By Michelle Talsma Everson, July 2019 Issue.
When most couples have a joint hobby it’s often something like a favorite sport, traveling, or binge watching the same show. For Keith Lane and Ben Ragunton — who have been together 23 years — their shared venture is a little different and a lot of geeky.
As the founders of The Two Gay Geeks Webcast, also known as the TG Geeks Webcast for short, they collaborate on covering “all aspects of Geek-dom and Nerd-ery” on their popular webcast and website. With a motto of, “You name it, we talk about it,” their webcast has experienced continued success.
When chatting, I asked the two self-proclaimed geeks the burning question that’s on everyone’s mind: what’s the difference between a geek and a nerd?
“There is no difference, it’s the same thing,” Ragunton says.“ A geek or a nerd is really anyone who obsesses over something that really drives their passion. For example, I nerd out or geek out over pop culture.”
Lane shares that the two, who both have day jobs in healthcare, started the webcast in June 2014. The idea to have their own show grew out of their experiences on former podcasts. The original thought was to have the domain name reflect their Two Gay Geeks brand, but TGGeeks.com was what was available — so TG Geeks was born.
“Our first webcast was eight minutes long, don’t ever listen to it, it was horrible,” Lane jokes. Since then, the duo has vastly improved, creating their weekly webcasts most often on the weekends and airing them on Mondays. It’s an interview type show with most often a pop culture focus, Lane says.
“We started with people that we knew, attending conventions, getting on people’s radar,” Ragunton says. “It was a lot of knocking on doors but now, after five years, we’re getting to the sweet spot where people come to us.”
The show does a lot of interviews with creators: film makers, authors, artists, and the like. Lane says that it’s often the guest’s first time being interviewed. Recently, in honor of Pride Month, their guests all had an LGBTQ+ focus. But, it’s also a theme in their show year-round.
“So, when we first started, we were Two Gay Geeks, but our content was mostly pop culture,” shares Lane. “And over the years we have interjected more LGBTQ+ content and have kind of become accidental activists.”
Ragunton adds that, as their listenership grew, PR companies and publicists looking to promote their clients and creative ventures are now approaching them more. Balanced with their full-time day jobs, the duo and their team of volunteers, now attend movie screenings, review books and go to press events to network and gather content.
“I used to feel like we were in a bubble, but the bubble has a greater reach than I’ve ever imagined,” Ragunton says.
Lane shares that, surprisingly, the Phoenix-based duo is more popular outside of Phoenix than across the Valley. They hope to change that, though.
In each show, they provide free advertising to nonprofits that serve the LGBTQ+ community and beyond. Lane shares they run PSAs for suicide prevention, The Trevor Project, the Trans Lifeline, the Joshua Tree Feeding Program, and more.
To split up the duties of a nearly full-time venture, Lane most often is the sound engineer, producer, website administrator and commentator. Ragunton is the co-host and loves to write.
Now, several years into their venture, the webcast has grown into a full-fledged media site. Lane shares that TG Geeks is home to the weekly Monday webcast, a Friday news article about pop culture, and even its own Sunday cartoon. One of their favorite claims to fame was a recent interview at a pre-Oscar party with the cast that won for Best Short Film.
“TG Geeks is truly a labor of love. even though sometimes it can be frustrating from a technology standpoint, we still publish daily,” Lane says.
“I really do enjoy this,” Ragunton shares. “It’s personally rewarding, especially when we get to do reviews and have guests in the studio. It’s fun for us.” Both men joke that they’d love to win the lottery so the webcast can be their full time jobs.
In addition to being on their own webcast, Two Gay Geeks can be heard on Krypton Radio (kryptonradio.com) — or as Ragunton puts it, they’re part of the “Krypton Radio Empire.” The show is about an hour long and the two admit that they talk about anything that “trips their trigger.” Some of their favorite topics — in addition to their guests — have been things they geek out over such as opera, Disney and single malt whiskeys. You can also find the webcast on popular podcast apps.
One added benefit to the TG Geeks labor of love as a couple is that it has brought the two closer together.
“Our mutual interest and love for things has brought us so much closer,” Ragunton says. “To create something, to see how it has grown. To create it together is something we’re both enormously proud of.”
more, visit www.tggeeks.com.