Married to the CEO

February 23rd, 2007 by Beth Balter

Stella’s Sock Puppet
Does this sound eerily familiar? Your phone rings. Picking it up and you’re immediately asked if you’d mind if you were put on speaker-phone. The person on the other end is affably telling you about an “idea” and asking you to do him (and the other perps in the room) a “favor”. You’re not really sold on the concept, and you’re really not sold on giving up your plans to go home, drink red wine and watch The Office, but you’re also not really in a position to say no. Well this is how I got here tonight, in front of this computer, attempting to get on board with Dave’s latest idea: throwing my hat into the Bento Box ring by explaining the manifold wonders and insanities of being married to the creator, CEO and Principle Goofball of BzzAgent.

In other words, I’ve been given a forum to complain.

This man is never home. When he is home he’s distracted, jetlagged, and obsessively bemoaning the perils of catching the ubiquitous barf/poop bug. He makes me pick out his wardrobe every day, he leaves shoes and glasses and half-eaten pretzels all over the house, and never gets home in time to pick up his dry cleaning. His knowledge of world events is negligible and his addiction to the Blackberry/cellphone/laptop axis of evil is insufferable. In short, his focus on BzzAgent has rendered Dave largely myopic to the world around him.

But not entirely.

He is a spectacular, uninhibited, joyous dad who clearly cherishes the precious time he spends with our daughter, Stella. He will fix everything that’s broken in our old home in a blaze of Saturday energy. He makes me laugh. He’s just as pissed off at Britney Spears as the next person. In short, and fully embracing the triteness of the following sentiment, he’s still the same guy I knew before he got so busy.

In the ten+ years that I’ve known Dave he’s had groundbreaking ideas galore - mixed in with his fair share of half-baked concepts. Ever the prankster, there was the time he told my coworker to put medicated Tucks pads on his razor burned neck and he ended up having to go on antibiotics to reduce the ensuing inflammation. Then there were the agonizing long-hair years, which segued into the gigantic sideburn years. Hang on a sec while I shudder a few times…

I’ve admittedly been a ruthless critic, not having much of a stomach for risk myself. But Dave has always been irrepressibly brimming with ideas—some good, some bad, some goofy, and some homeruns. It’s been my challenge to figure out how to give him an open-minded audience, when to be supportive and when to be (lovingly) derisive. I take the long view. I’m married to an entrepreneur. He’s always going to be busy, distracted, inventing, and thankfully goofy.

—Beth Balter

Married to the CEO

(9 votes, average: 4.67 out of 5)
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38 Responses to “Married to the CEO”

Melanie Says:

I loved the story of Dave. It kind of sounds like my marriage. My hat is off to you. I have been married for 13 years now and there has not been one dull day since. I never know from day to day what my husband is going to say or do. He keeps life interesting and I think that is a plus in my book.

bnewton Says:

great story

Sue Says:

Beth, kudos to you for understanding Dave, and yet, still loving him. After all, we women usually want to change our men into something we want, and then we don’t like the man he has turned in to! We tell them “you changed”. “What happened to the man I fell in love with?” Go figure!

You still have the same ‘goofball’ you fell in love with, and, to me, that speaks volumes for you!!


good2go Says:

Nice to meet you Beth… I’m glad “baby-Balter” now has a name (sorry for all the Baby-Balter cracks in my earlier Bento comments… all in good fun).
Thanks for the confirmation that Dave’s a goofball. It reaffirms that humour (humor) is necessary in the work place. Albeit it held me back, I’m sure, however I still have it and laugh at all the miserable fools in the business world.
It takes a special woman to back a successful goofball, and a remarkable woman to live with the ongoing challenges your lifestyle present.
I just hope one day I can meet my prince charming goofball and live haphazardly ever after ;)

asrnm Says:

enjoyed reading the story.

