Mad for…Stan

Where joylessness reigns, where humor dies, the spirit of Jesus Christ is assuredly absent. — Pope Benedict XVI

Day 91 of 365: Stan Crisci

Please forgive me in advance, Ragu, but I just cannot resist writing about you on April Fool’s Day. Somehow, it just feels right! Ha?! Meet my friend, Stan Crisci, pictured at left above with his gorgeous wife, Michelle. I don’t know how long I’ve been calling him “The Big Ragu” but it’s been a number of years.

Allow me to explain. Stan has among the largest personalities I have ever encountered. He’s a Ball State Cardinal with volume control issues similar to yours truly, and he’s just the ultimate Italian guy. He’s the youngest of 10 (I think) and all of that just shows in his every word and action. When one runs into Stan the man, there’s going to be a HUGE WELCOME and maybe a slightly inappropriate hug too. He has a knack for making everyone in his path feel noticed. He’s got the gift of gab and is perpetual captain of the party!

Stan is generous with others, and he’s got an enormous, soft heart. He’s a faithful Catholic guy who has never figured out exactly what foods are legal on Fridays in Lent, but he’s got people for every problem under the sun. Apparently, I am his resident expert on meatless Fridays! I know each spring I can count on a few clarification texts about things like eggs, cheese, etc. I’m not going to lie, I truly do love Stan because despite the hot air, he makes me laugh without fail, and laughing is my favorite!

Stan has three wonderful kiddos– Sam, Lauren and Kylie. He loves them fiercely. I know this because for a decade he was my backdoor neighbor, and you can’t watch a family raise their children without learning a few things about them. There isn’t a soul who knows him who isn’t aware of this fact, so I sure hope those three kiddos feel it too. Stan is a touch dangerous and just a wee bit outrageous, but he’s truly just a fine man who I consider a terrific friend. I’ve seen him go out of his way to help others find jobs, pay bills, and move forward in their lives with dignity. His generosity is undeniable.

Some really smart guy whose name I can’t remember at this moment said “Humor is a mysterious but unmistakable charism inseparable from faith.” I love that bit of philosophy and believe it holds true for my friend, The Big Ragu. Stan’s the real deal, a man of many talents, and a lovely human being– no April Fooling! Thank you, Stan, for the always warm and sunny smile! I’m grateful for the sunshine you always add to my week when I see you.

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