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Kicking back with Karl Williams

© St. Petersburg Times,
published December 9, 2001

[Times photo: Toni L. Sandys]
Karl Williams: "I'm the person that I used to be. I have never changed."
The word on Bucs receiver/returner Karl "The Truth" Williams is that he is one of the more reserved members of the team and one of the more genuine. So, on a myriad of topics, we present the Truth, the whole Truth and nothing but the Truth.

RM: If you're interested in a woman, how many days should you wait before calling her?

KW: You're asking me what's the rule?

RM: What's your rule?

KW: I don't have a rule. If I like somebody I will call them the same day I meet them. That's just how it is with me.

RM: But some women would think you're sweating them.

KW: Whatever. She can look at it either way, maybe he really likes me, or maybe he's sweating me. There's a thin line between what's right or wrong and it varies from person to person. I'm pretty up front about who I am and what I want.

RM: Is dating complicated these days?

KW: It's complicated and even more complicated when you're a pro athlete. When you first go out on a date, the first thing that goes through your mind is whether she really wants to know you or whether she wants (your money). You'll go out with people and you'll wonder, "Did she say I'm cute because she knows who I am or does she really think I'm cute?"

RM: My man, you sound a little jaded?

KW: It's bad to think like that, but nowadays when you meet a person you're on the defensive already. You can't open up your heart anymore.

RM: So where do you take her on the first date?

KW: I'm not a person to impress. Something simple. I'm an old fashion Texas boy. When I meet a person, and I'm trying to get to know her, we'll go somewhere casual, like a Chilis or a Red Lobster or maybe a Landry's. I'm not trying to take someone I just met to Bern's Steak House.

RM: But you could afford Bern's?

KW: It's not to say I wouldn't take a girl there, but I'm not that type of person. I might even tell her, "Let's super size it."

RM: Oh, hell no, you're not taking a date to McDonald's?

KW: It's not a knock on her or anything, but you have to admit, when you're taking someone out on a date they have to see the real you. Well, I'm single and I go out and get fast food on a regular basis. No, I'm not saying I'm going to take her to McDonald's, but I'm saying I'm not going to take her to Bern's either. That's not me.

RM: Should the man always make the first move?

KW: No. Life is too short. No one should wait on anything. When you feel it's the right time, go for it. The worst thing (the other person) can do is say no. I would hope she would be clear and say what's up, because I'm going to be clear and say what's up.

RM: Heard you like bowling.

KW: Yeah, I like bowling.

RM: Do you rent or own your own bowling shoes?

KW: Well, I just don't find the time to bowl as much as I used to. Now, back in the day, I used to have my own shoes and my own bowling ball, but I don't think I have those anymore.

RM: You got any skills?

KW: I'd say I'm not too bad. I average about 180s or around there. The first game I bowled recently, and I hadn't bowled in over a year, I bowled a 225.

RM: A few weeks ago Donnie Abraham sounded off like he was the best bowler on the team.

KW: You know what, a couple years ago a bunch of the guys would get together and bowl once a week and have fun. I think Donnie knew about it, but he never showed.

RM: So you're saying he has no game?

KW: I'm not saying anything about his bowling skills, or anything like that. All, I am saying was that he never showed. He was never there.

RM: To our hip hop impaired readership, can you explain what the term "Bling Bling" means?

KW: To explain it, I'm going to invent a phrase, known as "diamoned out." A person who's Bling Bling has got all the diamonds in the world. They have the diamond pinky ring, the diamond chain with the huge diamond pendant, the diamond cross. They'll have the diamond bracelet and the diamond watch. They're sparkling all over."

RM: In your ultimate Super Bowl fantasy, would you rather catch the game winning touchdown or return the game winning punt?

KW: Either one would be great. A touchdown is a touchdown. It's big in the Super Bowl.

RM: Nice try, you have to make a call.

KW: If I had to make a call. I would have to go with a return because a return is so much more difficult, more exciting, more dramatic. It's always fun when you have fans on the edge of their seats and when you break it open the whole stadium just jumps up and starts shaking.

RM: Do you think the Italian Stallion won the fight in the first Rocky?

KW: No, I don't think so. You know what they say, the tie goes to the champion and Apollo Creed was the champion.

RM: Did you know Sylvester Stallone wrote the original screenplay?

KW: Now, if I had written it, I would have had to write myself as the winner.

RM: Which Rocky movie was the best?

KW: There were so many of them, but I think you have to like the very first one, because it was the first one, and I kind of liked that one in Russia (Rocky IV).

RM: You think of Rocky, you think of what?

KW: A great fighter. Someone that never gave up. I tell you, I remember the scene in Rocky II when Rocky was taking those shots from Apollo and was using strategy on him. To me it seemed that he gave a little to get a little and that's all good.

RM: What's the Truth about you?

KW: What you see is what you get. I don't hide anything. I don't hold anything back. I'm the person that I used to be. I have never changed. When I'm 40, someone who hasn't seen me in a long time will look at me and say, "That's the same Karl Williams that I knew."'

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