Amy is an Accountant & Auburn Football Fan
Amy was born & raised in Birmingham, Alabama. Moved to Fairbanks, AK thinking it would be for a year, but she has been there for 18 years! Amy worked in public practice for over 10 years at a big (then) 5 accounting firm and 2 small local firms.
Auburn football fan Amy Cooper returns to the podcast to talk about some of the recent games she has been to and how her students show their appreciation by decorating her office with Auburn gear!
• Attending some of the recent Auburn football games
• Returning to school for her DBA
• Decorating her office with Auburn gear
• Why she loves coming to the office
• The influence of just a couple of people sharing in an environment
• Establishing trust by sharing your passions
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Bob is a CFO & Fantasy Football Expert
Bob Lung, previously featured on episode 5, returns to talk about his latest achievements in the Fantasy Football world from launching his new website to publishing his first Fantasy Football book!
• Launching his new website
• Publishing his Fantasy Football Consistency Guides
• Winning ‘Best Fantasy Football Magazine’ award
• Starting the first Fantasy Football Expert Draft
• How his passion continues to help create relationships with bankers and branch managers
• Your passion does not have to be a hobby
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Welcome to Episode 204 of What’s Your “And”? Follow Up Friday Edition. This is John Garrett and each Friday, I follow up with a guest who’s been on the show in the past to hear what’s their new passion outside of work, how things are going with the one that they talked about, and maybe hear how the message has impacted them since we last talked. I’m so excited to let everyone know that my book is being published very soon. It’ll be available on Amazon and a few other websites, so check out whatsyourand.com for all the details or sign up for my exclusive list and you’ll be the first to know. You’ll even get a few tracks from my comedy album for free. And please don’t forget to hit “Subscribe” so you don’t miss any of the future episodes because I love sharing such interesting stories each and every week.
This Follow Up Friday is no different with my guest and friend, Bob Lung. He’s the CFO at Red Head Brass at Northeast Ohio and now he’s with me here today. Bob, thanks so much for taking time to be with me on What’s Your “And”?.
Bob: Well, thanks for bringing me back. It’s been a few years to say the least since we did this the first time, but I’m really excited that this has exploded into everything you thought it was going to be. Thank you for allowing me to be one of your special guests to come back.
John: Of course, man. You were Episode Five in 2015.
Bob: That’s crazy.
John: That was almost four years ago and that is unbelievable how long it’s been. It’s been cool to hang out when you came to New York when I lived there for the fantasy football draft and stuff, but I’ve mixed up the format of the show a little bit and we’ve got to do the rapid fire questions out of the gate. We’re just going to do seven on the Follow Up Fridays because it’s my favorite number and it seems to be the favorite number of everyone who’s on the show. Here we go. First one, brownie or ice cream?
John: Okay. How about a favorite TV show of all time?
John: Oh! Solid answer! Okay. If you had to, Harry Potter or Game of Thrones?
Bob: Since my three daughters basically forced Harry Potter down my throat on an obsession phase for years, I don’t think I have a choice but to choose Harry Potter.
John: They would disown you if they listened to this.
Bob: It would look like an accident, but yeah, I would be.
John: They look dangerous from social media. That’s for sure.
Bob: Yeah, they do.
John: Cats or dogs?
Bob: Dogs even though I have one of each.
John: Oh, you do have one of each, but the cat knows.
Bob: Yeah, the cat.
John: When you fly, more aisle or window seat?
John: Okay. What’s a typical breakfast?
Bob: Diet Mountain Dew.
John: Nice! Okay, liquid breakfast. There you go. The last one and maybe the most important, toilet paper roll, over or under?
Bob: Oh, it’s got to be over. That’s not even a question, is it? Is that really a question? I don’t know.
John: You’ll never know. I just threw two curve balls at you to see if your family would disown you after both of those, the Harry Potter and the toilet paper, and you knocked them both out, so that’s awesome. What’s been going on with the fantasy football since we talked in 2015?
