It's been five years since that image of Ben was published. From there Ben and I have managed to get published in every ski magazine imaginable, from double page spreads in Powder, full pages in Ski, Skiing, Freeskier, Ski Journal, Outside and even this past December a spot in the New York Times. And we did it all from right here on the East Coast. I would dare anyone to find a more published or older athlete from New England - and I'm not talking about some name who gets a few sponsors and moves to Mammoth, but an athlete who was shot in New England!
The whole reason for this post is to give a huge THANKS to Ben for being the hardest working athlete I'll ever meet. Ben's excitement to get out and get a few shots when I was glued to my couch, bringing ideas to the table when things were getting stale and always paying close attention to every detail. It's that work ethic (yeah I said that, Ben and work ethic in the same sentence) that separates Ben from other wanna-be athletes.
Ben is moving today for the other coast, Oregon to be more specific. I told him he needed to find a replacement before he left, but in typical Kubas fashion he didn't. Maybe some young gun will drive up the access road - 20 min late - and take over for Ben, but I'm not holding my breath. We've been through a lot my friend, that trip to the hospital which made shooting skiing not fun, to the better times, those trips to Utah, skinning a mountain in a thunder-snow storm, finishing tours in the dark and a temp of -5, to jumping off condo's after a few pitchers of Utah near-beer.
Good times my friend, good times.
Drive safe and we'll see you in August.
The page that started it all. Skiing Magazine, December 2003.