Ryan Wilcox thought about a career in journalism, but now is on a path to being a firefighter.
Hey, you can still make a nice living in “media”, but it ain’t easy. I speak from experience. I think young Ryan will find more job security in his new field, not to mention perhaps more inner satisfaction.
Ryan is someone I’ve gotten to know a bit over the years. I have given him some feedback on his writing, and he’s done quite of bit of his both in college and as a freelancer. He grew up in Denver but went to college in Rockford, Ill., where he lives today. It ain’t easy being an Avs fan in Blackhawk country, as Ryan attests:
I have resided in the Rockford for the past 13 years. The perk of living here is that they have a nice AHL team in the Rockford Icehogs. So that helped keep my hockey passion alive with solid ticket prices and good fan interaction while catching whichever Avs AHL affiliate was in town. It also helps that every Blackhawks v. Avalanche game I could catch on TV, and whether they won or lost I was just glad to cheer them on.
Trust me I’ve heard it ALL DAY long about the Hawks dynasty, all of their Cups, how great Coach Q was (and how the Avs were dumb for letting him go), and simply how the Avs just suck. Even though most of the fans around here can’t recall who was a Blackhawks player before 2009. All of their smack talk leads me to one of my favorite moments ever: March 8th, 2013. The Blackhawks had gone 21-0-4 to start the partial lockout season, and were set to face the Avs who were under Joe Sacco (geez) and were 8-10-4. I wore my Landeskog jersey with a couple of Hawks friends and watched the game at a packed Buffalo Wild Wings. I remember everyone being pissed at me when they scored and while I was yelling, “Go Avs Go!” At the end I had a couple of people come up to me and admit that a loss is a loss. It was a sweet moment and a sick game.
This past season I was able to go to two of the Hawks v. Avs games in Chicago, and the amount of Avs fans that were there was surprising. I high-fived as many as I could and we would both agree that it’s our time now! My one regret is missing out on the Eurolanche fan club when they came into town. Hopefully, I can catch them this season when they roll into the city.
Best of luck, Ryan, in your new path, but don’t stop writing, either.
TAKE FIVE (QUESTIONS)
1. Have you ever found money, like in a parking lot or something? If so, what’s the most you ever found? The most I’ve ever found was cleaning up a parking lot in and I found a 50 dollar bill nestled next to a tree. I thought it was a nice gift (sign from above) for all the work I was putting in and then I’m pretty sure I turned that around and bought NHL 13.
2. My first real job was as a part-time dishwasher at a Chinese restaurant, mostly on weekends, in high school. My wage, the legal minimum, was $3.35 an hour. What was the first real job you had and what was the hourly wage? In the summers when I was in high school, my best friend and I worked for a trucking company 15 minutes away from our houses. We were like the gophers, errand runners, and ‘do this, do that’ guys. We got paid $8 an hour, and it was fun being able to work with my buddy.
3. Have you ever eaten a Rocky Mountain Oyster? I have! My Uncle Dan brought some a few years ago when I was in Denver and it didn’t really bother me. I cracked up at my mom’s reaction to me eating it, but the real winner was the Salmon we had for dinner. *Chef’s Kiss
4. Ryan Wilcox is a fairly common name, I would guess. Have you ever looked up other Ryan Wilcoxes on Facebook or anything and ever dropped something like, ‘Hey, I’ve got your name too’ on them? When I looked up my name through middle and high school there was a Utah politician that had the same name and it was blasted all over Google. That was annoying, but I know that Wilcox is a common last name, the Fire Department that I’m interning with right now has a Lieutenant with my last name and they all think I’m his nephew. It’s funny when we both greet each other, because we both say, “Wilcox,” really loud as we shake hands.
5. What would you say is your No. 1 favorite piece of Avalanche memorabilia, if you have any? My favorite closest thing I have to Avs memorabilia would be a 90s Home Joe Sakic KOHO replica jersey. I break it out for special games, but I just love that 90s jersey design. It’s hot. Maybe someday I’ll get it autographed, haha.