The Short Version
I’m a former firefighter turned rule-breaker, rebelling against the status quo of social norms and capitalism. I’m also the Co-Founder of BoozeHound, an entertainment company focusing on giving independent artists a level playing field.
I have been a…
- Web designer & Internet Consultant
I’m currently a…
- Screenwriter & Book Author
- Actor / Voice Actor
But, at my core, I will always be a…
- Rule Breaker!
The Long Version
You might be wondering how I went from being in the fire department, a paramilitary organization, to being a rule-breaker. To go from someone with authority to one who rebels against authority? The answer is, I didn’t.
Since my early days of childhood, I’ve never been satisfied playing by the rules or being enslaved to the status quo. I’ve always felt that ideas should be explored fully, without the restraints of following someone else’s rule book. Ideas that question the status quo is what moves us forward and breeds opportunity. Opportunity leads to success.
My first recollection of rebellion was when I questioned my kindergarten teacher. I wanted to know WHY I was supposed to do what they wanted me to do. I was told to just do it, but I resisted. Without understanding the WHY, there is no point in doing something because it’s likely not in my best interest, it’s in someone else’s. It’s about control. Along those same lines, I never believed that you should automatically respect someone just because of a title. Respect and authority must be earned. A uniform or title does not create authority – mutual respect and actions do.
In 1984, at the ripe old age of 14, I joined my town’s volunteer fire department. I don’t really remember how it happened, but I suppose it was a way to find the “WHY”, which I wasn’t getting elsewhere. Not only did the fire service provide the “WHY”, but it also trained me to see the big picture. It allowed me to see the world for what it is (or at least my little corner of it) and see how everything connects together. I also saw things that a 14-year-old probably shouldn’t see – mangled bodies inside a car wrapped around a telephone pole is one image that still haunts me. I suppose nobody should see something like that, regardless of age.
While firefighting is in my blood, and I still miss it, I was forced to leave after ten years because I realized the system is broken. I won’t go into details, but it validated my suspicions that things weren’t right. Authority was held by the wrong people and it was unbalanced. I resigned with tears in my eyes but without regret.
I set my sights on the future with the full understanding that there is no such thing as a level playing field. I decided to create one.
We have gotten to a place in society where the contract is no longer valid. I’m not sure the social contract was ever valid, but it’s very clear to anyone connecting the dots that if you fit a certain profile, you’re exempt from the social contract and get to make and follow your own rules. I’ve come to understand that playing by your own rules is how you reach success. It’s how you live your dreams. It’s what separates the haves from the have-nots.
Let’s be clear, this isn’t about lawlessness. It’s about setting ourselves up to succeed. It’s about everyone playing by the same rules. It’s about manipulating the system to our benefit so we have the chance to succeed. It’s about using the rules of the corruptors against them so we don’t have to worry about how we’re gonna pay for this or that. It’s about shifting power so certain people don’t have to fear for their life every time they see blue lights in their rear-view mirror. It’s about living life, not simply surviving it.
A broken system offers many opportunities, because anything that is broken is vulnerable. We can manipulate these vulnerabilities to create opportunities for ourselves. We take a little bit of their power and use it to move closer to our goals and become stronger. We have to understand that ultimately, we have the power, but we also need to understand how to use it. Sometimes it’s about taking the corruptors down, sometimes it’s about using them to our advantage. It’s knowing what battles to fight and what rules to break.
A few things I’ve accomplished living this philosophy
- I was an actor and technical advisor on a movie and two prime-time television shows in the late ’80s
- Co-Founded an auction company (LikePhate) which became an eBay Powerseller, Certified Trading Assistant and Certified Instructor within a year of our first sale. We were featured in the Orange County Register and our trading assistant contract was featured in eBay Timesaving Techniques for Dummies by Marsha Collier.
- I’ve launched/produced over a dozen podcasts since 2006, hosted from three continents
- Helped Produce a short film without knowing a fucking thing about making a short film. Oh, and this short film was basically a promotional excuse to release a movie soundtrack featuring independent musicians from around the world. Did I mention this film had literally zero budget and the movie actually made money?
- Self-published two books my way (which still earn money after many years).
- Self-published several books under a pen name, and not to sound like Frank Sinatra, but yes, I did it my way. These also earn a nice royalty check every month.
- I launched an apparel company which was profitable after one month
- Helped produce a fictional supernatural thriller that was told over multiple social media accounts, two different podcasts, a 327 page novel and it was told in “real-time”.
- I grew up in a house that used to be a Speakeasy during Prohibition
- My grandfather was on the Jury that convicted Al Capone
- My Favorite foods are pizza, street tacos, and burgers
- I am a Makers Mark Whisky Lifetime Ambassador
- My favorite metal bands are Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Testament, Slayer, and Old Queensryche
- I’m in the Guinness Book Of World’s Records for participating in the largest food fight