I Used to Be Somebody: (Un)Retirement Lessons Learned

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What's on your Bucket List?

Carl Landau | May 24, 2022

 

People love to create bucket lists. They are a fun way to set up goals, push yourself and achieve your dreams. You never know what following a list will lead to, or the people you will meet along the way. I wanted to learn more. In this month's podcast I talked with financial experts Ian Castille and Gary Sirak about bucket lists on our "(Un)Retirement Wisdom with the Pros" segment. 
 
Bucket lists are all over the map. They are personal and unique and sometimes surprising. My friend Matt Coen and his wife Emily had their "50 by 50" bucket list to see all 50 states by age 50. They just completed North Dakota and South Dakota number 49 and 50. I know another couple that watched every James Bond movie (there are 27 films). Others, (including my wife) want to visit every national park in the US (63 national parks).

 

Both experts say that money doesn't buy happiness but it can buy fulfilling, even once-in-a lifetime experiences. Or maybe your bucket list is really a wish list, where you set out to do all the things you wished you could've done but were working. Either way, knowing what you want, without compromising your financial security is pretty darn important in this second half of your life!
 
Some highlights from our segment:
 
Ian tends to approve and disapprove certain bucket list items, based on discussions with clients about the financial sense and quality of life perspective. 
Here are some common requests from clients:
  • Luxury African Safari: Probably a once-in-a-lifetime experience--approved!
  • Kitchen remodel: Spending more time at home, quality of life, possible resale value--approved!
  • Giving children money for home down payments: Really big expense that will most likely not be paid back--maybe.  It is critical to understand that this move would not compromise YOUR financial health in any way.
  • Second "vacation" home: Double your costs plus if you rent it out, it becomes a part-time job for you--not approved!
 
Gary prefers to call it a Wish List vs a Bucket List. First, he has each partner fill out a form about their dream wish list. This exercise is eye-opening and very helpful for discussion. (Sometimes partners have totally different wishes and priorities!)
 
Here are two unique client requests:
  • Client owned a machine shop and sold it, $3 million in a 401K. Asked to take out $1 million because he had a life dream of being a professional poker player. Paid taxes on the sum and lived off of it while forging his new career. He was successful for many years, played the circuits and won tournaments. 
  • Client wants a wish list item to include money for casino trips. Gary is not sure they win more than they lose, but it's something clients really want to do, they enjoy it.
 
With all of these examples, following your dreams is great, as long as you check with a trusted advisor to make certain you are not compromising your financial security. Now get out there and have some fun! 

 

• Ian Castille, Capital Advantage
• Gary Sirak, How to Retire and not Die

 

Carl Landau is the Creative Genius/Host of I Used to be Somebody podcast. https://pickleballmediahq.com/

 

Tags:    Carls Diary   bucket list   wish list   (un)retirement   Capital Advantage   How to Retire and not Die  

Sam McDowell Interview: All-Star Player with Hall of Fame Second Act

Diana Landau | May 10, 2022

This week Carl interviews baseball legend "Sudden Sam" McDowell. After a record-setting career as a Major League pitcher for the Cleveland Indians, San Francisco Giants, New York Yankees and the Pittsburgh Pirates, Sam embarked on a stellar second act as a sports psychologist and motivational speaker, creating addiction and recovery programs for players (and their families) in all sports. He had many ups and downs in his own baseball career, however. "My career was fueled by alcohol and addiction," he shares. Sam is also author of the book, "The Saga of Sudden Sam: The Rise, Fall and Redemption of Sam McDowell."
 
Growing up, Sam's family (including his 6 siblings) lived in Pittsburgh, PA. Sam's focus was sports. He played baseball, basketball, tennis and ran cross-country. (Fun Fact #1: His father was a football quarterback in the Rose Bowl.) At the young age of 17, the Cleveland Indians recognized his talent and he was recruited with a big signing bonus. By the time he was 18, he was already pitching in the major leagues. Sudden Sam became a star, a six-time All-Star and led the American League in strikeouts five times. By 1971, he injured his rotator cuff and his decline continued. "I didn't retire, I was kicked out," says Sam. The anxiety and depression that came from the pressure of being such a young superstar took a toll and his drinking continued.

