About Ben

May 16, 2007 | By | 39 Replies More

I hereby designate this space to be about Ben.

If you’ve never met him, Ben will show up here soon enough, with an armful of links and lots of observations.   I think this should serve as the official place where we can chat with Ben, jab him good-naturedly, learn of the many jobs he’s worked, and  watch his progress as he attempts to get dates through his written eloquence.  Most of all, try to determine if “Ben” is really an 89-year old woman or a grad studence observing us to gather data for his/her dissertation.  Or a really smart otter.  That’s the beauty of the Internet.

If your name is Ben, but you’re not the Ben, you’re also welcome.  If you’re not named Ben, but you want to be, you can join us too.  If you’ve got a 3rd cousin named Ben, have at it.

This location is about All things Ben-ish.  Ben and the art of motorcycle maintenance.  Ben voyage.  Ben nice talking . . .  OK, Ben, where are you?  Tell us something.

[After I originally posted this, I noticed that the software failed to generate any “related posts.”   This is extraordinary and it proves that there is nothing and no one quite like Ben.]


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Category: Whimsy

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (39)

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  1. Ben says:

    Injuries have often taken Pastrana off the circuit for weeks or months. His medical record includes multiple concussions, a broken back, and severe knee problems due to cartilage degeneration.

    In 1998 at a Triple Crown event in Lake Havasu when he was 14-years-old he jumped a 120-foot ramp and came up short. In the process of the crash he rag dolled and separated his spine from his pelvis, which put him in the medical books and left him in a coma for two weeks and in a wheel chair for three months. “I was in and out of consciousness for about three days and had six blood transfusions,” says Pastrana. He also adds that according to doctors only three people in the U.S. have ever lived after this kind of injury.

    “I don’t remember most of the injuries there have been so many.” His laundry list includes: the dislocated spine, in his left knee he’s torn his ACL, PCL, LCL, MCL, his bucket handle meniscus, broken his tibia and fibula, he’s had surgery on his left wrist twice, left thumb once, two surgeries on his back, one on his right elbow, nine on his left knee, six on the right knee, one shoulder surgery which left him with the only piece of metal he has in his body


    No Pain No Gain?

  2. The video about the free runners was cool. 😀

  3. Ben says:

    "Have you ever seen soldiers who fought against each other in WWII having reunions where they now share in their humanity?"

    In "Empire of the Sun" we catch a glimpse the respect which "men" hold for one another, including those on opposing lines, and especially the kamikaze. A powerful epic, a must see for John Malkovich fans. (the lead actor became quite famous too, Christian Bale of "American Psycho" and "Batman")



    also, I almost forgot to mention the most spectacular, rivoting, wrenching, inspiring WWII production that will EVER be made, "Band of Brothers"


  4. Ben says:

    Okay, calm down, I'm not the antichrist. Let's just say I opened Pandora's box. It is impossible to shut the lid now that is open, the contents are too tempting and unruly and real-seeming. I'm talking about learning about the Earth mostly, the way the major continents were once connected. The ridge which runs along the atlantic ocean spreads apart by a few inches a year. Lava is what pushes out of the fissure in the middle of the ocean. Imagine the fresh molton lava hitting the ocean water, being born. The environment is harsh down there at the bottom of the black ocean, but life abounds! Worms, bacteria, and "entire ecosystems" actually live down there near the scalding vents. That is where life began on earth 2,000,000,000 years ago.


    Another interesting area is the cosmos or "space". Long Long ago in a galaxy far, far away there was a little star. The star is part of a galaxy which contains BILLIONS of other stars. That is impossible to imagine, since even our own sun seems so immense and grand. But even if you could imagine the Billions of stars in our galaxy, that galaxy is just a tiny speck. In fact, there are Billions of GALAXIES in the universe!


    But how did the stuff get there? Someone created it? Nah, but if you can imagine 13,000,000,000 years ago, things were a bit cozier then they are now. In fact, time itself, kind of curls into itself. "Everything" which is part of the current universe was "one", very difficult to comprehend, but beautiful.


  5. Ben says:

    Here is a story about a different Ben, which gave me chills.