Bob: I don’t think I’ve reached your level of explosion from excitement in everything you’ve done, but it has been an amazing growth for me. Just four years ago, I was kind of moving to my own website. I had written for sites for years with my Fantasy Football Consistency Concept, so about that time, I started my own website called Big Guy Fantasy Sports. The big guy scenario comes from my friends and I all of our lives. He was a big guy. I was a growing big guy. That was just our thing. I jokingly said, “I’m going to create my own fantasy football” and I said, “I’m going to call it Big Guy Fantasy Sports” and the guys all loved it, of course. So I started my own website and for years have been writing articles to put in other people’s magazines that you see on the shelves this time of year. I was always excited about putting it in, but I had all of this data that I wanted to add to their magazine in addition to that. I said, “Hey, can I put this data in your magazine? But it’s going to be more than just one article.” They’re like, “Oh, man, we don’t have room. It’s already crowded.” Finally, I realized — I don’t know how I figured it out or somebody told me about it. They’re like, “You know, you can self-publish your own book on Amazon.” I’m like, “Oh, that’s interesting.” So three years ago, I published my first Fantasy Football Consistency Guide and I put it out there and sold like 65 copies. I’m like, okay, that was cool. It was a nice start.
John: Better than zero, man.
Bob: Better than zero.
John: Which is what you’d have simply if you didn’t write it.
Bob: Right. Then 2017, I improved a little bit, wrote it, put it out there, and sold like 850 copies. All right. People are liking this. I guess I’ll continue to do that. That year, I submitted my book to the Fantasy Sports Writers of America, which is an actual organization that I’m a part of, of course. It was nominated for Best Magazine of the Year in only my second year. I was just stunned.
John: Congrats, man! You’re way bigger than me. Look at you especially considering your Lotus 123 back in the day. I remember talking about that.
Bob: Right, yeah, but then last year in 2018, I sold over 2000 copies, submitted my book again for that award, and not only did I get nominated again, but I won the award for Best Fantasy Football Magazine last year by the FSWA, and so that was like a peak of honor there that I just never thought I would ever reach.
John: Congratulations! I’d like to say that the podcast gave you the bump, but I think you got it on your own, man. You got it on your own.
Bob: John Garrett, friend, check. Okay, you’re in.
John: Right. That’s so cool, man. The website is going strong and you’re able to write your own content and put as much as you want out there.
Bob: And I’m selling it. I’m selling subscriptions to it, probably not ever going to get to a point where I can quit my day job, but it’s that nice little side hobby that’s gotten to a point where hey, in ten years, maybe I can just do this when I’m retired and not doing accounting anymore, but my website’s been great. I put together probably the biggest fantasy football expert draft that’s held at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, which is my hometown at Canton, Ohio. That started last year. We brought in 24 of the best well-known sites. Sirius Radio actually flew to Canton and put it live on the air for six hours. We were the fifth highest trending hashtag that day for the name of our draft and that was just the first year. We’re doing that again August 17th, then August 18th, I’m putting on the first ever Fantasy Football Expo here in this area and we’re going to have 40 of the best experts come to that where people could come in and just one-on-one chat with their favorite fantasy people, talk about all the different things we do live onstage, Q&As, just your typical trade show for six hours to get fantasy football nuts. That’s on the 18th. It’s called the Midwest Fantasy Football Expo.
Every year, I try to think of some new things to build and add, just continue to benefit from the fact that I’ve been in this world long enough that I’ve got a lot of street cred and a lot of support from the community and everybody. We all help each other out. We do a lot of fundraisers too. I’m involved in a lot of things where we do fantasy football drafts and big drafts and throwing ten bucks each and all the money goes to Toys for Tots or this organization or that organization, so that’s a lot of the fun things and giving back that we like doing too because there are very few people in this world that do this as a full-time job. We’re all doing this as a hobby/something that is exciting and fun to do, so a lot has happened in the last four years.
John: Yeah. Look at you, man. I remember you talking about wanting to do the expo concept or the draft at the Hall of Fame several years ago and you did it. That’s really cool. Is there something that you’re talking about at work? Because I remember when we talked before, plenty of clients enjoyed talking to you right about now so they could help draft for their team and then maybe get some accounting work done on the side.
Bob: You know, it doesn’t happen as much now because I’m not in that public accounting world. In the private industry, it’s a little bit different. The banker knows I do it, so he and I would chat in August, so that’s always good. It just isn’t the same like it was when you’re in public accounting and you’re meeting with lots of different bankers and lots of different lawyers. I still get texts or calls this time of year from those same people, the bankers. “Hey, Bob! You’re with this bank and you’re probably never going to change. Could we meet so I can get your fantasy football magazine? I’m buying lunch.” I’m like, okay, I’ll take a free lunch for that, sure.
