650 - Toys are Tactical: Tom interviews Anthony Ciotti - Screw The Commute

650 – Toys are Tactical: Tom interviews Anthony Ciotti

Anthony Ciotti owns Tactics 2 Toys, LLC. It's an ecommerce store that specializes in collectible toys and strategy games, and he's in his 32nd year of the Army Reserves, had tours in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo and the African continent. And he's a brigade CSM. And he's full time with the Army and his family.

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Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 650

How To Automate Your Businesshttps://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/

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[03:02] Tom's introduction to Anthony Ciotti

[06:32] Quite a career path with 24 hour shifts

[08:45] Went to college and forgot to line up a summer job

[11:35] Transitioning to selling toys

[15:58] Board games for mental health issues

[23:18] Creating and selling digital products

[28:47] Sponsor message

[30:05] A typical day for Anthony

Entrepreneurial Resources Mentioned in This Podcast

Higher Education Webinarhttps://screwthecommute.com/webinars

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College Ripoff Quizhttps://imtcva.org/quiz

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How To Automate Your Businesshttps://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/

Internet Marketing Retreat and Joint Venture Programhttps://greatinternetmarketingtraining.com/


online shopping cart, ecommerce system



Disabilities Pagehttps://imtcva.org/disabilities/

Anthony's websitehttps://tactics2toys.com/




Email Tom: Tom@ScrewTheCommute.com

Internet Marketing Training Centerhttps://imtcva.org/

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Richelle Futch – https://screwthecommute.com/649/

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Episode 650 – Anthony Ciotti
[00:00:09] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.

[00:00:24] Hey, everybody, is Tom here with Episode 650 of Screw the Commute podcast? I'm here with Anthony Ciotti and he is in here part of Vetpreneur Month on Screw the Commute podcast where we honor our veteran entrepreneurs really were honoring all our veterans. We're very pro-military here, and on behalf of the audience and myself, we want to thank Anthony for his 32 years of service. More than many of you out there were born or in diapers when he was fighting for our country. So we want to thank Anthony right up front and we'll get into a very cool business he has on the side. He's still in the military, but he's got a side hustle. It seems like a lot of fun. So we'll get him to tell us about that. All right. Hope you didn't miss Episode 649. That's Richelle Futch. And I am in love with her. She is the military spouse of the year at Fort Bragg and a marine veteran. And she got me invited to the White House and to and in turn to speak at the Military Influencers Conference in D.C. So we just love her. But she's doing some cool stuff. I mean, she's got a program called Her Ruck to help Military Families, but lately she is putting together a company to get sponsorships. So big companies give you money to do the thing you're doing. So beautiful things, so make sure you don't miss. Episode 649 And anytime you want to get to a back episode, you go to screwthecommute.com, slash and then the episode number that's 649 and Anthony with his co business is 650. All right, make sure you grab a copy of our automation book. This book allows me to respond to prospects and customers lightning fast and saves me hundreds.

[00:02:15] And, I mean, it saved me after over all these years, thousands of hours of work on the computer. So you got to download this book and I'll just say you're welcome right now, because if you if you use even a portion of what's in this book, you will just save enormous amounts of time. All right. And it's just the one tip that saved me, like, 8 million keystrokes. And I'm not exaggerating, cause 20 bucks, one time you put it on your computer, and it just saves you enormous hassles. That's just one of the things in the book. So grab it at screwthecommute.com/automatefree. While you're at it, pick up a copy of our podcast app. It's screwthecommute.com/app and you can put us on your cell phone and tablet and take us with you on the road.

[00:03:03] Let's get to the main event. Anthony Ciotti owns Tactics 2 Toys, LLC. It's an ecommerce store that specializes in collectible toys and strategy games, and he's in his 32nd year of the Army Reserves, had tours in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo and the African continent. And he's a brigade CSM. I think that's a command sergeant major, but I'm not sure. I don't know. We'll have to ask him. And he's full time with the Army and his family. So, Anthony, again, we want to thank you so much for your service and continuing service to our country because we need it. I'll tell you, people like you that are persistent, consistent and fighting for us every day is just we can't thank you enough. So thanks for coming on.

