Senior Spotlights: Ben and Sam Bryant

Story by James Tatter, Pine Whispers

Video by Kaitie Shuping, Black and Gold

Ben and Sam Bryant were sitting in the Career Center lobby, Ben in a bright blue shirt, and Sam in a red one.

“My mom used to dress me in blue and Sam in red to tell us apart,” Ben said.

Ben and Sam Bryant are identical twins who are seniors at Reynolds. Besides the red and blue shirt trick, Ben cited one other feature that can be used to tell them apart.

“(Sam) parts his hair to the left, I part mine to the right,” Ben said.

Other than that, however, the twins can be hard to tell apart to those unacquainted with them–even more so because they spend so much of their time doing the same things. The Bryants see it as a perk to always have a “bro” right by their side.

“I’ve always got a FIFA mate,” Sam said.

“I always have a carpool partner,” Ben said.

“You can’t play chess by yourself, so I’ve always got someone to play chess with,” added Sam. “And sometimes when I get scared at night I crawl into his bed.”

Recently, the Bryants teamed up as members of the Ultimate Frisbee Club at Reynolds.

“I’ve always dabbled in Frisbee, but it wasn’t until this year that I got into it,” Ben said. “Sam and Nick (Nedved, a Reynolds senior) had the idea to start a Frisbee club and I really got on that train.”

Sam’s inspiration for starting the club came from previous Frisbee experience.

“A lot of older people at Reynolds used to play and I used to play with Boy Scouts on camping trips. Then Nick and I got this idea this summer,” Sam said. “We wanted Tabor to have a Frisbee club so we could play them all the time, but Tabor is lame sauce. Biggest lame sauce ever because they don’t even have a team.”

Ben describes the emotional appeal of playing such a physical game.

“It’s really changed my outlook on life. There’s something Zen about getting on the field of battle and tossing some (disk) with your bros,” Ben said.

Sam says that although the club is a close knit group of bros, friendship disappears when the games begin – even with his own brother.

“If he’s on the other team, I no longer look at him as my brother, but a mortal enemy,” Sam said. “I feel no mercy for my identical twin the second I step on the field.”

Sam does say that Ben and him are quite close off the field, however.

“Ben and I have super natural powers that I’ve never told anybody about,” Sam said. “When we hold hands, we get telekinesis. If we both focus really hard on the same object we can pick it up with our minds. The hard part is that we can never agree to focus on the same object.”

Despite their close connection, the Bryants are ready to branch out after graduation.

Ben is heading to Raleigh, while Sam will be attending Appalachian State University.

“It’ll be a new thing being apart,” Ben said. “It’s going to be weird, but it’s something that we have to do. We’ve been together for 18 years, so it’s about time we’re not together.”

Sam says that the separation is only temporary, and that the twins plan to stick together after college.

“The future is our oyster,” Sam said. “We’re going to take over the business world with our crazy innovative ideas.”

Editor’s Note: Senior Spotlight stories appeared in the May 2015 print edition of Pine Whispers. Yearbook students completed video projects on a number of RJR seniors that also will appear on the newspaper website. Enjoy!