I met this guy here with the mandolin 5&1/2 years ago in Winnipeg. He was performing his first solo show Pentecostal Wisconsin, which is all about growing up Pentecostal in Wisconsin and then leaving it all behind. I loved the show — and his dimples even more. I tracked him down later that night and yadda yadda yadda, two years later we got married at City Hall in New York City.
Listening to him tell a good story is almost as good as seeing it live. He had a funny tale yesterday on CBC Radio's Definitely Not The Opera. It's about being humiliated by a bunch of kids. You can listen here: http://podcast.cbc.ca/mp3/dnto_20110226_45945.mp3
Late last year I got to see Ryan perform at a storytelling night in NYC. Storytelling is super popular right now (Take the Moth, for example, which has spread from NYC to four cities and a travelling roadshow, plus a very popular podcast and celebrity storytelling nights), and it's a form in which Ryan really excels. I don't often get to see him perform because babysitters are expensive and I'm at home with our kid while he's out. But we coughed up the money so I could see him tell a story I'd heard over a dozen times, and it was so worth it to be reminded why I was attracted to him in the first place. His story is the first in this podcast of the popular Risk show: http://risk-show.com/2010/12/episode-206-eye-of-the-beholder/
Riskwas created and is hosted by Kevin Allison of the legendary sketch comedy troupe The State. Here's another great story by Ryan (his story is the last one) at a Risk storytelling night. This one is about the Rapture and losing his mom to kidney disease. One of those two things is the end of the world for a kid raised Pentecostal. You have to listen to find out which one: http://risk-show.com/2010/05/episode-116-the-end/