    The technique is called echolocation, and many species, most notably bats and dolphins, use it to get around. But a 14-year-old boy from Sacramento? While many blind people listen for echoes to some degree, Ben's ability to navigate in his sightless world is, say experts, extraordinary. "His skills are rare," says Dan Kish, a blind psychologist and leading teacher of echomobility among the blind. "Ben pushes the limits of human perception."

    Ben learned how to read Braille and walk with a cane, but when he was 3, he also began teaching himself echolocation, something he picked up by tossing objects and making clicking sounds to find them. His sense of hearing, teachers noticed, was exceptional. "One time a CD fell off his desk and I was reaching for it when he said, 'Nah, I got it,'

    Ben was 6 when he decided he wasn't going to use a cane – he calls it a stick – to get around. "You go to school and you're the only one with a stick, what's the first thing some kid's going to do? Break it in two," he says. "And then where are you? You're helpless." Ben plays basketball with his pals, rides horses at camp and dances with girls at school events. He excels at video games by memorizing the sounds that characters and movements make.

    Last month Ben widened his horizons even further. "The thing I'm most scared of is water," he says. "But if I had eyes, it's what I'd most like to see." So on June 25 he took a trip to San Diego's SeaWorld Adventure Park to swim with dolphins and hear how they use echolocation. Waist-deep in a saltwater pool, he immersed one ear as Sandy, a bottle-nosed dolphin, swam toward him. "Man," he said, "she clicks fast!" Ben spent 45 minutes playing with Sandy, touching her teeth and stroking her dorsal fin. Bob McMains, supervisor of SeaWorld's dolphin program, says that in his 23 years there, few people have listened so intently to the sounds the dolphins make. "He's got a gift with dolphins; he's truly unique," says McMains. "I told him, once he's 18 he's got a job here anytime."

  6. Vicki Baker says:

    Abou Ben Adhem

    Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase!)

    Awoke one night from a deep dream of peace,

    And saw, within the moonlight in his room,

    Making it rich, and like a lily in bloom,

    An Angel writing in a book of gold:

    Exceeding peace had made Ben Adhem bold,

    And to the Presence in the room he said,

    "What writest thou?" The Vision raised its head,

    And with a look made of all sweet accord

    Answered, "The names of those who love the Lord."

    "And is mine one?" said Abou. "Nay, not so,"

    Replied the Angel. Abou spoke more low,

    But cheerily still; and said, "I pray thee, then,

    Write me as one who loves his fellow men."

    The Angel wrote, and vanished. The next night

    It came again with a great wakening light,

    And showed the names whom love of God had blessed,

    And, lo! Ben Adhem's name led all the rest!

    -Leigh Hunt

    (Leigh Hunt was the perpetually broke journalist friend of Percy Bysshe Shelley, the atheist romantic poet.)

  7. Ben says:

    "watch his progress as he attempts to get dates through his written eloquence"

    You may eat those words someday. Soon…

  8. "and watch his progress as he attempts to get dates through his written eloquence"

    –Erich, May 16th, 2007

    "You may eat those words someday. Soon…"

    –Ben, February 2nd, 2008


  9. Ben says:

    Well, Ben's internet relationship has officially cooled off. Sulking a bit, but nothing really to be sad about. Still friends.

  10. I think you would enjoy a real relationship more.

  11. Ben says:

    Jim and Brynn and other newcomers since the Year of Our Lord 2007, meet the charming, bright, and eccentric person for whom this blog was originally crafted:



  12. Brynn Jacobs says:


    My hat is off to you and your amazing penny-guessing skills. 🙂 What's your secret??

  13. Ben says:

    Obviously I had some luck. However I did not just guess, I used weight to make my guess (I was allowed to lift the container, it felt just slightly heavier than a 20 pound dumbell). Then I looked online to see how many pennies in a pound, simple math. But wait, I also noticed that the pennies were old and brown (probably sitting in a drawer for years) thus were probably the *heavier* older variety of penny, so I adjusted my guess downward, I forget the exact math.


  14. Ben says:

    My best ski run caught on camera!


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