Mad for…Erik

Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy…The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. (Psalm 126:2-3)

Yesterday wasn’t my favorite day ever. It started out with my neighbor and carpool partner making an SOS call a few minutes after 7am. His car had broken down, he said, and he wanted me to come and scoop up the kids and get them to school. At that particular moment, I was in my bathrobe. My hair was looking not just a little like the online photos I have seen of Albert Einstein. Quickly, I threw on a Purdue hat and some yoga pants and off I went. Obviously, things happen and I was glad to help. I’ve been a stranded motorist, and it’s no fun. Still, it wasn’t an ideal start to the day. Later, when I was running errands, I ran into an acquaintance who confided about her need for prayers and the rough state of her marriage. It weighed on me. After that, I headed home for a bit. When I turned on the TV, Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris was burning– badly. For a gal who has never even been to France, it struck me as an enormous gut punch all the same. It’s one of the most historic Catholic Churches in all the world! It’s full to the brim of priceless art and relics, including the crown of thorns. Gosh. It just really hit me hard. I said a prayer for the firefighters and the people of France.

There were blessings, too, in my Monday to be sure (like Shoebox Club) so it’s not like I was focused on being a “Gloomy Gus”, but it simply wasn’t the day I would have chosen. This morning when I woke up, I found a sunny day, and lots of news coverage about Notre Dame greeted me.

I’ll be honest, I was at a bit of a loss today about who I wanted to write about. Then, I decided I needed to make a choice to be JOYFUL and to smile. This is the reason I am choosing today to write about the very entertaining Erik Ives. He’s pictured above with his family.

Under his moniker on his Facebook page, it reads, “I’ve always got a joke, but sometimes they’re not very good.” Allow me to demonstrate his point.

Are you laughing despite yourself? I know, me too! And so it goes with Erik. He’s always got something silly to say. He’s the father of two incredibly bright kids, Renee and David, and the husband of a pistol named Holly. Erik is from the east coast, maybe Connecticut? I’m not sure, to be honest. Also, I have not a single clue what he does for a living. There’s an office involved though, I bet? I know he plays tennis and is a big smarty pants from CORNELL. Those are the types of people who usually have offices…?

As far as I am concerned, Erik’s defining quality is his VERY QUICK WIT. He’s also insanely bright. I’ve learned over time that if there’s a single trait I really need in others around me it’s that they have a good sense of humor. It’s usually a fairly telling indicator of intelligence and temperament too.

Several years ago, Erik and I were sitting at a CYO basketball game. His son, David, was on Zach’s team that year. My husband, Tom was the coach. As we sat in the stands, Erik began telling me how he and David had been working on basketball in the driveway but said they weren’t very impressive. I was not expecting there to be a punchline in this harmless chat, but nevertheless, it came quickly. “Yeah, we decided to play each other in a little one on one.” I replied, “Well, that’s awesome, who won?” Erik glanced up and said, “We played for about 15 minutes, but neither one of us made a shot. My people are historically more MATHlete than athlete. I wish Tom luck with the kid, though.” HAHAHA! It was then that I knew I liked Erik Ives. He’s got sass and spunk.

Laughter is definitely of God, and life is too short to be serious all the time. I haven’t spent a lot of time around Erik, but I admit that I stalk his social media a skosh. I have been known to snort and chuckle at his wisecracking. The world needs a whole heck of a lot more folks who are willing to laugh at themselves (and life) like Erik does. He’s a “go-to” for me when I need to lighten the heck up! Humor diffuses stress, am I right? He’s relatable and effortlessly funny. Erik’s kids are two very blessed young people to have such a character and character-filled guy as their Dad.

Thanks, Erik, for the sparkle, quirkiness and laughter you add to the world. You make me grin and giggle and those are two of my very favorite things! I am grateful to know you! You make the world a better place with your genuine smile and charm!!

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