#683 – CrossFit Uprising / Jason Tomlinson, CrossFit Affiliate Series

Sevan Matossian (00:00):

I understand. Bam. We’re live. Jason, what’s up brother?

Tom Linson (00:03):

How are you? I’m good.

Sevan Matossian (00:05):

It’s a good life. It’s a good life. Jason Tomlinson, people like Tom, call him Tom. Tom Olson.

Tom Linson (00:15):

Most people do

Sevan Matossian (00:17):

Tomlinson to Caleb. What’s up with your shirt? Dude?

Caleb Beaver (00:21):

Party shirt.

Sevan Matossian (00:23):

You packed that in your suitcase and then deployed with that?

Caleb Beaver (00:28):

No, there’s, we got a package of, uh, nice shirts from a company and they just sent ’em out to us and so we just got it and everybody put ’em on for the day.

Sevan Matossian (00:38):

And So you felt obligated to wear it?

Caleb Beaver (00:40):


Sevan Matossian (00:41):

Sure. I guess if everyone’s wearing it, it’s okay.

Caleb Beaver (00:44):


Sevan Matossian (00:46):

My non-Hispanic wife attempted tacos. De lingua. I think that’s like tongue right. Last night for Thanksgiving dinner for the first time and killed it. Don’t think I can ever enjoy gram ground beef tacos much again. You like the tongue, huh? Right. I guess You ever had a, you ever had a tongue taco Jason?

Tom Linson (01:05):

No, not a tongue taco. I had actually had a beef tongue for the first time a couple months ago though.

Sevan Matossian (01:11):

How was it?

Tom Linson (01:12):

Um, it’s, the texture’s a little off for me. It’s a little too soft. Mushy

Sevan Matossian (01:16):

<laugh>. Were you trying like organ meats? Is that why someone’s like

Tom Linson (01:21):

No. Um, we had a, we have some family friends that own a beef farm, um, and they had had this cow that had fell on, broke her hip and they gave us the tongue to it to try, cuz my wife had always said it would’ve been a good thing to have. So

Sevan Matossian (01:36):

What a tough life. A farm animal. You fall down and next thing you know someone’s eating your tongue. <laugh>. Oh boy.

Tom Linson (01:44):


Sevan Matossian (01:45):

What state are you in?

Tom Linson (01:47):

Uh, Ohio.

Sevan Matossian (01:49):

And the name of the gym that had its grand opening on September 3rd of which you are the proud owner of is CrossFit Uprising.

Tom Linson (01:56):

Yes, sir.

Sevan Matossian (01:57):


Tom Linson (01:58):

Thank you.

Sevan Matossian (01:59):

Yeah. Wow. And, and this is, uh, September 3rd, so it it’s brand new.

Tom Linson (02:06):

Yes, it is.

Sevan Matossian (02:09):

I could start with just something big and crazy and just be like, why’d you open a CrossFit gym? I, I, someone, someone sent me a DM and they’re like, Hey, you gotta have this dude on. So I just sent you a DM and I said, Hey, would you like to come on the show? And then you wrote back, sure. Um, how come? Is it because of my story? And I wrote back, yeah, but I didn’t even know your story. I just, yeah. I was just like, yeah, the

Tom Linson (02:35):

Person, the person that did it. Um, I didn’t know it had happened. So what happened was, I, you started, you followed me on Instagram and I was like, well, that’s weird. Like, why would Sivan follow me? Like that’s, that’s cool. And all of it. So I put my phone down, went on my day, and I got up the next morning and I opened my phone up and opened Instagram. And I was like, it popped up on the tag and it said, Hey, I’d like to have you on the podcast, dude. I threw my phone on the couch, I just threw it down. I was like, whoop, I’m done. What was that?

Sevan Matossian (03:05):


Tom Linson (03:06):

Uh, no, you do not want me on your podcast. Right. And opened it back up and it was you. And I was like, sure. Um, I’d be honored to like, why, like, is it, is it my story? What is it? At that point in time, I didn’t know that Angie, the lady that DMed you about it, um Yeah. Had sent it to you. I

Sevan Matossian (03:28):

Was Is she member at your gym?

Tom Linson (03:29):

Yes, she is. And a very good friend. They’re my, my, uh, kind of, they’re my marketing team. So,

Sevan Matossian (03:39):

So then I thought, well, I invited this guy on based on a recommendation and I better find out the story. And I went and listened to your story. And, and the guys who interview you, one of them keeps saying, or he says a handful of times throughout the podcast, he says, man, this is like a Netflix movie. And I was like, <affirmative>. Wow. I mean it really, it’s better than a Netflix movie. And then you started, you started to write, you talk about how you started to write a book. Did you stop doing that?

