Sunday, March 21, 2010


WORDSImage by Feuillu via Flickr
Image via Wikipedia
I've made a hobby of collecting and remembering old sayings.  We hear them everyday from everywhere and by everybody--whether as coined phrases, one-liners, words to live by, or lines from a movie: 

"Hey dude let's party" helped launch Sean Penn as 'Jeff Spicoli' in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High".  'Scarlett O'hara's' "Tomorrow is another day"(Vivien Lee in "Gone With the Wind") echoed throughout my childhood. 

True, some old sayings get old fast, however,  many become thought-provoking, words of wisdom which enlighten us--as I hope this blog does for YOU!  Are you there?  Still reading? 

I got interested about 20 years ago in the office restroom of all places, where, above the urinal hung a two-foot by three-foot painting frame totally filled with hundreds of tiny sentences, each a different color, and each--an old saying!  The first was; "The journey of a thousand miles starts with but one, single step"...and the last was; "Have a nice day". 

 In between, I read hundreds of great ones over a period of bathroom visits--only a handful of which I will share!(I promise)  One night I took that painting down and started jotting them down:

"Those who talk the most have the least to say".
"A welcome guest is one who knows when to leave".
"Easy street is a blind alley"
"Those who pays too much attention to their reputation, often loose their character".
"Those who ignore the past, are condemned to repeat it".
"A person who trusts no one, should include himself".
"To truly hear you must quiet the mind".
"Trust is like money; you spend it, lend it, save it, and sometimes get robbed of it".
"A rumor is as difficult to unspread as butter".

Here are a few sales meeting motivators:
"A goal without a plan is just a wish". 
"Nobody plans to fail, they just fail to plan".
"A smooth sea never made a skillful mariner".
"A wish changes nothing, a decision changes everything".
"If a situation is constantly confusing, to solve the problem...look to the financial interest".
"A meeting is an event at which the minutes are kept, and the hours are lost"...(the one I prefer)

Then there are the love letter tools:
"Success in marriage is more than finding the right person, it's becoming the right person".
"The heart has reasons which reason does not understand".
"Better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all". (Boo,hoo,hoo) "A woman never shot a man while he was doing the dishes".
Are you still reading? These are good aren't they?  Here are a few more:
"Good taste is boundless, while bad taste has no bounds".
"When there's nothing on TV, most people will watch it anyway".
"A young person knows the rules, but an old person knows the exceptions".
"Smile. It increases your face value".
"Stewardesses is the longest word that is typed with only the left hand".(You stopped to visualize that one, didn't you?) "Life is like playing a violin solo in public, and learning the instrument as you go along".
"There are no atheists in foxholes".(My dad taught me that one) "Life is a bowl of cherries, just watch out for the pits"--"Life is a bed of roses, just watch out for the pricks".(My sisters taught me those) "Chance favors the prepared mind".
"Fortune favors the brave".
"Once in a while, you meet someone who thinks they are all eight wonders of the world".
"To be a good sport, one has to lose to prove it".
"Show me a good loser, and I'll show you someone who's playing golf with their boss".
That last one came from my family priest, the late Reverend John Sweeny, who pastored the much known "Our Lady of Peace" Parish in Santa Clara, California.What a wonderful soul he was, an not a bad golfer.  He helped inspire me to add this next batch of quotes--all with authors.

"Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves". Confucius "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody". Bill Cosby "The human voice can never reach the distance that is covered by the still, small voice of conscience". Mahatma Gandhi "To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible". St. Thomas Aquinas "Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who, only dream by night". Edgar Allan Poe "A banker is a fellow who lends you his umbrella when the sun is shining, but wants it back the moment it starts raining'. Mark Twain "A hero is someone who understands the degree of responsibility that comes with his freedom". Bob Dylan "A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs, who has never learned to walk forward". Franklin D. Roosevelt "Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise". Benjamin Franklin "You can't separate peace from freedom, because no one can live in peace unless they have their freedom". Malcom X "The bitterest tears shed over graves, are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone". Harriet Beecher Stowe "All great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word; freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope". Winston Churchill "If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have told me...faster horses". Henry Ford "Sure there are dishonest men in local government, but there are dishonest men in national government too". Richard Nixon "The nice thing about being a celebrity, is that when you bore people they think it's their fault". Henry Kissinger "If all economists were laid end to end, they would never reach a conclusion". George Bernard Shaw "Death is not the greatest of evils; It is worse to want to die, and not be able to". Aristotle "Do not fear death so much, but, rather the inadequate life". Bertolt Brecht "Thanks to the interstate highway system, it's now possible to travel from coast to coast without seeing anything". Charles Kuralt "I'm the one who's got to die when it's time for me to die, so let me live my life the way I want to". Jimmy Hendrix "I have a dream",that one day all mankind "shall not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character". Martin Luthur King Jr.
"It is easier to fight and die for one's principles, than to live up to them". Alfred Adler "Charity is no substitute for justice withheld". St.Augustine "Celebrity is a mask that eats into the face". John Updike "My brain; it's my second favorite organ". Woody Allen "Ninety-eight percent of this country's adults are decent, hard working, honest Americans.  It's the other lousy two-percent that get all the publicity...but we elected them". Lily Tomlin "It is not an old movie if you haven't seen it". Lauren Bacall "Nobody in the game of football should be called a genius.  A genius is somebody like Norman Einstein". Joe Theismann "Computers are useless. They can only give you answers". Pablo Picasso " a sexually transmitted disease". R.D. Laing "Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance". Edgar Bergen

