuted with one game in 1999.

This was the new breed.

2002 VFL Grand Final

In 2012, there was a strange feeling ‘around the Club’; with an ageing list of players, some already retired or moved on from that fantastic list of 1999-2002.  We’d got used to winning.  We were used to playing finals.  Funny isn’t it? Another oxymoron in the football world.  Pre-2000 we were used to losing.  Used to having a vacant calendar September to do something other than go to finals matches.   The 2012 season was a series of ups and downs, but we always felt like we’d make the top eight.  Perhaps even defy history and win the big one from outside the top 4 relying just on muscle memory alone.  As it turned out, the Cats made an inglorious exit in Elimination week; we were nonetheless proud of our team.  From all angles there was talk of the ‘era’ being all but gone.

True believers, like me, are not wanting to buy into the assumption of the era being gone.  We have new faith.  They say that faith is believing in a cause with no real evidence to back it up with.  The recent ‘golden era’ has given us evidence, tangible reasons to believe; here’s some evidence: since that VFL premiership day in 2002, the Cats have won 3 AFL premierships, 2 AFL Pre Season premierships, 2 VFL premiership, 2 Brownlow Medals, 3 norm Smith Medals, almost a whole team worth of All-Australians and many other awards, the list too long to mention.  In addition, Stephen Wells and the recruiting team have continued their outstanding work by unearthing even more talent which promises to keep stoking the faith fire for a time to come.

Can these Cats fill the massive boots being left by the Cats of 2002?

It has been less than 24 hours since (at the time of writing) that the siren on the VFL season blasted and in that solitary note possibly heralded a second coming.  The Cats again conquered Port Melbourne for the VFL premiership, this time by 33 points. Could this VFL premiership in 2012 signal the same or similar for Geelong as what 2002, in hindsight, was for that team?

The list is changing, old breed being exchanged for new.  New names, new heroes.  Horlin-Smith, Kersten, Brown, Burbury, Stringer, Walker, Sherringham, Gillies, Schroder, Simpkin (to name a few), unfamiliar names to many, lead the changing of the guard.  These players have been watching the golden era and have been salivating at the thought of their own success.  In the meantime they have honoured the retirements of Simon Hogan and David Wojcinski and at the same time announce themselves as they take a firm grip of the reigns.  If success breeds more success, then Geelong is in good shape and can look forward to more sustained successful eras.

Add to the mix, Selwood, Hawkins, Duncan, Christensen, West, Guthrie, Motlop, Taylor Hunt, Varcoe, Menzel and Vardy the future looks bright. Will we be looking back at this VFL Premiership team in a few years time as the catalyst of another great Cats era… let’s hope so.

Search & Replace in MySQL (PHPMyAdmin)

Ever needed to search and replace text, URL’s or other data within a MySQL database?  Well it’s pretty easy.  Just be careful.  Make sure of everything before you commit.

Step 1, log in to your cPanel (or direct into PHPMyAdmin) and select your database

Step 2, Use the following syntax in the SQL area.

Step 3, press GO.

update [table_name] set [field_name] = replace([field_name],'[string_to_find]’,'[string_to_replace]’);

NOTE: the square brackets are NOT needed.  However the apostrophe’s are.


update wp_options set option_value = replace(option_value,’‘,’‘);

Usage is as follows:

‘table_name’ is the name of the table where the content you want to change resides

‘field_name’ is the name of the field inside the table where the content you want to change resides

‘unwanted_text’ is the text you want to find so that it can be replaced

‘wanted_text’ is the new text you want to insert

So for example let’s way you wanted to find every reference to “” and replace it with “” within your database, you would firstly do a search in PHPMyAdmin and see where the references lie.  Once you know what table the data you want to replace is, you can then browse to see what field they are within.  Once you know what table and what field you can then apply the syntax above.

WARNING….  be careful, search first to see the results of your query before you commit the changes, and always backup prior to any database work.

Power House – my home away from home

Power House senior team runs out for battle against Old Westbourne on 11 August 2012

I’ve been involved with Power House footy club since 1985, I played just 66 games for the Club over 15 seasons (I retired from playing in 2000).  I’ve been a player, a committee man and since 1995 my business DISKMANdotNet has been the Club’s web designer, domain name and web hosting provider and more recently I’ve been an official photographer.  Everytime I go to the Club I get a really special feeling.  There’s no better place when I am there.  The clubrooms, the smell of liniment, the sight of the boys running out in the Green, White and Black; it stirs really special memories.  Makes me want to pull on a pair of boots and join them!

Being involved with the Club post-retirement is something which I really enjoy doing.  Giving back to the Club is really important to me as it gave so much to me.  It’s part of my identity and it feels great when I share that ‘my Club is Power House’ in conversations with people close and far from the Club.  “My Club”….

When I think of Power House, I stand tall and I am proud.  I am positive I am not alone with this feeling.

The reason I love Power House so much is the history of the place.  The characters which make up the Club are amongst some of the best people I know.  Their passion for the Club is infectious and you can’t help but being caught up by it.  From my past team mates, young and old, to the ‘old timers’ whose very shoulders the Club was built upon, to the present players; they are all important to me.

The Club was originally founded in 1940, but it wasn’t until 1947 (after the war) when it was resurrected and joined the VAFA.  Since then it has won 7 Premierships (U19’s, Reserves and Seniors), has had 2 players awarded with 300 game status by the VAFA and has had numerous  VAFA Victorian representatives.  More Club history can be viewed on the PHFC web site.

A great example of how my Club comes together to support, remember and appreciate each other is last Saturday (11 August 2012) when the Club hosted a Past Players’ Luncheon in memory of Les Gordon.  Sadly we lost Les this year and  it was fitting to dedicate the lunch and the game day in Les’ name.

Les Gordon

Les Gordon (middle) with (L-R) Ian Dakin, Rick Sykes, Peter Dakin and Peter Hutchinson

A bit about Les Gordon

Les is the games record holder for the Power House Football Club. He played 357 games in a playing career that spanned 1952 – 1971. Les is a 4-time Seniors Best and Fairest winner (1960, 1961, 1962 and 1964) and was Senior Captain in 1962, 1963, 1964 and 1971. He was Senior Coach for 6 seasons. He was a member of the 1959 Invincibles Premiership Team and was Senior Playing Captain-Coach of the 1971 Premiership Team. In 2011, Les was elevated to LEGEND status of the Power House Football Club.

I’ll never be a legend of the Club, I’ll never be a Life Member and I’ll never be one of the greats; but that’s ok by me because in my own way I played my part in the past and I continue to play a different part now which many people associated with the Club appreciate.  It’s enough to make ‘my’ heart grow glad. I am proud to be involved and lending my hand to recording and promoting the Club’s history.

Go Power House!  Go you Slushee Warriors!

Angry Little Man – Alastair Clarkson

Angry Little Man – Alastair Clarkson

The Footy Show’s (Sam Mitchell’s) gag about Alastair Clarkson being found in the images section of Google images was just that… a hopeless gag… but to prove how Keywords are important for SEO and how DISKMANdotNet can help you with your web site’s ‘find-ability’ within Google; we’ve embarked on this exercise.

In the next 24-48 hours, search for ‘angry little man’ in Google and see if you can find either this post in the organic results, or the image to the right in the images results within Google.

If you need some good and honest SEO for your web site, give James & the team @ DISKMANdotNet a call!

Tom Hawkins: Rise of the Tomahawk

Tom Hawkins, much maligned, much anticipated.  Some supporters always knew he’d take time to develop; but many were screaming for his head on a platter.  It’s time now for the nay-sayers to give him the respect he richly deserves.

Finally he is getting the recognition that he has fought for; that he was going to be good is something, internally, the Cats hierarchy knew was within Tom Hawkins.  Dumped from the team mid-season in 2011 he fought back and set about resurrecting himself as the prominent forward in the Cats team.  He now sits at the (near) top of the season’s goal kicking ladder for the AFL and has cemented himself as the dominating forward for Geelong.

Watch this inspiring video on Geelong’s web site to see for yourself just how good this kid is.  Just how highly he is respected and how much more we can expect from him in the seasons to come.

Click here or the image above to view this remarkable insight to Tom Hawkins… the Tomahawk


JamesD Photography on KISSOPOLIS

Always a thrill to find my photos shared around!

It’ always a thrill to find my photos on other people’s web sites.  In this case I am really over the moon as KISS is one of my all time favorite bands.  Mixing music and photography (equal par as far as my passions go) is always going to be enjoyable.  Photographing Bruce Kulick at the Corner Hotel was probably one of my favorite moments.  To have my work shared at KISSOPOLIS is a major thrill!