Tom Linson (04:09):

Yeah, I did for now. Um, so <laugh>, when I got to writing and then I got to reading my own writing, all I kept thinking was like, I’m a really boring writer. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, like, I can tell you a story, that’s fine, but putting it on paper doesn’t, from my view, looking at it doesn’t give the same emotion as what I can give you if I talk to you about it. So, um, so I stopped writing and I was sitting around moping one day about it and my wife was like, um, what’s wrong? And I’m like, just feel like I’m not doing anything. Like I’m just floating through life. And she’s like, what do you wanna do? And I was like, you know what I want to do? I said, it’s the same thing I’ve always wanted to do since I found it. And she goes, don’t tie it into our personal life. And she goes, just go do it. And that was that.

Sevan Matossian (05:02):

What is, and that’s what does that mean? Don’t tie it into our personal life.

Tom Linson (05:05):

Um, keep everything separate. Like, so don’t take out a loan based on our house and Oh, just make it an llc. Right. So, and, and keep it separated. So, so I went and I started talk to a few people and, um, I was one to just honestly, cuz I’ve never been, other than like way in the past and my being from my past story, um, been in the, been in a business, um, I went and talked to a few people about opening a business and just kind of mentor me through a business. And, uh, I went and talked to the guy that ran the podcast, Corey Gregory, um, about mentoring me. And he was like, yeah, I’d love to. Um, and then I have another, a real good friend that I met through Corey that owns another company locally. Um, and he, I, next morning I woke up and I was sitting at the house and Corey was like, um, hey, I want to be a part of this. I want, I want to help you. Um, how much money do you need?

Sevan Matossian (06:08):

Wow. So he kind of doubled down, not only mentor, but

Tom Linson (06:11):

Yeah. So, so,

Sevan Matossian (06:14):

And you don’t, you don’t have a long life of people believing in you?

Tom Linson (06:18):

Uh, no. I’ve, I’ve burned a lot of those bridges a long time ago. Like it, I did that right a long time ago. I, uh, I burnt a lot of bridges growing up. So,

Sevan Matossian (06:31):

Are you a parents still alive?

Tom Linson (06:33):

Um, yeah, they are actually.

Sevan Matossian (06:34):

No shit. Do you still see them?

Tom Linson (06:37):

Um, I talked to my dad. He’s in, uh, Mississippi. Um, I haven’t talked to my mom in probably 13 years, so.

Sevan Matossian (06:45):

Wow. Wow, wow, wow. Uh, you guys hold on to your seats. This is gonna be a wild one. This is gonna be so fun for some of us. I don’t know if it’s gonna be fun for Jason, but, and, and, uh, and you, you have been competing at, not only did you open a CrossFit gym, but you’re 46 years old. You’re 46 now.

Tom Linson (07:06):

47 as of yesterday.

Sevan Matossian (07:08):

Oh, awesome. Happy birthday.

Tom Linson (07:09):

Thank you.

Sevan Matossian (07:10):

And, and you have, um, not only aspirations to be the, the world’s fittest man, but you’ve, uh, taken some pretty, uh, heavy swings at it already. Yeah. And, and are you and Jason Grub and Sean Ramirez’s? Um, yeah.

Tom Linson (07:25):

Yep. Wow. Yeah, I competed against Jason down at, uh, in Arizona when Legends was in Arizona and Phoenix two years ago. Um, which was the first time I met him when he was, we were both in the age group at the first into the age group at the same time. And then, um, I met Sean just a couple, what, a month ago at Master Fitness Collective.

Sevan Matossian (07:44):

Um, and and what, what was your first impression of Jason Grub?

Tom Linson (07:47):

Super nice guy. I, I like Jason. Me and him get along. We text a lot, not a lot I guess, but we text some, um, message a few times. So I like Jason. He’s super nice, so

Sevan Matossian (07:59):

Super nice, right? Yeah, man. That is a, that is a, that is a, uh, star-studded group you’re with. That’s gonna be, um, that’s gonna be a war. And then the goal this year is to go to the games.

Tom Linson (08:11):

Uh, it has been the last couple, um, like two years ago was probably my best shot. Um, and I ended up 36. Um, then last year I caught a major, um, in the quarters and dropped me out of the, out of the semis into 40th.