"If the law is against you, bang on the facts. If the facts are against you, bang on the law. If both are against you, bang on the table". No One

I can't end this thing without sharing the first saying that inspired me, the worst ever written, my all-time favorite, and one I made up myself!

As a TV sports anchor-reporter some 26-years ago in Bakersfield, California, I did my first quality feature package(story) on a guy who's legs were blown off in Viet Nam--yet he lived life fuller than most! Entertaining 500 school children, Bob Weilan took batting practice sitting down with the baseball team, bench-pressed 380 pounds in the gym, and told of how he walked across the entire country on specially made hand-shoes! He also walked the LA Marathon a few years later!

I closed the feature with his final message...that the joy is truly in the journey--and that, "The only time you fail in this life, is the last time that you try". 

My favorite saying comes from the late comedian George Carlin, of all people...who wrote:"Life should not be measured by the amount of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away".

The most diabolical, hypocritical saying of all still remains posted above the front gate at 'Auschwitz' death camp in Poland, where innocent millions(mostly Jews) were murdered during World War Two. It reads: (In German) "Arbeit Macht Frei" will set you free.

 Almost finally, Diogenes of Sinope happily wrote once:
"One original thought is worth a thousand mindless quotations". 

Nevertheless I end with an original: 
"Men have all the lines, and women have all the curves. Happy are those who can read between both". 

I hope you enjoyed all of these inspired words! Take care and check out more blogs on www.streetwisesd .com

Sincerely, PeteCam4



"Best Wishes"--PTCJr
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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Could Pentagon shooter have been stopped?

