Addicted to Love

In my post of January 5, 2014, I referenced some of the biggest music videos (which I happen to like).  One I neglected to mention was the biggy of Robert Palmer (1949-2003).   In 1986, Robert Palmer – a Brit from West Yorkshire – recorded the top-of-the-charts “Addicted to Love.”  The corresponding music video was classic and catapulted Palmer into the national attention.  In 1987, Palmer won the Grammy for best male vocalist for “Addicted to Love.”    This music video can be seen at

The back up musicians – all women who are identically-clad and heavily made up – are thought to mimic or mock the painting style of artist Patrick Nagel.  Robert Palmer – a heavy smoker – sadly died of a heart attack in Paris at the age of 54.  But the women are still around.  The ladies were interviewed by Yahoo at the 2014 Grammys.  Interesting to see then – and now.    Check out

The Desolate Wilderness

“. . . .they knew they were pilgrims and strangers . . . and looked not much on these things but lifted up their eyes to Heaven, their dearest country, where God hath prepared for them a city (Heb. 9:16) and therein quieted their spirits.

The next day they were on board, and their friends with them, where truly doleful was the sight of that sad and mournful parting. To hear what sighs and sobs and prayers did sound amongst them; what tears did gush from every eye, and pithy speeches pierced each other’s heart, that sundry of the Dutch strangers that stood as spectators could not refrain from tears. . . . .

Being now passed the vast ocean, and a sea of troubles before them in expectations, they had now no friends to welcome them, no inns to entertain or refresh them, no houses, or much less towns, to repair unto to seek for succor; and for the season it was winter. And they that know the winters of the country know them to be sharp and violent, subject to cruel and fierce storms, dangerous to travel to known places, much more to search unknown coasts.

Besides, what could they see but a hideous and desolate wilderness, full of wild beasts and wild men? And what multitudes of them there were, they knew not; for which whatsoever they turned their eyes (save upward to Heaven) they could have but little solace or content.”

— Recorded by Nathaniel Morton, keeper of records of the Plymouth Colony based on the account of William Bradford.

Best wishes for a wonderful and Blessed Thanksgiving! 

Rules of Engagement

The restrictions on our military to deal with ISIS are so limiting that the rare boots-on-the-ground soldier needs permission to load his rifle and a virtual nod from Obama to fire it.  The litany of approvals necessary for a drone strike on ISIS traverses several levels of command. And can take hours. Or days. Civilian casualties are verboten. A civilian casualty can make the front page of the New York Times.  An injured squirrel makes page 6. 

Let’s fast backward to World War II.  Germany carpet bombed Allied cities with impunity.  Japan decimated Asia.  So the Allies narrowed their eyes, pulled out the stops and smothered the Axis cities with ordnance.  75 million people died in 6 years. Most civilians.  But few American civilians.  The War ended and today, Germany and Japan are America’s BFF’s.

In my post of October 11, 2014, I referenced the swift, brutal and crushing efforts made by America against bad guys during that terrible conflict.  These were acts of our parents and grandparents.  And they won big time.  When I read that in the aftermath of the slaughter in Paris, French and Russian planes struck “ISIS headquarters and training facilities,” I wonder – what has America been doingWhy haven’t we hit these targets beforeWe gave France and Russia the intel!  The current threat is real and imminent.  Yet the President remains a deer frozen in the headlights on foreign policy.  He refuses to say the word “Muslim” with respect to the enemy.  Yet ISIS and Islamic jihadists have murdered tens of thousands of innocents.   With millions more on the list. . . . . 

I wonder what would our parents and grandparents have done given the current situation.  How would things go with Franklin Delano Roosevelt or Harry Truman sitting in the driver’s seat of America?  

Watch for Anomalies

I have only repeated one post in 4+ years.  Here’s number 2 from June 18, 2012.  It has particular relevance today. 

