The Weekend Interview is back, and this time, the subject is Ricky Williams. A top pick out of the University of Texas, the running back played in the NFL for New Orleans, Miami, and Baltimore, and in the CFL for the Toronto Argonauts, before retiring in February.
Williams was one of the most curious characters: supremely talented, but with interests that strayed far from– and at times took him off of– the gridiron. At just thirty-five, Williams is a vocal person in retirement, recently confounding Dan Le Batard and Dan’s father (and anybody else watching) on the topic of head injuries and football.
Usually I have to subtly toss the “imaginary content” tag on these interviews, but not this time. Here‘s Williams and me on Monday (holiday weekend) afternoon:
(Because this was a text-based exchange in real time, I’ve taken the editorial liberty of cleaning up the words, abbreviations, and so forth to enhance readability.)
RW: Honestly, what are you doing today to honor our fallen soldiers? I’m dedicating “Gansta Lean” to all of them.
AD: For someone so committed to positive energy, I’m feeling some negative vibes out of you today. But maybe I’m misreading you?
RW: I never said I was full of positive energy. I’ve been trying to show you that positive energy is just as bad as negative energy. My preference is to be me, whatever that looks like, and be ok with it. How much judgment would I have to do to always know what’s positive? Anyone committed to positive energy needs to be committed. But that’s just my interesting point of view.
AD: Understood, I think. Probably not much judging, would be my guess, though. Once one has down how to be oneself, what’s next? Sure, one has to be realistic and balanced. Also, how much judgment is required to determine whether one’s own point of view is interesting?
RW: Learn how to make being down fun, and you will find yourself. You have to be realistic and balanced, but if I was, I’d kill myself of boredom.
AD: Gotcha. So what happens next? No judging, no boredom. How do you proceed?
RW: Any way you chose. That’s the beauty of it
AD: Thank you for the insight and conversation, sir.
Original transcript available here.