1. What is your full name?
Christopher James Nelson. It might be interesting to note that my middle name comes from a person who helped my father out of a jam. When my father was in the Navy, he accidentally blew up some toilets, and was looking at spending the rest of his life doing menial chores. ‘James’ rescued him from eternal KP and elevated him onto the flight deck of an aircraft carrier. This kind of intervention, divine, mortal, or otherwise, is a constant thread throughout my life story.
2. What was your favorite activity as a child?
Drawing, reading, daydreaming, and hiking, which are still some of my favorite activities. As a child I grew up in southern California out in the desert, and as crazy as it sounds, I used to walk to Kindergarten on my own. And, as absurd as this sounds, sometimes instead of going to school, I would opt to wander out into the desert to catch lizards and tadpoles, eventually making my way to school at my own leisure. Avoiding responsibilities is still another favorite activity.
3. What job did you have in high school?
When I was 11, I asked my father for an allowance, and the next weeked he got me a job scrubbing dishes at a deli. In High School I upgraded to working the swing shift at a convenience store.
4. What is your most embarrassing memory?
Hmmm. It might end up being this questionnaire. I’m a pretty insecure person, so just about every living, breathing moment is fraught with the potential to recede into an embarrassing moment. It’s better if I just keep on keeping on.
5. What is the best vacation you have ever taken?
Is there really such a thing as a bad vacation? Oh wait, there was that time to Legoland…
6. What makes you laugh out loud?
Dumb, immature, jokes. The weird and curious things my children say.
7. What accomplishments are you most proud of?
I have lots to be proud of: my marriage, my wife, my children, my sobriety, my professional career, just to name a few. I have a long gratitude list and constantly thank the heavens for my good fortune.
8. What advice would you give to your younger self?
Sigh. The same advice others were trying to give to me but I ignored: know right from wrong, and pursue the righteous path; it’s the sure way to happiness.
9. What would you like people to remember about you?
That I wasn’t an asshole, I had the occasional piece of good advice, or a good joke; that I loaned my tools freely, and I tried my best to be an attentive and loving person.
10. Why do you practice at Marin Power Yoga?
As usual, I started writing a long winded response, but I’ll spare us and just end with this quote from Chuang Tzu: Make the inexhaustible your body / and wander beyond origins.