 

After a short career in real estate and then in insurance, Sam hit rock bottom, losing his wife, family and mountains of debt from a failed business venture. The turning point came when he moved in with his mother. "I woke one morning at 3am and felt in my heart like something beat me." He made a call to a recovery center that morning. (Fun Fact #2: TV Show "Cheers" based their Sam Malone character on Sam.)
 
After learning in recovery that alcohol is a genetic disease, he says the lights went on. His own therapist encouraged him to become a sports psychologist and help other players with addiction and recovery. Sam attended Harvard's continuing education program in sports psychology and eventually was hired by the Texas Rangers to be their sports psychologist, a first in any sport. After a very successful second career in baseball, now at age 80, he continues to help players and former players in all sports through his programs. He has two World Series rings to show for it from the '90s. "The Toronto Blue Jays felt I was valuable in helping them win it all!"
 
Sam's Advice on (Un)Retirement Success:
  • Financial security: "It is extremely important. You must be honest and realistic with yourself. Be sure to consult a financial planner—you may live until you're 90!"
  • Cheering has stopped: "Yes, you had a successful career. Accept it. Now go on."
  • Second act: "Get a hobby, volunteer, play sports. Where does self-worth come from? Set out to accomplish a goal, then do it. This builds your self-esteem."
 
• More about Sudden Sam McDowellClick Here for more unretirement ideas
The Saga of Sudden Sam: The Rise, Fall, and Redemption of Sam McDowell
• Sponsored by Capital Advantage
• Sponsored by Gary Sirak's How to Retire and Not Die
 
• Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.
 
Tags:    blog   interview   major league   baseball   redemption   financial security  

Home Features Every Newly (Un)Retired Couple Wants

Diana Landau | April 11, 2022
This is a “love letter” from my wife Diana about her experience with me moving my office home.
 
  1. Cone of Silence—That’s right, Get Smart style. Just press a button and you can have actual phone conversations without your partner “interjecting” with helpful opinions.
 
  1. Padded Room—Not for your partner, but for yourself. Sometimes sharing the home 24/7 is all a bit too much.
 
  1. The True Divider—This is an actual wall constructed down the middle of your one office that you have to share. Matching shelving on each side for storing YOUR very important mementos and vital personal items that your partner erroneously states are “junk.”
 
  1. Kitchen Sweeper—Not for your floors, but for your kitchen counters where partner has left remnants of lunch, part-time work papers, backpack full of pickleballs and lots of notes written in tiny scribble that not even the cat can decipher.
 
  1. Private Sanctuary—Uh, a certain partner uses this term for the bathroom. Whatever.
 
  1. Discerning Doorbell—this features a speaker that says loudly, firmly yet politely, “Go Away!” for those times when neither of you want to get up and see who’s at the door.
 
  1. Living Room—This area is actually your new office/sanctuary. As you talk on the phone, you look at the walls and imagine them padded. (See #2 above.)
 
  1. Sports Viewing Room—It’s actually outside. Well, ok, the man or woman cave in the garage, but please, just outside.
 
  1. Pet Throne—With all the extra time you two have now, you both spend an inordinate amount of time fawning over the pet(s). Perfect, fluffy, organic, silk pillow for Fido? Yes, Amazon!
 
  1. Outsized Wine Rack—This feature becomes critical to survival and civility as time goes on.
Tags:    the carl diary   unretirement   home office   marriage   work from home  

Corky Logue Interview: Pawn Shop King Turns Into Pickleball Pied Piper

Diana Landau | April 11, 2022

 
Carl talks this month with Corky Logue of Rollingwood, Texas. Corky is a man of incredible energy and focus. As a serial entrepreneur, he has owned 40+ companies. "One of my biggest shortcomings is I'm a little too optimistic about things," he says. A big success came at the age of 47, when he went public with his chain of EZ Pawn stores, leaving the company a few years later with about $30 million in stock. A self-described workaholic, Corky is still as busy as ever at 74. "Everything I do is fun. If it's not fun, I'm not doing it!"
 