[00:03:59] Oh, you're very welcome, Tom. I'm glad to be on. And I love what I do.

[00:04:03] Yeah, I guess you do, because I've been looking at some of your background and I'm really a little confused. I don't know if it's the normal in the military, but I was following your career path a little bit, and I see you were in Kosovo for a while. Yes, Iraq. Djibouti. And then Afghanistan?

[00:04:25] Well, that's.

[00:04:25] Correct. What I don't understand is that it seems I mean, just looking at it from a civilian point of view, it seems like if you are in, let's say, Kosovo for a while and making relationships with the locals and whatever you did to get the job done, then they pull you out and send you somewhere else. And some new person comes in and all those relationships disappear. Is that is that a naive thing to say?

[00:04:51] No, that actually is not out of the ordinary. Your deployments are typically nine months to 12 months. Nine months seems to be the standard thing. And in a perfect world. When you get to that eighth month mark, you should already know who your replacements are coming in. You received them on your last month. You do a left seat, right seat handoff and they take it from there. If they want to pick up on your work, great. If they start over, that's on them. There's we have a running joke, the saying you don't get good evaluation, bullet points for sustainment operations. So everybody tries to recreate the wheel.

[00:05:31] Just to me, it just seems like, wow, you met you had relationships and somebody trusted you. And then now the the FNG guy comes in to the to the thing and now nobody. So I start all over again. But, well, whatever it takes to get the job done, I guess. But I was interested. I started looking up that Djibouti place a little bit. Did you ever make it out to that super lake they got there with the salt chimneys and all that stuff?

[00:06:00] That's the one place I did not get to see.

[00:06:03] They say it's the it's the most inaccessible area of the earth.

[00:06:07] Yes. Yes, it's highly possible. We did have a couple of teams get out there on my second deployment and 14, 15 or 13, 14 to Djibouti.

[00:06:17] Wow. Wow. Yeah. I never even heard the place until I looked you up. So there's oh, there's just so many places that a big world out there. So I guess we it's our job to to police it.

[00:06:31] Apparently so.

[00:06:32] But you've had quite a past. I mean, I was looking at some of the things you've been in emergency medical, you're a recruiter, you help out families. Now, this one thing, though, how could you be on 24 hour shifts? I mean, it said the commitment entailed. I'm quoting this The commitment entailed a weekly 12 hour shift OC I can get that 124 hour shift per month, one meeting and one training session per month, and 3 to 5 additional 24 hour shifts throughout the year. I mean, don't humans I guess you guys are so tough, you never have to sleep, huh?

[00:07:08] Well, no, we the the building we operated out of, that's the Marshall Minutemen Rescue Squad. The building we operated out had a bunk room. So you sleep like you would normally at home, but on your 24 hour shift on the overnight. When a call goes out, the sirens go off, the lights go off, the dispatch comes blaring through and you wake up, shake the cobwebs off, get on the rig and go.

[00:07:35] Wow. Well, I mean, it seems to me disasters don't, you know, just decide to make sure you have enough sleep in that 24 hour period. So what? Is it possible you could do 24 straight hours going back to back disasters?

[00:07:50] Never. But it's never been that close. The 12 hour shifts. We've gone six straight hours without getting back to refit.

[00:07:58] What's that mean? One load up with water or what?

[00:08:01] Know refit as in load up more first aid equipment.

[00:08:05] Oh.

[00:08:07] Reload the oxygen, that sort of thing.

[00:08:09] Oh, wow. Yeah, yeah. So I guess you can grab some shut eye in there, but boy, it seems like. Wow, that's quite a quite a tough thing to pull off. So is that where you, you know, you jump in the fire suit and go down the pole? Is that similar to firefighters?

[00:08:27] No, it's. We had a one floor structure. No. No pulse.

[00:08:32] No. But but the thing is this. Firefighters have the same kind of thing, right? They would have to sleep in the fire station for a 24 hour shift. Yeah. Okay, I get it. All right, beautiful. Now, you told me that you apparently way back when, went to college, but then just kind of forgot to line up a summer job. So you went into the Army?

