Ep. 15: Jason Collins interview

WEEI
Wednesday, October 18th

In this edition of "Two Outs," Alex Reimer and Steve Buckley speak with Jason Collins. They talk about his coming out experience and whether he's disappointed more male athletes haven't followed in his footsteps. Jason also reveals his old weekend routine of driving by Club Cafe and wistfully looking inside, which prompts Alex to invite him out.

00:34:52

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

And re matter and shoot outs quick Roemer. The rambunctious way I am mostly taught me the phenom Alex a rare. And the old time baseball do the six people who don't know what I'm getting the sixty who didn't know what before I'm gay priest is definitely want a couple bases definitely two outs which brought him Roemer. It is episode number fifty. You know he's throughout podcasts and I think we want to show about 56 months ago we had a cup. People at a top our guest list and one of them was a man who we spoke with today Jason Collins Mary X. Interestingly. I had somebody tell me. You guys are doing awhile I started to its name but two gay guys bought about. Would you do have to get Jason calls on what what happens then. The reality is we're six months into this we got around adjacent what's and I guess we can show. Over it's on it's been a good run house of cards it's over half Collins on is doing nothing else nothing else to do. Opt out very excited to finally get him on the show a guy obviously is at the forefront of this out that it's coming up and sports are very well spoken to tell wasn't his first interview tonight teased the interview with the comment you can do yes. Okay it turns out in this is the ultimate eighties. It turns out that Jason Collins on a nightly basis used to drive by club kept day. Fantasizing about going in their meeting out three. That Mike is it exactly is it exactly. Yes and I told them anytime he wants to come I'm happy to happen to a club cafe at L Circuit City doesn't have VIP pass up to get him in for eleven ourselves that we don't Wheaton crazy said no frank about it it's been nice to end this ally like before the interview session to record that's you saying hey that's Sports Illustrated as the year really great but they Japanese Katzmaier blared in there as well I was on this point I have a commonality you know I am Miami -- -- famous -- personal I made famous gay person I boards well I dove I I glom on his famous that's so thank you so much you know I you know when you came on I was doing all these interviews as well I'd modeled on is famous the emperor I'm happy to admit that. And and I'm not entirely fabricating and I say that each drove by club Jeff Adrien meaning for him now I bet I least magic tenacity acting game a little higher and your professional NBA player. I gotta tell you it was two guarantees unity it's one of the better ones we've done I keep saying but. We keep coming public. I've got a blockbuster right here for an interview in the coming weeks that it's not that we can land that is if you Ari can say it on the Dark Knight kinda beat Atlanta's awesome though it would be a huge wonders to mention it now image by it's it's the one we're working on and we but. What you gonna be dragged into this kicking and screaming but. The fact we have Jason Collins today and it took us this morning get to him not that we didn't wanna hammered the beginning but you schedules tight. Wasn't always available but it was a good get by you to reach out to him whatever better and let's give Brian polite credit. Oh Brian I don't know tennis route nine tennis rates. And he was in toward teams are budging interview a couple of weeks ago enjoyed it like so many did and that. Protestant types so we want to think brine that he Bryant and how little the little assess stick to stick well that's a crooked stick and hockey. I was ticked at this idealistic. Yet to fight news Gator the view of the two men I've I've ice skated a couple times now immediately. Now it's. Never never I mean I State's expert. Snuck. But was great was Ian was great yeah that's coming up and and I got to tell you real quick I usually we have a segment things a history of violence I have nothing this week. Because you sir. In back to back segments of this program. Installments that have landed it was guest Jim Harbaugh is on games. And technologies and also now you have to pick up your weight like you had Ryan Callahan in this I was trying to make everybody came out that week we got rights later that was a plus but that was already enjoy your citizens what's yes to get it moving it's like I can't go on my batting average of five years ago right exactly like Rick Purcell won the Cy Young win last year. That's right he didn't quick Red Sox manager who is it now score. Pretty browser Ameren producing disappointed that I say I wanted. Like durst. It's a I was going to say like these stories within that get me in all kinds of trouble so what I say it's the I can do it with the gays and you think you know multi that's right Stacy cons coming up next deathly great thirty minute conversation so we cover all the ground from is coming out story. To his apartment and driving past podcast they would use closeted so don't miss that. Opposite fifteen to its. Welcome back to two outs podcast on the phone right now we have been somebody bock who was but at the top very best wish list for a while so no pressure Jason Collins a man knew. Needs no introduction here Jason how are you. Now first question I have for you very important he just came back from a trip overseas and agent Hong Kong what's more comfortable for man of your size flying across the Pacific. Are watching game at Fenway Park which had you done. I don't know. There's there's definitely all people problems. All around but somehow someway it is I admit I'd make it work itself. A little complain about. About either. It's a good Dave Dombrowski answered down the middle doesn't take as any direction. Very diplomatic