Willie James: CRAZY LADY IN THE HALL

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After that 1980 season I got a commercial from Kentucky Fried Chicken, and it was getting some play around the country. People were coming up to me more. When we were on the road, more and more people were noticing me after games. So, we’re in Milwaukee afer a game and in the bar at the hotel. I have a few drinks, and I go up to my room My roommate in the adjoining room is U.L. (Washington). All of a sudden there is this banging on the door. Boom! Boom! Boom! I look through the peephole, and I see this really good looking girl, who I have never seen before. I go, €œWho is it? and she just starts screaming, €œOpen up this door! I have U.L. come into the room and look through the peephole to see if he knows her. And I call security and tell them someone is banging on my door. Five minutes go by, eight minutes, no security and Boom! Boom! Boom! I’m thinking that security isn’t coming, so I’m just going to open the door and when I do WHAP! she just slaps me across the face. I slap her back and say, €œYou don’t even frickinknow me. She says, €œThis won’t be the last time you hear from me and she gets in the elevator and goes straight to a doctor, like the emergency room. The doctor tells her there is nothing wrong with her. Then she goes to a lawyer, and this guy thinks he’s got cash walking into his office. The next day it’s all over the radio in Milwaukee that I hit this girl. Of course, if it’s news in Milwaukee, it becomes news in Kansas City. I’m talking to fellas on the bus as we’re going to the stadium and telling them what happened. Hal McRae, in his wisdom, says, €œYou know, she can sue you. €

I say, €œIt’s self defense, man. But he goes, €œI’m just telling you … Sure enough, afer the game – I had a horrible game – I’m walking down underneath the stadium to get to the locker room, and I see two policemen waiting there. €œAre you Willie Wilson? €œYeah. €œDo you know so and so. €œNo. €œShe claims … . I’m talking to the manager. He’s telling me it’s all over the news; it’s on the radio back home. Anyway, all the way back to Kansas City on the airplane I’m thinking about it. When I get off the plane in Kansas City my wife is at the airport. She never picks me up at the airport, but she’s at the airport. You can imagine that conversation. How do you explain that you don’t even know this person? My wife is telling me that this is not the life she wanted to live. Anyway, the woman who slapped me ended up going to four different lawyers – four. Every time they dug deeper they found more crap on her. She had a baby by a guy who she didn’t even know his last name, she never went to college, she never finished high school. She was just doing this to try and get money from people.

After a month or so, the D.A. calls me from Milwaukee, and he goes, €œWillie, we’d like to apologize … . I go, €œREALLY? For weeks you guys have just been pummeling me and now you’re apologizing. Then they tell me if I pay $250 they will drop the case. She couldn’t pay her lawyer, so I end up paying her lawyer $250 so I can get out of trouble. This is all for a girl who smacked the crap out of me. She hit me so hard if I had false teeth they would have come out. And this is all because of a commercial and because I’m becoming a little more known and people think I have money. When the case was dropped, there wasn’t the same kind of headline or anything like that. I guess she must have been in the bar the day before or the night before and picked me out. I’m telling you, that was crazy. After that one I started inviting my wife on every trip to Milwaukee. That was never going to happen again. So, what I’m saying is that there are two sides to all those celebrity stories you hear – and I wasn’t even that big of a celebrity.


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