Yogie or humble ninja? Dedicated artist or favorite teacher? The question “who is Corey Wiscomb?” frequently sneaks into students’ conversations. The best answer is the first correction this Olga-born gave in his interview: “Feral Children of Olga, not Feral Olga Children. Very different.”
Like many of us, Wiscomb began his adventure of a life on Orcas, taking his first martial arts classes from Sensei Warren Kinion in Oddfellows Hall and playing football and basketball at OIHS. After high school, he attended Colgate University, playing basketball and studying physics. However, like many students, his dreams changed. During his college career, Wiscomb left basketball and took a year off from school in order to surf and do some soul searching. Upon his return, he studied art with the support of his professor, and it eventually became his major. He also became known as the “Dojo Rat,” practicing martial arts for hours a day, and living in the Asia House where he experienced other aspects of Asian culture. Wiscomb’s wandering spirit can be attributed partially to his adventurous upbringing in Olga as a child.
If you have ever had a class with Wiscomb, you have likely heard scraps of his seemingly unreal stories, which he insists are nothing but the truth. His adventures started in a perhaps unexpected center of martial arts activities, in the farmlands of the Midwest: Indianapolis. Starting with a passion, Wiscomb gave 100 percent to his dream: four years on the pro-circuit, where he traveled to China, London, and Hawaii. He lived his dream and worked with incredible teachers. Some, like Leon Joy, were even fellow island kids.
Leaving the martial arts in his late 20s, Wiscomb still had a lot more life to live. Due to hip injuries, Wiscomb was not able to maintain and grow to the level at which he once was, but instead chose to follow another passion. Many athletes understand the feeling of a “high” when they are in the zone. Everything else is obsolete and the only thing in the way between you and your goal is your abilities and yourself. Since drifting from the martial arts world, Wiscomb has found this high in his new passion: music and art. In his journey to Asia, back to the island, and everywhere in between, Wiscomb has continued to evolve, always keeping true to the wild adventures fostered by his childhood days running barefoot in Olga. His adventure is ever-changing, and while his timeline began with a dot in Olga, the end is an arrow pointed forward.