I'll take out ads that might hire more people to apply. It. You don't look so good good apparently well I think they're both back issues of and also talking. Yeah I additions to its top people problems all the way around. On 61 and not not nearly so you and I find Fenway varying comfortable but I just flew India and backed back in March and I thought that was that that plane commented accommodated me quite well. To visit I was going back through on your Sports Illustrated SA act you know preparing for Ian you know everything and I've read it before a few times and reading it again I still felt pretty emotional I felt of some of the similar feelings I felt my first dreaded I'm wondering. Do you ever go back and read it and if so what what kind of thoughts pop into your head. Are there and credit. But we've evolved our. Policies. It's been. A couple years and of that dark hole but you're right I think about it. It brings real bright back to produce the whole experience. Sitting down away promptly. Having. His daughter talk or arm Sports Illustrated in my house. And telling my story. And the whole process. And just speaking of ourselves. Not talk about an article. You know it's like the kid in the classroom who's waiting for someone else to raise their hand expect. And finally however quote I'll put my hand up if I you know you know it's me. Jason what when I came out in 2011. A lot of people. Asked me who would be the quote unquote Jackie Robinson. In in sports in coming out. And I've always kind of glanced at that because in fact I wrote a piece reais in the magazine. Saying that it it seem correct on on many levels. Mainly be im glad you agree with me right up because. Jackie Robinson walks into a clubhouse in and have its field in 1947. To a room full of people who really didn't want him there and a lot of those people if not all of them. Had no black people in their lives as opposed to today. The openly gay aptly walks in a room filled with people who they all have gay people realize that in my premise all along and one of the reasons. I have never had a problem and in novel lock arms and all the athletes that dealt with even though some of them don't like me because of what a written. People say why haven't had a problem. And I always fall back at what is everybody has a lesbian sister gave brother high school coach. Everybody has somebody in the lights is scandalous or just the planet right wing nut job. That that they've made your peace with Steve do you agree with my premise. Made. Soared to a lot of work out with their MBA. One of the things I do as a as all the players incoming rookies. And and from recessions. We ask them like how many players who know someone who is. Members go to these communities. And more more chance to go up not all of it and to go up yet. A lot. The players being African American. It's still an issue where. African American families sometimes the people who live there are authentic Lawrence. It but it is good to have gotten better each year more and in the room to grow it and more people are culpable. Is because they know somewhat. And and that makes it a huge difference where. You know someone whose members eligible to be. Because it goes from being this app abstracts being that it. To an actual person every member Fred. Holy you know Beijing though in the art of relationship with. So that's why it's so important that people continue to come forward and and development that are great because. It affects so many people on some different problems. They can attach names to it that actually leads me to question I want to ask you wide. Do you think the what does he do work with closet athletes now you do work with the MBAs you mentioned what do you think the atmosphere is like now compared to what it was even four years ago five years ago when you're just starting to come out. There's still work to be done homer over homophobic language is still uses. It's. I think now although people are really. When you all modeled on it in a very instantly it's fate of editor Yahoo! com. So bear immediately apologize and understand these are the impact of the of the words. What you call out on. It's it's a process. That's why I am proud of the work that I've been doing them alongside. Have some terrorist about it a lot of talking to the guys talking to the players. And we note. A problem for the bill on the style or approach or years. But every single rookie. As this conversation and it has had its all. And we're trying to increase their awareness for some language. That they use whether it be homophobic or whether it's access. I'm just trying to increase their awareness. When you hear the homophobic language do you think it comes from an area of animosity and hatred do you think it's just inaccurate that they use and they're not even aware of that area carries. 99%. Of the time it's not common as yeah it's appropriate so just. Not truly understand the impact of the were not true understanding. And when I break it down element. Again because people our people caller that they how would you fuel. So more. Who it is occasion. Used casual racism over and over and absolutely it is through a network or trying to get understand the impact of the worse than. Our partners saying homophobic language. To be in the locker room or to try to cut you know. Someone down in China. You're angry you're cutting about your job you're trying to calm down to meet them via and its. Oh which immunity should never use. Someone's sexuality problems identity. Worried someone's religion as a way to cut them down cup bound by any other ways you can cut from about it calmed down by. What they choose. So where it was close that weapon. A good noble and good elbow in the paints a good way to. You know what who. Talked about what they're wearing sort of there's other ways in but Eric there's this story was written and you know cut someone now. So when I wrote the piece knees in the magazine about that though Jackie Robinson reference