His clients include MTV and Microsoft, Nestle and the Singapore Defense Forces – in a word the guy has made it.
But Carmazzi’s life was not always a day in the country.
A fat little kid born into an immigrant Spanish/Italian family in America’s desert country of Carson City, Nevada, Carmazzi was at the bottom of the pecking order at school, shy, lonely and an outcast in an outcast landscape.
“My Mom was Spanish – she’d feed me and feed me. I was a fat, outcast kid,” says Carmazzi of a little boy from the past that bears no resemblance to the man today.
“We were the typical immigrant family. We had a small house that was almost like a farm since we raised chickens, ducks and geese. We were not well off, pretty much your average middle class family of 1960’s America, a place I never really fit into.”
Not only was Carmazzi physically the outside runner in the popularity stakes, he was also dumped into his primary school’s remedial class, as a failure in English and Mathematics.
Not an easy achievement in a scholastically challenged nation like America, where the ability to write your own name will take you far. Just look how far Ron Reagan got on a memory for lines and George Bush 2 failed senior high school abysmally.
“When I was moved to the remedial class, it was like being given a life sentence – I was fat and now also I was dumb. The fat, dumb wop from the chicken farm. Kids at school called me stupid – in the ways kids do. I didn’t fit in, and the teacher who headed the class for ‘special’ kids was so kind and attentive, that I not only accepted being a stupid kid, I began to like it.”
Carmazzi’s one chance to rewrite his future came in the eighth grade when he was accidentally placed into the advanced Math class.
“There I was, the remedial kid in the advanced class. I was pretty overwhelmed, and failed the first quarter. It was my teacher, Mr Backus, the greatest mentor I ever had, who seemed to understand I wasn’t stupid. He took me under his wing and guided me through the differences of the way my mind worked and how I could use it better. “
Mr Backus had picked up the fact that I did not learn and absorb information through traditional teaching methods, but tended to take information in osmoticaly, working it out in my head. It was weird – I went from being the stupid fat kid to the smart fat kid in the space of six months,” Carmazzi remembers.
While his confidence academically was on the rise, his social world was as lonely and lifeless as ever.
“I was 16 years-old and I had never had a date – had barely spoken with girls – just watched them like all guys of that age do. There was one girl that I really liked and one day I worked up all my courage, and asked her out on a date. I stuttered the words out like a fool. It was horrible, she didn’t even bother responding – just laughed and laughed. I was absolutely shattered and humiliated, but that wasn’t the worst part, by the end of the school day, Everybody knew! But it was that rejection that was the beginning of my new life,”
A year of introspection led the young Carmazzi to an epiphany on his future, a black gaping hole of loneliness and failure.
“I actually looked into the future and saw my self. It was dark and cold and I was old and alone. An awful future that I wanted no part of. So I decided to change my self, change my future,” Carmazzi says.
The fat boy went on a diet, shedding kilograms of lard on the physical plane and shedding all the negative notions he had of himself on the metaphysical level. The pupae and the chrysalis; Carmazzi emerged from the protective layers of fat that had kept him safe from personal engagement with his society for nearly two decades.
“I let go of the excuses I had created that kept me safe. I could not be rejected if I never stepped forward and I was terrified of rejection. So I turned it around. At first I put it to myself that if I asked a girl out and she knocked me back then it was not meant to be, but I didn’t feel that was a strong enough motivator.”
“I then thought to myself ok. It was not meant to be and I have saved time and money because she has said no. Getting rejected would meant I would save me time and money – Wow – this was a new revelation and my confidence grew each time I asked out a ‘unapproachable’ girl – I had created my own win win outcome,”
Scholars say that hardships and knock backs can forge people so they grow stronger. Carmazzi was hardened on the forge of infatuation, where every rejection gave him greater confidence.
“It was bizarre. The idea that rejection was a negative no longer applied, and instead empowered me to do more. My confidence grew, in fact, with every rejection. That sense of self confidence soon started getting me dates. I went from a 2 percent strike rate to a 70 percent strike rate in getting dates and I was feeling pretty good about my self,” says this self confessed nerd.
The lessons learned in his dating days have served Carmazzi well in other aspects of his life, particularly in business where his never say die belief in himself and his vision have allowed him to create an idyllic lifestyle, based in Bali and working throughout Asia.