John: That’s awesome.
Bob: Yeah, certainly. It’s continued to carry forward and as fantasy football continues, it just gets bigger and bigger. Last year, 60 million people played.
John: Man, I think it’s interesting that none of them called you for tax advice.
Bob: Yeah. No, because I’m not good at that.
John: Right. You know, they’re not calling you for accounting questions. They’re calling you for real, legitimate questions for things that both of you are passionate about.
John: That just shows that that relationship is legit because it can transcend no matter what job you have. You’re super passionate about fantasy football and whatever job you have, you can still keep those connections even though it’s not really a business case anymore. That’s really cool. Do you have any words of encouragement for people listening that think that, “My hobby or passion has nothing to do with my job”?
Bob: I do. I think the key is talk to people. If you’re out with your banker, if you’re having lunch with a coworker, ask them, “Hey, what are your hobbies?” because you’d never know. Fantasy football is a little bit easier. Any male between 18 and 45 pretty much either plays or know somebody who does.
John: And there are a lot of women out there too that are kicking butt at it. It’s crazy.
Bob: One year, I went to breakfast with one of the branch managers and she just happened to mention it because I didn’t bring it up. She goes, “I got my draft this weekend in my husband’s league and man, I so want to kick his ass this year.” I’m like, “Oh, really?” Her eyes lit up. I walked out to the car and I always keep books in the car in case I run into that situation. I came back and I handed her the book and I said, “Here you go. This might help” and she’s like, “Oh my gosh, this is going to be so awesome. I can’t wait. I am going to hide this from him and I’m not telling him about it. When I win, you’re the first person I’m going to call” and I go, “Don’t make it so obvious because he might check your phone records and I don’t want to be shot by your husband. He’d think you’re having an affair with me when it’s really fantasy football.
John: I love all that and what great words of encouragement for people to just be a part of it and ask that question.
Bob: Yeah. You’ll never know what the connection is because even though — maybe they have a hobby or they’re doing something. I think a big thing too is your passion, it doesn’t have to be a hobby.
Your passion can be a nonprofit organization. My wife and I do a lot of nonprofit stuff still, helping with various organizations, and you’ll never know when that may be what really is the passion that you’re sharing not a hobby, not gardening, not woodworking, but more of give my time and my money to this children’s organization that helps for afterschool programs. “Oh, you do that? Oh, geez, I’m over here in this side of the city and I do that same thing with this organization. We should try to get the two organizations together.” The next thing you know, you have a bond. It may not be a hobby, but it’s a passion and I think that’s the key. Regardless of what you call it, you may be on the same page and you don’t even realize it. Don’t be embarrassed by it either. People shouldn’t be like, “Oh, I’m bragging if I say I help this nonprofit.” No, you’re not. You’re sharing your passion. That’s not bragging. Bragging is, “Well, I wrote a check for X amount of dollars.”
John: Right. Exactly.
Bob: That’s great, but hey, I have this passion for this group or this organization. Passion is passion, so yeah, definitely get out there. Share it. Talk with people. Don’t be embarrassed by it.
John: Yeah, all great advice. It comes up in conversation like the woman with the fantasy football team that wants to beat her husband. It’s going to be so awesome when she does and that’s going to be hilarious, so yeah. Before we wrap this up because this has been really fun, it’s only fair that I let you rapid fire question me, so if you’ve got two or three, I’m buckled in here.
Bob: All right. Well, the first thing is since you’re a comedian and one of the tens of people that have your CD still — and I know this is supposed to be a “yes” or “no” or this answer or that answer. Favorite comedian?
John: Oh man, there are so many great comedians. My go-to is always Brian Regan. He always makes me laugh and he’s a really, really, really nice guy.
Bob: There’s a new guy out there that you probably have seen and he reminds me of you, and that’s John Mulaney.
John: Oh yeah, John Mulaney, and he’s not even that new for people that had been around. Yeah, Mulaney is great. Ryan Hamilton is a little bit of my doppelganger. He’s a good friend of mine as well. Tommy Johnagin is really funny as well.