When my daughter was young, I taught her a phrase – “watch for anomalies.” As a young girl growing up, I wanted her to be keenly aware of her surroundings. To know where the exits are in a restaurant, theater or other public place. And to always be aware of what doesn’t “look right.”   People.  Places.  Things.  Situational profiling.  Which is smart.  What looks out of place.   I cautioned her – if something doesn’t look right, get out.  Go the other way.

I have a feeling that my daughter at the age of 12 could “case” a room as well as anyone. Though today when I say “watch for anomalies,” she’ll usually respond “Oh dad. . . .”

I learned the expression years ago. As a State’s Attorney – working with police – I learned quickly that they watched carefully for anomalies. Situations that don’t look right. Things that look out of place or out of character.

Apart from teaching my granddaughters about music, the guitar, speaking Spanish, how to spit, hitting a golf ball, making spaghetti carbonara, playing poker, doing magic tricks, finding pennies on the street and so on, I want to teach them situational awareness.  And to “watch for anomalies.”

The Thin Blue Line

When I grew up, I was inculcated with the notion that ALL lives mattered. Not just black ones. . . .

I’m insulted. And offended. When I hear some Black Lives Matter folks calling on their brethren to “kill police.” Let’s have a show of hands — who agrees with these people??

When I was a States Attorney, I worked with the police every day. Hundreds of them. You know what? Most were good guys (a few gals) (see my post of 3/20/14).  Sure – there were occasional bad apples (and you deal with them) but most were just doing their job.  A pretty good job.  Of protecting the public.  Thus, I stand behind the police. I stand behind that thin blue line.

I would invite all of you to stand behind the police in your community. And for Mayor de Blasio of New York and the Black Lives Matters folks who urge violence — if you won’t stand behind the police, when the ISIS (or bad guy) bullets start flying — please stand in front of them.

Gluten – II

In my post of August 13, 2013, I discussed gluten and how gluten can compound (sometimes dramatically) the effects of arthritis. We are not talking celiac disease which is an allergic reaction to gluten. We are talking gluten intolerance.

I spoke of how gluten exacerbated Donna’s arthritis issues. She has been on the gluten-free wagon for a while. That along with limited four-legged protein and modest dairy really helps.   

I’ve got foot pain. And bad knees. So some months ago, I got serious about going off gluten.  And I’ve pretty much stayed off of it.  Know what?  I feel better.  Fast forward to last week. I had a sandwich with regular bread and some real McCoy pasta.  And cold (the only way) bread pudding for dessert.   Yum?  Not.  Next morning I woke up.  Eyes blinked open and . . . . I knew something was different.  I got up and my feet and legs started talking to me – Petersen, you are a knucklehead (see February 13, 2014).   In fact, Petersen, you are a #@%x!*^.  There was significant pain.  And I lurched through my day.  From now on, I’m going to listen to my feet and legs.  And be more serious about avoiding gluten.

Arthritis affects 80% of the aging population.  But going off gluten could help many in minimizing its effects.  And feeling better.  Downside?  None.        

Why Are You Here??

Some years ago, I was asked to speak to the Mexican corporate bar association – ANADE (Associacion Nacional de Abogados de Empresa) at their annual meeting in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Donna and I flew in to Mexico City International Airport and rented a car – Budget – for the 270 mile drive. 

We pulled out of the Budget lot over the angled ground spikes and headed out onto the street.  I adjusted the rear view mirror and noticed that a police car had pulled in about 100 yards back.  Hmmmmm. . . .    I kept driving.  Carefully.  After a mile or so, the police car put on its flashers and pulled me over.  I got out of the car and held up my license.  An officer got out, adjusting his Sam Brown belt and walked up.  “You almost hit a car back there.”  Bull.  After some discussion, he looked at me quizzically and said “why are you here?”  And I told him I was giving a speech to the Mexican Bar Association.  He laughed, turned, waved and said “just be careful.”  He got in his car and drove away. 

Why are you here?   I think about these words.  In my heart, I believe that we are all “here” for some purpose.  I love a quote of Albert Schweitzer – “The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.”  Then again, there’s the quote of W.H.Auden – “We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for, I don’t know.”