Sevan Matossian (08:27):

What does that mean? Caught a major,

Tom Linson (08:29):

A major penalty. And the overhead, the overhead squat. Oh, that was with the, the wad, the overhead squat and the lung wad.

Sevan Matossian (08:36):

What was the penalty? What was the penalty? What were the critical of

Tom Linson (08:39):

Uh, lack of hip extension on it, on the overhead squat.

Sevan Matossian (08:42):

And when you watched it, were you like Yeah. Or were you like, no, no.

Tom Linson (08:45):

I was like, no. And I had a bunch of people tell me the same thing that no, um, the only thing we could come up with was you really couldn’t see because I had black shorts on, on a black wall.

Sevan Matossian (08:54):


Tom Linson (08:55):

So the clothing issue, I think that, you know, that’s been coming out about it.

Sevan Matossian (09:01):

Um, and, and are you injury free?

Tom Linson (09:04):

Um, <laugh>, um, injury free now? Yes. Um, aches and pains from just being old and playing hard? No. Yeah. Um, I had injured myself at the Monster Games out in Joplin, Missouri a couple months ago. Um, land in a Box jump, I’d hurt my foot. Um, but it’s all back to normal now, so

Sevan Matossian (09:29):

It it’s what what a what a crazy place, uh, you’ve put yourself in. So you, you’re running this gym that just opened. Do you have members already?

Tom Linson (09:38):


Sevan Matossian (09:39):

Wow. Congratulations.

Tom Linson (09:41):

Thank you.

Sevan Matossian (09:42):

Where, um, and and what, and what’s the name of the city you’re in in Ohio?

Tom Linson (09:45):

Uh, Newark. It’s about 20, 25 minutes east of Columbus.

Sevan Matossian (09:53):

And, and, and why, why open a um, why open across the gym? Why didn’t you just open a regular gym? Why not? Just because CrossFits, why it’s called Uprising.

Tom Linson (10:05):

Um, few reasons. Um, one is I just, I could never explain what CrossFit’s given to me like ever. Like it’s given me an, it’s given me a whole new outlook on life. Um, a whole new way of looking at things. A way of still way of giving back, I guess. Um, when I took so much when I was younger. Um, and obviously it’s from the business side of it, it’s easy, it’s easier to market with CRO with the name CrossFit instead of just fighting around it. Um, but I believe in it, like I believe in the things that it does.

Sevan Matossian (10:50):

Um, how, how long after you got out of prison did you take your level one?

Tom Linson (10:56):

Um, see, I got out in 2004 and I’ve been, so probably about eight years.

Sevan Matossian (11:04):

So 2012?

Tom Linson (11:06):

Yeah, 2012 actually I think it was 2000. It was March of 2012.

Sevan Matossian (11:13):

Crazy, crazy, crazy, crazy. And do you remember who your, uh, instructors

Tom Linson (11:17):

Were? Yeah, I sure do.

Sevan Matossian (11:19):

Who were

Tom Linson (11:19):

They? Austin Mo. Um,

Sevan Matossian (11:24):

He, he, he spent some time I think in juvenile detention centers.

Tom Linson (11:28):


Sevan Matossian (11:29):

Yeah. Different, different. He got out before you did out of the business, but, um, but I think he had a pretty wild Yeah, I, I think basically they came and got him at his house, threw him in a van and hauled his ass off. I think maybe his, I don’t remember the exact story. Maybe his dad even called him on him. Crazy. Yeah. And, and who else, do you remember who else was there?

Tom Linson (11:51):

Um, the guy that owned Doug Chapman owns Hyper Owns HyperFit.

Sevan Matossian (11:55):

Yeah. That guy Smart as

Tom Linson (11:56):

Shit. He was there, um, I can’t remember, is it Joe that used to own Omaha crosswalk?

Sevan Matossian (12:01):

Oh wow. Yeah. Wow. God. Yeah. Uh, Joe Westerland. Yeah.

Tom Linson (12:06):

Westerland. Yep.

Sevan Matossian (12:07):

Oh, he’s cool as shit too. Wow, you had good dudes. Yeah,

Tom Linson (12:10):

And Lindsay Smith.

Sevan Matossian (12:12):

Okay. Oh wow.