[00:08:56] That's right. Yes. Finals were over. I was packing out my dorm room. I went to Seton Hall University up at in North Jersey. And I didn't have a job lined up. So I said to myself, well, I'll join the military.

[00:09:11] So you say, okay, I'm just going to blow off that first year.

[00:09:13] And it was one of those moments where, yeah, it seemed great. I went, I signed up, I did what's called a split option where I go basic training, one summer advance camp the next summer. That way, my school wasn't too interrupted.

[00:09:30] Oh, so you went back to school after you enlisted?

[00:09:33] Yes. Oh, I.

[00:09:35] Thought you just bagged out of school and said, Heck with this. I'm going to go the service.

[00:09:39] No, that's. I talked to the recruiter. I shipped out two weeks later.

[00:09:42] Wow. Wow. And, boy, was a different world back then, huh?

[00:09:48] Yes. Recruiting is recruiting. It's not. It hasn't changed a whole lot. Just more jobs and people are a lot more knowledgeable when they go to the recruiter. Also, I wanted to be was an infantryman and the recruiter said, with your scores we can send you anywhere, do anything. I told him I want to be an infantryman. He said, No, we're not hiring infantrymen right now. You could be an accountant, a medic or a cook.

[00:10:13] With your scores, you could be a cook.

[00:10:15] All right? Yes. Yes.

[00:10:17] Does that mean your scores were high? It must have been high then, right?

[00:10:20] No, I. It looks like if you look at my scores, it looks like I know a lot about a lot of things. I think I just test really well. Mm hmm. But I said, what's going to get me the closest to the front line? And he said, Become a combat medic. And I did. And I still am a combat medic today. Wow. Although I don't I don't practice medicine now at my rank.

[00:10:44] Well. So you're like oversee other combat medics or what?

[00:10:49] I don't have medical assets at all. I'm in a job in material position because alls I do is advise a commander on enlisted soldier problems and solve problems, which, if you look across the gamut, all the problems are the same. I don't have to worry about medical training anymore because I'm grandfathered in.

[00:11:12] I see. One of my favorite quotes I heard because I do a lot of stuff with firearms and and self defense, stuff like that. And I don't know who said it, but it said a sucking chest wound is the God's message that you need to slow down.

[00:11:30] So I guess that's that's pretty accurate. Yeah.

[00:11:34] Yeah. So. Now, this is quite a contrast. This. I mean, when did you decide? You know what? I think I'd like to sell toys. You know, that just doesn't seem to fit with a 32 year old service person.

[00:11:51] Well, it's it started out I was selling things on the third party marketplace starting around 2012, just clearing out things out of the shed.

[00:12:02] So just, you know, one, one off stuff, right?

[00:12:05] Yes. And I got addicted to hearing that cash register sound when somebody bought something.

[00:12:11] Right.

[00:12:11] And next thing you know, I go into my PayPal account and after about two months, there's a few thousand dollars sitting in there. And I was like, wow, this is found money. This is stuff that's been in the shed since we moved into the house and someone else wanted it. Yeah. So then I started. Getting more and more into it. I was going to the store and buying things on clearance. I didn't even know it had a name. It's called retail arbitrage, right? Right. Buying clearance items and scraping off the stickers and flipping them. And then? Then we've got a 90 day notice. We had to go to Africa. That is 2013. So I had to shut everything down.

[00:12:48] Djibouti job.

[00:12:49] That's correct. Yeah. And it was going to be my second tour of Djibouti. I was excited. I love the continent of Africa. I've been in about ten different countries there, so I was excited to go back. As particularly to see how much has changed since 2005 and six. My first time I was there.

[00:13:06] So did you have Internet access while you were deployed there and able to? I did. Doing this.

[00:13:13] No, this I couldn't keep doing, so I had to shut everything.

[00:13:15] Down. Sorry. Because I was hoping I could get some Djibouti booty.