Bob: Yeah, I think I’ve heard that. I listen to a lot of comedy when I’m driving to and from work.
John: I remember that. It was great.
Bob: Favorite city you’ve lived in, Denver or New York?
John: Oh, Denver. Denver is so amazing. I can’t even list all of the reasons of why Denver is so amazing.
Bob: And every New Yorker just got mad at you.
John: Well, that’s fine. They know. It’s like the cats. They know.
Bob: All right. Since we’re doing sports, how about favorite sport to watch?
John: College football, hands down.
Bob: Favorite sport to play?
John: Growing up?
Bob: Whatever. I know you’re a band geek.
John: I always grew up playing soccer and I was pretty good at it.
Bob: That’s cool now. Now that World Cup is in, all of a sudden, soccer’s cool again, so that’s fun.
John: Yes, exactly. It’s a fun game. Sweet! Well, thanks, Bob! That was awesome. Thank you so much for taking time to be with me on What’s Your “And”?.
Bob: Thanks for having me. I really appreciate being a part of it.
John: This was so fun, and everyone listening, if you want to see some pictures of Bob, he does some really cool stuff with all that football NFL Hall of Fame or connect with him on social media. Also, check out his bigguyfantasysports.com. Go to whatsyourand.com. All the links are there. And while you’re on the page, please click that big button and do the anonymous research survey about corporate culture. It’ll really help for the book that’s coming out very soon. Thanks again for subscribing on iTunes or whatever app you use and for sharing this with your friends so they get the message that we’re all trying to spread that who you are is so much more than what you do.
Stuart is an accountant and a radio talk show host
Stuart returns to the podcast for the first Follow-up Friday segment!
Stuart was originally featured in episode 13 discussing his passion for stand-up comedy. Today, Stuart is no longer as active in stand-up comedy but is now a host of his own internet radio show called “Hack Attack on Sports”.
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Welcome to Episode 202 of What’s Your “And”? Follow Up Friday Edition. This is John Garrett and each Friday, I follow up with a guest who’s been on the show several years ago to hear what their new passions are outside of work and hear how those messages impacted them since we last talked.
I’m so excited to let everyone know that my book is being published in just a few weeks and it’ll be available on Amazon and a few other websites, so check out whatsyourand.com for all the details. You could sign up there for my exclusive list so you’ll be the first to know. If you sign up, you’ll get a few tracks from my comedy album for free, so feel free to do that and be on the cutting edge of all the latest updates on stuff like that. And please don’t forget to hit “Subscribe” so you don’t miss any of the future episodes because I love sharing such interesting stories every Wednesday, and now with Follow Up Fridays.
This Follow Up Friday is no different with my guest, Stuart Hack. He’s the managing member at Hack Tax and Accounting Services in West Palm Beach, Florida and now, he’s with me here today. Stuart, thanks so much for coming back to be with me on What’s Your “And”?.
Stuart: Thanks, John. Thanks for having me back.
John: Absolutely. You were Episode 13, man. Lucky 13, I guess?
Stuart: Probably. It was definitely lucky for you, and since I’m still around, I guess it wasn’t too bad for me either.
John: Exactly. It was so much fun having you on, talking about standup comedy back then and we’ll follow up with that, but first, doing it a little different now, rapid fire questions upfront. Typically, it’s 17, but for the Follow Up Fridays, we’ll just do five. You know what? We’re going to do seven because seven seems to be the most popular number that everyone says, so we’re doing seven rapid fire questions, so here we go. First one, Harry Potter or Game of Thrones?
Stuart: Can I say neither?
John: You could say neither, absolutely. Neither, alright. That works. You’re like anything make-believe is not good.
Stuart: When they start flying around on the brooms, they lose me.
John: Okay, so you were good for a little bit on Harry, so you lean to Harry Potter. I got it.
Stuart: My daughter made me read the first Harry Potter book and actually, the first half wasn’t bad. You see the story and everything, and then once they start flying around on the brooms or whatever, I was done.
John: Okay, fair enough. How about when you travel, more planes, trains, or automobiles?
John: All right. How about chocolate or vanilla?
John: This one I guess goes in line, but more brownie or ice cream?
