Brian Crall founded the Sacramento Comedy Spot, but that’s not really what he originally intending on doing. The comedy theater itself now offers shows six nights a week and classes in improv, standup, and sketch comedy four nights a week. It’s the biggest comedy school in northern California. That’s quite an outcome for someone who was only trying to do a single show…just to see how it would go. Little did he know that the business degree he threw the towel in on would become just as important as the theater degree he actually got. For quite a long time, he was working a “real” job as a sky cap to support his family AND the theater…rather than the theater supporting him. And that wasn’t the only sacrifice he made along the way.

I started taking improv classes from Brian last August, and he ended up being on my short list of favorite people I met in 2017. Perhaps what I admire most is his ability to just let it go and perform without being afraid of failing. It’s all the more shocking that at one point he suffered with terrible stage fright.

You can find Brian on social media as @brianccomedy and The Comedy Spot @saccomedyspot

Also check out The Top 10 List Podcast!

Resources:

Websites: SacComedySpot.com & SacramentoComedyFoundation.org

More about the Harold — Long Form Improv

12 Stars who got their start in improv comedy (including Amy Poehler, Ed Helms, Zach Woods, Aziz Ansari, Kate McKinnon, and Donald Glover

 

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

This episode contains a frank discussion — in adult language — about real issues like depression, suicide, relationships, and sexuality. It may not be suitable for all ages.

“Rational decisions don’t always work out for me.”

New York Times bestselling fitness/lifestyle author and founder of Roman Fitness Systems, John Romaniello talks about how overthinking decisions sometimes takes him down the wrong path, and how following his gut sometimes provides clarity.

He also discusses how his lifelong struggle with depression led to a sincere suicide attempt that he initially kept secret from everyone, and how writing a powerful blog post about his experience has proven to be a turning point in his life.

Finally, he explores how he gained insight into his dissatisfaction with social norms around relationships, and how the use of MDMA (in addition to therapy) helped him find a new way to look at his own identity.

You can find John on social media as @johnromaniello, and at Romanfitnesssystems.com

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

 

Resources:

There’s Always More to Say: Tattoos, Semicolons, and Suicidal Depression by John Romaniello

“Three Waves of Polyamory” article:

New York Times Article on MDMA

Article: MDMA Assisted Therapy for PTSD

PowerCast #107 with Janae Kroc

Mike Beech is Matt Vincent’s partner in HVIII Brand Goods, but that’s not his most important job. He’s a stay-at-home dad keeping with the demands of raising three young kids, while his wife works as a physician. He talks about his past jobs in the corporate world, the decision to leave it behind for the home gig, and how being the best parent you can doesn’t mean getting hung up on trying to be THE BEST DAD EVER

You can find Mike on IG @beeeeeeeeech (that’s 9 Es), @HVIIIBrandgoods, TheHVIII.com, and ThrowBros.com

Do Whatever Podcast

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

Several years ago, Michael Fahey approached me with an idea. He wanted to make a documentary about Westside Barbell. I did my best to talk him out of it, but luckily I didn’t succeed. It took quite a while to come together, and it sorely tried his patience and stamina, but in the end his “lack of sensible quit” has produced an outstanding, (nearly) finished product.

Michael explains how his time editing the documentary “Forks Over Knives,” and a stop off at the NFL Network fueled his desire to produce his own project, how a conversation with a reality show producer let him to make contact with me, and how the crazy journey to make the film played out.

You can find the film’s website at westsidevstheworld.com.

Instagram @westsidefilm

Facebook

Twitter

 

Resources

Westside vs the World trailer

Vice.com video about Westside Barbell

Reality show sizzle reel

Westside Hoodie with balls

The Story of Elite Fitness Systems

The “Athlete Family” of Archetypes

 

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

Momma’s Boys Podcast partners, Mike Farr and Omar Isuf take a minute to get serious about the decisions that took them out of the paths they found disappointing or tedious…and into what? Mike broke up with his one true (sports) love, and Omar left behind a college scholarship. They ultimately the ended up catching and riding the wave of new media offered by the rise of YouTube, podcasts, and social media. What do their stories have in common? An intolerance for dissatisfaction.

 

Resources:

The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Taleb

The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick)

That Alan Aragon tweet:

Some of the places you can find Mike and Omar.

Momma’s Boys Podcast Website

Mike’s YouTube

Omar’s YouTube

Mike’s Instagram

Omar’s Instagram

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

Can you finance a life filled with travel, hanging with friends, and racking up cool experiences with the kind of job you can get without a college degree? If you do it right, you can.

John Tims did some research, took some chances, and figured out what kinds of jobs he wanted to target. And when his job left him wanting to do more and create additional income, he launched a side hustle into men’s products (beard care, razors, toiletries, and other awesome stuff) by starting a company called “Self Wrought.”

What are you willing to do to get to the life you want?

You can find John and his products at SelfWrought.com and on Instagram at @selfwrought

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

Jacob Ross was working on a Master’s degree with his sights set on getting a PhD in neuroscience in his home state of Texas. A fateful phone call lured him to a dramatically different life in Chicago training athletes…professional athletes.

Jacob is now an athletic performance coach and consultant.  You can find him on social Instagram @jacob.w.ross.

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

Matt Reynolds was a high school teacher and football coach who was ticking off the requirements to become a principal. Eventually all the boring, non-competitive stability–and the crushing math of the Rule of 80–made him realize he wanted more from the many years he had left until retirement. An unexpectedly successful hobby gym, and an unforeseen twist of fate, and an uncommon business approach led him to become head of a fast-growing online coaching business.

Matt is now owner/founder of Starting Strength Online Coaching, and co-host of The Starting Strength Podcast (and formerly Barbell Logic). You can find him on social media @reynoldstrong and @ssonlinecoaching.

 

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald

Ryan Spencer decided that the best way to follow up his outstanding high school experience was to return…as a teacher. Not just any teacher. The COOL teacher. A last minute internship pulled him toward politics and changed his life forever.

Ryan is a lobbyist at Dimare, Brown, Hicks, and Kessler in Sacramento, CA. You can find him on social media @politicalmuscle.

Host: Jim McDonald (@thejimmcd).

Instagram: @lessthanobvious

Twitter: @lessthanobv

Facebook

Logo: Joseph Manzo.

Audio Engineered and Produced by Jim McDonald