Click here to visit KISSOPOLIS online.

Jimmy Bartel; the Cats Greatest?

Jimmy Bartel

Jimmy Bartel; possibly the Cats best in season 2012 so far

Jimmy Bartel has nearly done it all.  So it begs the question; is he ‘the’ Cats best ever player?  Look at his achievements below and see his resume is just about complete.

  • AFL premiership medallion (2007, 2009, 2011)
  • 2-time NAB Cup premiership winner (2006, 2009)
  • Brownlow Medal (2007)
  • 2-time All-Australian (2007, 2008)
  • AFL Rising Star Nomination (2002)
  • Norm Smith Medal (2011)

The only thing missing is a Carji Greeves medal for Geelong Cats’ Best and Fairest.  Find out what drives him to succeed, it’s all revealed in the two following videos.  The way he is tracking this season just might see him winning that elusive best and fairest.

Establishing himself as an elite mid-fielder and winning the Brownlow Medal in that position, in recent years he has transformed in to one of the games most versatile and accomplished players.  He can play tall, he can ‘run-with’, he can take a great mark and he’s ever so reliable kicking in front of goal.  Pound for pound, definitely up there amongst the best.  Above all, he’s humble, likeable and approachable.

Read Jimmy’s official profile here

I have such beautiful eyes

Having to put up with wearing glasses every waking moment of every day is a pain in the backside, and annual checkups are a must to make sure everything is going ok.  Prevention is far better than any cure so staying on top of it all is good peace of mind.  Recently I have been getting headaches and a sharp pain in behind my left eye.  A trip today to the optometrist revealed some surprising results.  Good news and bad news….. Ok, the good news first.  My long distance vision is stable, no need to worry here.  BUT here goes with the bad…… You can’t imagine my horror discovering that my close vision eyesight is deteriorating.  Even worse horror…. I have been recommended to wear multi-focal lenses in my glasses.  I guess age is catching up with me and the inevitable is fast approaching.  At least I still have my teeth!!

Retinal Photograph

Here’s looking at you kid!




Bruce Kulick Photo Shoot

Bruce Kulick at the Corner Hotel

Awesome photographing a 'hero' of my yesteryear

In February 2012 I had the pleasure of photographing Bruce Kulick (ex-KISS guitarist 1984 – 1996) at the Corner Hotel in Richmond, Melbourne.

Bruce put an awesome band together comprising of Tim Henwood (Vocals), Travis Dragani (Drums), Paul Drennan (Guitar), Matt Macauliffe (Bass) and of course Bruce himself on Vocals and Guitars.  The band bashed out a number of KISS hits featuring Bruce’s signature lead solos.  Also a feature were three original songs from Bruce’s latest album BK3.

Click here and scroll down to February 13, 2012, the main image of Bruce is one of my shots and two or three others are contained in the slide show once you click on that main image.

More photos of Bruce’s Melbourne gig are on my Flickr here.

Cats Scrape Home Against Hungry Tigers

Matthew Stokes & Paul Chapman

Encouragement and advice

The Cats 2012 season continues on its rocky road with a 10 point win over a determined young Tigers outfit.

Led brilliantly by Joel Selwood, Jimmy Bartel and experienced defenders, Tom Lonergan, Harry Taylor and Josh Hunt the Cats were able to hold off a desperate effort by the young Tiger team, who actually drew level midway through the last quarter.

Cameo performances were the order of the day in blustery conditions with the wind tunneling down to the old Wade Stand end where a gaping hole prominently figures.  Senior players like Tom Hawkins, Paul Chapman and Matthew Stokes showed the way for young guns Allen Christensen, Mitch Duncan, Cam Guthrie and debutant Jessie Stringer who all contributed in their own ways towards the win.

The Cats take on the Lions next Saturday night in Brisbane and they better have their playing hats on if they’re going to get over the line.

Final Scores
Cats 11.9-75 defeated the Tigers 9.11.65

Geelong Goal Kickers
Stokes 2, Chapman 2, Hunt, Selwood, Hawkins, Podsiadly, Duncan, Motlop, Christensen

Geelong Best Players
Bartel, Guthrie, Lonergan, Taylor, Mackie, Selwood, Hawkins

More photos on my Flickr here.