Tom Linson (12:13):

And Chuck was our flow master, I think at that point in time for just starting to become the Flow

Sevan Matossian (12:18):

Master. Holy cow. So you had a star studied staff, I think maybe Lindsay was even a games athlete

Tom Linson (12:23):

At that

Sevan Matossian (12:24):

Point in time? She was at that point, yep. Wow. And, uh, and blew your mind. Loved it. Oh

Tom Linson (12:30):

Yeah. Loved it. I, I, I was hooked. I took my first class, um, in 2000 December, 2011, and told the guy that who was, was the owner of the old gym that I’d went to, um, told him I’ll be back. I went back in January and I’ve never looked back since. By March I was, had my L one, um, by the end of March I was coaching and I’ve, I’ve coached or competed ever since. So,

Sevan Matossian (12:57):

Um, where were you born?

Tom Linson (12:58):

Uh, Ironton, Ohio.

Sevan Matossian (13:01):


Tom Linson (13:02):


Sevan Matossian (13:03):

So, so you, so you’ve, you’ve always been a, uh, you just Ohio’s home,

Tom Linson (13:08):

Um, it’s home. Yeah. Um, by the time I was five I had lived in like different states.

Sevan Matossian (13:16):

States. With your mom?

Tom Linson (13:18):

With my mom and dad. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (13:20):

Were they, how is that, how do you, how do you live in 15 different states?

Tom Linson (13:24):

Um, my dad works, worked for a company that built the, um, he built the big great big steel transmission lines that comes outta power plants.

Sevan Matossian (13:31):


Tom Linson (13:32):

Um, so we moved around a lot, a lot.

Sevan Matossian (13:36):

So those big steel towers you see that connect all the big lines, like if you’re driving around California, you’re like out in the middle of nowhere and those big ones that are carrying it just hundreds of miles, he built those.

Tom Linson (13:44):

Yes, sir.

Sevan Matossian (13:46):

Wow. Is your relationship with your dad still good?

Tom Linson (13:50):

Yeah, it is now. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (13:52):

Uh, rough childhood, even up to five, like already? Um,

Tom Linson (13:56):

No. Well, my childhood up to five, other than moving around from the things, the flashes that I remember, um, was normal. Um, I remember, I remember some, like, I remember certain kindergartens, um, I remember tying my shoe for the first time being with my dad in his truck. Um, it seemed normal.

Sevan Matossian (14:19):

Yeah. Um,

Tom Linson (14:20):

But shortly thereafter it wasn’t. So,

Sevan Matossian (14:23):

And, and, and when you’re five and you move that much, I guess you don’t have a lot of, you don’t have any stability. You and you don’t really have any possessions. All your shit fits in like a, a a paper bag.

Tom Linson (14:32):

Our house was actually a, uh, is actually like a 14 by 60 or 70 mobile home.

Sevan Matossian (14:39):


Tom Linson (14:39):

It moved with us. So, I mean, the only thing stable in my life really was my home <laugh>. So,

Sevan Matossian (14:47):

Uh, you guys do it different than we do in California. Why did this guy go to jail? Well, funny you should ask funny, you should

Tom Linson (14:54):

Ask <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (14:55):

So he could, so he could be, he just was looking for a place to work out with other strong guys. He just needed some alone time to dedicate

Tom Linson (15:01):

To getting Yeah, that’s what it was.

Sevan Matossian (15:04):

Strong. Uh, and then at five, did you finally land somewhere where you were gonna stay?

Tom Linson (15:09):

Um, so my next memory that I have was, we were sitting in a truck and my, uh, my grandma and grandpa, so on my mom’s side, um, their driveway. And I can remember my mom saying that my dad had to go away for a while and that we wouldn’t see. Um, um, and like there’s flashes of memories of like, we lived at my grandma and grandpa’s house until our trailer got moved to town. Um, and then I flashes of like living in that trailer and going to school and, but from that point on, yeah, from that point on, I, now that I know the story, I know that they were separated and they ended up in divorce. Um, but like now looking back that this is where we stayed. So

Sevan Matossian (16:02):

Do do you have siblings?

Tom Linson (16:03):

Uh, yeah, I have one younger sister. She’s a like two years younger than me.

Sevan Matossian (16:08):

Um, and and are you in contact with her? No. Did did she, did she end up, um, taking the same path you did?

Tom Linson (16:15):

No, she did not.

Sevan Matossian (16:17):

Oh, wow. How come you’re not, um, in contact with her?

Tom Linson (16:23):

Um, my, we were, when I first got out, um, but like I wasted enough of my life. Um, my sister tends to be about, unless it’s about her, um, then and centers around her, then it’s not gonna, no one else can be included. So

Sevan Matossian (16:42):

Okay. Maybe she’s in protection mode, she’s protecting herself. Like

Tom Linson (16:46):

She could be, I don’t know. Um, she was, we never had a problem growing up. Like we weren’t the fighty type siblings or nothing. I mean, I was gone a lot. Um, and then I think my mom helped protect her a lot by sending her to my, like she stayed that if we’re leading to where I think we’re leading the summer, that things went really bad. Um, she was staying with my aunt and uncle a lot during that summer. So like, I think my mom, my mom got her out a lot so she wasn’t at home when all the bad shit was going on. So

Sevan Matossian (17:20):

There, there’s the theme in my show where I talk about that no matter how good of a person you are, if you don’t keep young men busy, they will get into trouble. You really, really have to keep young men busy. Sure does. If you are neglecting, if you have boys and you are not keeping them busy from the second they wake up to the second they go to bed, um, you are, you are asking for trouble. You are rolling the dice and this story you’re going to hear. Although for some of you it may sound, um, pretty wild. Uh, it, it it’s actually just the status quo of, of young men who all over the world who don’t get, um, who don’t, who don’t have someone who’s looking out for them and keeping them busy. And some people are gonna be like, well, people need their free time. Yeah. Then keep them busy with free time. Yeah. But you cannot leave young men to their own accord. We are not, we’re not made for, we’re not made for

Tom Linson (18:13):

That. That old saying of, you know, idle mind is the devil’s playground is true. It really

Sevan Matossian (18:19):

Is. Yeah. Yeah. You know,

Tom Linson (18:20):

And where this, where this all leads, everything that led up to me going in going to prison was like, once you get there you really realize it. Like, cuz there’s a lot of downtime in prison. A lot.

Sevan Matossian (18:32):

And probably all your homeboys there all had the same story too, right?

Tom Linson (18:36):

A lot. Yeah. A lot of ’em are along the lines. Like you can meet a few people. Like I’ve had a few friends that were in there that like, it was like their first crime, their first bad thing they ever did. And like, they had never had a bad childhood. They had, they, everything was perfect and they committed one crime, you know, but like that’s few and far between. A lot of ’em you, they, you grew up in the bad, in the bad household, abusive household, um, with the wrong, with not even the wrong friends, but you grew up in the wrong group of people and that’s where you end up.

Sevan Matossian (19:10):

My, my e even my, my buddy, uh, has, um, two, one of my buddies has two sons and they’re like the two best quarterbacks in the country right now. One in high school and one in college. Nice. And I asked him just the other day, I said, how are you keeping them away from like smoking weed and doing all that stuff? He’s like, dude, even my, my son who’s in college who’s a senior after the game, I just bring him home and he’s a big savage man, juice up dude, just fucking 300 pound professional arm wrestler. You know what I mean? Juice to the gills. And like, he’s like, I I just put the hammer down on him. Yeah. Like, fuck you, you’re staying home.

Tom Linson (19:43):

Well, I mean it’s, we like

Sevan Matossian (19:47):

That’s in West Virginia, which I think is very similar to us, Ohio. It, it, it’s, it’s hair’s shit.

Tom Linson (19:53):

Yes, it is. It’s, and there’s a lot like, because a lot of West Virginia is rural, like really rural. So like there’s a lot more, not saying a lot more, but there is a lot that goes on. So,

Sevan Matossian (20:07):

And it’s that same kind of living. It’s, it’s the trailer park living. It’s the, it’s the, you know, the the either the parents are at work or in trouble or in jail or on drugs or my particular friend, his mom had been working out at like a seven 11 for 30 years. You know what I mean? Yeah. So, so um, so you, you’re five and, and were either your parents into, into drugs? No, no.

