One Geekified Interview: GreenUp Ryan!

 It is almost 7 in the am and I couldn’t sleep so I thought that I would get my latest interview up with Ryan from one of my favorite podcasts Green Up Gaming!
I wanted to take a quick second and express how much I enjoy the friendships I have encountered on Twitter especially from those in the Podcasting Realm, they are really friendly and care whats going on in your life. But they really connect with listeners (not all) and seem to care about your daily life. I am truly honored to have gotten to know so many podcasters. I really hope that one day when I have time and space that I could either start a show or join in on someones idea again. In that time I plan on learning everything there is to know! Sorry I didn’t mean to ramble or take away from my interview with Ryan just wanted to say thank you to all those who have done interviews and those who talk to me on twitter daily, I am not really sociable in my everyday life but on Twitter I strongly believe that’s who I truly am damn social awkwardness.

Now lets just jump right in! I would proudly like to introduce you to Ryan from Greenup Gaming and Gotham Knights!
Tell us a little about yourself. Anything you would like to share.
Well, I am in my mid 30’s happily married for almost 14 years, my daughter just turned 5 and they are my world. I work hard to make sure they both have everything they need. Coached high school football for a decade, love to play video games and I have two podcasts: Green Up Gaming and Gotham Knights.

If you could give a geek from this generation advice what would you say?
Do you!  If you have something that makes you happy, and you enjoy doing it, do it (unless it involves killing or bad stuff) Us geeks and nerds finally fit in, just be true to yourself.

Who helped shape you into the geek you are today? How/Why I guess my mom.  She encouraged me to do what I wanted and have fun.  She supported video gaming starting with the NES.  She was a huge supporter of my photography, but at the same time my dad was supportive with sports; football, basketball and tae kwon do.

How has social media Impacted/improved your life?  If it has affected negatively how so?
I’ve never really been too social.  Kept to myself, when I got online with video games, it really opened me up to more people and I grew a huge group of friends from across the country and some overseas.  Social media has just been another extension of that.  I have made a few really close friends from it. It has also given me the chance to reach out to a few old friends I had lost touch with.

If you could change one thing about the geek/nerd culture what would it be and why?
Well the pretentiousness of it.  Remember the roots, all these younger geek/nerds didn’t have to go through the shit we did.  It’s more accepted now so they fit in and treat others that aren’t part of that culture as outsiders.

Do you have any secret projects you’re working on that you could share with us?
Yes, I am working on a Holiday special for Green UP and another podcast.  I’m hoping for an epic recording, some singing, tons of laughs and to make it an annual thing!

If you could give up one geeky hobby which would u drop and what would u replace it with?
The only thing that I am half-assing is comic books.  I have started reading and collecting some but its hit and miss.  I have a very strong addictive personality so I have to be careful.  I’ll read a book, not like it but can’t just have the number 1-3 I need to get them all just so I know I have them all.  I would replace the time and $ spent on it and put it towards my daughter for something.  That’s the hard thing is I started reading books to bond with my daughter (my little pony’s and tiny titans) So by giving that up would take that away, so I wouldn’t take anything away!

Where can my readers find and contact you?
Easy, and @Greenup podcast on twitter.

Tell us about your podcast Green Up Gaming? You’re also involved in a show called Gotham Knights please share about this as well.

Green Up Gaming, is a podcast that I do with a few of my video game buddies.  We talk about the games we are playing, bring some gaming news and share some wild and crazy stories.  Gotham Knights is a podcast about Gotham on Fox.  With Gotham I wanted to do a show a couple of podcasting buddies, Neil from Dark Angels and Pretty Freaks is a huge Batman fan so it just made perfect sense.  I am looking to expand both of them to widen our audiences.

What’s your favorite thing about hosting a Podcast?
Chatting with my friends and meeting new people!  Plus it really gets me out of my comfort zone. I am not a real social person in my everyday life.  I get to chat about video games, TV shows, movies and more.  Plus it lets me hang out with my friends even though they are states away.

