The irony of masks

I’ve been a student of all things that can protect you and cause harm to those that might choose to harm you or loved ones for over forty-five years.
From a cross writing pen to a firearm and all sharp punchy things in between.
The ironic observation is that me NOT wearing a mask could harm you and your family much more silently and with more pain. The reverse certainly is true and believe me that keeps me up at nights.
Over the years I’ve trained and worked with some amazing women and men.
Top in their field of martial arts; SWAT leaders; snipers; special ops; first responders and one who has worked for every government agency with three letters; protecting government leaders.
What unites these women and men is they are the most kind, gracious, skilled, brave and heroic individuals you could hope to meet much less call friends. They put others before themselves.
You just never know who is behind that mask.


RIP Rev. CT Vivian.
One of the most incredible people I’ve been blessed to meet and spend time with.
You taught me to look in the mirror everyday and understand what it was like to NOT see a face of color.

Gun safety practices and fun:

Ran some shooting stages last night after work with my colleagues from both stores.
An awesome opportunity to learn techniques in a simulated, safe environment…what fun.

Thank you to Travis for setting it up, and bosses Jesse, Ross and the rest of the crew for their experience and support. These folks are very good at what they do.

Needless to say my experience level is much higher with wood weapons than with a handgun at this time but working on it.

Unrelated, but may be a blog spot down the road on the store site.

We see a fair share of folks that don’t keep their ammunition separated on the range and shoot handgun calibers that look very much the same. This is an example of a 40 cal. shot in a 45 cal. firearm.
The casing will expand from the gases to the size of the chamber and can be a bit of a challenge to remove. Just a good example of finding a way that works for you to keep your ammunition separated for the firearm being used at any given time.


A prayer to nature:

Thinking of my time in Nagano today for some strange reason.  Maybe it’s the total reverse of  temperature.  Walking the streets in freezing wet snow; the sounds; the kind people; the distance sounds of monks chanting in the monastery.  The small dojo I passed welcoming me to watch from the window?  I like the idea of offering prayer to nature….a written word to feel the rain, heat and snow.

Buddhism: Contributions to the Martial Arts:









With the Holiday’s just around the corner I just wanted to wish you all good health and a very Happy New Year.
Truly a time of reflection and reconnection with family and friends.

A former colleague and good friend reminded me of a a phrase I would toss out from time-to-time to staff just to get folks thinking in a new direction. I certainly don’t come by words easy and this was passed along to me in a pile of hand-outs at the Poynter Institute.
As I remember it noted the author as being “unknown”, sad that some of the most meaningful words and images are from those “unknown”.
Maybe that in itself is a lesson to be humble.
Over the years I have seen many versions but this seems to come close to what I most believe.


Success: Do something that really makes you happy.
_Golden Dragon Fortune Cookie_


Replace Fear with Knowledge:


-Brandon Lee-



Artemis Self-Defense/FOR WOMEN:

If living in the Phoenix area don’t pass up an opportunity to take a self-defense class from Sensei Julie.  She has a very rich background that includes years of using these techniques in the street and teaches from a reality-based program that although serious in nature she and her students have fun learning together.

For more information on her program visit:

2012 in review: A Wonderful New Year to those that visited and new friends to come

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 8,700 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 15 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

My Monk wears New Balance:


I can’t really claim him as my monk guessing I have to share him.

Chuang Yen Monastery, Carmel NY

While visiting the Chuang Yen Monastery yesterday, as we were leaving the Great Buddha Hall, we visited with a wonderful monk, Ven. Ji Xing, who greeted us with a smile that would have filled each square inch of that hall.

Great Buddha Hall, Vairocana Buddha is called the supreme Buddha and represents the wisdom of shunyata, “emptiness. He is white, representing all colors and his symbol is the Dharma wheel. He is associated with the first skandha, form. Meditation on Vairocana vanquishes ignorance

He spoke of the importance of the earth and our place grounded, close to the earth, “All things come from the earth!  Does the earth get mad when you toss down trash? No” he said.  “The earth is forgiving.”

Buddha has a sense of humor…..I hope.

He pointed a sharp finger to my chest. “Do you get mad when I point at you?”

“No, I said.”

“That is good.” he smiled and laughed.

“When someone is pointing one finger at you in a menacing way. They point three fingers back at themselves.”

“Ha, ha, ha, ha, you get one finger they get three. Ha, ha, ha, ha. There is no reason to get


The teachings continued until he had to leave for other pressing monk-like duties.  I’m gong to miss my monk in the running shoes.

