Tola Talks with fashionista Valeria Goncharova Barrett. On Throwback Thursdays, Rich takes us back to the highlights of 2001 – Including a tribute to the Heroes of 9/11.
Weekdays on youtube.com/tolatalks
Energize – Burn Fat – Learn Yoga on the Beach!
Watch me and Leah teach a 10-part Yoga sequence Anyone can do Anytime – Anywhere
And come join us August 1st from 7-8:30p for some energizing Book Talk & Yoga at the enchanted Mystic Journey Bookstore in Venice, CA, located at 1624 Abbot Kinney Blvd. I’ll be signing copies of my memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood, followed by a short Yoga class – no mats or Yoga clothes required – just bring your friends!
Hope to see you there – R
Simply put, my message is this: Do it Your Way.
No matter what conventional wisdom holds, and no matter what others believe you can and can not do. It doesn’t matter – you’re the only one that matters when it comes to what you believe is possible. Not to mention what you put in your mouth and what you do to preserve your body every day, i.e., diet and exercise. Which happens to be the exact same message you’ll get from my memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood.
It’s 69 short and witty chapters about following the herd and living a wild and colorful life – with Wall Street excesses, exotic locales and scores of bad-boy romances with NYC strippers and wealthy married women. Then finding the peace and courage through Yoga to finally change my evil ways, evolve my soul, and follow my dreams to Hollywood.
Because anyone can change…if you believe you can and want it bad enough to confidently set your sights and try. Just like the women and children living in domestic violence shelters where we teach the benefits of Yoga. Upon completion of my film, Boulevard Zen, I founded The Boulevard Zen Foundation to bring the powers of Yoga to families overcoming adversity, specifically survivors of DV. So in 2005, after 20 years of wanting to change my lifestyle and really go for it on that daunting ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams’, I became enamored with this 6,000 year-old mind-body-spirit practice that truly changed my life. Two years later I bought a one-way ticket to LA and never looked back.
I also went bust along the way. But did I fail? On the contrary, I succeeded in following my dreams and I’m still standing. Happily I might add, with a film, a self-published book in paperback, digital and audio (narrated by me), and more than 15 hours of instructional Yoga videos on the market. Not too bad for a poor Sicilian kid from Trenton, NJ who overcame the odds and went on to graduate from the Wharton and Kellogg business schools with no particular background in the Arts.
So anything is possible, wouldn’t you say? Just Do it Your Way.
So you’d like to take your family to see a really good movie with a bunch of really good actors about saving Mankind that’s New Age cataclysmic yet also heartfelt and Zen.
Not only does director Zach Snyder (300 and Sucker Punch) capture you visually and vividly like he always does, the amazing cast keeps you riveted and wanting more. Starting with the chiseled and Zen-ful Henry Cavill complemented by the beauty and charm of Amy Adams, the talent just keeps coming. There’s Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Michael Shannon (loved him in The Iceman), Laurence Fishburne, Ayelet Zurer and Christopher Meloni.
So give credit where credit is due, and go see Man of Steel. Because it Delivers – just like my Emmy award-winning sound engineer, Alex Wilkinson, did on my Audiobook. Kudos to Alex!
Here’s a clip that shines some light on my childhood and bartering ways in “The Barbershop”.
Enjoy – R
Flashback to 10 years ago and visit your local Mall. Do you remember that rather unorthodox, grassroots fitness movement that swept the nation – Mall Walking. It was a sure fire way to lose weight and it was weather-proof. Plus it was a great way to hang out with your friends without spending any money…unless you hit the food court or stopped by Foot Locker for a new pair of kicks!
Today I experienced this exact flashback while watching a man cruise around the Burbank Town Center Mall (that’s right, the same Burbank, California that Johnny Carson would poke fun at), and wondered what a simple way to get in your 15 minutes of daily exercise – without being outside or paying for it at your local gym or yoga studio. Of course that goes without saying, but there really are no excuses for not respecting yourself with a daily fitness program that equals a mere 1% of your life.
So if you don’t have time for a few of my free 5 Minute Fat Burning Workouts on YouTube (CLICK HERE), then why not gather your friends a few frigid nights a week and head straight for the Mall!
And when you’re done sharpening your body, then sharpen your mind by reading a good book.
Here’s a great suggestion: Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood. It’s my witty and entertaining memoir filled with 69 fast-paced, bite-sized chapters from growing up Sicilian, to the cute-boy syndrome, to the boardroom deals (and babes) on the inside of Wall Street and Hollywood.
These five simple yet powerful words are meant to help ANY woman who’s being abused by a significant other and doesn’t believe she has the wherewith-all or courage to do something about it.
Case in point: A few months ago I had just returned to Hollywood when I met this really sweet thirty-something year-old gal who had been living with her lazy, no-good boyfriend for the past 5 years. And I say lazy, no-good because not only does this scumbag mentally and emotionally abuse my friend, but this disrespectful low-life doesn’t pay rent, doesn’t hold a steady job, doesn’t look for work, doesn’t cook or clean or help with chores around the apartment, doesn’t help pay for groceries, and doesn’t own a car but always uses hers. Now I would call that a blood-sucking disrespectful low-life, wouldn’t you? The good news is she doesn’t own anything with him nor do they have children together.
Yesterday I had coffee with her and specifically asked why she still supports this abusive scumbag considering she has ALL the power in the relationship, which by the way, has her looking like she’s suffering from Anorexia nervosa. She meekly said, “He’s not so bad, you know, and even if I wanted, I wouldn’t know how to get him out.” My advice was these five simple words – KICK HIM TO THE CURB. She just looked at me like I was crazy until I said, “It’s really simple if you have the courage to end it – and here are three ways you can do it: 1) tell your landlord you’re being abused by your live-in boyfriend and you need to move out, then pack up all your things when he’s not there and hire a few very large men to help you move everything into a storage unit and go live with your parents or your best friend; 2) on your way out the door tomorrow morning tell your boyfriend he’s got until 5pm to vacate the premises and never return again, at which point you’ll be returning with the police (or other suitable protection) and a restraining order against him; or 3) pack-up all his belongings when he’s not there and leave them on the porch with a note saying if he comes within 100 yards of you or your apartment ever again, you’ll have him arrested (and go directly to the authorities for that restraining order).
Anyone who’s familiar with my charity, The Boulevard Zen Foundation, knows that I’m passionate about changing the lives of women and children living in domestic violence shelters. And not just with a daily fitness program that’s based on Yoga, but with a self-respecting and open-hearted approach to life that starts with loving yourself and never letting anyone abuse you in any way, shape or form.
Know that ALL abusers are the weak ones, and know that ANYONE can find the courage to seek help from domestic violence organizations and shelters that are there for you.
Be strong and KICK HIM TO THE CURB – you can do it!
As for that scumbag boyfriend of yours – or anyone else abusing any man, woman or child – really look at yourself in the mirror and commit to changing your evil ways – you can do it! And you can start by reading my memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood, where a portion of all sales goes to support my charity and our Yoga teachers.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING Everyone! – R
PS – Don’t forget to get your workout in!
Call this a Rant, but the following commentary is meant to help you ladies SMARTEN UP when it comes to men. That’s right, smarten up, because you can be quite stupid when it comes to wasting your precious time obsessing over the wrong guy. And since most women are like little girls who never grow-up and believe their Prince Charming in shining armor is going to swoop them away – sorry ladies, that only works for Julia Roberts & Richard Gere – they fall victim to bad-boy Gigolos wanting to score as their Mr. Right Now. I should know – I was one of them.
Let me explain with a real life example. This weekend I spent an hour with my sexy cool 33-year-old friend who’s also a really sweet gal whom I never slept with – which makes it easier for me to be her therapist (something I advise never to do, by the way, in my memoir Chapter 15 – Just Say No). She told me last week she met a really hot guy who she spent 3 days texting and talking to before they met for coffee on the 4th day. Sparks were flying and they talked about “meaningful relationships” and how they were both “done with the party scene” and all that.
So her 29 year-old Prince Charming talks like he’s “the one” and asks her to dinner the following night. The next day he never called or anything. So she texted him. No response. Now it’s a week later with no communication whatsoever and she’s whining to me about how she’s getting older and she’s not that attractive any more, and how she feels totally rejected by this chucklehead she really thought was the one. And of course she’s obsessing about whether he’ll still call, and if he does, should she say anything about him blowing her off for dinner or just leave it alone. Now I would call that wasting your precious time, wouldn’t you? So what did I suggest to my love-smitten friend? Forgettabout him!
Ladies, take heed of my favorite 4 letter word…NEXT. Because Mr. Right Now definitely got my friend’s text and choose not to contact her. He’s playing her for a fool and only wants to secure the power – don’t let him do it. Move on to better and brighter pastures and remain open to meeting Mr. Right. It’s not this guy, that’s for sure. Because if a guy doesn’t follow through, then he’s got something or someone else he wants to pursue that takes priority over you. Not good. Be strong and kick him to the curb. Better yet, run! Because Gigolos will only chip away at your self-confidence and self-respect. Something you should NEVER let happen. Respect yourself, just like you would with a Daily Fitness Program. However impossible it may seem, you CAN do it – if you just try and never give up! Because ANYONE can workout every single day and drink from the Fountain of Youth, as explained and simplified by me in Chapter 67 – Self Correct, for when the right man (or woman) does come along.
I have – for the past 40 years.
And for anyone looking to expand your mind – or change careers – here’s what Erica Lamberg with media giant Gannett writes about my memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood, www.mycentraljersey.com (click link to read article).
There’s 386 pages packed full of 69 bite-sized Chapters detailing the fascinating journey of this street-smart Sicilian kid from “Jersey” who grew up poor then forged his way through the Wharton and Kellogg Business Schools, to Wall Street juggernauts Goldman Sachs and Drexel Burnham Lambert, to signing contracts with Donald Trump and reaching a net-worth of $10 million. Only to lose it all in the blink-of-an-eye, leading to an Epiphany (Chapter 47) that led to Yoga and enlightenment.
A mouthful I know, but it’s sure been a wild ride with tons of witty and heartfelt stories about growing up Sicilian with “Goombata Sal” and “representing the family”, to the “cute-boy syndrome” that fueled romances with a bevy of engaged and married women (and NYC strippers), to the plethora of major US cities and exotic locales where I lived, worked and played including NYC, LA, Philadelphia, Chicago, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, to the “nobody makes it here” streets of Hollywood.
You’ll also learn about domestic violence and why I founded a charity, The Boulevard Zen Foundation, to teach the benefits of Yoga to women and children living in domestic violence shelters. A portion of all my book and DVD sales are donated to this cause.
Enjoy…and don’t forget to get your workout in! – Rich
Or shall I say, From Wall Street to Hollywood. Because if you didn’t already know, Screenland is synonymous with Hollywood and the movie industry. And you definitely know The Big Apple, my second all-time favorite city. Yes, it’s true, I’ve just moved back to Los Angeles – my favorite city in the world – after spending the past nine months exploring such unique and beautiful locales like Honolulu and San Francisco, not to mention my most recent adventures in Bushwick, Brooklyn.
In fact, when you read my intriguing new memoir that’s quite a page-turner, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood, you’ll experience life in a plethora of other great cities I called home including Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Princeton. And don’t forget my hometown of Trenton, NJ, where old-school Sicilian customs and traditions like representing the family, funerals, and falling off the truck were all the rage! Well, you get my drift. There’s tons of exciting stories from across the globe…with women attached, of course.
So I’m happy to report I’m “back in the wood” and here for good. North Hollywood, actually, because I always wanted to explore this NOHO neighborhood and Studio City part of town. At least until Howard Stern or Wendy Williams calls to have me on their NYC shows! Hey, ya neva’ know!
Have a great day everyone, and don’t forget to add at least a modicum of daily workout to your reading today. Enjoy – R
Did you know that the Williamsburg Bridge connecting lower Manhattan to the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn is 4 feet 6 inches longer than the Brooklyn Bridge? And was the longest suspension bridge of its time when it was completed in 1903 – and remained that way for almost 20 years!
If you’re intrigued by bridges or would like to expand your mind with some historical trivia, check out my latest book signing video filmed at the top of the Williamsburg Bridge.
Hope to see you Sunday! Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood
Hope you can make my hometown book signing at John’s Reading Center in Mercerville, NJ, 08619 on Sunday, July 29th from 9:30a – 1:30p, located at 372 Rte 33 in the Mercerville Shopping Center.
And for all you George Washington and American Revolutionary War fans (like me), here’s a short video I made at the historic Princeton Battlefield State Park, one of my favorite New Jersey locales!
Enjoy – R