"Love Me or Hate Me: Just Donít Judge Me"

An Interview with Georgetownís Running Back Robbie Jones

by Molly Weatherston

     

Molly_Weatherston: "Well, let's get started, then. As popular as you are, it seems that not many really know much about you. So, that is what we are here to do tonight. First, why did you pick Georgetown University?"

Robbie_Jones: "I guess it was Ďcause I had heard so much about it from being a big NBA fan back home. Georgetown this, Georgetown that, and for a school to produce a few great centers; (Patrick) Ewing, (Dikembe) Mutombo and Alonzo Mourning, I guess I hoped I could have the same effect on the football program that they did on the basketball program... and also, it was highly recommended to me by a good friend."

MW: "Now, what of your life before DC? Where did you live?"

RJ: I grew up in Auckland, New Zealand, and for a few years I lived in a pretty rough part of the city called Ottama. Itís sorta like the projects are over here in the States. You got so much crime and gang shit, that you gotta fight to make it thru the day, and for a while there I was fighting just to stay alive and stay sane.

MW: Is that where the violence you tend to be known for comes from?

RJ: The violence? I guess so... You donít get preyed upon for 7 years, without piling up some hurt and hate. When I first came to Georgetown, I guess I tried to use that hate and hurt to make a wall around myself, to try keep myself safe... I guess you could call the violence now a delayed reaction to my past. What I held in all those years.

MW: And has the time spent here cooled that hate and hurt? Or have the things that have happened here just added to it?

RJ: In all honestly, I donít know. Some days, I feel on top of the world, while others, I get up and look in the mirror and I hate what I see. For what happened, both here and back home, and those days, I ask why, and I am sure thatís why a lot of the guys think I am an asshole at times. Yet, the self-loathing days ainít as frequent, anymore.

MW: Does this mean you are recovering? I understand that you lost someone due to being caught in the middle of a drug war.. and with that, gained the attention of a group of racists?

RJ: I guess I am recovering from it somewhat. Some days are easier then others. The racist attacks came first. But, losing Karissa (Banchi) was really hard. Although, after the stabbing, we were drifting apart, a bit. I think that maybe I was scared being around her, afraid of getting her hurt, so I started putting barriers up and it was ruining the relationship. I miss her. But, I try each day to remember the good times we had and vow to keep her memory alive

MW: You almost sound like as though you have at least found a way to move on. Speaking of moving on, I hear rumors that you are thinking about applying for early entry into the NFL draft.. Is this true?

RJ: That is the biggest load of shit, ever! If I hadnít played so shit at the start of the season, then maybe there might be a basis for that shit. In hindsight, I shouldíve taken a Red shirt and missed this season. (Robbie pauses) Heck, opening weekend, there was no way in hell I should have played. I was carrying baggage from the attack, both physical and emotionally. To answer your question, though, I am here for another year, at least.

MW: You have to love rumors, though. Now, there is talk also that you hope to transfer to another University, someplace warmer, say, Miami.. Are you leaving us, Robbie?"

RJ: For a while there, yes, I thought I might transfer out. After the poor start this season, yeah, it came to mind, and after seeing the way Miami and Oklahoma are playing, and having both their coaches sayiní I would be such a good fit there... yeah, I wanted to jump, but I chose to stay, for personal reasons.

MW: Personal reasons? I shouldnít pick at that, I take it?

RJ: You can, I guess... Basically, when the letters of intent to transfer came through, there was a girl who meant something to me before she just did a bunker, and I turned them down for a chance at what I thought was love, but it crashed. But to be positive about it, my ball skills are back at least.

MW: Would that be the now-Senior Archaeology Major, Raisa Romanov? You two were linked early last year for a while.

RJ: NoÖ While I had, and still have, deep feelings for Raisa, that was a long time ago now. The lady that kept me here was only here for a real short time. To be honest, so short that I only ever knew her first name, Jesyka. She was another student here, but quite protective of her past. When she suddenly disappeared a few weeks into the semester, I thought, well shit, maybe she wasnít the angel I thought she was. Maybe that secret past caught up to her.

MW: She just disappeared?