[00:13:20] I guess I put everything into storage and. Started thinking I was sitting there. And I realized I'm. Not getting younger. I'm almost at the top of the food chain. I was a first sergeant at the time, and sooner or later, the Army is going to say, you've had enough. No more playing. You're going back to the house, which means they're going to say you need to retire. I thought I didn't know what I want to do, what I want to be when I grow up, you know? So I started trying to figure out the next chapter of my life and. I thought the online sales thing was worth researching.

[00:13:57] Yes, I think I agree.

[00:13:58] I had fun doing it. And then I found this whole community of resellers out there, reseller Facebook groups, resellers who have their own YouTube channels, followings of hundreds of thousands of people. Well, 150,000, I think, was the largest. So I just started listening to hear their stories. And it. So I thought this is actually possible. So I talked to my wife and she said, So what do I have to do? I said, Nothing. All you got to do is agree. He said, Sure. So not waiting till I got home. Before I left, I had the tax ID number already established. I had two distributors.

[00:14:39] So you were from Djibouti?

[00:14:42] Yes. I was doing all this from. From Djibouti.

[00:14:44] Ready for this?

[00:14:45] Yes. When I got back, I signed on with GoDaddy. Got a website built well. Built a website. It was there. There. Hosted service before I moved to WordPress.

[00:14:55] Yep.

[00:14:56] And. It just started building from there. I was buying everything and anything. From government liquidation to sporting equipment. And it just somehow niched into collectible action figures and games. Mm hmm. So now I keep all the non toy game things on eBay and Amazon and EA Crater and the toys and games stay on my site. Particularly because some of my vendors. Only allow me to sell on my own site.

[00:15:29] Mm hmm. Yeah. You told me you had some wholesalers and so forth.

[00:15:34] Yes. I buy direct from a couple of manufacturers. And I deal with. There's a distributor I dealt with. They were my first company to actually say, Yes, we will sell to you even though you don't have your website set up and your home based business. I'm still with them today. I have a certain amount of loyalty and I one day I hope to pay that forward and give someone else a chance like I got right.

[00:16:00] Now these these board games. Now, I was reading some things that you had copied or forwarded or something that somebody else wrote about, and I know you're interested in this topic is mental health issues and anxiety, depression, PTSD and so forth. And how does the games work into that?

[00:16:18] It's well, with my undergraduate world, I was a psychology major. So, you know, I.

[00:16:25] It's a.

[00:16:26] It's a it's a topic unless you go to grad school, you really can't do much with. So I figured out a way to bring it to life. Now, with things like PTSD, which myself and a whole lot of my colleagues suffer from or deal with, not suffer from, there's an urge, depending on how symptomatic you are, to alienate yourself, to cut off from your friends, family, society in general. The same thing when anxiety and depression. Board gaming. Allows you to connect with people. In a more controlled area, especially the games that I'm trying to sell. They're cooperative games, so you actually have to work together, your friends or your enemies? Your enemies or your friends sometimes all for the common good of to your advantage to try and win the game, either as a team or leave your team behind and win.

[00:17:19] See, that's what. What when you said this, I keep thinking of monopoly and how families argue and fighting and I'm glad they don't have any MX fours with them when they're fighting over a hotel. So these cooperative games, I'm not even familiar with that.

[00:17:35] Yes, there are. I'll use one as an example. The Zombified standalone game Night of the Living Dead. It's based on the movies and they have a whole series of games too, and each one builds off each other and they have some standalones. I'm a big horror movie buff, so I bought the Night of the Living Dead game. Yeah, and you are? Like the movie. You're the hero or one of the other characters, and you're trying to stay alive throughout the night. Right. And you have to work cooperatively. The same thing with the Shining Board game where one person. Is controls the board. You need minimum of three people to play. Two other people are working either co-op both cooperatively and against each other to try and survive the night at the Overlook Hotel.

[00:18:24] So this is helping people that are I want to say I don't know how to say it right. Afflicted or you said don't say suffering. So but dealing with anxiety and depression and PTSD, this is a therapy for them.

[00:18:41] In my eyes it is because I know what it does for me and I think there is some merit to it rather than just throwing pharmaceuticals at them.

[00:18:49] Oh, exactly. Yeah. I had a friend that his parachute didn't open and you just smash the heck out of him, and they just kept filling him full of drugs and almost lost his family and divorce and everything. And until he just pretty much set his broken foot down and said, no, no, no more. And then he was able to come out of it when he got rid of all the drugs.

[00:19:12] Right. And they and sometimes it makes things worse. You gain weight. You feel worse about yourself. You become hooked on the pills, depending on what they're giving you, because some pain management pills are very, very addictive. Some psychotherapy drugs. May be addictive. I'm not an expert on that area. But there's got to be a more holistic way to do it. And I think board gaming may be one of them.

[00:19:37] That's beautiful. And I'll tell you what, I'm afraid to take any kind of pill nowadays. And, you know, I'm not on anything, which is great. But but the way there's hundreds and millions of pills coming in from the border that it looked like something else. I mean, I just wonder when they're going to accidentally slip into the legitimate pharmacy system and then people start dropping like flies, you know, one one pill puts you down that fentanyl stuff.

[00:20:08] Yes. I read an article on a trend on that. Now it looks like looks like colored candy stuff.

[00:20:14] Yeah. Yeah. The rainbow rainbow fentanyl is coming in. By the I mean, they're hiding it everywhere. There's no way they're catching all. But one guy came in, had it hit it in crutches. He was on crutches and the whole crutches were filled with pills.

[00:20:28] So that's it's another lecture I got to have with my son. This with Halloween right around the corner.

[00:20:35] Oh, my God. Yeah. Ingesting anything is just dangerous for sure. Now I do. I ask one of the other folks that I've interviewed here, you know, you have it right here on your resume. You were in Afghanistan back, I think, what, like ten, 12 years ago, this exit from Afghanistan, it's got to hurt. I mean, I get pissed off just thinking about it. And I'm a civilian, but I see those guys marching down the street with our boots and our MX fours and our. How are you willing to talk about how you feel about it.

[00:21:12] I was it pains me to see I guess that's the best way to put it.

[00:21:18] So I might have put you on the spot there, but.

[00:21:21] Not at all. Not at all. I'm very judicious of how I speak because I cannot I'm not allowed to say anything against the administration or anything along those lines. But I mean, the move was decisions were made, so be it. We have to live with it. But how it happened, it did not have to go that way. And it pains me to see one of my one of the people my son takes martial arts with their daughter. His daughter, he's an Afghan immigrant. He was a translator. Now he works for the Air Force. I can't imagine what he's going through because he put all this time and effort. We all did. I've seen enough. People going home, not not whole. My one of my close friends lost his leg. People are people are just shattered from the war. And to exit like that is just adding insult to injury, if you understand what I mean.

[00:22:18] Yes. And then and then further, I mean, it's not I mean, within a few months, all the women were back, you know, being abused and face covered and not in school. And it just it's almost like 20 years went by for nothing, you know, it's just it just kills me to think of what you guys sacrificed for, to.

[00:22:41] Forget those and the countless billions of dollars and lives to. To try and rebuild. Now, maybe the method of rebuilding wasn't wasn't may not have been the right one. Trying to build a central government and a a country that. That's fairly fractured. I don't know. Maybe the governance should have been set up like the original 13 colonies in the United States with regional partnerships. I don't know.

[00:23:09] Yeah, I mean, it's far above my pay grade, that's for sure. No, but.

[00:23:14] We definitely could, woulda. Could have. Should this the death.

[00:23:17] Yeah. Oh, boy. Yeah. So it's a far cry from selling games and retail arbitrage. Now, what I want you to do is get into some digital products. I've been selling ebooks for 22 years, and you create it once and you sell it forever, you know? So I call it like an insurance policy because, you know, the money can keep coming in no matter when life gets in the way or you get deployed. The business keeps running. So love to see you get into some digital products.

[00:23:48] I'll have to explore it. I, I have some digital products. I know I've encountered some people who. Produce them pretty regularly.