Corky's father was in the Navy, so his family moved some but most of the time they lived in the South Austin area, in a trailer park. Corky has a large family and six children of his own. He says he was a geeky teen, very involved in Explorer then Eagle Scouts. "It taught me leadership,"  he says. After high school his father urged him to join the Marines, but Corky wanted to attend the University of Texas and moved out on his own. He worked 2-3 jobs and put himself through college. Sometimes on the podcast, guests talk about their worst job and how the biggest problem was usually the boss. Corky tells Carl, "Since 1972 (when he was 24), I have never had a boss. I've been the boss!" 
 
He has owned drywall supply companies, bike stores, travel agencies, software companies and more. From the early 1970's to the mid-1890's he was running 12 companies simultaneously. He also became a pilot. "I like living at 100 miles an hour." Corky says he only needs about 3 hours of sleep each night. "I'm still as busy as I was when I was working. The big difference is back then I had few friends. Now, through tennis and pickleball, I have more friends than the previous 65 years!"
 
Corky has 2 courts in his backyard, where he schedules 45 people to play pickleball each week, 4 games a day. "When they're through, they come up for a beer. It's so much fun. I've met some great people." In his spare time, he spreads the message of Toastmasters as a 50-year member. "Absolutely, Toastmasters has made me a different person and I want to pay back what it gave me." Corky also spent some time as Mayor of Rollingwood. There's a pattern here with Corky—a high energy lifestyle, leading by example and having fun—all at the same time. "I used to be somebody, and now I'm nobody and I'm damn happy about it!"

Corky Logue's (Un)retirement Advice:
  • "Play pickleball! It's one of the few sports you can play 7 days a week. With pickleball, I've made the most friends, had the most fun and it keeps your body happy too. "
  • "I have a daily routine that I stick to, I'm still trying to learn to live at 55 miles an hour." (vs 100 mph)
  • "Being social helps you live longer. If that's the case, I'm going to live to 150."

• Sponsored by Capital Advantage

 

Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

Tags:    blog   interview   Corky Logue   pickleball   toastmasters   texas   EZ Pawn   serial entrepreneur  

King of Comedy?

Carl Landau | March 15, 2022
You need to "practice what you preach". We're always encouraging listeners on the I Used to be Somebody show to try doing something NEW and more FUN. So, I felt like I had to try something new.....
 
WARNING: For anyone trying something entirely new ( a second act), at the beginning you're going to be frustrated, scared, overwhelmed and at some point you're going to want to give up. These are natural feelings. It's supposed to be a challenge! So have patience and give yourself a break when trying something new. 
 
I signed up for a six week comedy stand-up workshop and our final was performing before a live audience. I learned a ton by taking on this project and it really kicked me out of my comfort zone.
 
  • Stand-up is HARD, and not just because you are talking in front of an audience with bright spotlights focused on you. You have to learn to take command of the room while at the same time you are trying to get a very specific response from the audience -- laughter! (And not just once but for most of the time you are up on stage.)
  • You have to be a good writer, develop a script, memorize it and then successfully perform that set without note cards, which are four entirely different skills. Oh yeah---and be really funny!
  • Find a great mentor, it makes a difference. I was so lucky because I had the incredible comedian, Jack Gallagher, who has had a big time career in comedy and acting.
 
Jack told our class, "Regardless if you continue with your stand-up career or not, the experience translates into big-time confidence in anything else you do in the future. If you can do stand-up, you are bullet proof for anything." I think this is totally true.

 

 

Tags:    the carl diary   stand up comedy   comedy   comfort zone   comedy gold   funny   jack gallagher  

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