Monthly Archives

July 2022

“Paco” Chierici

By Author, Fun, Military, Movies No Comments

If you loved Top Gun, you’re going to love this episode! F-14 Fighter Pilot Francesco “Paco” Chierici joins Gary Scott Thomas to get our adrenaline going by taking us through the excitement of a “dog fight.” Oh, and did we mention he’s an author, trainer, and video game script writer? He’s lived quite a life so far!

**A dogfight, or dog fight, is a form of engagement between fighter aircraft

In This Episode:

Key Takeaways:

  • How he got the name Paco
  • Being the FNG 
  • What Gforce feels like
  • Dog fights*
  • How to prevent the air from getting the air sucked out of his lungs
  • If there’s a fear 
  • The violence in the cockpit
  • The artistry involved in an aerial dog fight
  • How many people it takes to carry out the mission
  • The real legacy of the first female fighter pilot in the U.S. military to die in a crash
  • How he navigated the geopolitical aspects of the book
  • His thoughts on drones’ effects on pilots
  • One of the coolest moments he experienced
  • Being a fighter pilot trainer
  • Writing a script for a video game
  • His book Lions of the Sky


“I’m one of the very few people in the Navy who never actually got a call sign. I just used my nickname the whole time. So I, they tried. I even crashed an airplane. They couldn’t come up with a call sign.” ~Paco Chierici

“I don’t know why I write. I don’t know why; I just can’t not write.” ~Paco Chierici

“I started when I was 21. I didn’t have any fear. I mean, not really. I had a fear of failure more than anything, but I wasn’t afraid of crashing an airplane.” ~Paco Chierici

“It is so fun. It just washes everything else away. There’s nothing like the feeling of going like 700 miles an hour, a hundred feet off the ground, weaving through a canyon to make you feel Bulletproof.” ~Paco Chierici

“Some famous athlete said, you know, an athlete dies twice, right.” ~Paco Chierici

“You die when you stop playing your sport, and you die when you die, obviously. And that’s the same for a fighter pilot. If you’re lucky, you die twice. If you don’t die flying an airplane, you have to hang up your boots. And that sucks because you feel like you’re giving up something that you’ve dedicated your entire life to.” ~Paco Chierici

“The way I write and the way I tell stories is that I want the reader or the viewer, like with the documentary, to feel like they’re involved in the story.” ~Paco Chierici

Guest’s Bio:

During his active duty career in the U.S. Navy, Francesco “Paco” Chierici flew A-6E Intruders and F-14A Tomcats, deployed to conflict zones from Somalia to Iraq, and was stationed aboard carriers including the USS Ranger, Nimitz, and Kitty Hawk. Throughout his military career, Paco accumulated 3,000 tactical hours, 400 carrier landings, a Southwest Asia Service Medal with Bronze Star, and three Strike/Flight Air Medals. Unable to give up dogfighting, he flew the F-5 Tiger II for a further ten years as a Bandit.

Guest’s Contact Info:

Stephen Joseph

By Author, Personal Growth, Philosophy No Comments

Stephen Joseph is an attorney turned children’s book writer. In this episode, he talks with me about his interesting take on crankiness, craziness, and more.

In This Episode:

  • The unusual thing he did after getting diagnosed with COVID
  • Growing up in the Bronx
  • Being a “reformed fat person”
  • Losing 85 pounds quickly
  • How he stopped being a “garbage can”
  • The word he prefers over “habit”
  • The unique way he writes his stories
  • Running a marathon for his ex-wife
  • His mother, a Holocaust survivor
  • His spin on The Wizard of Oz
  • Pulling yourself out of crankiness
  • Giving people permission to be crazy


“They put me on three minutes of cycle level one; I could barely do it, but I kept going.” ~Stephen Joseph

“I don’t like the word habit. We have to have good habits and bad habits. I’d rather talk about normal because that’s more permanent.” ~Stephen Joseph

“It’s [running a marathon] almost as much mental as is physical.” ~Stephen Joseph

“Make it a norm to marvel at as many things as you can in the day.” ~Stephen Joseph

“I have a 49% reduction on craziness just by giving people permission to be crazy.” ~Stephen Joseph

Guest’s Bio:

Steven Joseph is an excellent attorney and a remarkable writer. He’s gone from writing comprehensive legal briefs to penning award-winning non-fiction for children and adults.

Being a son of a Holocaust Survivor, Steven recognizes and celebrates his Jewish heritage. Most of his writing is based on the concept of survival, which was ubiquitous in the household he grew up in, and acknowledgment which he learned through his zen practice. As a crankiness expert, Steven can help you manage your emotions, embrace your crankiness, and improve communication with friends and family.

Steven is the author of the Mom’s Choice Award-winning The Last Surviving Dinosaur: The TyrantoCrankaTsuris and The Crankatsuris Method: A Grownup Guide to Effective Crankiness.