Alone in the Middle of the Ring:

Out of the golden age of boxing it is just Ali who is left standing. A man who has spent a lifetime in the boxing ring and has been fighting physical challenges in his twilight years.

Gone is Angelo Dundee his mentor and father figure; Joe Frazier passing a few months ago who took him to his athletic limits time and time again and the “Mouth that Roared” Howard Cosell who built a career in the verbal sparing ring with the fighter.

I grew up in an Italian household where the only fighter known was the “Rock” Rocky Marciano and anyone else other than Joe Lewis was not even worth a mention.

I remember it like it was yesterday, I was nine and it was the eve of the first Liston-Ali fight on February 25, 1964 fight but of course he was Cassius Clay in those days and the days leading to the fight were filled with interviews and press much like today’s Super Bowl.

There were phrases like ” Fight like a Butterfly, Sting like a bee.”; brief interviews with the famous Dundee and poetry by Ali on the fight’s outcome…

 Clay comes out to meet Liston and Liston starts to retreat, 

If Liston goes back an inch farther he’ll end up in a ringside seat.

Clay swings with a left, 

Clay swings with a right, 

Just look at young Cassius carry the fight. 

Liston keeps backing but there’s not enough room, 

It’s a matter of time until Clay lowers the boom. 

Then Clay lands with a right, what a beautiful swing, 

And the punch raised the bear clear out of the ring. 

Liston still rising and the ref wears a frown, 

But he can’t start counting until Sonny comes down. 

Now Liston disappears from view, the crowd is getting frantic 

But our radar stations have picked him up somewhere over the Atlantic. 

Who on Earth thought, when they came to the fight, 

That they would witness the launching of a human satellite. 

Hence the crowd did not dream, when they laid down their money, 

That they would see a total eclipse of Sonny.


The fight was on cable in those days and we neither had nor could afford cable but  I did know that the neighbor who had just moved out of the apartment a few doors down had it as I could see the looping connection curled on the empty apartment floor as I passed the open window each day.

With military precision the night of the fight my friend Bruce and I packed up the portable black and white TV which was about a forty pound, metal cased, zenith with a small pair of pliers where the channel changer should have been and rolled it down the sidewalk to the empty apartment where Bruce made quick entry through the window and we settled in for what would be the most awesome fight of the golden age of boxing.

It was the start of my love for the sport of boxing and the end of my career as a first story man.

The bags are packed: Thoughts before heading east…again.

As we prepare for yet another cross-country trip returning to the east coast, I can’t help but think of how resilient we as Americans have become given our economic environment.  As challenging as unemployment can be, it also offers avenues to put you into situations creating new friends and reconnecting on a different level with former friends and colleagues.

As a newsroom manager I saw my staff cut by over half in workforce reductions through 2008-2010; very talented individuals who have worked hard to rebound and build something they can call their own creating their own businesses or taking a new career path..

Folks like Sandro and Jessica Picasso who built an increasingly popular on-line gaming business PICASSO GAMES ETC. good people who found a needed niche and built something from an idea. Also, check out their blog for updates. Sandro’s brother Carlo Picasso who is an accomplished Martial Arts instructor and also a regional distributor for Pella Windows in the Palm Springs area.

Talented visual journalist, Rodrigo Pena, Silvia Flores, Carrie Rosema, Paul Alvarez, Amanda Lucidon, David Shea, Caitlin Kelly, Greg Vojtko and Eric Kim.

Adam Wright who produces HAULER MAGAZINE and shoots amazing portraits of skateboarders to the finest motorcycle and hot rod builders in the country.

I still find it unbelievable that there are those who don’t understand just how deep unemployment in our country cuts to the bone.  There are those who believe that today’s unemployed are lazy and living the good life off their government checks…you’re sadly uninformed and the line between those who have a paycheck and those who pray they had one becomes increasingly thinner.

 It is less out of frustration, but more out of pride in my friends, family and former colleagues who have risen above the adversity creating a new path in their lives; sharing resources and keeping the spirit alive that gives hope for the future.

Photography and Martial Arts:

Ying Yang, style vs technique or all one?

One needs to understand the distinction between style and a technique. 

Style is a distinctive feature of artistic expression or execution of an image. 

Technique however is the fundamentals of how that expression is derived.

 A technique may help form a person’s style but it is only one component.

 It is only through trying limitless techniques that a photographer, if he or

 she is fortunate, they will develop a style seen in their work.