How do you find balance between doing podcasts, family/home life and work? What’s your secret?
Add school to that! I haven’t been doing a very good job.  My issue is when I get into something I dive head first and get tunnel vision, that’s where my wife comes in and helps me get me back to reality. One thing you learn with having your own podcast is that there is a TON of work that you don’t plan on; editing, producing the episode, networking, marketing and scheduling.  Now that I have 2 podcasts, the work load doubles.  So I have moved some of the time-consuming stuff for after bedtime, I do my homework after work, that way I can still get quality time with the family too. I work an early shift, so my weekends I’m up by 5, 6 at the latest, which allows me to do homework or work on my networking/marketing without interrupting any family time..  It’s a juggling game sometimes, but family always comes first.

What advice could you give to someone looking to start a podcast, such as myself?
Subject! Talk about what you love and have interest in!  Reach out to a few people and pick their brain.  The indie podcast scene is amazing, so supportive.  I try to make myself approachable for new podcasters, I try to help someone not make the same mistakes I have.
Listen to the Libsyn the Feed podcast, I wish I would have known about their podcast before I started.  Surround yourself with fellow podcasters like yourself, and ask as many questions as you can!  No question is too dumb!

Was there anyone or any shows that inspired you and made you want to be a podcaster?
Tell em’ Steve Dave and The Tenderloins were my first podcasts.  The shows were so fun to listen to.  But as they are ‘tv stars’ they aren’t to ‘reachable’ via social media.  I bumped into Jason from 7 Days a Geek on twitter as he is a huge TESD fan as well.  In his tweeting he mentioned he had a podcast too.  I gave it a listen (about 3-4) episodes but he was very interactive on twitter, which was quite surprising to me.  But it showed me that you could have a great podcast and still interact with your audience.  It showed me how to be a great host!  Graphic Novice, History of Bad Ideas and Green Up as started within weeks of each other, we grew as friends and helped each other out.  It inspired me to keep pushing forward!
Dark Angels and Pretty Freaks, if I was a new podcast their show would be my fuel to get into podcasting, Neil and Annaleis are such great hosts! And their presence on twitter is more than inspiring.  As a friend of theirs I feel very blessed and honored to have them in my corner.

What are some of your favorite podcasts to listen too?
Dark Angels and Pretty Freaks, Graphic Novice, 7 Days a Geek, Amish Baby Machine, Tell em Steve Dave and now I have added Attention Deficit Order to my weekly mix.

If there was one thing that you could change about Greenup what would it be?
Clean up the structure, keep it a little tighter and carry more video game subjects.  Something I have a plan for in the future.  I am torn about wishing to go back in time and show myself where I needed to focus, and save myself from going through the rough patch we did.  But at the same time if I don’t go through that tough patch I don’t think I would be as humbled as I am or as grateful. I think the pain is worth where we are now.

If you could have anyone famous special guest on your show who would you look forward to the most and why?
Jeremy Clarkson from BBC’s Top Gear, I am a HUGE fan of the show.  He has the best job in the world!  The locations he has been to and the success his show has.  My number two would be Chef Gordon Ramsay, again I have watched his shows before he came across the pond!

What are your favorite Football teams? NFL? College?
I’m from Utah so I am a Ute fan through and through!  As for NFL, ever since I was young I have been a Chicago Bears fan.  But lately I have just been following Utes as they get to the next level.

You used to coach football. Why’d you stop? And if you could would you start doing it again?
Like with podcasting it’s a juggling game.  The amount of time and energy I put into podcasting is just a fraction of what went into Coaching.  It was a part of our family’s lives.  Practice, meetings, film watching and games.  My life during the season, was get home from work, change my clothes and say hi to my family then straight to the high school. I’d come home around 7 or 8, eat dinner hang out with the family then stay up till 10-11 working on practice planning, watching film and scheme changes.  My daughter just turned 5, and I don’t want to miss her growing up. Our old head coach was fired 2 years ago and the new head coach brought in a whole new staff, I was only 1 of 2 coaches to return.  I had a hard time finding my spot within the staff and I did not have much fun last year.  I didn’t feel that I was wanted or needed, so all that added up to make the decision easy for me.  I had a few offers to coach at other high schools in the area, but I couldn’t do it.  I didn’t even make it to a game this year, the wound is still raw.  I think once Jillian gets older I can always go back to coaching.  If the time is right and we can make it work, yeah I miss the sideline!