The Pentagon, looking northeast with the Potom...Image via Wikipedia
Last Thursday's Pentagon shooter was actually raised in Hollister, California where he recently lived with his now grief-stricken parents.  36-year old John Patrick Bedell  also happened to be a promising electrical engineering student who'd already achieved a bachelor's degree, and was was attending graduate studies at San Jose State University until last fall.
So, what was it that triggered this soft-spoken, 6-foot tall, blond haired, intelligent man to drive to Washington, D.C., pull out a gun, and shoot two Pentagon entrance guards, wounding them both....before being shot dead by their retaliating bullets?
A few of his high school classmates said Bedell was smart, quiet, but kind of weird.  Neighbors in Hollister claim he was just a normal kind of guy, while professors praised him as one of the best circuit-design students at San Jose State.
"He was always on time, always prepared, and asked great questions that sparked further discussion", said professor David Parent, who never thought Bedell was capable of such a violent act, and nothing like the student he came to know so well!  "I still can't believe this is the J.P. I knew," he said.  "It's as though someone stole his identity".
As it happens, however, troubling signs foreshadowed Bedell for years...including severe bipolar depressive disorder, which competed with an addiction to marijuana, causing fits of anger leading to numerous scrapes with the law, including charges for resisting arrest.
Bedell was also arrested in 2007 at Bubb Elementary School in Mountain View after threatening a six-year old and his father with a 6-foot long stick, after they refused to to let him join  soccer practice!
That same year, Bedell was detained on a mental health hold, pleading no contest to exhibiting a deadly weapon other than a gun.  A month later his youngest brother signed a citizen's arrest form, claiming Bedell even assaulted him, after which Bedell served just 20-days of weekend work service.
Am I the only one noticing an obvious pattern  here?  Aren't these incidents at least the beginning signs of impending disaster for Bedell?  Wasn't he, in fact, a ticking time bomb just waiting to explode, needing a heck of a lot more than community service work to defuse him?
It's true his parents Oscar and Kaye Bedell did try for several years to get their son into therapy for his marijuana addiction, often seeking help from San Benito County Supervisor Reb Monaco, who was a family friend.
However, when that failed, shouldn't Bedell have at least received treatment for bipolar depression, which is a highly severe medical condition requiring aggressive therapy and  life-long medication?  It often afflicts extremely intelligent people, and is brought on by an imbalance of naturally occurring substances in the brain or spinal cord.
Instead of treating himself with marijuana, Bedell should have been on prescription anti-psychotic drugs like Benzadiazepine or lithium....which treat symptoms of hyperactivity, irritability, and hostility; the very symptoms which haunted him!
I say this because I've seen the way bipolar-ism has affected others, even people I know personally!  My cousin's wife has an IQ of 155, and used to suffer psychotic fits and convulsions after consuming even the smallest bit of alcohol.  She's fine now, but only after receiving alcohol treatment, intense therapy, and a strict medical re gamin for bipolar depression.
My own sister took it upon herself to seek life-long treatment for mood swings and chemical imbalances, which caused her to throw violent fits of rage when we were kids. I remember them well, and now she's fine.but only because she got the necessary help she needed? 
So did actor Robert Downey Jr. a bipolar depression sufferer also strongly addicted to cocaine, who literally traded in a bright career for a jail cell until finally getting the proper mental health care required to achieve total sobriety. Could John Patrick Bedell have gotten similar help?  Unfortunately, we will never know.
His story only got worse, with even more disturbing and revealing behavior, such as his recent anti-government threats and rants on 'You Tube' and other internet postings, where Bedell blasted the alleged miss-handling of a Marine colonel's death, and launched conspiracy theories surrounding the 9/11 disaster.
Just after New Years there were more red flags and danger signs.  Bedell's parents filed a missing persons report when he vanished eight days earlier following another fight with one of his brothers. Then they received a call from the Texas Highway Patrol claiming to be "disturbed" about Bedell's car being in "disarray" after being issued a speeding ticket.
When Bedell finally returned home on January 18th, his parents confronted him about a $600 purchase from a Sacramento shooting range, however, their son refused to tell them what he bought...thus arousing obvious worry and suspicion, but no action
A few weeks later Bedell banished himself to the road again, headed for the pentagon in D.C. with two 9-millimeter automatics, never to see his family again. Why couldn't something have been done earlier to get him the mental health care he so drastically needed?  He may very well have received some treatment, and I'm not about to say the Bedell family didn't try very hard!  What I am hinting, is that,  perhaps our entire community and government  approach to mental health care needs to improve, for the sakes of families like the Bedells!
Every day homeless people wander the streets, some of them half-brain dead. mumbling aloud to themselves. Could they have been helped? How many of us (so-called) upper and middle class citizens suffer from chronic depression, and why are there so many suicides, homicides, and rapes? 
The fact is, our prisons are filled the the brim, while seemingly normal, over-achieving, clean-cut folks John Patrick Bedell end up killing and/or dying violently....while we continue to wonder; could it all have been prevented?
I only hope our government and its communities learn from this, and find a way to improve preventative, mental health care, whereby....fewer families have to suffer tragedies like the Bedell's,  who last Friday issued a statement saying: "We are devastated as a family because, to the outside world this disaster is the first and only thing they will know of John Patrick.  To us he was a beloved son, brother, grandson, nephew, and cousin. We may never know why he made this terrible decision, but one thing is clear--his actions were caused by an illness, and not a defective character."
Thanks, and stay in touch at
Sincerely, PeteCam4

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Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Colonies of pathogenic bacteria growing on an ...Image via Wikipedia

It has been one recall after another. In October 2006 it was Green Leaf Lettuce, E coli was found in the irrigation water. In July 2009 there was a recall on Romaine  Lettuce which was tainted with E coli. Now there is a recall on hydrolyzed vegetable protein it is tainted with Salmonella. This hydrolyzed vegetable protein  is a flavoring used in every type of processed food.

  How are consumers supposed to know if lettuce has E coli, you can’t!
With beef and chicken  we are told to cook it to temperature of 155 degrees Fahrenheit, but we can’t do that with lettuce. we can wash lettuce under running water and hope that is enough.

  Consumers are at the mercy of these companies that produce processed foods.  Dr. Margaret Hamburg told reporters that the risk of illness was very low and so far, no consumers have reported getting sick from products containing the flavoring. I think someone got sick after eating one of  the recalled items, but  just dismissed it as stomach flu. Dr.
Jeff Farrar associate commissioner for the food safety said “We expect this to get larger over the next several days, actually several weeks.”

   We can all prevent the spread of E coli and Salmonella by washing our hands and utensils  with hot soapy water before and after handling meat and washing all surfaces that the meat touched. Do not thaw meat on the counter, put cooked food in the refrigerator promptly after its cooked Salmonella can cause sever illness in the very young, very old and frail. To all you consumers please read all  processed food ingredients labels, avoid processed foods containing hydrolyzed vegetable protein.
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