Free Freedom? 60th Anniversary of the Korean War

Like most students I don’t know that I took the best advantage of my American history classes as I could have, or should have.  It’s not until you become a bit older that you soon realize that history is wasted on the young.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to spend a few hours with members of “Korean War Veterans, National chapter #1”. It was not enough time to spend with this group and I’m hoping for more down the road.

It’s the 60th Anniversary of the Korean War that started when the North Korean Communist troops invadedSouth Korea on June 25, 1950.  Well not really called a war it was a “Police Action” where 57,976 lives were lost, over 54,246 were from the U.S.; 103,284 U.S. soldiers were wounded, 8,177  were MIA (missing in action), and 7,140 were POWs (prisoners of war).  Other countries suffered the loss of 3,730 lives; 12,146 were wounded, 379 were MIA, 1,376 were POWs. More than 3 million civilians lost their lives.

It is called the “Forgotten War” but it is hard to forget when you get the opportunity to speak with some of these men and those Korean Americans who helped us all remember that “Freedom is not Free”.  Just happens that these words are etched into the Korean War Memorial inWashington,DC.

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Philippine Independence Day Celebration:

Members of the Philippine American Heritage Dance Troupe of Redding provided the backdrop for the 113th Philippine Independence Day Celebration Sunday at St. Joseph School.  The story in today’s Record Searchlight can be found here.

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An Engaged Photojournalist:

A Western Sunset

It’s an interesting time to be involved in journalism these days as a freelancer you dip your toe in and out of the pool much more a spectator than being a coach or player in the game…maybe not a bad thing.

I was trading emails with a young photojournalist a few mornings back and she was in a gut wrenching dilemma over what software to use for her new Nikon camera which she could now produce video as a multimedia journalist.

“Should I spend the money for Final Cut Pro or Premiere Pro? Should I use IMovie? I know FCP is what everyone in the business is using. I just don’t know.”

For me it is much like debating the value of a beer coming from a tall, thin bottle or the same beer poured from a short, fat bottle.  The container has little to do with the quality of the drink.

The drink is quality storytelling and becoming ENGAGED with your subject. It’s about making a connection and leading your viewer/reader on a journey.

As we move forward with various levels of multimedia visuals; think about replacing the term multimedia with “engaging journalism”.  Place the emphasis on the quality of the craft and then build a better container.

Cissi Lundgren, 91 year-old artist started to paint at nine in Stockholm, Sweden.

2010 in review: Oneheartonemind blog stats

“I never keep a scorecard or the batting averages. I hate statistics. What I got to know, I keep in my head.”

-Dizzy Dean- 


In 2010, there were 102 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 201 posts. There were 342 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 113mb. That’s about 7 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was March 9th. The most popular post that day was BigSnow2H_Web.


The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for oneheartonemind, road course magazine, adam wright book, nature photography, and adam wright photography.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

About January 2009


Searching for the Summit: October 2010

“Call ‘n’ Response” August 2010
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The Therory of Combat Karate:

“Be professional, be polite, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.”

-USMC Rules for gun fighting #21-

Under the watchful eye of Sensei Rubin Ruiz, 6th Dan Shotokan Karate operator of America’s Finest Shotokan Karate and Kickboxing Academy (AFSK) in Fishkill, NY and his mentor and Sensei since nine-years-old, Reno Moralez,  9th Dan and co-founder of the Bronkx Shotokan Karate-do Clubs International put students through their paces Saturday during “The Theory of Karate Combat” seminar held at Vassar College.

It was six hours of intense training focused on knowing the mind, body and spirit and controlling emotions in the real world.

Both instructors offer a depth of experience in practical martial arts on the streets.  Sensei Maralez was inducted into the Martial Arts Hall of Fame; international competitor and executive protection specialist.

Sensei Ruiz, a student of both traditional Shotokan and Kiokushin full-contact fighting, is a retired police officer of twenty years in the NYPD.

-view audio-slideshow-



Zen Snow Shoveling:

Zen Snow Shoveling 

 If we believe that enlightenment is a product of meditation and intuition rather than faith.   We must then believe that the art of shoveling snow is just a way of creating a path for future travels. 

When the depth of our opponent is that of  just a few inches we need to remember that “Speed Creates Power”.  A firm but flexible grip on the shovel handle is important  for transferring power from our hips once  in a relaxed horse stance. 

Sometimes while attacking greater depths of snow, as in life, one must take two steps backward before initiating the attack with a forward thrust. Do this with “snap and power” This can be a power move keeping your center low. 

The question that one should ask is:  “How good do you want to be?” 

Broken twig and bird tracks find their future among snow flakes.