I guarantee in that piece. That he would be in openly gay player and American team sports within three years and you maybe look Smart but just barely under the wire because the the clock was running out when your piece of Putin's what's illustrated so I was able to claim victory if which is the most important court which is an important thing is Jesus sided so I did a victory lap with Joseph Kennedy that night and but. I want to ask you. Are you surprised that there are not more because. There are taught well. Robin Rogers who were. Maybe where. And oranges. Talk. Mail as he operates a indoors as perfect tonight and it continues to reduce salt. To bird this summer amount. Our right yeah I mean effectiveness in Iraq not not so little this with too many qualifiers bird but. For the play discussion American male team sports is is the jumping off point. So it's a do over at all com. Surprising. More burst out of step forward. In unity can look at my example. You know what I got back into the NBA playing with the diplomats. My first twelve games in the league you know. That you are we went to an incident and we ended up making the play all beating swamp so games. It was being a successful obviously in dispute these it was probably Rogers. Waiting. That mullah. It was really cool I was able actually to be there to witness. So there are positive examples man. Opposite Michael Sam not being it would source state and then they'll make it to operators is game I think that might have something. To do what other athletes using. Not step forward. I I told results are not marketer of and what you should and shouldn't do well I'll tell you Bill Clinton and if you do choose to step forward know that there's a community. Waiting and ready to accept you support its we who are your life or be exponentially better. And yes. There will be some media attention. For one bit to my case it was two weeks and that it was about the scene and if you can get through those two weeks of just you know answer all the questions and on the media attention. Trust me that it will eventually go to okay how are you performing how is that team doing. And that's what it is about it with being a professional athletes those questions are all that you ought to be the best and that's what it's going to be such as. No you know you can. You can play your sport and you can ask your significant other waiting in the Samuel. Just what everybody else's that's what analysts. What I. Especially with the one of the muted bestsellers. Because I with the Brooklyn Mets being able to play the game about how my boyfriend waiting in every room. Along everyone also is significant other. Which Jason tooth to support you point. One guy a met you it was outside that two week window because by the time Brooklyn came to Boston. You were and I say this respectfully old news and I went the shootaround that morning and to me having gone it was zillion shoot around over the last forty years it. It was on remarkable and you spoke to a small crowd of local gravel. And instead give peace and we all went on but the calm Iraq that day was how on remarkable it was. That that you had answered all these questions in new York and in a few other places in the immediate aftermath. And and I remember that day when you dig tomorrow. Because on the local gay guy I was. Doing interviews all day long as you war of course. And then we going on otherwise so so so that was that that must've been a good thing to other closet athletes to see that you simply. Went back to the grabbed a pick ax and went back to work. There are riveted. It should but at the same time you know we still haven't seen them step forward. And you know we've. In the meantime we'll continue to do the work of trying to. Again educate the players aren't too. And encourage allies to people call and it. Someone says something that does something in appropriately. You know what sent a message. Our sport about orders an inclusive sport. And you know try to send all the signals of support that we can't those well. You say you're surprised you haven't we haven't had an active athlete net for a major male sports come out since you. Are you disappointed that that has now. Happens. I didn't a little bit disappointed yes but again. It's just makes me you know work that much harder to try again from those signals about athletes that it's okay to step forward. Get everybody have their own. Like two that decisions are made him. I. I would hope that they would step forward by. If you have on the roster let's try to you know some bad message of the environment is as safe for them to. There were rumors were waiting and ready at. I'm gonna ask you the most embarrassing question you announced that you came out that you prepared. I read this and this is the tough one now. Would use Joseph Kennedy ran for president. After. Forward with a daughter we have at all results. Are you and I right there with a. I suspect every single day it's something else using a bit and other. Just heads shaking head scratching moment. But I guess. I've read it was a couple of days ago. Would be quote that came off incompetent. And it. Are you Alex hanging anything and only thing you know is. There's. Or for just another another excuse for Juarez. But a disarming another example of of Juarez is just or. Horrible. Horrible. How much avail leadership vacuum do you think there is wind you know he may mean you cannot of course President Obama did call you Michelle Obama invite to the stated union. I don't see president trump doing anything like that how much heavy leadership vacuum do you think there is that we now have. This big Tito in the White House. In terms of LG BT and guys peeling conflict and not 100 does not really. What. So called firewalls work you did victories getting the call from President Obama bellows of expected don't icing on the city. But think getting the call from my teammates gave the call from. Among coaches. Getting those calls of support. I think that's