As relayed on Sep. 12, 2015
What I remember about Erik growing up, he was always around to play with. When he lived here with his room in the garage, I was so amazed by his living space- his telescope, his snoopy stuff, the galaxy he had hanging from the ceiling. He was always willing to show me the stars. (And my mom would later recount that he was mad when the streetlights were put in- adding to the light pollution.)
We both shared a love of reading, and throughout the years he gave me books like, What Einstein Told His Barber and West of Jesus- Science, Surfing and the Origins of Belief. Whenever I read philosophy, I think of Erik. When we both came home to visit, you could find either of us reading on the swing down by the river, lounging by the pool or on the deck, but especially Erik. When I read his book, Vistas of Many Worlds, I was in awe by the way he could bring together space, time, and the expanse of the universe simplified for the rest of us in layman’s terms. And the beautiful photography. That book showed his genius mind.
Last weekend when I went to Erik’s service in Ashland, I was struck by how lovely all of his friends were. He surrounded himself with highly intelligent and creative people. We know he was never one for small talk, but he was good at connecting people who were at his level, and was happy to engage with you in something of strategy with anyone of any age; who could help stimulate his mind and be a kid again.
I felt like I had a certain amount of commonality with Erik and his friends. When I was working in the wakeboarding industry in Florida, Erik was shooting photography for Hot Boat magazine. Once when I went to a wakeboarding event in Arizona, I found myself on a cigarette boat exploring Lake Havasu. I asked the owner of the boat if he knew my brother, and Todd did in fact shoot photography with him from a helicopter before. He was surprised to hear that we were related, and regarded Erik with much respect.
Erik was intuitive, loyal, and had a great memory. Once on my birthday he gave me a can of peas with a $10 check attached to it. Knowing that I hated canned peas, he knew which one I was going to pick. He was so good at recalling what Jason (my brother) and I were like when we were kids.
And you better not lie to him about the Easter Bunny or stumbling onto a turtle in the front yard, because even as a little kid he was too smart to believe in that.
I will never forget the day that Erik took me on a cruise around Lake Tahoe with his Porsche Club. He needed a co-pilot and I had the time. The day was sunny, perfect, and just being there with him and his friends was so special to me. We ended up at a house in Alpine Meadows of a guy who had an incredible wine cellar. I look back at having a light-hearted, fun day with my brother.
The last time I saw Erik was on Father’s Day. We talked about web development a little bit and he helped me download an app to read documents on my tablet. When I left and went back to Lake Tahoe, I gave everyone hugs, including Erik in the kitchen. But then he did something different- he walked me out with my dad.
They both stood there, looking so much alike with their arms crossed, mustaches, and topless- I think- since it was over 100 degrees in Redding. The both of them together, sending me off.
I’ve tried to read a lot into that day, but now I do think Erik was just there to show his love for me.
There’s no doubt that my life is enriched because Erik Dean Anderson was in it.
Other Random Memories:
- How he played the piano; he could hear something and pick it up immediately but couldn’t read sheet music
- His love of Weird Al Yankovic and The Simpsons
- You better spell his name with a “k”, not a “c”
- How he helped Noah and I with our high school video project- dubbing Rush into our Ayn Rand review