(Audio interview with WNYM's Valerie Smaldone below.)
Al Kratzer and Bob Benjamin met at the bus stop their first day of Kindergarten in the small town of Flemington, NJ. They spent their early years playing in the woods, building forts, racing go-carts down hills, knocking on doors as 3rd grade Jr. Fire Marshalls and terrorizing the neighborhood on “Mischief Nights.” Both sets of parents seemed happiest when they were nowhere in sight.
Though very different - Al was into science, art and music while Bob cared only about sports - they’ve remained good friends all through the years. Al turned Bob onto music and writing, and Bob got Al to compete as an athlete - to the point that Al built a boxing ring in his family’s garage where all the boys around came to beat the crap out of each other.
After graduating from high school, Al went on to the very “liberal” University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, and Bob headed south to Rollins College in Winter Park, FL, a more “conservative” (yet wild) institution. Neither one was a model student.
During the course of his career, Al worked his way up from being a political cartoonist at a local newspaper to becoming the Publisher of a prominent media outlet. Bob worked for a Congressman in Washington, then a media buying service in NYC before serving as President of a family owned retail concern. In recent years, Bob sold his interest in the firm and Al opted to take a buyout from the newspaper operation he headed.
Whenever they’d get together, the subject would turn to politics. Al taking a definite Democratic Party stance, while Bob remained true to his Republican values. Heated arguments would often ensue and last until they’d tire out. In almost every instance, they’d wind up laughing out loud only to agree that there’s a solution somewhere towards the “center.” This kind of thinking has thus become the essence of Head2Head.
The authors hope you’ll have as much fun reviewing their work as they’ve had creating it.