what it's another lap features are support built the protocols that they wore all water here and wanted to. You know if if they get the call from triple China seriously to help out the ice it on it's it could. Part of things so I think it's it's goes relative. You know the circles that you. Are familiar with him those people that you have interacted with. The professional athlete in your coaches and teammates. Those people in front office of the organizations if you see. Getting those calls. Getting apps support the thing would mean a law. And and just open. Those coaches those teammates those people and organizations whether you know members of ownership. Continued to speak up in so be. An ally. To Belgium it's in the. You know we joke about the comment that Romney device for about hands. And it's funny in the abstract but yet at the same time this is the president of the united. It's that they have and it's not really it's it's. No that's my point that's my point is is that people who step away Rick kind of find it funny. The point I was going to raise CU is that is that if you are gay and particularly if you closeted it's it's it's it's tomorrow. And I remember when I was off more and all it and being worked out with Matthew Shepherd to shepherd was on. And that's part of the reason why I chose to Wear Jersey 98 was on. So it's. I. It is really. Is there a message there's commons from. Washington DC from the White House from about this administration and I'm so many different levels were not just oh to teach that it would just. Probably different levels of Ross saw what happened with short it's at all and it's. Again it's like every single day there's something else but he and his. Secure. About wearing number ninety aiming at that I was a pretty bold step he made especially because you weren't publicly out at about points did you. Haven't answer in your head if somebody asked you about why did you Wear it ninety eighths to street's number yet. Source because the first time such as the number so for those that don't know. I used to be Jersey number 34 and 35. Was fine what the other what other teams. And when I got the Celtics but couldn't see. Those numbers because the Celtics have so many great players and about law posters use our particular retired and could this though. I had to pick a different number and I chose not be a pretty year 1990. Out of respect for her. Matthew Shepard ability to reduce total so that was the year that the trouble spot that was founded. And then what I told the Celtics but I walked the number 98. Because usually gospel writers don't go higher than the. Right there it was strange to see on the court that there have been good to me like what. Well percent of. I want about what the bribes one may go to the scoreboard well you mark an important. You know bow. Because of course have to use their hands. It's messed with them sort of sort of it apart from true because I do you know 10 yeah one users expected to be involved. Blows. The only market close friends apparently. Knew why the chosen number that. And it was just. Everything would I put on pitchers. I was just. Just connecting with this new identity is becoming more comparable with as they. Gave dot. You only implies that a short period of time do you. I don't wanna say step ball but do you did you do you have any kind of support mechanism here in Boston obviously UN Joseph Kennedy hero friends but beyond that. Yes side compression Stanford. Find who has. In my freshman dorm here and his wife. We're living in also avatar my old college point guard Mike MacDonald shot up to mark McDonald but living in Boston haven't. His wife and two and then of course drove our former roommate so a lot of Stanford connection and bolsters those very. Happy like on days off I would go over somebody's of one of those one of the three else's. You know watch football or you know hang out with and there's. I think this is stamped the club and Boston are chapter. You know we're well on February that are patient. It is. Agreed on the ball implode. It was it was so under the some motive and no one back. Stewart Burton. And around the corner world. Well yeah exactly. So I'm always active or I would drive five and I knew about it in Nablus it was. Wouldn't I would rethink our line but on news that that was part on the corner so. I would drive. People have been on it and dorm where you know I would never go away and wasn't ready do. We'll he had you wouldn't see now yes I am pretty much every Friday and Saturday night at one point I want to ask us. Because it was ordered it. Bill Kennedy. These are the other corporate though it were reasonably. Told me about the word autonomy. The two of them they were in all of our but they were I'll. A gable and errors out there. It's. A bit. But the equipment to. It work ready is. Have all these. There's a follow joke there I just haven't come up with my Islam itself if you want it ever. And walked into the aid being chanted wires of club kept pages and be happy to accompany you it's mostly like points like myself planet yet. But what about what about ballot there's like indoors. Like back to SE real quick at one line really strike outs and he said. You don't let your race defying new anymore than you want to sexual orientation to sell. Here you are four years later a Buick every interview you do including this and obviously you're introduced ads Jason Collins gave basketball player. Do you feel that defines you now and are you OK with. In. It's just that the parents are converted noted. Yes it's a part of me so yes I accept that as someone chooses to label me. That's fine. You can label me as a lot of things poll African Americans. Unity. Yes. Being day. All of it makes me who I am I celebrated every single part that makes before I am bar. So yes it is yes it doesn't. Necessarily bother me if someone says just that the Japanese however I don't Bedard got up more than. But. You know I celebrate all that makes me unity and I'm very proud. You know it took me a long arm. To be crawled to. But I am. Brigade there and yes you can see or want to publish or. Before I came out in eleven I. A buddy of mine and I flew down the cell be to be met with Billy Beane. Who I had never met before but we have mutual friends and it spent a night over dinner with him. And and that kind of help me in my own coming out process. Was wondering if if you I am I'm going to guess you've met billion. Probably a good book of mine yeah. Yeah I could get on the court for a while. So it's I year. It's. About like partners for news and. Then last summer I was in Newark. Got a chance to play affiliate. I want something far. Second time you've mentioned that so we have to management to billing now solvent in the opening of the show yes. Cory gets decent god speed toll being intense. But. Great. And just because through courses the fraternity. Athletes. Supporting each other. And getting ready to go to Robbie Rogers wedding in. A couple months. Very much looking forward to seeing. Should see Robby. And a couple business knowledge of the. I'm twenty I'm 24 now I came out originally now is twenty but I came out professionally about a year ago when I start here at the eye and I don't think I would be able to be. The writer I am certainly to talk show host I am a spyware closet obviously basketball a bit different since my personality is how my bread and butter here but. Do you feel like that. Staying closet now do you look back on it. Alge got in some playing your professional career do you feel like a big weight was lifted up their shoulders and you did commander dear do you not think about that much. I just put it back on it a couple burns. I always played angry and I think part of that was because I was. In the closet. And oh. I would say that if it did help me because I was in the context or it's okay to be aggressive about right certainly. So. But at the same time more and I I would always living struck. And just pennies on the conversation a couple of significant others or whatever I would get this murderous Russians as it was horrible living without sure that you know about Strasburg feeling extra. Might laps here in the NBA it was incredible. Again it's it was so great just. Not having enough stress and just being able to focus on possible adjustment it would it go out there. And and they might like the the sensor like valued by our public MetaFilter. So my words and actions. If and I'd I'd let all of that go last year and it was great. I felt more. Are always pretty funny cars in China in an elephant in its one. But I could have been in this. By last year play. Got you know really hang out with the guys and just be myself and they're not worried about. It's as if I'd say this will figure out an update as it is and I is just incredible. It was it really blows. Incredible science I hope those athletes. Are wrestling with a decision. Can hear from my voice and just or hear from our words just. How great it was being able to may well centered on. What is funny Jason because. On almost every other level it's the pro athlete who is the role model for the amateur athlete the high school athlete and college athlete. Except or you pardon the pun in this arena. Because. This is eagle is a very good friend of mine he's written about you and I read all he's coming up pieces Simonyi high school and college athletes every week and I have to think that if your professional athlete in your reading all these stories he general wrapped that you with people we buy that do you agree with that. I would hope that there would be a spotter on the Phillips C. Based on the generation and they know it's great to see the younger generation. That their markets at any time anyone as it was to develop and deploy its formal or. And I hope. Again Michael visit but he those professional outfit for the positive. To step forward and you know again that it would. Bear are. In marble and probably just going around and seeing. Like you said before there's always like assemblyman who. As a member of the ocean BT community and whether it's our. These executives to our coaches two ownership. There's so many people that are have a connection to the boat should be its community. And better outlook. So I just waiting for the next athlete to come forward. Right Jason we really appreciate you as I mentioned coming on the show and please if you're ever in bought when you're in Boston next guy you have had not been to cloud cap today I can give you a tore. Very exciting because he now. I can tell you he can give I'm assuming you don't have a VIP pass left to get you in before eleventh he stamped it can have a drink it trophy rivers something angle backs are up and I are on the express how Alex is the prince of the city trust you know Larry. Writes it takes again he would take care. So big things can go at Jason Collins for joining us on the program and if you have any guest ideas for us here in Q it's we'd love to hear from you. Yes but a turn your Mike guy with. No talk c'mon it's a podcast or free flowing now I have an idea he's cancer though listeners but that's gonna be blockbuster cable you have an idea send this email Alex are at WEEI dot com app out -- one on Twitter your hat but in Boston. And that notes Kim what would follow with it's as Buckley at Boston Herald dot com as a bucket and eat well yes that's as Buckley at Boston that's our Jason got on the shows that you of anyone you love to hear from what DOS we'd love to you. Potentially each shot with that whomever always open to guest ideas as always WEEI dot com and iTunes stores that scratch two outs. We've reviewed these big gas are hoping to get more previews. Bet five star rating still balk which is very exciting so. It's gonna have never been rated five stars before in my life so it's that's that's good stuff so again thanks for listening thinks Jason contact you law. And a couple weeks.
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