The Boy Behind the Blog

Since I reference Ben a fair amount on this blog, I thought it was only fair that you guys got to know him a little better. I came up with some questions and left them open for him to answer. His first response upon seeing them: "I don't like open-ended questions! How long do my answers have to be?!" Sooo maybe that gives you some indication of the kind of guy he should be pretty obvious that he is not a blogger. He actually does enjoy writing, though, and after some encouragement, he shot these answers back to me. They're all straight from him, no additions or edits on my part (except some links I added in case you're new or just forgot what the heck he's referencing, and this: he wants you to know he thinks this post should be titled "The Boy Behind the Girl Behind the Blog").


So, Ben, what's your deal? Tell us a little bit about yourself. 
I'm 28 (I think - It's hard to keep track). I went to Virginia Tech for Computer Engineering. My parents are workaholics and the gene was passed on to me. I grew up working in the family business, the Commodore Theater. Now, I build computer software and hardware stuff for container ports. In my free time, I volunteer for Code for America by helping local government leverage technology to make their services easier to use. Translation, I make free apps like http://HRTB.us, and 

When Tracy can pry me away from the computer, I like to go to concerts and binge watch TV shows on Netflix with her. We also have a lot of pets. It wasn't my idea to get any of them, but I've grown so close to some of them that Tracy questions where she stands (Trace - it's the dog, then you, then Octavian). 

What do you think about Tracy's blog? What are your favorite post topics? Favorite post(s) in particular? 
I think it's really interesting to read Tracy's blog and get some insights into what she's thinking that I wouldn't get otherwise. The running stuff isn't my favorite because she already articulates most of that to me in person. I like when she examines her life choices, especially since they've been so dramatic over the last couple years. When she makes her decisions, I don't ask about for her reasoning; I trust her judgement, so I just encourage her to take the leap. It's interesting to read her thoughts once she's organized them and written them down. I'm also always pleasantly surprised to read posts about me. She says the nicest things. I need to work on doing the same for her. 

What do you really think about Tracy's running and triathlon adventures? 
I'm super impressed by how far Tracy has come. I remember our first run... We tried to run through the grass around a part of the street that was closed and ended up in deep mud. Tracy got frustrated to the point of tears and we went home to wash our new running shoes out. Her adventures were almost over before they started. A few weeks later, we tried to run a 10 minute mile. We got to 0.9 when Tracy gave in to exhaustion. 

I know better than anyone how unlikely these adventures of hers are. I've learned to never doubt even her wildest dreams. I know she will find a way to achieve them all. It's fun to watch. 

You and Tracy have been to nearly 100 concerts together. Which one was your favorite? 
That would have to be the time we drove to Danville, VA together to see The Fall of Troy. I'm sure the show was good, but the lead singer was sick. Halfway through the show, he had to sit down and put his head in his hands until the throbbing subsided enough for him to continue. But this show takes the number one spot because it was one of our first real bonding experiences. Our friendship was solidified on that car ride through Southwest Virginia and it became the foundation for our relationship and our marriage. 

I'm really sad to say that my favorite concert from a musical perspective was one that Tracy didn't attend because she was sick. Dr. Manhattan came through Tampa when we lived down there and I went by myself. It was in a tiny little warehouse and there were about 30 people there. Every single person was completely into the show and we all danced together the entire time. 

Other notable shows include The Fall of Troy in Charlotte where we hung out with the band until 4AM and then got a speeding ticket on the way home, TREOS at the Peppermint Beach Club, Taking Back Sunday's Tell All Your Friends Tour, and Saosin with Anthony Green in Philly. 

Why do you even like Tracy anyway?
I hate this question because it's so hard for me to articulate how I feel about Tracy. It's like asking "why do you like breathing". Tracy and I have been best friends for almost ten years. Being with her is the most natural thing in the world. I've always loved her, but she's become a really amazing person in the last few years. The strength she has shown both in her running and in her career change has been truly inspiring. I can't wait to see her graduate college and become an Ironman! 

If you could quit your job and do anything, what would you do? 
I would Code for America full time. 

You give some pretty spectacular advice. What's one mantra you think everyone should have?
"Positive Thoughts. Positive Deeds." I'm a huge believer in the power of positive thinking. We are living in the future! Take advantage of it and don't waste time on negativity.

Hope you enjoyed getting to know the #1 dude in my life! Anything else you want to know about him?


  1. "I hate this question because it's so hard for me to articulate how I feel about Tracy. It's like asking "why do you like breathing"." FAVORITE PART! So so sweet and I know it's so so true! It was really fun to learn more about it him! My company does computer stuff for the government and it blows my mind that people know how to do those kinds of things! I wonder if I could rope Peter into doing this…:)

  2. "It's like asking "why do you like breathing"" Holy cow. That was the sweetest thing I've read in a LONG time. *heart eyes*

    This was such a sweet post, Tracy (And Ben!). You've got a keeper there.

  3. I loved reading this-- Ben does articulate things so well! Loved his concert stories, but loved his answer to why he likes you even more! So sweet!

  4. awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww 'It's like asking "why do you like breathing".' I die. So freaking adorable.
    This was such a fun post to read and to hear (read) Ben's perspective. I love that he's super supportive of you. You guys are clearly great together :)

  5. Aww! This is great! Ben seems like a good egg :o)

  6. Okay, stop. This made me so happy! I'm sure you guys have your ups and downs just like any couple — hell, any two people at all in life life — but you look pretty damn perfect from here. I love when both halves of a couple honestly speak so highly and respectfully of one another. (I do NOT get the people who act like their SO is a great big burden on their lives, ya know?) You guys are lucky to have one another and have such a mutual admiration for each other. And I love that you guys have the same perspective on those concerts/road trips to them! Very sweet. (PS, I agree — Tracy, you're pretty incredible.)

  7. OH my gosh - his response to why he likes you - it's like trying to articulate why I like breathing - swoon!! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

  8. Awwww he is such a gem!! Seriously! I loved his answer about why he loves you. So sweet of him. Also as usual he gave good advice (Thanks Ben). You both are so lucky to have each other you both rock!

  9. Awww great post! Loved his breathing analogy.


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