SPORTS by Brad Weisman: An Athlete Was Alive Before We Were Born
Christopher Nielsen was alive before any of us were born. Affectionately known as “Chris” and when on the field or ice “Nielsen”. I think he lurked the planet before even g-d arrived. Is that possible – well if you knew Chris you would be the first to say it is possible. I knew Chris and I still know him today. He never left me…..so I suspect he never left anyone. He is alive. Trust me on that.
Let’s talk about this physical specimen – or I would call Chris a “freak of nature”:
- Taller than most, but hardly a big dude
- 1 scarred hockey chin on the menu
- A heart you could see literally beating through his clothing
- Thin – but he seemed broad and big for a guy who was paper thin
- Legs that had gas even when he was walking or just getting out of bed
Let’s talk about his contagious personality:
- Unparalleled energy that even had me beat – happy hyper dude
- Loved his family – mom/dad/brother/sister were his world
- His demeanor was born in a lake fishing in Wisconsin
- He could eat like a pig…be stuffed and force himself to eat more
- Funny….I mean real funny…..prankster….laughed at his own jokes (I do that)
- Could live in LA or Middletown, Ohio and fit in both places
- Great hands with the hockey stick……wonderful skater….powerful….bold
- He was what the world needed back then and needs more of today
To understand Chris – well, you would also have to understand what a fantastic athlete he was. He was fantastic at soccer………wrestling……and man could this kid hit the ice. He was so good…..at it all. He probably could have been a running back or receiver if he wanted to be. Chris could have been a good anything. The only thing he wasn’t good at was understanding how “GREAT” he was to everyone around him. I actually think he sort of knew.
During childhood I hung out with this surfer looking dude. He went on to hit the ice every so often at Marquette. We lost touch, but every now and again we would run into each other. Raddon and I always got a kick out of Chris. He was a year younger, but he totally fit the mold for anyone to be around. He was bigger than the field….rink…..and perhaps space.
Several years ago I sent him an invite through facebook. He never accepted it because the day I sent the invite he died that very day. I never knew how and I really had no interest in learning how. I just could not believe we never connected. I just could not believe the day I decided to connect with him he died. I am so pissed at my tardiness to get to the greatest guy in Northbrook. No…not me….Chris. Hahahaha. This guy was so fun to hang with…..be around……and that unparalleled energy was just insanity in the most normal way possible. He could make a dead plant grow above the sky. What a burst of hyper good energy. He was not manic at all….just a happy dude. I think that is why Chris and I connected so well. We shared that unparalleled energy.
As I write this article it was precipitated by a picture of Chris that JD through up on FB. I realized at that moment I had to honor Chris and his wonderful family. I can still hear his mom yelling from the stands at wrestling matches. She yelled out of love and belief in this kid. I suspect Chris has been granted the keys to any mansion in the world he wants. He deserved it. Thanks for making me laugh my ass off all the time!