[00:23:57] Yeah. They're much they're easy because I mean you take a word document, convert it to PDF that costs nothing and now you have an e-book, then you convert that to Amazon Kindle and now the whole Amazon 200 million people a day can possibly look and buy by your book. So and this will whet your whistle. I have one e-book that I created in a four hour layover at McCarran Airport in Las Vegas. And as of this morning, it's brought in $3.8 million for our investment in 27 years ago.

[00:24:33] So that's that's a nice number right there.

[00:24:36] Yeah, well, I call it an insurance policy, Anthony, because I was in a hunting accident. Now, it would be such a great story had I gotten shot. Right? But no, I fell on a log and perforated. Yeah. I wish you'd have been there because the idiot doctor. My next book is called Highly Educated Idiots. This doctor, I'm down in in fuck southeastern Virginia. He's a traveling doctor, can barely speak English. And he says, No, no, you just strained yourself, you know, take some aspirin, go, go sleep it off in the hotel. I'm bleeding out inside. And my buddy luckily is French and he's he doesn't take any crap. And so we're almost getting the police called on us because I won't leave. And the next doctor comes in, said, Oh, I just give him an MRI to shut him up, you know. And then they did and then was like, Oh my God. And they rushed me to a trauma center and I was in intensive care for two weeks and and six months, couldn't lift £5. So but money kept coming in because the digital products just kept coming. Sell and sell and sell. And so you work once and you get paid forever. That's the that's the point of it. So hopefully that will whet your whistle.

[00:25:48] A little bit. It does because the summertime is usually a slow season. And now that the pandemic has waned in a manner of speaking, sales have slowed down a bit because people are going out.

[00:26:02] To other things summers, summer, there's other things to do. But I'll tell you what, I just thought of this and I'm going to do it for you and everybody, all the veterans that are on for this this month. I just completed an E book master class. People paid 500 bucks to be in it. And I'm going to give it to you because just I mean, I can't possibly thank you for everything you've done for our country, but it's it can help you and your family, and it teaches you everything you have to know about eBooks. So. So if you will accept it, I will give it to you and all the other veterans that I interviewed.

[00:26:48] I will absolutely accept it. Thank you very much. And I look forward to reading it.

[00:26:52] Well, it's it's a video course. So you'll watch with me teaching people on a mastermind and then you'll have assignments in between on what to do and go research this and go research that. But people are cranking up e-books in a matter of weeks. And I mean, I can do it in a matter of hours, but to learn all the details, it takes a little while. But then you can crank out one after the other. And again at the you you work once and you get paid and paid and paid and paid and paid. See?

[00:27:27] And that sounds like a true passive income stream.

[00:27:29] Well, yeah, it's, it's, I mean, it's, it's not quite totally passive because you do have to advertise it and write sales copy to get people to buy it and have a way to collect the money. The thing is, is you have worked once and you have now a piece of intellectual property that you can sell over and over and over as opposed to a physical thing where you and plus it's 97% gross profit. So any other business is the wholesale stuff you buy, you pay a certain amount for it, and then you have only so much you can sell it for. So that's your gross profit. And so and then you got to do it over again and over again and over again, and you have to ship stuff and everything. With this, they download it immediately. The money goes into your checking account and there you go. You're just selling electrons, basically. So that's I made just fortunes doing that since my first e-book went out in 2020. No, not 2020, 22 years ago. Put it that way. So it'll be 20. It's 2000, around 2000. So I'm going to give that to you.

[00:28:37] Thank you. I look forward to watching it.