Jamie Guggenheim Says:

It’s nice to know there is a real person behind bzz agent. Sometimes corprate seams to businessy and you don’t think of them as real people.

htoumfodrow Says:

Ideas…Some good, some bad, some goofy>>>and then BOOM…right out of the park! That’s what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur - (Is it genetically encoded or is it a learned behavior???) Watching his infamous (I mean to the point of utter absurdity) thumbs literally fly across his Blackberry keypad is truly a thing to behold – I mean insane and ridiculous speed – you gotta see it! But then again, you have, haven’t you Beth? You know what I mean…I’ve had him in my car twice. A conversation (yeah, uh huh…just a sec…almost done…uh…yeah…go on….) whilst I see a peripheral “thumb blur” to my right as I’m driving. He apologizes, and then does it again, and again, and again….then answers a question before I’ve finished asking it! I stopped short of reaching over, opening the door and pushing him out (at a stoplight of course!) ;>)

Reality is - he is (hands-on) running a growing company & a major concern; building it; thinking on it in the same manner that enabled him to conceptualize it. He works his ass off! He does so with a great sense of humor…truly so. He digs tunes, sports, debating, and most of all – both his Children: Stella & BzzAgent. The later is his passion, the former is his life. His passion, I believe, feeds his life. I like him, and it’s why I am here.

I think it’s safe to say though, that if he’s kinda’ cool….Beth, you must totally rock….and are, I’ll bet, THE ROCK!

Lynda Says:

You love him a great deal and are very proud of him. That is very obvious. I can picture a sparkle in your eye when you are typing about him and a little grin when it come to…well..some of his interesting sides. Keep up the good work, I would guess you are his best supporter and he woudn’t be where he is today if it weren’t for you being at his side. In a world where divorce is one out of two, and everyday a person can turn on the television and hear husbands and wives condeming each other so bad you wonder what they saw in each other to fall in love in the first place. It’s nice to see a marriage with love, trust, and support that shines in all the words you wrote. I bet, if he were asked to write the same, he would glow with pride written in his “man” words of course. Thanks for the encouragement in knowing there are couples that really love and like each other. Now take what you have written, put it in a frame, and take it out when you have one of those days when you are so frustrated with him that you wonder what you ever saw in him. It will, I guarantee you, put that sparkle and smile back on your face..and give you enough flutter in your stomach and heart to feel in love once again. And on your 50th wedding anniversary..maybe you might even want to share your thoughts with him…or not..keep him wondering what keeps putting that grin on your face year after year. Thanks again for sharing

patricia phillips Says:

I found this funny and cute,and kind of romantic at the same time.I think you two are made for each other.And it works,because you have given him his space to do what he needs to do.As he probably does for you.And you do not make him feel bad for chasing his dreams.Hats off to you!

Heather Says:

You guys remind me a lot of us as well! My husband and I have been together 10+ years and it’s good to know the good, the bad and the ugly…and accept it!

Louise Says:

Sounds like a good marriage and never a dull moment. I enjoyed hearing about Dave the husband and Dave the father!

Brittle Says:

I hope when I get married my marriage will be like yours. I totally agree with Louise.

Spencer Says:

I though this was funny and romantic!!! And I really enjoyed reading the story…

Green House Says:

I agree with that idea wholly. I mean, not only does it get frustrating when your loved one is never around, but start with it just plain hurts. I’ve been apart from my girl friend from solid weeks at a time, and sometime it’s like she’s the only thing that i want around, at all… others, i have to try and keep myself busy with MY work as not to get distracted. It’s a little harder for me than most to communicate with her, my personal problem though, i personally HATE phone. I don’t have tones of dropped calls or anything, it just seems so unpersonalized and imperfect. Typing things like this, you at least get the time to decide if this is what you want people to hear or not, so it can be perfected, but on the phone, it’s instant and you don’t get to physically see their emotions. But yea, I understand, whole heartedly. And it’s healthy that you see that these are things that he ‘has to do’ and that you’ve found a way to cope.