John: Brownie. Nice! Last one, do you have a favorite sports team?
Stuart: The New York Mets.
John: New York Mets! There you go!
Stuart: I was born in Queens.
John: Born in Queens, absolutely, and I remember we talked about that before, so let’s jump into what’s life been like since 2016 when you were on the show.
Stuart: “Previously on…” I had just finished performing. I had done two standup comedy acts at the Improv down here in West Palm Beach, kind of like a bucket list thing. I have not done any more standup since then. I kind of owe it to George Costanza, “Theory of Life”, leave on a high note.
Stuart: So that’s what I’ve done. However, I haven’t just been sitting back and doing taxes. I’ve had the opportunity about two years ago. I actually started a weekly internet sports talk radio show called Hack Attack on Sports. It is on Monday nights at six on the weinetwork.com and I’ve been able to get some of the best in media, some former ball players, and it’s been a lot of fun. It’s an interview show and we do little wrap-up. We’ll have a guest on. We’ll interview them for 20 to 30 minutes and then we wrap it up and it’s a lot of fun.
John: That’s awesome! How did that get started?
Stuart: One of my tax clients owned the station and there was an opening. I believe someone had passed away. He knew I was a sports fan. He knew I had done radio in college. He said, “Would you be interested?” and I said, “Sure.” I didn’t know how long it would last because I came in and I knew two people that were in the industry that I figured I could ask, but I had no way of knowing they’d even come on, but luckily, they came on and they’ve come on again and again. And then through that, it just snowballed because when I reached out to someone to see if they want to appear — at first, I start off and I tell them, “Look. I’m an accountant.” This way, if they come on, they’re not expecting a heck of a lot.
John: Right. “I’m not going to ask you hard questions.”
Stuart: Right. I never ask biting questions or hard questions because I don’t really want to piss anybody off and I’d like them to come back. I’m not looking to fight while I was here, more of like —
John: Or Jim Rome or somebody like that?
Stuart: No, I definitely don’t want to be that. So I would say that and then I’d give a list of the names of people that I’ve had on and as I got more people, that started to grow and then people just said, “Sure, I’ll come on. I’ll come on.” Actually, last month, I was able to bring back somebody from the dead.
John: Oh, really? Who was that?
Stuart: Last month, the New York Mets had a celebration for their 50th anniversary of the 1969 World Championship team and during the celebration at Citi Field, they played a video tribute to those we have lost, the players and coaches that had passed in the last 50 years. The only problem with that is two of the people on that video were still alive.
John: Oh no! Oh my goodness!
Stuart: So somebody lost their job. I looked up one who had a Facebook page and he was pretty active on it for someone who had passed, so I reached out to him and I was lucky enough — this happened on a Saturday. I was able to get him on for like five to ten minutes on my Monday show a couple of days later and then I had him on for a full interview a week later just to talk about his career. He was a big player. He was really on up on September, but he got his 15 minutes, not just me. We had some articles written about him, had some radio and television interviews, so we bring back people from the dead. We also had Marty Appel who was the former PR guy for the Yankees, and speaking of George Costanza, he was the model for the George Costanza Yankee employee character.
John: Oh, that’s awesome!
Stuart: So we asked him about that and he said he actually had the opportunity to talk to Jason Alexander about that.
John: That’s so fascinating, man. Look at that! All because you had a tax client who knew some of those passions that you had outside of work.
Stuart: Right, and I’ve been lucky enough to — my business has grown. I really can’t complain. I’ve been active. This year, I am both the president and treasurer of the Wellington Chamber of Commerce. I became the president.
John: That sounds like a page out of a Steinbrenner book right there. “I’ve run everything.”
Stuart: Well, basically, I was treasurer because any time an accountant walks into a room or into an organization, they become treasurer. The other day, I walked into the men’s room. There were three people in there. They handed me some money. They said, “Deposit it.”
John: Exactly, right in your pocket. Thank you.
Stuart: It’s been a lot of fun. I think whatever you do in life, as long as you are passionate about it and you show that you love doing what you’re doing, you’ll do well.
John: Great advice. Do you feel like that passion has to always apply to only work or you’re allowed to have passions other than that?
Stuart: Yeah, I definitely think so because I could talk to you about taxes all day especially if you’re having sleep problems.