Tom Linson (20:30):

Not that I know of. Not that I know of. Like there’s been, there’s been no stories. Like my dad had this, like he actually lied on his, uh, application to get the job, to get a job at the same company that his dad worked at for his whole life. Um, he was 17, he said he was 18. He took that job and my dad went from being a grunt laborer to being one of the most important people within that company. Right. So like my dad’s always been this like top notch standup human being. Um, not saying there isn’t fault, obviously we all have ’em, but like, and, and my mom up until like I grew up and realized that my mom didn’t have my, my best interest in mind, um, like my mom was always was there right. For a while. Um, and then as I grow up I realize that she really wasn’t so, but as far as I know, they were, you know, they know what nobody, I’m the first in the line to, to call this what it is to do what I’ve done. So

Sevan Matossian (21:43):

No, it would, the, the jail story, we will get to it easy. Everyone settled down. This is, this is like, we have to really contextualize this at first. We have to lay some soil down. This is not, uh, he robbed the store and went to jail. This is not like, this is complete. Uh, this is a party. Uh, and um, when, when you said your mom didn’t have your best interest in mind, paint that childhood for me. I’m, I’m getting that feeling that your dad was basically a workaholic like a lot of our parents

Tom Linson (22:12):

Were. Yeah. Um, so I know that me and him have talked since and you know, he, he’s explained to me a lot of it. Like my dad is still super standup. He, you know, he still has talks to me at time about my mom, like to make, try to help me understand that. Like, look, in the end, that’s still your mother regardless of what she’s done or anything else. And when, when things come to an end, like that’s still your mom, um, he has no ill will towards her anything. Um, my mom ended up, my mom ended up cheating on him is what happened. And he caught her. Um, and like my dad was all about, like back in the day, it was all about the man takes care of going to work and the woman takes care of the household. Right. And then he is always there for, you know, you’re always there at the end of the day for him when he gets home from work. So like that, that old school, this is, you know, the way it is, we’ve talked about it some. So, um, that’s I think a, I don’t know if that’s why my mom did it. I have no idea. I don’t know. So, um, which is what led us to that park, that driveway talk that day. Right. That driveway talk of, um, hey, my dad’s going away for a while and five years old, six years old and doing nothing but balling my eyes out cause I’m gonna miss my dad. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (23:42):

So how, what, when that happened, how long was it before you saw him again? Did you still see him on weekends or There was actually he went away.

Tom Linson (23:49):

Oh. I probably didn’t see him again for probably till I was a freshman in high school.

Sevan Matossian (23:56):

Holy shit. You have a 13 year old daughter? Yes,

Tom Linson (23:59):

I do.

Sevan Matossian (24:00):

What’s the longest you’ve gone without seeing her?

Tom Linson (24:02):

Um, three weeks.

Sevan Matossian (24:04):

Holy. She went to camp

Tom Linson (24:06):

Or something? He was, he was actually, no, she stayed at my, she stayed at my dad and stepmom’s house in, in Mississippi one time for three weeks.

Sevan Matossian (24:13):

Wow. Just because you wanted her to get to know your dad or, um,

Tom Linson (24:16):

Yeah, I think, um, they wanted her to stay. Um, there she is. Um, they wanted her to stay. Um, I know they’re, my dad is like, my dad’s really. And her really, and Suzette are really family oriented. So, um,

Sevan Matossian (24:32):

Suzette’s your stepmom?

Tom Linson (24:33):

Yeah, she’s my stepmom. Um, so like, and she wanted to stay, Maggie wanted to go down and stay, so, so it was cool. So I talked to her almost every day though, like we FaceTime before bed and everything. I, I couldn’t imagine it. I, I couldn’t and I know not all that was his fault. I do now talking to him and other people. Um, that majority of that was my mom keeping him away from me.

Sevan Matossian (25:01):

Crazy. Uh, um, and you, what, what’s that called? Is your daughter, is it 3M or four M? What’s that thing? We don’t have that. Uh,

Tom Linson (25:10):


Sevan Matossian (25:10):

H. Four h. Four h. Yeah. That’s basically where like you get kids into taking care of farm animals at a young age. Yeah, she does that. She

Tom Linson (25:18):

Loves it. She’s actually, that’s awesome. Ever since she’s been little enough to talk, she’s always talked about she just wanted to be a veterinarian. So she has never changed that thought at all.

Sevan Matossian (25:29):

And, and your, your current wife’s name is Kathy. Carrie. Carrie, yeah. And that’s the baby. And that’s your, your guys’ offspring? Yes. Holy shit. Wow. You’ve really, uh, and you got outta jail in 2004. Yeah. So you, you made the baby once you were out, you didn’t make the

Tom Linson (25:46):

Um, yeah, it was actually a point where neither one of us wanted kids. Sure.