Lori Says:

Nice story Beth..it is so real. So true. Isn’t it funny..you can love someone with every single cell in your body..and then those things that drive you crazy only drive you crazy because you do love them..I bet sometimes you find yourself watching him with your children and saying “GOD, i love this guy’..who the heck left these socks on the floor!!! I guess life need balance..but remember..you guys need US time.. ;) I know after 21 years..even if its laughing at the same jokes you told each other 100’s of times…

camila Says:

i loved this story! you guys seem like a really good couple! i think that your story was really funny and cute! HAHAAHHAHAH

keenan Says:

great story

Brittle Says:

I thought that this was a great story, it really does hurt when a loved one isn’t there… this story helped me and I am sure it helped other as well.

Lori Says:

Sounds like my marriage a little. Been married for 6 years to “Jimmy Neutron” and his ideas…lol.

jboyd_13 Says:

Wonderful story…thank you for sharing with us all

palmarty Says:

Loved the story it made me know I’m doing the right thing when in my relationship I accept-Understand and Support

katylt2000 Says:

This was a great story. It reminds me that I am not the only one with a husband who works hard and as a result has his cell phone glued to his ear 24/7! Yet he also has the side to him that only I see where, he too, can be a goofball! Since most of my friends are not yet married it is sometimes difficult to know whether all husbands are this way, or any at all for that matter. Job well done! :)

Jagsmom Says:

Thanks for sharing a little of your life with us.

Melissa Says:

It sounds like you give Dave the room to be the business man, the comedian, the father, the husband, with the patience and understand that a lot of business man’s wives can not give. Trying to fit all of that into a busy day, week, etc. and finding the balance at times may be hard, but it seems ya’ll have it pretty much in control, so congratulations. Thanks for sharing a glimpse of your life with us.

Luke Says:

I loved reading the story… especially the part where Dave is pissed of at Britney Spears! That was great!

kathy a smith Says:

I liked your story too. I have been married for 24 1/2 years. It has been a roller coaster ride and well worth it. I guess it is true what Forrest Gump’s mom said “Life is like a box of chocolates You never know what your gonna get” Its a good thing chocolate is a girls best friend.

Pam Says:

Yes! Married life is not dull. At times it makes roller coasters seem like kiddie rides, but oh what fun!!!
Been married 20 + years and I find my hubby is still a very interesting and creative man.

Just remember during the bad times how great the good times are!

Thanks for sharing your story and reminding me to be thankful for my continued story…

Great luck as you continue to write more chapters in your book of marriage! Enjoy!!

Christianw27 Says:

I love this story but I think my husband and I are in reverse. I am a dedicated workaholic. I have my own business, a full time job, I teach a class for a local college and I’m just going back to school now. I think this helped open my eyes a little to my husbands side of the story. He probably thinks I’m crazy but, I just thrive on it.

ddee Says:

Mine, too. I have a crazy schedule and thrive on it… and I have a very supportive husband. Beth, like the last poster your story opened my eyes as well. Thanks for sharing.

JBaileyR Says:

Just goes to prove behind every great man is a great woman!

MajorLoser Says:

Well written, light-hearted and amusing. Cheers.

Barb Says:

Great to see there’s more to life out there than Buzz for Dave. Thank you for sharing. You tell a story well.

Karla Says:

A witty story, fun to read and makes me really appreciate Dave. And as stated earlier behind every great man is a great woman!

Nancyyc Says:

Sweet story, Beth. Thanks for giving us an “inside” look.

Larry Says:

Well I must thank you for this kind of insight. I now know what my wife feels. :-) Thanks for the great story.

Leila Says:

thanks for the story. it’s a delight to read that other people are married to people as colourful and distracted as dave and myself and still love us anyway.

Stingray Says:

Well said. I have been with my husband now for 15 years. He’s been supportive in EVERYTHING I do and I appreciate him for it.
I am the CEO of a company and an entrepreneur. Without him there is no way I would be where I am today.