Stuart: I could also talk about sports and different things and do that with a passion that will make it interesting. I’ve always prided on myself even with the taxes to make that interesting as well. When I’ve spoken in front of people — I’ve talked about the tax deductibility of a sex change operation. Now, I have people’s attention. I once had to speak — I was a business partner at our local high school and they had something where the business partners would go up and speak. I get up there and there are parents, teachers, and students, and they say, “Oh, terrific, the accountant is coming up.” I could tell the kids are already getting on their phones and I’m next to the guy from Buffalo Wild Wings who had samples to give out, so I started talking about the deductibility of a sex change operation. Now, all of a sudden, I have their attention.
John: Yeah. They’re like, “What?”
Stuart: They’re watching. Part of that too is if you get breast enhancements as part of that, that’s actually not deductible as a medical expense because it’s cosmetic, but if you work as an exotic dancer or something, you could actually take that as a business expense because it grows your business.
John: Then it’s a business expense. That’s awesome. That’s really funny, man. That’s really funny. It just shows a little bit of personality and not too many tax accountants are coming in to a high school to talk and then bringing an example to them that makes them want to pay attention, so that’s really great, really great. Do you have any words of encouragement to everyone besides be passionate about things that you’re passionate about?
Stuart: Just work hard. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, so people that are looking for a quick fix — and I see that a lot both in business and in personal — it’s just not going to work. If you work hard and you’re passionate about what you do, you’ll do well.
John: That’s so true. It’s been so fun catching up with you and just hearing what you’re up to now. If everyone wants to listen to the radio show, we’ll have a link on whatsyourand.com, so you can go there and click over and catch it on Monday nights. That’s really cool, Stuart, really cool. It’s only fair that I turn the tables and let you rapid fire question me though since I fired at you right out of the gate.
Stuart: All right. I’ve got three for you.
Stuart: Breaking Bad or Dexter?
John: Breaking Bad.
Stuart: Okay. You know, I actually just finished binge-watching Breaking Bad.
John: Yeah. Man, what a great show. I love that show. They’re similar, but Breaking Bad for sure.
Stuart: Last summer, we binge-watched Dexter and I guess next up will be Better Call Saul.
John: Oh, yeah, the follow-up. I haven’t seen too many of those, to be honest, but yeah, Breaking Bad is really great.
Stuart: Kardashians or Hiltons?
John: Oh, good Lord. I guess the Hiltons because their great grandfather created the hotels that I stay in mostly.
Stuart: Okay. That’s fair enough.
John: They’ve also been pretty quiet lately, so I’m a big fan of that.
Stuart: Yeah, they have been. I was thinking of throwing 90210 in there especially with the reboot coming up.
Stuart: So what would be your favorite reboot? 90210 or Murphy Brown or Roseanne? I’ll give you three there.
John: Oh, wow! Okay. You know, I guess 90210 just to see what happens just because it’s just fun to watch.
Stuart: And hopefully, Tori Spelling can get her finances in order.
John: Right, right, exactly.
Stuart: To make enough money.
John: It’s almost like which one is the biggest train wreck, which of course would’ve been the Roseanne one.
Stuart: My last one is 13 or 202?
John: 13 or 202? I’ll say 202.
Stuart: Okay, and do you know why I asked you those numbers?
John: No, I don’t.
Stuart: Because originally, I was on Episode 13 and —
John: Ah! Good call! Good call! Yes, that was tricky, man because I was like, wait a minute, 13? Yeah. No, that’s excellent. 202, man!
Stuart: I have to finish with numbers.
John: I see what you did. This was really great. Thanks so much, Stuart, for coming back. Everyone who wants to listen to the first episode, it’s Episode 13, so you can go there. Thanks, Stuart. This was really awesome.
Stuart: It’s great to be back.
John: Yeah. Everybody listening, if you want to see some pictures of Stuart outside of work or maybe connect with him on social media, be sure to go to whatsyourand.com and the radio station link will be there as well for those Monday evening internet sport shows. And while you’re on the page, please click that big button, do the anonymous research survey about corporate culture. Thanks again for subscribing on iTunes or whatever app you use and for sharing this with your friends so they get the message that we’re all trying to spread that who you are is so much more than what you do.