[00:28:38] Yeah, yeah, it's it's it's a long course. It's it was a 12 week course, once a week for them. But you can really go through it in a weekend if you really were gung ho. Och, we got to take a responsive break. When we come back, we'll ask Anthony, what's a typical day like for him? Does he have a morning routine and how he stays motivated? So, folks, about 25 years ago, I kind of turned the Internet guru marketing world on its head and that people at my level were charging 50 or 100 grand up front to help them. And I knew a lot of these people, they're rip offs and you give them 50 grand, they'd be hiding out in Djibouti or, you know, one of these places I never heard of. So I said, that's too risky for small business people. And I'm a small business advocate. Also, I have a TV show in development Hollywood called Scam Brigade. It's got a little military angle to it. The people knew I wouldn't disappear on them because I charge just an entry fee, and then I tied my success to their success. So for me to get my 50,000, they had the net 200,000. Well, 1700 students later, more than that. Now, it's still going strong. It's the longest running, most successful, most unique Internet and digital marketing program ever. You can check it out at greatInternetmarketingtraining.com. And we give massive discounts to military and first responders, law enforcement and nurses. So check it out.

[00:30:07] All right. Let's get back to the main event. We've got Anthony Ciotti here he is, been all over the world on our behalf and still he was able to get a business started, even in a place that most I guarantee it, nobody on this thing ever heard of Djibouti before. What's a typical day look like for you, Anthony? Do you have a morning routine? What do you eat? Do you get up? What time do you get up? You know, you got I think you have a family. So what's and you got a puppy to deal with now.

[00:30:38] Oh, yes. I'm up by 530, 6:00 on a on a good day where I get to sleep in late. I run downstairs, let the dog out. Check and see if orders have to go out. Get cleaned up, dressed, pack and pack. Orders for shipping, print out the labels, slap them all and load them up. Get my son up for school. Well, not for school right now because that will start on Tuesday. But get my kid up. My wife's already getting up, and she's already up and dressed by this time as well. Get that first cup of coffee in me so I can clear the cobwebs out. Head over to the the bass and do my day job from there. My lunch. If I am. If I have inventory arriving, I'll drive home.

[00:31:26] Oh, that's cool.

[00:31:27] I'll pull it in. Inspect it? Yeah. I'm only 12 miles from where I work, so it's. It's not.

[00:31:33] Much. Not a commute to screw.

[00:31:35] Not at all. So I'll process in whatever is new, add it to my inventory spreadsheet, go back to work, finish out the day, and then at nighttime is where I do the technical side. When I take my son to his karate lesson, I bring my computer, I do the back end work. I do the marketing emails at that point in time. So. An hour or so at night. Oh, and all the bookkeeping, my bookkeeping software retired, so I had to go to a new bookkeeping software. So I'm rebuilding financials going back to 2016.

[00:32:05] That's fun.

[00:32:07] It more as long as this year is good. Everything else, the taxes are paid on. Right? So as long as this year is straight, I'll be okay. Well, then.

[00:32:20] You get some of those digital books out there, you'll be even better than. Okay.

[00:32:25] Yes. Try to have dinner with the family every night as a collective. And. Thursday nights I meet, I do a Zoom meeting with a series of other veteran business owners. We talk shop. What we're working on, what we're having issues with. Sometimes we'll have guest speakers on talking about their specialty marketers, lawyers, that.

[00:32:49] Sort of thing. My hand is up right here. I'll do it for any need to help any kind of veterans.

[00:32:56] All right. Unfortunately, this week was canceled because both hosts were unavailable. But. In the wintertime you get a bigger population 22, 21, 25. Business owners summer times it waned a bit because travel, soft travel, sports and that sort of thing.

[00:33:15] Holiday weekend, too.

[00:33:17] Yes.

[00:33:18] But it's. Yeah.

[00:33:20] We've got to be we all got to be good friends. We've traveled to visit each other. We. Monday night, my wife and I went to the local American Legion to meet somebody who was doing a photo shoot for Subaru. And. He only had one night available, so we turned back a couple of drinks with them. And that's that's what it's like. It's very.

[00:33:44] Lifestyle business.

[00:33:45] It's very unpredictable. Once I retire, things will be a little bit more. Ah, easier. The hardest part is. The hardest part is. The website.

[00:34:01] We'll fix that up for you, too.

[00:34:02] It's a piece of cake. I don't. I don't have a Larry Guerrero in my pocket.

[00:34:07] Yeah, that's. He's talking about our back end guy. That helps. Helps with everything.

[00:34:11] Yeah, I listen to I listen to those three podcast you did with him.

