Friday, October 16, 2009


i realize that i haven't really talked a whole lot about how i met ben here... or about how exactly i ended up in missouri. so today, i put your burning curiosity to rest. that, and my friend mary is having a bloggy carnival about first dates. join along if you'd like!

it was 12 years ago this coming november. the year was 1997. i was a minnesota born and raised 15-year-old green bay packer fan and lover of brett favre. i had recently discovered chat rooms online, and one inparticular chat room that i occasionally visited was a football chat room. one afternoon i happened to start a discussion about the packers with an 18-year-old missouiran and rival minnesota vikings fan. at the end of our conversation, for some reason, he gave me his email address,

so i emailed him.*

and he emailed me back.

and thus my friendship with ben started. we emailed back and forth and chatted online for 2 years. and then one lovely afternoon in august my friend jessica and i were watching a movie at my house when i got a call from john henry with the internal revenue service. (remember that jess?!) mr. henry informed me that he had 6 documents stating that i hadn't paid my taxes for the past 4 years and if i didn't cooperate that he would hand the case over to the authorities. my parents weren't home, so i was kind of freaking out. and then he said something like, "so this is what you sound like." yes, that mean mr. henry who wouldn't believe that i'd never had a job was actually ben calling me for the first time. (and yes, he had written out his whole speech prior to calling me...)

and that was the beginning of our endless phone calls and tons of money spent on phone cards. eleven months later, in july of 2000, ben came to minnesota to meet me in person for the first time. i was 18, ben was 21. and at the airport it was love at first sight! he stayed at our house for nine wonderful days. we toured the city, went bowling and mini golfing, went fishing, had a pizza picnic, soaked each other in a water fight, and played a ton of games! i don't remember exactly what our first date was, but i do remember that we kissed the second night he was there. i gave him a hug goodnight, and then it sort of awkwardly but wonderfully turned into a kiss.

it was inevitable and unavoidable. and incredible.

and thence our relationship set sail.

our first ever picture together. please excuse my big looking head and my extremely white face. and the quality of the picture—it's from our scrapbook.

it was also inevitable that ben had to leave after our nine-day venture. but i will save that for another post! after all, this was only supposed to be about our first date!

hop over to mary's blog to read some more first date stories, or write your own and play along!

*in no way do i condone 15-year-old girls meeting boys online. he did not know my first name for months and did not give him my address or phone number for years. and yes, we will be coming up with a different story to tell our daughter someday...!


Jess said...

I had only heard bits and pieces of that story so it would interesting to hear the rest of it! How cute and wonderful of a story for the first time he called you!

A day in the Life... said...

Yes I would LOVE To hear the complete story!

Brooke said...

What a great story! I wonder if you two were some of the first ever couples to meet online and get married.

mcfadden said...

Keep Writing! Would like to hear the rest of the story!

Heather B said...

Brings back memories..I totally remember Ben leaving for Minnesota!!

Heather said...

ah, the memories! good times. i relived some of them as i was doing your scrapbook. and of course laughing about the "script" for the first phone call..... wow, that should have tipped you off right there, erin!

Ashley @ {Let Go, Laughing} said...

what a sweet story! i never knew you guys met online like greg and i!

or maybe you told me that in a comment and i am just blanking.... hmmm not sure now.

anyway, i can't wait to hear the rest of the story! you left us hanging! what happened after he had to leave???

Jess(ica) said...

I totally remember Ben calling you that day! Good times! Glad I could be there for one of the many milestones in your relationship! =) Cute story and I'm with Katie, let's hear the complete story!!!

Mary @ Giving Up On Perfect said...

Thank you for playing along!! I love your story! So cute and fun and oh, yes, you should probably not encourage Samantha to meet boys online. :) And of course, I’m so glad Ben got you to move to Missouri!!

Sonya said...

I had no idea that you all met in a chat room! How funny and what a cute story. Something I never would have guessed from chatting with you at the credit union!!!