RJ: Yeah... One day I went to her place, and it was gone... No note, no nothing... And to be honest, that hurt me more then prolly anything else since I came to DC. It was like Karissa; somebody dying all over again.

MW: And yet, you carry on.. to love again? Or is it simply a matter of distracting yourself? Perhaps I should rephrase that.. Have your repeated romantic failures turned you into a Player? Or are you still looking for true love?

RJ: Love. Thereís a funny word. What is love? If you mean feeling needed in someoneís arms after you spent some intimate time with them, then yeah, I prolly will love again. If you mean finding someone you can spend you life with, and if need be serve them for all time, I donít know. I am looking. I just ainít found the one I would love and surrender myself to fully. But how much difference is there between a player and some one who seeks true love?

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  MW: I would like to think that is up to the individual. But how much, in your case, then?

RJ: To answer the question, I donít think I am a player. Misguided Island boy, yeah, but player... I donít go after one nighters. I try for relationships; they just never seen to work out.

MW: Do you get into the club scene, Robbie?

RJ: Club scene....um <seems a bit nervous> yeah, yeah I do... Hang out at one or two when they got nights for under 21.

MW: What about a sado-masochistic club called Bound?

RJ: Yeah...I been there once or twice.... but...forget it.

MW: Forget it? I admit it is not my scene, but why forget it?

RJ: OK, so I hang around the fringes of that scene... Last I heard, this was a free country.

MW: Easy, Robbie, I'm only curious. Your appearances there are news.

RJ: Sorry. Yeah, I been to Bound. And I ainít saying anything else on the matter. No offense Molly, but I would like to keep at least some things private

MW: I understand. There was another name that was mentioned by you I believe.. Father Jackson? What can you tell me about him?

RJ: Father Jackson...Yeah, heís the closest thing I got to a father. He...he is like an uncle to me, and he helped me get over here, and he moved back here to help me settle in to the States and so I donít lose sight of who I am.

MW: Do you have any other 'family' in the States?

RJ: Not really family per say... I got a few friends of Father Jacksonís who have made me feel welcome.

MW: Was it hard for you to adjust? I mean settling in to a foreign country, with no true family close?

RJ: I never had a true family... Both my parents died when I was young, and then having to spend seven years in a living hell, I never really knew what a family was. A real one.

MW: I would imagine then having some like Father Jackson has been a blessing.. Where is it he preaches?

RJ: These days he sorta runs a camp out in the mountains for wayward youths. Father Jackson has been a Godsend for me... He been there in my darkest hours, and he was the one who got me outta the hell house in Ottama

MW: Admirable. Where he has helped one.. now he helps more. Well, seems I'm just about done.. Is there anything else we havenít covered that you would like our readers to know about you?

RJ: So you ainít gonna ask who the red head was in the paper was then?

MW: Well since you brought it up, sure. Who was that?

RJ: Not much to say... name was Kailian, and I meet them at a bar... Donít see why the papers made that big a deal of it.... like I was doing anything wrong.

MW: Of course not, Robbie, youíre a public figure thoughÖ her name was Kailian, you said? How interesting. I was recently at a piano bar called the Hush. They have a singer there. Very attractive young man, though almost penniless.. named Kailian Abyssinian. Ever been to the Hush?

RJ: No...I met Kailian at the Web.

MW: So it isÖ Him. He has a beautiful voice. Do you think you have found love this time?

RJ: No...Kailian was more a once-off. A brief return to what I went through in Ottama.... A chance to close a door and lay some peace on a period of my life that drove me mad, cold as that may sound.

MW: So that relationship was just a cleansing for you. Interesting. ..in hopes this will allow you to find some peace with your past? Were these kinds of relationships part of that?

RJ: Yeah thatís prolly it... to move on from what was inflicted on me back home... I guess I had to revisit the pain I suffered and see if it was me or not. And I think now that itís not.

MW: Then we are seeing a better, more healed Robbie Jones? One more at peace with himself, and truly looking for love again?

RJ: I wish that was the case, but on the level... I donít know. I got so much baggage I still have to deal with, and I am scared of failing again.

MW:I think that might be a good place to end this. But one last thing. What one truth would you like to see in print?"

RJ: Easy. Love me, or hate me. But never judge me till you know me.

MW: Thank you, Robbie.