[00:34:17] On plug ins.

[00:34:18] On the plug ins a couple of times.

[00:34:22] Well, they're not too hard, but anyway. Yeah, we'll get you fixed up because it's word press is the gold standard, but you do have to keep up with it because so big it's susceptible. I mean, a lot of the hackers point towards stuff that's big. We can get you fixed up. Absolutely.

[00:34:37] I appreciate that.

[00:34:38] Yeah. Yeah. I mean, yeah, like I said, we're. Well, yeah. My I don't know if you you know, my dad was in the cavalry. My my dad was in the early 1900s. In the cavalry. I have a picture of him holding a real 1911 colt and not really. Yeah, it's you know, it was around 1911, so it wasn't one. Oh, wow. Reproductions for now. But yeah, he had a horse that he was based out of El Paso, Texas. And, and we're very, very pro-military. People would razz me a little bit because I had an appointment to the Naval Academy, but I, I didn't take it. I went up there and they were jogging to class and I'm like, oh, man, some, some little guy is going to tell me something. I'll get court martialed, I'll be in jail.

[00:35:28] So I'm sure that that can happen. Those military academies are no joke. Yeah. So getting accepted to military academy means you were the best in your. Say your graduating class. But now.

[00:35:42] Yeah.

[00:35:43] The best.

[00:35:44] Know what it means.

[00:35:45] All right. The best of all. The best. Go to the military academies and my. One of my rescue squad friends. When he went to Annapolis, he said, I feel ordinary, right. In high school. He's a three lettermen and very, very popular valedictorian. He goes there and so is everybody else.

[00:36:04] Yeah, exactly. I was valedictorian and All-State, football and fourth in the Pennsylvania wrestling. And but but I just, you know, people telling me what to do doesn't fly that well. So I probably made a good decision.

[00:36:18] Fourth and Pennsylvania Wrestling says a lot. Wrestling in Pennsylvania is a serious sport.

[00:36:24] Yeah, exactly. Where are you at?

[00:36:28] I'm in South Jersey. I grew up Philadelphia.

[00:36:30] Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Yeah. So, yeah, Pennsylvania is a hotbed. The only guy that beat me was went on to a big pro football career. But but what was nice though, I had connections with the Pittsburgh Steelers and John Kolb, who was big lineman back in the day, would come down to the school and work out with me, oh my God. It was like wrestling a tank. I mean, you cannot believe the massive muscles of these guys and but yeah, he beat the crap out of me. But but it was really, you know, it was good training, that's for sure.

[00:37:10] Oh, I'm sure it was. That's probably like rustling a bear.

[00:37:13] Oh, my God. Yeah. I mean, it really was. You'd have had a better time with a bear. I mean, this this guy was, you know, his wrists and everything. Just enormous. But anyway, so, so happy to. To meet you and hear about your business. I hope we can be a part of making it better for you with get get some digital products. So and you said when you retire, is that when they tell you to retire or you already got it planned when it's going to happen?

[00:37:38] I have an idea. I am at the point of my current tenure as a brigade command sergeant major, where I have to look for a new home. So I either have to find another brigade or take a general officer level position as his or her CSM. And I think that's going to be my last three year stint. And so I got about 4 to 5 years before I hang it up.

[00:38:02] Okay. All right.

[00:38:03] Well, that'll put me at 55. I'll be still young. Yeah.

[00:38:07] And you'll be selling all kinds of stuff if I got anything to do about it.

[00:38:10] That's right.

[00:38:12] Well, thanks so much again from our audience and myself. We want to just thank you for your massive service, man. I mean, that's like four or five or six or seven guys just putting in a regular couple of years, you know, so amazing how you could do that for us. So thank you very much.

[00:38:31] And thank you, Tom. Thanks for having me on.

[00:38:34] Absolutely. So, folks, we're right in the middle of Vetpreneur Month. We're honoring our wonderful veteran entrepreneurs, but really, we're honoring all our veterans that do the things that we are not doing. So to keep us safe so that we can do what we're doing. So keep listening, folks, and we will catch you on the next episode. See you later.