What was the best thing about coaching football?
It’s FOOTBALL!  Football has always been in my life, I played all through school.  The best thing about coaching is the kids and the bond you form with them and your fellow coaches. I’ve had undefeated seasons, I have had 1 win seasons and everything in between.  The wins and losses aren’t important, it’s the young men!  The relationships you build are for life!  I have a few of my boys playing college ball.  Going to their games, seeing them play at the next level, then after the game you go down to the field and the hug and handshake is something only a player and coach can describe.
The strategy of coaching is also gives a lot personal satisfaction. Planning and preparing the week before, when you work hard to get your kids ready and on game day you call and coach a great game, and you put the kids in a the position for them to succeed, and when the time comes and you call the right play and your boys come off the field successful and you look across the field and see the other staff with their heads in their hands, yeah I won that one!

If you could coach any team in the world who would you pick and why?
Utah Utes! To be on the sideline at Rice Eccles and hear the MUSS do the jump on 3rd down, have them rush the field after beating a top 10 team!  I would love to be on the sideline and work with Coach Urban Myers (now at the Ohio State).  Also I would love to be at Soldier Stadium with Coach Ditka during the 85 season!  I got to meet Coach Jon Grudden and the time I spent with him was so much fun!  I’d love to work alongside him!

Tell us a little bit about your charity/Toy Drive Jilly-Bugs Toys for Hugs!
10644149_752869874771532_2791595862095461558_oMy family holds an annual toy drive to provide new toys to the children (patients) and the families that are at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland OR.  My daughter’s life was saved there, she suffers from a rare liver disease and we have spent many nights there.  On our last long visit there, we didn’t know why Jillian was so sick.  I was at my breaking point and a volunteer brought in a coloring book and some crayons, for 30 mins my daughter was herself and it gave me the strength to push through what we needed to.  We want to do everything we can to help bring some joy to some strong and special kids.  We are going to be delivering our 4th donation right before Thanksgiving. In our 4 years we have donated almost 3500 toys!  It has also been amazing to see my daughter take such pride in our toy drive.  To see her, see the importance of giving back is very special.

How long have you been playing video games? What’s your favorite memory?
I’ve been playing since the NES.  For me it’s silly but sitting in front of the TV that Christmas while my mom played Mario and duck hunt with us.  This year Jillian will be getting an old NES for Christmas and I am looking forward to her getting to play and grow with the games that I did.

What is your choice in console? And how did you feel about the Console wars when next-gen was coming out?
Xbox, I was a Sony guy up to PS2,but  the 360 was great.  But here’s the thing with me Live is what sells me on Xbox, the PSN wasn’t as good.  Now with the next-gen, the PS4 has come out swinging and has out done the One.  But as I look back to the 360, and all the headaches we had with Live then.  They were able to build a great service.  Unfortunately the One has really let me down with Live and what they have to offer and all the bugs.  But I am faithful, most if not all my friends play on the One and Live and that is what keeps me there.  I think after this holiday season, if MS is smart and clean up Live and its issues, bring us the content we want on Live I think they can overcome the PS4.

What are some of your favorite games to play by yourself? And with your friends?
By myself, Tropico, Civ or Madden.  With my friends, anything as long as its fun.  Usually Call of Duty or Battlefield. Looking forward to Assassins Creed Unity!  But nothing compares to the old days of Socom II on our PS2’s!

Important question: Why do you Game?
Its fun, and I can get away!  I can just sit down and for an hour or two I don’t have to help someone find something or do a carry out (work).  I get to just sit down and play a game!

The year of new games is coming close to an end. In the remaining months what game are you most excited for?
Assassins Creed Unity! I’ve never played an AC game, but the 4 player co-op looks and should be amazing.  After that the only game I am really eager to play is an Indie game named Aztez by Team Colorblind.

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