Sevan Matossian (25:50):


Tom Linson (25:51):

There. Like, we were like, look, we’re, I have wasted 10 years of my life and like, let’s just be us. And then one day we look, she’ll blame it on me. Um, one day I was like, I was like, Hey, I think I’d like to have a kid. What about you? She’s like, sure. So we tried and six months later she was pregnant. So,

Sevan Matossian (26:10):

And, and uh, and, and now you wouldn’t have it any other way?

Tom Linson (26:13):

No, not at all.

Sevan Matossian (26:15):

Isn’t it kind of crazy? Did you feel like a lot of your shit just kind of went away because you just all of a sudden someone was so much more important to you in your life than you were to yourself? Yeah.

Tom Linson (26:25):

Yeah. It’s uh, things change. Things change a lot. Um, things changed before I got out, having my wife, um, and then having a daughter. Things changed a lot too. Again, like somebody else that you, that you really like, you’re responsible for.

Sevan Matossian (26:43):

So you’re, you’re, you’re there’s this, uh, dowa saying, um, stop thinking and all your problems will, will end. And it, it’s, it’s so true. And there are these, you know, there’s a lot of questions you can ask yourself when you have bad thoughts. Who would I be without this thought? But man, when you have a kid and you and you have your priorities straight man, you get a lot of freedom. People, people think that, uh, it’s kind of scary for people cuz a lot of people don’t wanna have kids cuz they can’t imagine cuz and they’ll admit, admit to themselves, but I’m so selfish. Yeah. But then you have a kid and if you’re wired properly, like I think the way we’re supposed to be, all that shit just kind of goes away.

Tom Linson (27:15):


Sevan Matossian (27:16):

Didn’t even give a shit. If I got a shower today and a workout, I’m good.

Tom Linson (27:20):


Sevan Matossian (27:21):

Right? I mean, it’s like,

Tom Linson (27:23):

Yeah. Right.

Sevan Matossian (27:24):

Yeah. Um, so you’re five years old and your dad leaves. And the way the story picked up that I heard on the other podcast is you basically around the age of 13, you, you became a cook. You started, you started cooking. That’s

Tom Linson (27:40):

An interesting way of putting it. I guess

Sevan Matossian (27:42):

You became, I watched too much. Breaking bad. You started cooking crack. Yeah. So, so were you, can you tell me fill in that gap there from when you were five, when you were 13, how you got those skills,

Tom Linson (27:53):

How you were My mom remarried, um, remarried a great guy. Like his name was Darryl and he was awesome. Like he took care of us like we were his own. Um, he worked, he worked driving truck, um, for a local oil company. So he was home a lot, um, was around a lot. So ended up getting me into BMX racing. Um, like I had, this felt like a normal childhood to me. Um, like I didn’t have no complaints. I wasn’t abused. They didn’t drink like it was well taken care of. Um, your

Sevan Matossian (28:29):

Mom loved you, your mom loved you. Good?

Tom Linson (28:31):

I think so. I mean it, I never felt any different up until

Sevan Matossian (28:35):

What’s, you remember being hugged and kissed and held and tucked in at night and all You do remember all that? Yep,

Tom Linson (28:40):

Sure do. So like, just seemed like looking back on it, it seems so what people call your normal American family life, right? It never seemed any different.

Sevan Matossian (28:54):

So what bmx what BMX bike did you

Tom Linson (28:56):

Have? Gt

Sevan Matossian (28:57):

Oh wow. Cool bike.

Tom Linson (29:00):


Sevan Matossian (29:01):

And, and not cheap.

Tom Linson (29:03):

No, it was, it’s funny, like I look back on things and I realize we had a, there was a bike, a bike shop in the town that I lived in, um, who was helping to sponsor me to race. Um, and um, I remember they ordered that bike straight from Santa Monica or Santa Ana, I mean out of the GT factory. Um, for me in particular, um, that thing was like $586.

Sevan Matossian (29:29):

Yeah, those were, I had a, I had a mongoose, it was like a heavy chrome frame, but the kids who had gts, those were kind of the cooler kids.

Tom Linson (29:36):

Yeah. <laugh>. Yeah. My bike at the end when I was racing ended up weighing it was, was only weighed like 16 pounds. So it was super light and

Sevan Matossian (29:46):

I could go and, and then tell me how you meet these guys who, who teach you how to cook crack. Like how, how can you walk me into that?

Tom Linson (29:54):

Well, my mom ended up divorcing Darryl Uhhuh, <affirmative> cheated on him. Um, and divorced.

The above transcript is generated using AI technology and therefore may contain errors.

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