Guest’s Contact Info:

Charles Kelley

By Music, Personal Growth One Comment

If you love Lady A, you’re going to love this episode. Hear behind-the-scenes stories from Lady A’s very own Charles Kelley. This episode is so unscripted and authentic; you’ll even hear a cameo from someone else in his family.

In This Episode:

  • Who he gets to golf with
  • How he feels about being a dad
  • Going from a finance degree to Lady A
  • Who supported him more–his friends or his parents
  • Which concert recently blew his mind
  • How he got an appreciation for his fans
  • The time he bombed on stage
  • His favorite live shows
  • The various roles each person in the band has
  • Having Boyz II Men open for them


“It is definitely a lot more work behind the scenes. I always say we don’t get paid for the time on stage. The real job is the travel and the behind-the-scenes, the grind and the being away, but I still wouldn’t trade it for the world. I mean, it’s an addictive job. I mean, it’s an adrenaline rush.” ~Charles Kelley

“When I saw her [Kacey Musgraves] a couple of months ago, it was like watching Beyonce up there. She just was like a superstar in complete control.” ~Charles Kelley

“I just love great music. I don’t care what genre is.” ~Charles Kelley

“The true win is longevity in this game.” ~Charles Kelley

Guest’s Bio:

Charles Burgess Kelley (born September 11, 1981) is an American singer, songwriter, and lead singer, and founding member of the country music trio Lady A, which was formed in 2006 and signed to Capitol Nashville.[1]

Guest’s Contact Info:

Brian Moran

By Author, Faith, Mental Health, Personal Growth, Philosophy One Comment

Grab some tissues for this episode! Brian Moran and Gary Scott Thomas went way off course from what they had planned on talking about, and the result was spectacular.

In This Episode:

  • The illusion of security
  • How Gary has double first cousins
  • How coming from a big family helps you cut through the BS
  • Forgiveness
  • Being courageous in faith
  • Viktor Frankl’s The Meaning of Life
  • The lens of gratitude
  • Practicing gratitude
  • Running the NY City Marathon
  • His upcoming book My 5 Conversations with God
  • The importance of paying attention
  • Thriving after bankruptcy
  • How mental health is like trying to explain a TV to a caveman
  • Helping his son with his mental health battles
  • How the mountaintop and valley moments are all part of our purpose
  • Taping into your courage
  • His advice for parents who are helping their child through a mental health struggle
  • The importance of no electronics days
  • Not always offering advice to your children
  • The gift his daughter reluctantly gave him
  • “Buddy Days”
  • The thing that made Gary cry
  • Writing down what you’re worried about and seeing if it actually happened
  • Treating everyone with love
  • How a homeless person affected Brian
  • An amazing Hindu proverb
  • The one thing Brian wants people to take away from this episode


“The meaning of my life is not my job.” ~Brian Moran

“The meaning of your life can change over time.” ~Brian Moran

“When you are grateful for everything in your life, from the clothes you wear to your physical faculties and mental faculties, and just every single day, the food you eat, the family you have, even the obstacles that are in front of you and the fact that you have the ability to get around them–when you are grateful for all of that everything just looks beautiful.” ~Brian Moran

“It’s [faith] like a special power.” ~Brian Moran

“I’m not as anxious or stressed because I’m grateful for every day.” ~Brian Moran

“You have two options. You either move ahead, or you die.” ~Brian Moran

“Be comfortable getting out of your comfort zone.” ~Brian Moran

“Get into a zone where time stands still.” ~Brian Moran

“Get them [kids] off their phones…point out the small miracles to them.” ~Brian Moran

“Have days where you say this is a no electronics day

Be mindful of things they [your kids] don’t tell you.” ~Brian Moran

“What do you think the meaning of your life is today?” ~Brian Moran

“We’re only guaranteed today. We can only live in the present moment.” ~Brian Moran

We all have a limited amount of time…if you are waiting for something to happen, make it happen today.” ~Brian Moran

Guest’s Bio:

Brian is the founder and CEO of Small Business Edge, a global community platform for business owners and entrepreneurs to find answers to their most pressing questions and obstacles that keep them up at night. 

Brian’s goal with Small Business Edge is to measurably increase the success rate of small businesses both in the United States and around the world!

Before launching Small Business Edge, he spent 20+ years helping America’s entrepreneurs realize their dreams. Prior to starting his 3rd company in 2012, he was the Executive Director of Sales Development at the Wall Street Journal overseeing the financial and small business markets across the WSJ franchise.

From 2002-2010, he ran Veracle Media & Moran Media Group–both content companies utilized various media channels to help entrepreneurs manage & grow their companies. Prior to launching these two companies, he was the Associate Publisher at Inc. Magazine, a Publisher and Associate Publisher at Entrepreneur Media, and held management positions at Success Magazine and Medical Economics Magazine.

His specialties include all areas, divisions, and channels within the small to midsize business market.

Guest’s Contact Info: