So, you thought we’d skip talking to the Beauty to Drew’s Star Trek geekdom? 25-year-old Erin Gipson, a model and voice coach from Chicago, was the first blonde to be axed this season. Erin found herself on the show after being sent to an audition by her modeling agency. Did she take anything away from the show other than a newfound skill at making a Vulcan sign?
Hi, how are you?
I’m fine! To start off, I’m just wondering: how does a successful voice coach end up on a reality show?
I’m also a model, and my agency sent me to a million auditions, and this was just one of many that week.
Oh, how interesting. So it was just another gig you were trying for?
I did know it was a reality show. I had seen about five seconds of it before, and I knew what the audition was for. I kind of have to go so I just went. (laughs)
They didn’t showcase your singing talent, not once! Were you expecting your music to come into play somehow?
No, I wanted to keep it separate. I’m really precious with my music and I wouldn’t want to exploit it for a reality show, not at all.
Let’s talk about Drew. Had you ever met anyone who was deep into Star Trek fandom before?
No, I had never personally met a Trekker. (laughs) Everyone has weird interests, and I just think he’s very outward about loving Star Trek. I would never look at someone and say their interests are weird -- I’m too old to look at somebody like they’re weird. I give everyone a chance. (laughs) I’m past that. I’m not in high school anymore.
The premise of the show is that the women are beautiful but not too bright. Is that how you see yourself?
I think that’s an easy stereotype that the public slaps on more than it being the basis of the show. As contestants, we all knew it as a social experiment. To me, it was just taking people with completely different interests and having their worlds collide. It’s really annoying to me. I went to college, and I’m smart. I’ve always been smart. (laughs) It was annoying to hear, “Girls who are academically challenged.” I’m like, “No, I’m not academically challenged at all. It was annoying, and it’s just like, just because you have absentminded moments, or like, “blonde moments” as they say, doesn’t really have anything to do with academics. It’s just silly moments, you know?
Everyone I’ve talked to so far has been to college, and they don’t exactly emphasize that on the show.
Yes, my degree is in Music. My thing is I am really good at what I do, and my interest was always very clear to me. I always knew that I needed to focus on Music. The thing is that Drew – his interests are just different. I was never interested in focusing on Science. It just wasn’t my focus.
When it came to the men, were they what you were expecting?
I was actually pleasantly surprised at how understanding and patient that they were. They really looked past the fact that we were all attractive girls. They really didn’t care! (laughs) I’m sure that they did to a certain point, but that wasn’t their main focus at all, and it was really refreshing to be around guys like that.
So it wasn’t like they went on the show to meet women, then?
No, no, not at all. I mean, they didn’t even want to hang out with us half the time. They would rather play their chess games and talk about…whatever they talked about. (laughs)
The guys seemed to get along, but the women were a catty dramafest.
It seems that way from the show, the way they edited it and everything, that it was all drama all the time. It really wasn’t like that. I had a really pleasant experience and I kind of stayed away from all the drama. I focused on my tasks.
What do you think of Cecile going on and on about Niels?
Yes, it was kind of an awkward moment. We were on vacation, there was drinking involved…you know how people act when they, you know. (laughs) I feel kind of bad that they showed that because it wasn’t her, she was drinking, you know? I feel bad.
You think it was the alcohol talking, then?
Yeah, or maybe it was easier for her to keep going because she had that liquid encouragement. (laughs)
Explain the little dance session on the boat. What was that all about?
We were all on a yacht in the middle of the ocean, and it was just like, weird. We were all very excited to be on a boat with each other and finally get a break from always having to study and be serious all the time. We really let loose. We were all dancing. I guess mine was just the funniest. They certainly showed it for a while! (laughs)
Maybe everyone else dancing will be on the DVD extras.
Yeah, I know! The yacht was big, too. I don’t know if it was because cameras were on one part of the boat and not the other. I think at that point, it was kind of cold because we were going full speed ahead, and people were probably dancing inside.
What defines a geek, now that you’ve had some personal exposure?
I just think someone who is really openly passionate about what they like, and it may not necessarily be what the masses are interested in. Like a baseball fan, only it’s like, Star Trek.
Did you feel bad about any of the eliminations before you?
No. I mean, it’s a game. It’s unfortunate that Tori didn’t have more time there. It’s very hard because they for ratings, they show the peak of drama, and what they leave out are really sincere and kind of funny, silly moments. That’s what I’m going to remember. I’m not going to remember all this catty stuff on TV, I’m going to remember my conversations with people and having fun and being silly.
I wanted to ask you: some of the challenges seem insultingly easy for the women, like using a walkie-talkie when everyone today can use a cell phone, or finding a library book. Did you the tasks easier and it was the pressure of the moment that made them difficult?
The Dewey Decimal system, nowadays, it’s just not like that. You don’t go to a card catalog to find a book on a subject. It’s so easy that you may over-think it. We’re more advanced than that, you don’t have to remember how we did things before all this technology.
Do you think the men would have been any faster, then? Like the metal detector – it was just a matter of using it and digging up boxes. There wasn’t any particular “geek” skill to them or any particular brains.
Yeah, but there were 30 boxes and there were only 5 of us, and I dug up 3 empty boxes. It was really frustrating. It wasn’t hard, but you needed luck on your side. I really think luck played about 90% of this whole entire game, from the very moment that you picked your partner to the last challenge I was there for. It just wasn’t written in the stars for me to win, but that’s okay, because I won friends. I’ll look back on funny memories, and that’s what you need to get through life: to laugh, and have memories.
Looking back, is there somebody you would have rather been partnered with?
No, I don’t think like that, because there’s nothing you can do. I don’t do woulda, coulda, shoulda.
You said on the show that you and Drew are from different worlds. Did you feel like Drew learned about your world?
You know, I think the times that Drew and I came together were just to study and to make sure we were prepared for the challenges. I wish I could have talked to him more about what I do, but I was frustrated. He didn’t listen to me a lot of the time, and that’s a challenge I had the whole time being his partner. I felt like I would say something, and I feel like I am four years older, and I do know some stuff, and it was just frustrating to feel like he wasn’t listening to me. He was very young, and it’s those crucial years between the ages of 21 and 25 where so much happens. It doesn’t sound like a huge difference, but it is.
Who were you closest to in the house?
How about JennyLee and Nate? Did you witness any romance blooming there?
Yeah, you know, Jenny and I – actually, right next to Nadia was Jenny as far as who I got along with the best. So Jenny would tell me, when she had a crush on him, and it was really early on in the crush thing, she started telling me – even before the makeover, she was saying, “I can’t wait, Nate is so cool, and I can’t wait to see what he looks like.”
Do you still talk with Nadia and JennyLee?
Actually, Nadia and I have become like best friends. I know it’s fast -- (laughs) – it’s only been a couple of months, but we hang out all the time. My boyfriend teases me about it, but I say, “You know how it is: when you know, you know!” (laughs)
Plus it’s such an intense situation. It’s like knowing someone for a year.
Yeah, totally! Definitely. Especially these days, when we’re all so busy all the time.
Was there anything that happened that you wished had made the edited show? Anything we as viewers did not get to see?
There’s so many things. There’s so many times I’m thinking, “That was so funny, I can’t believe they didn’t show it!” Matt and I wrote a Pi song, the 3.14, and we used the first 27 numbers, and we went in the confessional and sang the song with jazz hands. I taught Matt jazz hands. It was so funny. And then they focus on dumb things, like my dance on the boat. It was so dumb, I mean, everybody was dancing, you know? And they made it look – you know what I mean? They should have showed when I ordered 3 pina coladas to the weight room, because that was way funnier. (laughs)
Thank you very much for speaking with me today, Erin!
I’m just glad to get back to my life and being able to do my thing. Thank you!
Thanks for talking to us Erin, and many thanks to CW for letting us talk to a beauty.